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LIGO_casebook

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THE LIGO COMMENTARIAT Science reporting in the olden days was simple: Scientists put out information. Reporters reported this faithfully. If the information put out later turned out to be wrong, the reporters were not at fault. Today we have a new breed of science reporters who project themselves as sciencesavvy arbiters of science, and tend to see themselves as science celebrities. They promote chosen science like hucksters. They make editorial comments and value judgements. They ignore critics and criticisms at will. Therefore, when what they report is false science or fraud, they become part sharers of the blame. Some of the blame must be assigned to them, including legal blame. Even worse are the so-called science popularizers, who are actually practicing scientists. When they promote fraudulent science, it is not science popularizing. Whatever it is, it is not good for human society. And then there are the book writers or auteurs. They project themselves as expert scientists, biographers, psychoanalysts and heroizers – all rolled in one. They are largely a nuisance for anyone trying to expose bad science. But the bottom line for them is $$$. Even if their books in the end turn out to be a load of lies, what does it matter? The money is already in the bank. 93

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