Saints + Sinners: Rupert Murdoch, Science Hero

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Saint: Rupert Murdoch
  News Corporation chief Rupert Murdoch has taken a lot of heat lately, but he deserves credit where credit is due: His Fox television network recently announced that it is reviving Cosmos, the show that made Carl Sagan famous and turned millions of people on to science in the 1980s. The new Cosmos, hosted by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson and produced by Sagan’s widow, will air in 2013.

Sinners: Retractees  The number of retracted studies in peer-reviewed scientific journals skyrocketed from 22 in 2001 to 339 last year, according to an analysis commissioned by The Wall Street Journal. More than a quarter of the retractions were due to fraud rather than innocent mistakes.

Saint: Lucy King  For years Kenyan farmers have had to deal with five-ton elephants trampling their fields. University of Oxford zoologist Lucy King has come up with a solution: fences made of beehives. In a recent field study, all but one elephant turned away when confronted with the pesky honeybees.

Sinners: Pharma Hackers 
 A new study found that one-third of online search results for prescription drugs are hacked websites that redirect users to illegal online pharmacies. Many of the infected sites have .edu or .gov addresses to give the pharmacies false credibility.

Comment on this article