Unless you really, really don't care, you know by now that gravitational waves have been detected, hence proving one of Einstein's theories. It was all over news, in any form: TV, podcasts, blogs, you name it. That day as I was watching the news the anchor very casually said to the scientific reporter: This is obviously very interesting...but why is it important?
I was baffled at first. I am not that big in physics, is one of those subjects that I find very hard to dive in. But for me, questioning the importance of such event was ludicrous. Then off course, it hit me: I'm part of the community that gets exited about this, but that's not everyone. The anchor was doing (on purpose or not, doesn't really matter) something extremely important: opening the dialogue with the Sci reporter to explain, to vulgarize, to make this discovery exiting to the rest of the people that might've been at home thinking "yeah, so what?".
We keep talking about how important it is to share scientific news. A lot of people, me included, wonder how come there isn't more people getting exited about this or that development in science. But we don't necessarily take into account that while we might keep on babbling why it is FASCINATING (to us, most of the time) we seldom explain why this is a game changer, or simply why is it important to the rest.
It's not easy, off course, to put into words things that might feel as obvious. But when scientific news makes it to mainstream news, we should make our best to explain the heck out of it. While is great that this particular piece of news made it, we should push for more. What about memory cells and blood cancers? Or a new form of ice? Or a four neutron nucleus? Everyone of us, in the science community, see every day a new piece of the puzzle. Why not share it? And more importantly, explain why we find it important, relevant, interesting. Let’s make those doors for dialogue constantly open.
You might argue that all these examples I gave imply having to explain much complex subjects to others. And I say: so? The more we explain, the easier it would be for more and more people to know and hopefully understand said subjects, hence increasing the chances of them getting exited about science news. Little by little, we could see more science being shared and loved, instead of hidden and feared, and wouldn't that be nice?
What piece of science news do you want to share today? and why? Tell me, or better yet, tell everyone you know.