Tag Archives: social media

Twitter and your Research Program: tweeting your publications

At the 2018 conference of the Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution, 5 friends and I put on a workshop on the use of Twitter in science.  Today: slides and commentary from Alex Smith‘s piece of the #CSEETweetShop.  How can you use Twitter to share the word about your own scientific publications?  And how does it help?

I’m an imposter (begins Alex). I joined Twitter in September 2013 looking for a way to promote and distribute the photos and videos that I take in the field.  The way I had done this in the past (individual blogs or websites) was getting views only from my family at first, and then slowly it seemed, not even them.  So I joined Twitter because I thought it was the social media platform that would help me promote the work my lab does. So speaking at the CSEE 2018 symposium on Twitter and Science I felt a bit of an imposter because since October 2013, my Twitter experience has been all about learning from others. But here we go…tweeting your research, why would you want to; and then some suggestions for how to go about doing it. Continue reading


Twitter considerations and tips at conferences

At the 2018 conference of the Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution, 5 friends and I put on a workshop on the use of Twitter in science.  Today: slides and commentary from Shoshanah Jacobs’ piece of the #CSEETweetShop.  How can you use Twitter in connection with a conference, to increase the reach of your science and of others’?

I’d like you to reflect for a moment about all the things that your body had to do over the last few days to get it to where you are sitting now. Perhaps you took a flight, perhaps you used public transportation, perhaps you maxed out your credit card, waiting for a reimbursement. Maybe more importantly: who isn’t here with us, and why? Continue reading

Student blogging on insect conservation: a success story

Image: Skillet Clubtail dragonfly, by David Marvin (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

This year in my 3rd-year Entomology course, we introduced a new student assignment: to write a blog post about an insect of conservation concern in Canada. (I say “we”, because most of the credit goes to my TA and PhD student Chandra Moffat. I’ll link to some of the resulting posts below; but first, a few thoughts. Continue reading


Two things caught my eye last week that got me thinking about praise. First, I realized I’d been on Twitter for exactly a year; and second, I saw (HT Friday Links at Dynamic Ecology) this commentary on the rarity of “negative” citations in immunology*.

I can draw a connection**. Scientists are encouraged to be skeptical and critical, but in each case I see evidence that we’re often very (surprisingly?) nice to each other. One of my greatest fears joining Twitter was that it would turn out to be one of those cesspools of internet trash-talk. And that does happen (of course), but overall my impression is that science users of Twitter, at least, are phenomenally positive and supportive. People are “excited” to visit each other and “honoured” to give talks, blog posts are “thoughtful”, and collaborators and students are “fantastic” – which can even seem a little cringe-worthily mushy and sycophantic until you get used to it. And the rarity of negative citations? Because we’re told science makes progress by overturning previous results, and because we’re trained to be critical of published papers, and because everyone has a Reviewer #3 story they love to tell, you’d think we’d be tearing each other to shreds at every opportunity. Apparently we don’t. Continue reading