Neurophilosophy

The insulta?

Both EurekAlert and ScienceDaily have a story called “Sense of taste different in women with anorexia nervosa”. The stories have been “adapted” from a press release issued earlier today by the University of California, San Diego.

This “adaption” is nothing more than a reproduction of the press release, spelling mistakes included:

…a new study finds that women with anorexia have distinct differences in the insulta — the specific part of the brain that is important for recognizing taste — according to a new study by University of Pittsburgh and University of California, San Diego researchers currently on line in advance of publication in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology.

Something I like even less than the syndication of copy by news agencies is syndication of my own “copy“, especially when I haven’t given permission.

Update: I’ve just received this email from the “author” of Boleman & Friends

I’m sorry about that, I was just posting them to my site so my mom could see them opposed to sending her links. I didn’t mean to offend you. I’m sending her a PDF of the articles instead. Again, I’m sorry for ripping articles off of your site.

.

Comments

  1. #1 Blake Stacey
    September 25, 2007

    The insulta is clearly located adjacent to the crockus.

  2. #2 Rosie Redfield
    September 25, 2007

    From my experience, you’re much better off having the news agencies use copy that you wrote for them, rather than having them attempt to rewrite it in their own (usually wrong) words.

    I had a brief flash of fame some years back (for a paper with a juicy title involving males, mutations, and the cost of sex for females). The best advice I got was to provide the press with a very carefully worded explanation of what I’d done and what it meant, written in such a way that they would feel comfortable using it without rewriting.

    If I hadn’t done this I fear I’d still be cowering under my desk, hiding from the combined wrath of conservatives and liberals, each furious over different misinterpretations of what I’d shown.

  3. #3 hibob
    September 25, 2007

    isn’t Eurekalert just a clearinghouse for academic science press releases?

    from their home page:

    “EurekAlert! provides a central place through which universities, medical centers, journals, government agencies, corporations and other organizations engaged in research can bring their news to the media. “

  4. #4 Kate
    September 25, 2007

    I’d like to stick up for EurekAlert: It’s a press release clearinghouse, and doesn’t claim to generate new content. Corralling releases in one place is a useful service for PIOs and for science writers, who can turn around and create original stories with the release as a guide.

  5. #5 Zachary Tong
    September 25, 2007

    I agree with Kate, I use both EurekAlert and ScienceDaily as a means to find interesting studies I’d like to read, then go hunt down the original publication. I have rss feeds that send me reports from PubMed, but they only grab a limited scope.