The media is peeking in through your lab windows?
Opt for fame that depicts your usual safe practices.
Many famous scientific mishaps do not conjure up images of safety gloves or sound evacuation plans. While absentminded practices may sometimes have led to discoveries that were interesting, Oregon State’s advances are based on laboratory practices that are safe (stirred into a test tube of common sense).
Let’s also remember to be aware of how our scientific procedures are depicted in the media.
Say a popular publication gets wind of your brilliant hypothesis, and wants an exclusive of you in the moment of invention. In situ, the photographer thinks you’ll look more dashing if your eyelashes show, so “off with those goggles for a sec, please.” Or the reporter thinks it would be cute to get you to cuddle that rat . . .
The results: the world – via magazine, newspaper, web, video – receives images of less-than-best practices. Young would-be scientists pooh-pooh their teachers’ precautions. Havoc is unleashed on the world – probably not in the form of a new Beatles song.
If the media is ringing you up, sweep the floors, check your hair, and review your safety procedures. Contact Environmental Health and Safety for guidance and training needs.
Historical information from Discover Magazine – 20 Things You Didn’t Know About … , and other sources (- must be true – we read it on the web).