Coca-Cola co-opts the National Press Foundation while the World Health Organization tries — again — to issue dietary guidelines with strict limits on sugar, Tabitha M. Powledge writes in her weekly science blogs roundup: "So you can see why the sugar people are in a panic, and why Coke has seized an opportunity to lobby journalists." Also, integrity at the Office of Research Integrity, gene therapy for HIV infection, and President Obama amid some potted plants.
The writing and editing are all over and it's time for the hardest part — celebrating your book's publication. But Bill Ferris is here to help with an all-too-true guide to planning a book launch party: "Like any good party, you can't have just ANYBODY showing up. Limit invitations to whoever happens to be on your Facebook friends list. Don't bother with real-life invitations – you've burned out all your real-life friendships by asking them to beta-read your novel."
Multiple events that came to light in late 2013 revealed that the science-writing community is not immune to professional issues of sexual harassment. A ScienceWriters2013 session titled The XX Question served as a forum for a broad range of issues related to professional status and recognition for women in the field. This post is a commentary from “LadyBits” blogger Rose Eveleth on issues raised in the session. From the Winter 2013-14ScienceWriters.
Joel Andren's public relations firm PressFriendly has been in business for just a month, but he already has developed some firm ideas about how to (and how not to) get reporters to pick up your pitch. He offers tips like this: "Email is the best way to get ahold of a reporter (with certain exceptions). It works, but it doesn't work immediately. Always leave enough time before your announcement to email the reporter and have one follow-up. One follow-up should suffice."
There are many hopeful contenders for the title of America's Best Journalism School, but the standards for measuring such things are weak at best, Eric Newton writes on the Knight Foundation blog: "The opaque nature of journalism education quality and the lack of general transparency is bad for the next generation of content creators, young people who increasingly struggle to get through college, all too often graduating after six years with a large student loan debt."
What does Arsenic and Old Lace have in common with Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle? They're both examples of Kurt Vonnegut's "Man in Hole" story shape, according to a Nieman Storyboard post. The Slaughterhouse-Five author developed his story-shapes model as a master's thesis at the University of Chicago, but it was rejected. It later found new life in a YouTube video and the Nieman post includes interpretations in both text and graphic form.