The papers were released online—
They numbered sixty-six—
So, how to make one paper shine?
The writers have their tricks.
A catchy title sure is fine
To pluck you from the mix
A subject could be quite divine,
But leave you in a fix….
I’m not a regular reader of PNAS (the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences), though I probably should be if I had the time… but I ran into a popular press story with a stop-the-presses title: “Science proves women like men with bigger penises.”
Past research has seemed to indicate that women, as a group, are drawn to larger male members. But those results have been disputed as sexist, or scientifically flawed, or both.
So Mautz and his team, working at the Australian National University, designed an experiment in hopes of settling the controversy. They created 49 unique, computer-generated, nude, life-sized male figures. Each figure varied in three traits: height, shoulder-hip ratio and flaccid penis size.
You can find more at the link, or at the other link, or probably by watching the evening news, at this point. I, myself, was amused that this paper, out of 66 that were published in PNAS today, was the one that merited 15 paragraphs at NBC.
My suspicion is that if a paper about penis size was not available, we’d all be reading about how global warming is going to effect wine production. Which it is–just check the other link.
And among 66 papers looking at ape parasites, hippocampal neurons, planetary basalts, noble-metal nanocrystals, antibiotic resistance transfer, and bovine viral diarrhea virus, we had a total of two titles that had potential in the mainstream media (when did I grow so cynical?). On a normal day, wine production would have been enough.
But not when up against penis size.
(BTW, one of my biggest and most reliable sources of hits on the old blog was a post about “the biggest dicks of all“–that is, about the frauds at enzyte who were marketing snake-oil. Hey. Posts about penis size sell. Apparently, even in the science business.)