Friday links: the ecology of GameStop!

Just kidding, they’re the normal sorts of links this week, nothing about GameStop. This week: conferencing in the After Times, #pruittdata latest, underselling vaccines, the game theory of anger, overwork in online courses, the Lewis Chessmen vs. a seminar audience, and more.

From Jeremy:

Agnes Callard on anger management. Lovely piece, with which I agree.

It’s not just students at my uni who feel overwhelmed by the amount of work that’s been asked of them since all their classes moved online. It’s students across the US. So what’s actually going on? Are students actually being assigned more work, or does the same amount of work now feel like more to them, or what? Click that last link for thoughtful discussion of various possibilities, and advice on what to do about them. Related: Meghan’s old post on how academics themselves feel like they work many more hours than they actually do. (ht Stephen Heard)

Freedom to return to normal life is the whole point of getting vaccinated for Covid-19. Good piece critiquing the moral panic about risk compensation. A couple of sample quotes, to encourage you to click through:

Vaccines provide a true reduction of risk, not a false sense of security. And trying to eliminate even the lowest-risk changes in behavior both underestimates people’s need to be close to one another and discourages the very thing that will get everyone out of this mess: vaccine uptake.

I will feel no joy if vaccinated people wait to hug their grandkids until I am vaccinated, nor will that get me—or those at higher risk than I am—vaccinated any faster. Self-deprivation will not, in itself, prevent infection.

Geologist Paul Bierman on the news that his department would be eliminated and all the faculty laid off (unless they could find other departments willing to take them). This resonated with me because my own uni recently raised the (for now hypothetical) possibility of eliminating entire departments in future, if our own budget woes get sufficiently worse.

Another one bites the dust: Pruitt et al. 2012 Am Nat has been retracted, with the agreement of all authors except Pruitt. The retraction is for numerous serious unexplained anomalies in the data collected by Pruitt.

The College of Staten Island will repay over $98,000 USD in grant funding to NOAA due to scientific misconduct by the PI. The PI on the grant fabricated results submitted to NOAA. I pass this on because it was an ecology grant, related to effects of ocean eddies on the productivity of a marine fishery. The PI is no longer employed by the College of Staten Island, but isn’t named in the linked press release and I can’t be bothered to try to figure out who it was. Anyone know? (ht Retraction Watch)

Joe Hilgard reported clear-cut, repeated data fabrication by psychologist Qian Zhang to journals, and to Zhang’s employer (a Chinese university). Here’s what happened next, and what didn’t. Related old post from me on what happens to the worst serial scientific fraudsters after they’re discovered.

Dan Bolnick, Andrew Hendry, Kiyoko Gotanda, and numerous folks on Twitter, on what bits of virtual conferences we should retain once in-person conferences become possible again.

The Science family of journals adjusts its open access policies so as to be able to accept papers from Plan S-funded researchers.

And finally:

I’d caption either of those images “Me when somebody endorses the intermediate disturbance hypothesis.” 🙂 Click through for the entire, very funny Twitter thread.

8 thoughts on “Friday links: the ecology of GameStop!

  1. Pingback: Friday links post up now! | Dynamic Ecology

  2. The only chess set that I own is a facsimile of the Lewis Chessmen, cast in resin. It doesn’t do justice to just how beautiful the original is. Loved Healy’s interpretation of their expressions 🙂

  3. Been working at home… and feel like I have way more to do, as well. But I know I don’t. I think it may be because, as someone else phrased it, I’m not working from home, I’m living at work. Boundaries have disappeared and so has true down time. The lack of physical separation is getting me down for sure. That’s mostly my fault, partly circumstances, but there it is.

  4. I have to confess that I read the Agnes Callard essay (twice) and couldn’t sort out the take-home message. Is it that anger, though sometimes useful always leads to bad behavior and calm, while sometime inappropriate, always moderates bad behavior so, we need the balance of both responses?

    • Yes, in part, though I might not put it exactly that way. I take it as making the old Aristotelian point about how any virtue becomes a vice if taken to an extreme.

      The other point is that, at the level of an entire society, we need both people who are quick to anger, and people who are slow to anger. That the social optimum is a “mixed strategy”. The inevitable tensions between people who think others all need to calm down, and people who think others all need to get angry, are a sign of a society with a healthy level of emotional diversity.

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