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Dysfunction In Modern Science? 155

Posted by timothy
from the could-be-worse-could-be-social-text dept.
eldavojohn writes "The editors of Infection and Immunity are sending a warning signal about modern science. Two editorials (1 and 2) published in the journal have given other biomedical researchers pause to ask if modern science is dysfunctional. Readers familiar with the state of academia may not be surprised but the claims have been presented today to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) that level the following allegations: 'Incentives have evolved over the decades to encourage some behaviors that are detrimental to good science' and 'The surest ticket to getting a grant or job is getting published in a high profile journal, this is an unhealthy belief that can lead a scientist to engage in sensationalism and sometimes even dishonest behavior to salvage their career.' The data to back up such slanderous claims? 'In the past decade the number of retraction notices for scientific journals has increased more than 10-fold while the number of journals articles published has only increased by 44%.' At least a few of such retractions have been covered here."
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Dysfunction In Modern Science?

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  • by crazyjj (2598719) * on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @11:49AM (#39486065)

    When I was in grad school there were always grant-whore and PR scientists around. Everyone knew who they were. They were the Chicken Littles who were always proclaiming the end of the world if their pet project wasn't funded. They were always the first to run to the press with GREATLY exaggerated claims and alarmism if it served their purposes (especially when they were looking for political support with funding). Their "science" was far less about scientific method than their own financial self-interests (including getting the precious tenure that they all craved like little lapdogs).

    Of course, I have a friend who still won't accept that this EVER happens. "Science would never allow that," he says. His naivete is so endearing.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      That's because it's not a problem with science, but rather with the funding of science, which is an administrative and political problem, not a scientific one. Strictly speaking, your friend is technically correct - the best kind of correct.

      • it's not a problem with science, but rather with the funding of science, which is an administrative and political problem

        Absolutely. The extreme competition and unscrupulous behavior we see today is because there is not enough money to go around. When (if) funding is restored to historical levels I expect we will see a concomitant decrease in malfeasance.

      • by ATMAvatar (648864) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @11:13PM (#39493197) Journal
        More generally speaking, take any positive human endeavor, add money to it, and watch the value to humanity leech away.
    • by Kenja (541830) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:00PM (#39486233)
      Your fried is right, "science" wont allow that to happen, but people will. And when it happens, its not science.
      • by idontgno (624372) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:32PM (#39486865) Journal

        And what is "Science" (must capitalize correctly) without scientists? Including unscrupulous ones?

        Way to posit "no true scientist." [wikipedia.org].

        Science is a human artifact. Every human artifact is potentially susceptible to fraud, manipulation, trolling, marketing, and every other foible and evil humans are capable of. Almost any human intention and motive can be expressed through the manipulation and corruption of the scientific process. And scientific fraud is no less about science than financial fraud is about finance.

        There is no great, glorious and impersonal "Science". Insisting otherwise is just another form of deism, one that gives rise to the criticism that science is just another religion. And I'm sure no one here wants that.

        • And what is "Science" (must capitalize correctly) without scientists? Including unscrupulous ones?

          Way to posit "no true scientist." [wikipedia.org].

          Science is a human artifact. Every human artifact is potentially susceptible to fraud, manipulation, trolling, marketing, and every other foible and evil humans are capable of. Almost any human intention and motive can be expressed through the manipulation and corruption of the scientific process. And scientific fraud is no less about science than financial fraud is about finance.

          There is no great, glorious and impersonal "Science". Insisting otherwise is just another form of deism, one that gives rise to the criticism that science is just another religion. And I'm sure no one here wants that.

          Wow, 12 mod points left, and I really wanted to mod you into oblivion. Instead, I'll just point out why you are wrong, and let some other mods go medieval on your ass. To answer your question, science is a process, not an artifact, so it doesn't matter if there are scientists around, unscrupulous or otherwise. It is a methodology, not a thing. If humans didn't exist, the process would still be there for some other species to discover and use. Since your premise is demonstrably false, your assertions

        • To expand upon your great post, at the risk of getting modded down, since people confuse passion and integrity:

          A fantastic read is "Myths of Skepticism"
          http://www.rpi.edu/~sofkam/talk/talk.html [rpi.edu]

          Feynman already warned about how Science was turning into a religion.
          http://www.lhup.edu/~DSIMANEK/cargocul.htm [lhup.edu]

          He wasn't the first, Planck said it ~50 years earlier.
          "Science advanced one funeral at a time", paraphrasing Max Planck's "A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them s

      • The point is that it is labeled as science even when it isn't. People hold up findings and research claimed to be scientific as if they were science. Those findings and research were found and performed by people who are capable of mistakes, distortion, lies, and so on. People generally can't tell the difference between actual science and fake science sometimes published in scientific journals. A growing amount of bad science makes it more difficult to trust the current state of science. This stuff ten
      • by dbet (1607261)
        Why wouldn't "science" allow it? Science allows for outrageous hypotheses, even if they eventually can't be proven, or are proven false.
    • by magsol (1406749) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:02PM (#39486269) Journal
      While it's disheartening to hear about such abuse of the scientific method, from a purely scientific perspective (meta!) this actually isn't all that surprising. Abuse exists in every system; there's always a distribution around the mean of those who are honest and trying to do the right thing, and the minority who are either malevolently trying to game the system or who are truly just competent enough to not get fired. I'm also a grad student and while I would love to agree with your friend--in theory, science shouldn't allow it, but as we know, theory and practice rarely align in practice--I have to acknowledge that science is just another system run by imperfect human beings and, implicitly, will have some imperfections.

      The problem arises when this distribution of participants skews and the "expected" minority (the quantity of which you still try to minimize!) grows. So the question becomes: is modern science suffering from a growing problem of bad scientists? It's hard to say. While I'm willing to accept the numbers, the title "is modern science dysfunctional" is, itself, a tad bit sensational, making the rest of the article difficult to take seriously.
      • Unless you can quantify honesty, it's a distribution around the mode.
      • by ceoyoyo (59147)

        "science shouldn't allow it, but as we know, theory and practice rarely align in practice"

        It looks like science isn't allowing it, which isn't really surprising. The fakers are caught out eventually, whether it's being explicitly identified and their papers retracted, or their results disproved.

        The problem is non-scientific - we'd like the system to work more efficiently by discouraging the fakery and other dirty tricks in the first place, using means unrelated to the scientific method.

        • Th outright fraud will be exposed, but the real problem is the huge amount of selection and publication bias that goes on (at least in biomed), as well as misuse of stats. We need to start getting excel spreadsheets in the supplements.

          • by ceoyoyo (59147) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:31PM (#39486829)

            I have yet to see evidence that there is any publication bias, at least of the kind that most people talk about. There is an ANALYSIS bias - everybody (thinks) they know how to analyze for positive results, but few few researchers have any clue at all how to actually analyze negative results. When you hear the vast majority of (non-particle physics) researchers talk about "negative results" they're actually talking about inconclusive results - p-values that are not significant, with no discussion of beta, confidence intervals, or minimum significant effects. Inconclusive results shouldn't be published, unless it's to provide required sample size estimates for future studies.

            Most researchers' poor stats skills are indeed a problem, but not a scientific method one. Errors due to poor stats will be discovered, in time, by the scientific method, just like actual fraud.

            • All data is beautiful and should be published. "Inconclusive" is subjective. It depends on the prior probability you ascribe to the hypothesis.

              • by ceoyoyo (59147)

                "All data is beautiful and should be published."

                Almost all data is ugly, capricious and vile. Occasionally, with lots of work, you can dress it up to be moderately attractive. If you want to publish all data then start a Journal of Inconclusive Results and Lazy Statistics. The mainstream journals have too much trouble publishing what they get now.

                "'Inconclusive' is subjective. It depends on the prior probability you ascribe to the hypothesis."

                It is not. Your very next sentence suggests how it can be obj

                • Almost all data is ugly, capricious and vile.

                  Ha, this is what I think is beautiful. I was kind of kidding though. Anyway, journal's have no problem with publishing 5 pages articles with 40-50 page supplements, I don't think space is an issue. For people studying very similar things having access to the (almost) raw data would be very useful. Of course it should be curated and organized somewhat.

                  If you're too lazy to calculate confidence intervals on your non-significant result and make an argument about why

    • by Electricity Likes Me (1098643) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:04PM (#39486293)

      Double edged blade. If you have tenure then you can hold off on publishing to make sure you're really, truly correct. If you don't, then you have no choice.

      To my mind the real issue is that the notion of "debate in the literature" is being rapidly killed by the increase in complexity and cost of some experiments, and to a greater extent the very terse manner in which journals like to have their experimental methods published: I'd much rather read a rambling journal or logbook then someone's - effectively "opinion" - on what they think their important experimental variables are, since accusing someone of publishing false information is ridiculously difficult (and not to be taken lightly) whereas people simply missing things is common and to be expected.

      • by ceoyoyo (59147)

        Debate in the literature is being killed by people (silly reviewers included) who think that everything should be perfect before it's published. Someone in the Slashdot story about cancer cures today posted that scientists shouldn't publish animal research because the results might not translate to humans. I had a reviewer on my last paper actually say "method should be perfect before it is published" because we mentioned some potential improvements we planned to look at as future work.

      • by serviscope_minor (664417) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @07:05PM (#39491505) Journal

        : I'd much rather read a rambling journal or logbook then someone's - effectively "opinion" - on what they think their important experimental variables are,

        You think you would, but trust me, you wouldn't. This is what you get when you have a bad paper to review. A disorganised rambling mush of random, unconnected results mixed in with a bunch of rather peculiar and rambling experimental conditions where it is amazingly hard to figure out what's going on. It is really, really hard to figure out if the experiments are sane and the results even remotely interesting in a paper like that. Even getting past the first page will bore you to tears.

        While your current opinion reflects an admirable level idealism in the dispassionate search for knowledge, unfortunately the world in all its messy glory has a habit of getting in the way.

    • by Pausanias (681077) <pausaniasx@@@gmail...com> on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:07PM (#39486347)

      You are either bitter, or were stuck in a bad department. While such sensationalist people certainly exist, few of them actually influence the broader debate. In my community such people are far outnumbered by brilliant and truly insightful researchers who work incredibly hard and whose contributions to our understanding of the universe are vastly undervalued by their pay. To think that some of the most brilliant minds in the world, working at the frontiers of science simply because they love it, are paid no more than a senior code monkeys, is the real travesty.

      • by SJester (1676058)
        I'm in a similar community but unfortunately people outside of science, even educated and intelligent people, do not distinguish between the two breeds. My university is honoring a well-respected faculty thinker who proffers deep and meaningful opinions with little evidence, while us fact-based scientists slave like Morlocks in the subterranean labs to find evidence for little things. The people who set our salaries enjoy showmanship; they call it "good communication." I'm often asked, in fact, why we don't
        • by wisty (1335733)

          It is "good communication". It does add a lot of value. Malcolm Gladwell famous because he's a great communicator. But it would be silly to call him a scientist.

      • by Mindcontrolled (1388007) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:29PM (#39486791)
        The climate denialists' poisoning of the wells has worked out. Everyone believes by now that "they are only doing it for the grant money".
        • by geekpowa (916089)

          The climate denialists' poisoning of the wells has worked out.

          Or rather, as the article suggests, it is merely that CAGW is cargo cult science and it is coming home to roost. Your use of the word 'denialist' shows your poor grasp of the debate and the range of opinions out there. Where do 'lukewarmers' fit into your simplistic world view?

          Everyone believes by now that "they are only doing it for the grant money".

          Such a crude strawman. Typical of this debate. If we insist on discussing motives, then subconscious drivers perhaps. I suspect that it is to some extent about social prestige and the desire contribute back to the human race. Afte

    • by NeutronCowboy (896098) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:26PM (#39486701)

      In other news, HR people find out that when people are judged against a specific metric, those people will work towards that metric and disregard their actual job. HR and management is particularly shocked, and wants to know what metrics they can use to make sure people don't game their system.

    • by operagost (62405)
      "Science would never allow that?" That's the problem right there: assuming that science is a moral system.
  • Yet... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @11:54AM (#39486133)
    For some reason, people defend publish-or-perish and systems that evaluate researchers based on the quantity of work or the names of journals or conferences where they have presented their work.
    • Re:Yet... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by ceoyoyo (59147) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:00PM (#39486237)

      Publish or perish is good. As a scientist you MUST communicate your ideas or you're a failure. What's wrong is the use of simple metrics like paper count or journal "quality." As usual, if you want to properly evaluate someone's worth you need to use your brain, not your calculator.

      • Publish or perish is good. As a scientist you MUST communicate your ideas or you're a failure. What's wrong is the use of simple metrics like paper count or journal "quality." As usual, if you want to properly evaluate someone's worth you need to use your brain, not your calculator.

        I agree with the latter, but as for the first sentence? Not so much. The reason why? We need look no further than a gent by the name of Jan Hendrik Schön [wikipedia.org]

        • by ceoyoyo (59147)

          "The scandal provoked discussion in the scientific community about the degree of responsibility of coauthors and reviewers of scientific papers. The debate centered on whether peer review, traditionally designed to find errors and determine relevance and originality of papers, should also be required to detect deliberate fraud."

          Nothing to do with publish or perish. The guy wasn't even faking things because he was up for review and didn't have any papers - he was faking things to get famous.

          If that's the be

        • But what if your project will perish before it makes sense to publish, because the price and time of the research is too great and the progress too small, even when you're really on to something? It seems a shame to miss out on that.
      • Publish or perish is good.

        This is correct! Just look at the difference in output between scientists in the Soviet Union and the US during the cold war. Our system, in which output is paramount, uses competition to drive scientific work. The USSR had a lot of brilliant, well-funded people, but because there was little pressure to publish the impact of their work was limited.

        The problem today is that research is so severely underfunded that competition arises not from the desire for excellence, but because there is simply not enough

      • by lbbros (900904)
        However, in the current academic climate (at least for life sciences) publish or perish is not a way to communicate your ideas or to advance knowledge. It's a way to get funded so you can continue working.
        • by ceoyoyo (59147)

          Scientists who don't contribute shouldn't get funding.

          Yes, there need to be reasonable limits. As I said elsewhere, if you want to evaluate a person you need to use your brain, not your calculator. But off the top of my head I can think of a professor (in life sciences) at a major university who didn't publish any first author papers during her ten year post doc, and hasn't published any papers as a professor. She's coming up on her five year review in a few months. She SHOULDN'T be funded and shouldn't

          • by lbbros (900904)
            The problem is in the degree of such evaluations. Also, the "expected results" section in grants are sometimes difficult to write down, after all you're doing the experiments in the first place to actually see anything. And then there's the matter of authorship in papers, since you can easily lose the first author position out of politics (I had to fight for one of mine quite strongly).
    • by dkleinsc (563838) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:07PM (#39486325) Homepage

      But really, there's another way to solve this problem, and one that I'm sure at least some people make use of: Plagiarism.

      To quote Tom Lehrer:

      I am never forget the day I am given first original paper to write. It was on analytic and algebraic topology of locally Euclidean metrization of infinitely differentiable Riemannian manifold. Bozhe moi! This I know from nothing. What I'm going to do? But I think of great Lobachevsky and get idea - ahah!

      I have a friend in Minsk, who has a friend in Pinsk
      Whose friend in Omsk has friend in Tomsk
      With friend in Akmolinsk
      His friend in Alexandrovsk has friend in Petropavlovsk
      Whose friend somehow is solving now
      The problem in Dnepropetrovsk

      And when his work is done - ha ha! - begins the fun
      From Dnepropetrovsk to Petropavlovsk
      By way of Iliysk and Novorossiysk
      To Alexandrovsk to Akmolinsk
      To Tomsk to Omsk to Pinsk to Minsk
      To me the news will run
      Yes, to me the news will run

      And then I write, by morning, night
      And afternoon, and pretty soon
      My name in Dnepropetrovsk is cursed
      When he finds out I publish first

  • by john83 (923470) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:02PM (#39486263)
    Surely any competitive system to select people for desirable posts is going to encourage dubious behaviour? Those editorials don't seem to offer very significant changes, just new metrics for people to game. It's not just academia either - every career where your value is measured by some proxy metrics is going to see unethical behaviour from people near the cut-off.
    • by timeOday (582209)
      I agree, except it's true of all jobs, because all performance measures are proxy measures to some degree. Even a straight commission salesman can earn a big commissions while screwing his company if he does it by making false promises to customers or undercutting others in the company to move up the ladder. All measures of "output" have unintended consequences.
  • by Gavin Scott (15916) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:05PM (#39486309)

    ...but people forget that "scientists" are not "science", they are simply people using the tools of science to seek the kind of knowledge that the scientific method and process can produce. As such they are subject to all of the same pressures, hopes, dreams, failures, etc. that the rest of us are.

    But the process of science itself will always move forward, since science is only about reproducible experiments, so no matter how much bad (human) behavior might get involved, eventually the "truth" will win out. But the bad behavior can of course be extremely damaging to the process.

    So there's nothing wrong with "science" or even its application I think. There are probably economic incentives that are promoting behaviors that affect the short-term reliability and the long-term costs of gaining useful scientific knowledge though, and hopefully we can come up with ways of improving the meta-processes.

    G.

    • The problem is that it is wasting a bunch of time and money. Both of the researchers publishing crap and those who have to sift through it.

  • by 0123456 (636235) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:09PM (#39486371)

    Read the part after the one everyone always quotes about the 'military-industrial complex'.

    • by wanzeo (1800058) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @03:09PM (#39489083)

      Fascinating. For those who are curious:

      In this revolution, research has become central, it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.

      Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.

      The prospect of domination of the nation's scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present – and is gravely to be regarded.

  • by bcrowell (177657) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:15PM (#39486497) Homepage

    A lot of the issues discussed here are only relevant in the life sciences, and especially in medicine. Retractions are not a big phenomenon in the physical sciences. Ditto for publication bias (refusal by journals to publish negative results or failed attempts to replicate published results). This is essentially just because the life sciences are harder than the physical sciences. The life sciences have much more intractable problems with complexity of systems and difficulty in controlling variables.

    Some of the problems they discuss are clearly insoluble. The uncertain career prospects for young scientists are a straightforward matter of supply and demand. There are many, many very talented people who would like to spend their careers doing fundamental scientific research. The number of such people is 1 or 2 orders of magnitude greater than the number of jobs available. This isn't a new phenomenon, although in the past the problem may have been hidden more, because, e.g., up until about 1950, only white, affluent, European and American males were considered prospects for a career in science.

    • by vlm (69642)

      Could be that physical sciences have about two or three generations more experience with the concept of pounding the data set with computers for statistical analysis. Maybe give the soft sciences another generation or two?

      A big factor might be that datasets are no longer handwritten in a lab notebook on the experimenters desk, but are living on flash drives, DVD-Rs, dropbox, ftp sites...

      • Perhaps, but bioinfomatics is an up and coming field. The big, big problem is the inherent variability of biologic systems and our rather primitive understanding of same. The other problem is we're shotgunning science - we spend an enormous amount of money to study human biology (poorly, in general) whilst we should really be spending money on the back end - bugs and worms and the like that we might be able to understand better.

        There are good reasons for this, of course, and 'science' doesn't really care.

    • by Hatta (162192)

      Some of the problems they discuss are clearly insoluble. The uncertain career prospects for young scientists are a straightforward matter of supply and demand.

      This is not insoluble. We can and should increase demand for talented young researchers. Basic science is the best investment we can as a society, in terms of ROI. The problem is that the returns are enormous but infrequent, and not just limited to the funding body.

      If we understand just how valuable basic research is, then our scientists don't hav

      • by bcrowell (177657)

        >>Some of the problems they discuss are clearly insoluble. The uncertain career prospects for young scientists are a straightforward matter of supply and demand.

        >This is not insoluble. We can and should increase demand for talented young researchers. Basic science is the best investment we can as a society, in terms of ROI. The problem is that the returns are enormous but infrequent, and not just limited to the funding body.

        I disagree. One of the problems described in TFA is that there is a large number of researchers churning out papers that are either of low quality or simply unimportant. They're describing the life sciences, but this is also my experience in physics. There are already too many people scouring the same scientific hunting grounds at the same time.

        The other reason I disagree is that I wasn't kidding about 1 or 2 orders of magnitude. Seriously. There are literally 10 to 100 times more people who would like thes

    • by CAIMLAS (41445)

      This is essentially just because the life sciences are harder than the physical sciences. The life sciences have much more intractable problems with complexity of systems and difficulty in controlling variables.

      That's certainly a possible contributing factor. I will grant you that.

      Or, quite simply, they're not rigorously exercising the scientific method, as you have to in a more provable field such as hard science. (There's a reason why it's called hard science, you know.) It seems like every other week we read about some study 'proving' some new scientific principle which is plagued with logical and procedural fallacy.

  • by Improv (2467) <pgunn@dachte.org> on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @12:16PM (#39486517) Homepage Journal

    The high profile journals weed out sensationalist claims more often than not (part of being high-profile is having a finely tuned bullshit meter). The number of retractions are also a sign of strength, as the mechanisms forcing people to correct their errors are getting better. This isn't to claim that the process doesn't have room for improvement, but the cited examples are rubbish.

    • by Nidi62 (1525137)

      The number of retractions are also a sign of strength, as the mechanisms forcing people to correct their errors are getting better.

      This is what I was thinking. Perhaps along with this, it is simply easier with today's technology to identify faulty or incorrect (whether intentionally or not) research? Communication is easier, so more people can look at your data, your analysis, your conclusions, and with a larger audience, the more likely it is that any incongruity will catch someone's eye. 100 years ago there was a much smaller audience for scientific research, and it could take a long time (months, if not years) for any interested

    • Re:OP is broken (Score:4, Insightful)

      by jeffmeden (135043) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @01:01PM (#39487383) Homepage Journal

      The high profile journals weed out sensationalist claims more often than not (part of being high-profile is having a finely tuned bullshit meter). The number of retractions are also a sign of strength, as the mechanisms forcing people to correct their errors are getting better. This isn't to claim that the process doesn't have room for improvement, but the cited examples are rubbish.

      In my head the summary read "Modern science is dysfuctional, claims several modern scientists. See attached scientific statistics for details."

  • You can't expect journals to vrify the claims of a paper. That's the job of the scientific community, to try to replicate the results and see what happens. Of course, accepting unreplicated results as facts is a serious problem in some sciences.

    • by green1 (322787)

      One of the big problems I've been hearing about recently is that many journals refuse to publish replication papers, which means nobody wants to replicate the results of any paper to see if the original author was correct, because they themselves won't be able to publish it.
      Replication is one of the most important part of the scientific process, it's how you find liars, cheats, and actual errors. If you discourage people from trying to replicate other's experiments you harm the whole scientific process.

  • The primary work of pseudo-scientist is to make faux-science for personal, religious, corporate, and government purposes.
    Sort of like the Iran-science of tits-&-earthquake relativity, USA proof of poof Iraq-WMDs, EU ..., RU ..., CN ....

    Highly certified people accept lies as personally essential. Highly qualified people accept proof/truth as life critical.

  • Considering how many misinformed people there are on the internet, there are lots of people who aren't even taking a basic science requirement in school at the time they post random bull in youtube comments, their blogs, their facebooks, etc. all of which, while not an influential public claim to scientific research, creates loads of other spout-off-the-mouth misinformed folk who read the ridiculous e-diatribes. Crap is made up on spot it seems, all reactionary and without an ounce of "I might be wrong..."

  • What baffles me is why aren't the authors of retracted articles punished in some way? At a research lab I worked at the prominent researcher proclaimed the discovery of a new particle that made a big splash in the news - when you looked at the details, he wasn't even the first guy to claim it, it is just that the original claim had marginal statistical significance, he just claimed he got a bigger signal - he got lots of citations, but no-one could repeat the experiment and when you looked closer at what he

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