Update: this post is confusing if you haven’t read the one before it. The article is a good article; my commentary continues from the previous post.
Another article on DN Lee and Scientific American, Nobody Ever Called Einstein A ‘Whore’. (Yes, yes, frisson, blah blah collective outrage, yadda yadda impure motives. Noted, Jeremy, now go monitor someone else for a few years.)
Danielle Lee is another one of its well-known scientific writers. Lee, a biologist who studies animal behavior, mammals and the ways organisms interact with their environment, earned a doctoral degree in biology from the University of Missouri–St. Louis, was named Young Professional of the Year by the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis, and her urban science blog was named as a finalist for the 2011 Black Weblog Award in the best science and technology category. When not blogging, Lee works for the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. By all accounts Lee is well-known and well-respected in scientific circles…
It’s good to have some background.
Then there was Ofek, then Mariette DiChristina removed Lee’s blog post…
That’s when things really got ugly. Besides the ethical considerations of journalists removing whole stories from websites without warning or fuller explanation, Scientific American apparently failed to take into consideration how readers would react, especially those who had already seen the post. Not only was the initial story picked up by the ever popular Buzz Feed, the website specializing in viral content, also implicated Scientific American’s complicity in the controversy. Scientists around the globe are now protesting the magazine, taking to Twitter and other social media platforms to demand that their content also be removed from the site, stating their refusal to now use Scientific American’s materials in the classroom, and are dropping subscriptions. And they are calling on colleagues to take similar actions.
Aka the frisson of collective outrage. How dare scientists around the globe protest! How dare they make Danielle Lee feel supported instead of isolated and dismissed? How dare they, I tell you! It’s much better to steer clear of all possible frissons and leave everything as it is, including random people calling women whores when they feel like it.
…the oldest continuously published monthly magazine in the United States should have known better, even more so (one would think) since its editor is a woman. If nothing else editors should explain its relationship with Biology-onlineand the editor who is accused of calling Lee out of her name. One would also think that editors at Scientific American would be empathetic about scientists getting riled when their work is not respected, but something tells me that Einstein never had to worry about being called a “whore,” let alone an urban one.
Uh oh. Is that a reference to privilege? It’s all over.