dinsdag 8 februari 2011

Science vs Public Opinion

To reward myself for studying like a boss, I like to watch an episode of a random series. This afternoon it was an episode from BBC Horizon about science and more importantly it's credibility.

Sir Paul Nurse, the president of the Royal Society, investigates how it has come to pass that the large public is increasingly skeptical about scientists and science in general. As a main thread through the episode, the example of global warming is used. This is of course a subject of many debates and lends itself as a prime example to see how opinions are formed and influenced.Ultimately he came to the conclusion that point-of-view is more important than peer-review in todays society, meaning that there is a sort of cognitive dissonance where all facts which do not support your opinion are discarded as rubbish. This is most noticeable in the mass-media where often personal and/or political opinions influence the reporting of a story, stressing the importance of a trustworthy media source.

I implore you to watch the episode, it's season 49 episode 10. Besides that I can only urge you to be critical of everything you hear and read, whether it's from your parents, your minister, some science-dude or some meaningless blogger. Don't just accept someone else's opinion about anything, whether it's religion, science or anything else, but more importantly don't ignore the facts.

P.S. I hope this post was coherent, I'm falling asleep here.

13 opmerkingen:

  1. This will be the downfall of the planet if you ask me.

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  2. I am officially stealing your topic for my blog.

    And DAMN YOU for not letting me think of that episode on my own!

    :D

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  3. Haha didn't notice your sleep until the last two sentences ;-)

    Hit me back!

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  4. cool ill check out that episode later tonight

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  5. I'll look for this episode you suggested. Nice post. That is what I always tell to people.

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  6. you stayed coherent, frustrating stuff for all with a brain. maybe one day.

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  7. Basic neurology and evolutionary psychology should be mandatory in all schools...seriously. It explains all the bias, cognitive dissonance etc. etc. that we're all prone too

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  8. public opinion should not be bothered with.

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  9. I ask myself often why people watch random episodes os something.

    don't you miss the story ?
    like, watching the wire randomly would be silly.

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  10. ignoring the facts! thats the point

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