Sunday, August 18, 2013

Link Farm: Chemistry Communication

Blogs, like any medium, shift, change, and grow over time. At first, I devoted my humble corner of the internet to food chemistry. After a while, it became a tool to root out misconceptions about chemistry in popular culture.

Well, to borrow a phrase from Click and Clack, I've come around for the "third half of the show" - figuring out how to bridge the gap between the growing public desire for accessible, informative, entertaining science content and chemistry's approach to that communication. A lot of terms have swirled around this issue: "punching down," #BogusChem, "Inside Baseball," 'in-reach' not outreach, #chemophobia, and "dumbing down," to name just a few.

Thanks for the tip about the magnets, Andre!
(P.S. Yes, I know "D" isn't an element)
This post will serve as a (growing) collection of pieces dedicated to thoughtful chemistry outreach.
Readers: Have a favorite post I haven't included? Send it along in the comments.

Janet Stemwedel, Doing Good Science: "When we target chemophobia, are we punching down?"

Chad Jones, The Collapsed Wavefunction: "Punching down? I don't remember swinging at all."

Ash Jogalekar, The Curious Wavefunction: "Where's the chemistry lobby? On why we need a National Center for Chemical Education."

See Arr Oh, Just Like Cooking: "The Chemistry Popularity Conundrum"

Michelle Francl, Slate: "Don't Take Medical Advice from the NY Times Magazine"; Nature Chemistry: "How to counteract chemophobia";

Paul Bracher, ChemBark: "Combatting Chemophobia"

Rebecca Guenard, Atomic-O-Licious: "Chemistry Isn't Just About Chemicals"

Science 2.0: "Chemophobia - The Unnatural Fixation of Activists"

Chemjobber, Dr. Rubidium, See Arr Oh, Chemjobber: "Chemistry Avengers" (podcast)

Marc Leger, Atoms and Numbers: "Consider the audience when addressing chemophobia"

Chris Clarke, Pharyngula: "Did you know douchebags are full of dihydrogen monoxide?"

Andrew Bissette, Behind NMR Lines: "In defense of #chemophobia"

More to come...


  1. While we're at it, have you seen this ad from

    The ad depicts chemical compounds, and elements, as living organisms. =/