The disturbing trend of science

Review of a Stanford Medicine article by Keith Humphreys

Source: TheCuriousCoconut

Oreo cookies have formed an important component of the market for the past many years. As per Target Market’s latest survey, 75% of the people had positive opinions about Oreos, and 7% buy them every week. The sweet delicacy was in a controversy when a press release stated that, “Oreos are as addictive as cocaine!”. And well-known outlets, namely, The Washington Post, Christian Science Monitor, and Time, were among the broadcasters. After looking for the source of this information, the author finally discovered that it was an undergraduate research project at Connecticut College in New London. This was quite surprising! Peer-Reviewing is a crucial step in science writing, and a press release like this one, without getting your work evaluated by some experts of the concerned area, can harm society.

According to Dr. Edythe London, there were fatal flaws in the study that concluded Oreos being addictive. Other ways of science rumors arise when the peer-reviewed, real findings are distorted by press releases. Such acts mislead the public and spread unnecessary fear. To err is human and science authors are no different, however, before getting over-enthusiastic about our work, we should spend a little while getting it peer-reviewed and checking it for validity ourselves. Else, not only do we undermine our credibility in the eyes of the general public, but we also tend to break the trust of our readers, who had assumed the theories to be well-tested.