Field of Science

Rapidly Eyeball Abstract and Diagrams

R.E.A.D. = Rapidly Eyeball Abstract and Diagrams

"Did you read the paper by Østman et al. (2014)?"

"Yes, I READ it."

What does it mean to read a paper? How much of it must you have read to be able to say that you have read it? Every word, including acknowledgements and the list of references? Surely not. Probably what most people mean is that you understand the paper and know what the authors did. And to that end reading the abstract and the figures will often suffice - and free up some time for locating some free food (which is a skill I perfected as a grad student and researcher, because $50k per year was just not enough to live on).

Coronavirus: A matter of tone?

I had this conversation a little over a year ago, and I wonder how these four people have faired since, and whether any of them changed their minds or not.

Person 1: "Down for Friday! Not succumbing to the hysteria👆"

Me: "Sorry, but this is not hysteria. You ought to cancel this meeting."

Person 1: "I took down the article because I didnt want to be insensitive to ppl's feelingd about Rona. If you want to freak out, that's Fine. But I just cant live my life in fear nor am I down for self-isolation. There have been tons of outbreaks past and present and for whatever reason human beings persist. Not saying that I'm indifferent. I'm still washing my hands but Im not out here stockpiling and bubble wrapping myself. I say live your life but take reasonable precautions."

Me: "Social distancing is a reasonable precaution. You seem sorely ignorant of the topic, tbh. *smh*"

Person 2: "Can we NOT put people down for their opinions 🙄"

Me: "Can we NOT let opinion guide how we deal with a pandemic? Can we please trust the scientists who tell us to help flattening the curve by exercising social distancing? Suggesting that such measures amount to hysteria *is* ignorant."

Person 3: "Bottom line is to be respectful of others 🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗 I feel ignorant is a harsh word to call a person"

Me: "No, I do not agree that that’s the bottom line. Bottom line is to help flattening the curve. Also, “ignorant” is not a slur, but an apt description when someone simply doesn’t know."

Person 4: "Similar to topic we discuss at book club, COVID is a polarizing issue. There is a way to express opinions and facts. While you are saying may be true, explaining yourself with empathy people understand your viewpoint without being insulted. We all come from different backgrounds and one of the great things about book club is that we all feel free to express ourselves without being judged. Keep that in mind."

Person 1: "Well said. Everyone is entitled to their feelings and reactions about Rona. Look forward to Friday."