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Arianna Huffington unveiled a new science section for the Huffington Post this morning. This could be a very good thing (but only if they leave behind their nonsense of the past). I consider the development at the Loom...
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Hasn't the Huff Po published stuff by +Philip Plait? Maybe they'll be able to identify good science writers better than they can identify good science. +Chris Mooney would be another good choice.
 
I looked over Arianna's post and yours but saw no mention of the new science editor's name. Do you know who it is? It would be nice to know, so I could persuade friends who have given up on the Huffington Post to give it another look.

I've never totally given up on the Huffington Post, I'm just very wary of it and don't read it regularly for the same reason I don't follow, say, the contrarian blog Watts Up With That. Quite recently I found an article by Bob Ward on the lesser known UK version of the Huffington Post. It was pretty good, and I know Bob's name from elsewhere, he's a science writer and currently Policy and Communications Director at the Grantham Institute.
 
" HuffPost Science, a one-stop shop for the latest scientific news and opinion."

The words "and opinion" appended onto that sentence are making my inner Admiral Ackbar shout. But, well, let's see how it goes, I suppose.
 
+Andrew Spencer I wrote a few things there four or five years ago, when they were still new. But their constant promotion of dangerous antivax quackery forced me to leave. While I think having a science section is a step in the right direction, they have a lot of reparations to make before I'll stop calling them a den of antiscience nonsense.
 
Got to agree with Plait... especially since the AOL merger, they have basically sold themselves to sensationalism and fluff. Fingers crossed as they have a large following.
 
Thanks, +Carl Zimmer. Here's what I was looking for:

http://www.medpedia.com/news_analysis/188-CMU-Medical-and-Technology-Review/entries/67572-Viral-Hepatitis-8-Self-Defense-Tips-for-Travelers-in-Thailand

It's an advice piece by David Freeman on viral hepatitis and yes, it does unequivocally advise travellers to get vaccinated, saying "Safe, effective vaccines are available for hepatitis A and B, though not yet for hepatitis C" and quoting a professor of clinical medicine who says "Anyone who travels abroad frequently should probably be vaccinated."

No nonsense, no fluff. Given where we're starting from, this is promising.
 
+Carl Zimmer Many folks don't realize journalists make a distinction between a news blog and a content farm.
 
In my opinion, the post by +Seth Mnookin over at HuffPo will make an interesting case study of how this may work out. In the first place I believe that the Huffington Post readership base makes this just the place that Seth's message needs to reach. On the other hand, in the comment thread, it is apparently the media editor of Age of Autism that attempts to spin the conversation. And this person has some sort of HuffPo badge, marking her as a regular and well connected HuffPo contributor. On the other hand, comment thread hijacking is not unique. As I know that +Philip Plait also knows, this comment thread issue can arise on science blog posts also.

Authors who chose to post at this venue, and the science editor here will have their work cut out for them in terms of maintaining credibility. And the rest of us ought to be keeping a wary eye on the situation as well. This should not merely become another platform for Age of Autism to drum up a following,
 
I went back and forth a fair amount on this before I decided to post a piece there. (Here's the link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/seth-mnookin/need-for-reliable-science-journalism_b_1183429.html?ref=science ) Ultimately, I decided that I would take David at his word -- that he was putting together a legitimate science portal that wouldn't give credence to quackery -- with the knowledge that, like what +Philip Plait did when the anti-vac lunacy got out of hand, I could simply never post there again if my I ended up being wrong. But certainly I have that same fear: That people who know and respect my work will assume that what appears alongside it deserves equal attention and respect.

I did think it was a good sign that they let me call out their own past in my post -- both implicitly, with the tone of the whole piece, and explicitly (I embedded a link in the section below to a HuffPo piece by Jenny McCarthy, which I actually inserted at +Carl Zimmer 's urging): " Those realities have created an enormous amount of opportunity for budding science writers, blogging networks, and non-traditional newsgathering operations -- but with those opportunities come responsibility. The fact that a specific story is controversial (or that it is promoted by a particularly outspoken celebrity) does not mean it deserves the oxygen it needs to survive."
 
They've been published science opinion/politics pieces by Peter Gleick over the past year, as well — those have mostly been spot-on.
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