My Letter to the Canadian Blog Awards
To Whom It May Concern:
While looking over the nominees for the best Canadian Sci/Tech blog, I noticed that three are by the same person: Denyse O'Leary. She has "Post-Darwinist", "Mindful Hack", and "Colliding Universes" all up for this award. I would like to know who nominates blogs for recognition and how they come to be in a particular category. Ms. O'Leary self-identifies as a "Toronto-based journalist; grandmother; Roman Catholic Christian" (from her site) and in no way represents science or technology in any sort of accurate manner. Her disregard for evidence-based inquiry and rational discourse should disqualify her from this category - science is all about honest debate, intellectual discussion, and at least a cursory familiarity with the subject matter in question. Ms. O'Leary has been taken to task for her lack of said qualities in so many blog posts by actual scientists that it would be pointless to cite as any 12 second google search would bring up dozens of entries.
The fact that not one, but three of her sites are in contention for any sort of award with "science" in the title makes me weep for the state of science writing in Canada. There are so many great sites from this country (for example: Jeffrey Shallit of Recursivity, Larry Moran of Sandwalk or T. Ryan Gregory at Genomicron) but you would never know it by looking at your nominees. In all honesty, it is embarrassing and the quicker an actual qualified scientist gets to look over the blogs up for awards and insert them into the correct category, the better.