Given the recent interest in the merits (or lack thereof) of consensus messaging, I was planning to write something. However, since I’m likely to be busy all day (and I’m feeling lazy) I will simply reblog this post which largely says what I was going to say anyway. If I get a chance, I will try to write something about the recent Pearce et al. paper.
I might have to give Dan Kahan some credit. Even though I’m not convinced that consensus messaging is toxic and polarising in general, there are certainly circumstances in which it can be, as I discovered – again – on Twitter yesterday. There appear to be some physical scientists who object quite strongly to its use and, to be quite honest, I have some sympathy with their views; I don’t really like it either.
I wish we lived in a world in which what was obvious to those working in a field, was immediately obvious to everyone else. I wish we lived in a world where all you had to do was explain science clearly and carefully, and everyone would understand it, accept it, and recognise its significance. I wish we lived in a world in which scientists who engaged publicly would always include the caveats to their chosen scientific position…
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