Welcome to Dynamic Ecology! Below are answers to some questions you may have about this blog.
Who started this blog?
I’m Jeremy Fox, a Professor at the University of Calgary. Previously, I did a B.A. at Williams College, a Ph.D. under Peter Morin at Rutgers University, and a postdoc at the NERC Centre for Population Biology at Imperial College London.
I’m broadly interested in population, community, and evolutionary ecology–those bits of ecology that–in my view, anyway!–have population dynamics at their core (hence the name of this blog). For information on my research, please visit my lab homepage.
Although I’m the founder of Dynamic Ecology, it’s not just my blog. It’s a group blog. Brian McGill and Meghan Duffy also blog here. They’re both awesome. All three of us collectively decide how the blog operates.
We also publish occasional guest posts.
What sort of posts do you write?
We post ideas, opinions, commentary, advice, and humor that we think might be of interest to our fellow academic ecologists and ecology students. We believe blogs can be a great vehicle for serious professional conversations, complementary to other modes of scientific communication such as peer-reviewed papers and conferences.
Didn’t you used to have another blog?
Previously, I blogged for the journal Oikos. That blog was similar to this one, and most of my posts for that blog, along with the comments, can be viewed here at Dynamic Ecology. Here is a post explaining why I chose to set up my own shop.
Why do you blog?
Here is a short video interview I did back when I was with the Oikos Blog, explaining why I blog.
Here is an interview I did with another ecology blogger, touching on how I got into ecology, why I do the sort of ecology I do, and more.
What’s the comment policy?
We’re blessed with awesome commenters and have never felt the need for a detailed formal comment policy. Basically, we like open professional discussion, so we’re happy to approve any comment that isn’t offensive, doesn’t contain personal attacks, and doesn’t seem designed to derail the thread. Historically, we’ve had to block less than 1 in 1000 comments for being out of line (did I mention we have awesome commenters?).
Our comment threads tend to be pretty agreeable for the most part, but we welcome productive disagreement with the post and/or other commenters. One valuable role of blogs is to provide a forum for professional, productive debate. See here, here, here, here, and here for some of our more vigorous comment threads, which include comments that disagree with the posts.
Commenters are welcome to remain anonymous or use a pseudonym, and you can fill in a fake email address if you wish. However, you are not welcome to use multiple identities in an attempt to mislead others. And if you are one of the very rare people we’ve had to ban from commenting, you are not welcome to adopt a new identity to try to get around the ban.
Note that even if you remain anonymous or use a pseudonym and a fake email address, your IP address will be visible to the blog owners (Meghan, Brian, and I).
Can I write a guest post for you?
You’re welcome to offer, but we can’t promise we’ll accept. Most of our guest posts are invited. Just FYI, we’re not likely to accept a guest post that functions mainly to advertise something else (a peer-reviewed paper, an upcoming event, an organization…). A guest post for us usually needs to “add value” in some way besides just publicizing something. (see following item)
I want to get the word out about a [job opening/event/petition/news item/etc.]–will you help?
No, sorry. This is our blog, not a message board. If you want to reach many academic ecologists, you can post to a listserv or discussion board run by a scientific society, such as the Ecological Society of America. You can also use your own social media channels.
Would you be willing to write a post on [topic]?
We sometimes ask readers to submit questions for us to answer. Other than that, we mostly come up with our own ideas for posts. If there’s a topic you’d like us to post on, you are welcome to email us, but we can’t promise we’ll take up your suggestion.
What does the header tagline “Multa novit vulpes” mean?
It translates as “The fox knows many things”. I have a post about this, which asks whether I am a fox in name only.
Those header images are beautiful! Where are they from?
Here is a list of the sources of our header images. All images are presented under Creative Commons licenses that permit non-commercial use, and modification such as cropping (all images are cropped). Follow the links in the source list for full license information.
Are you speaking for your employer or anyone else?
No. All the views expressed on this blog are entirely my own, not those of any other person or organization, including my employer. The same goes for the other folks who blog here.
Can I republish your posts?
No. Posts are (C) the author of each individual post (specifically Jeremy Fox, Meghan Duffy, Brian McGill, or as otherwise noted at the top of each post).
The copyright holders have made these posts available on the Dynamic Ecology website at the present time for reading and commenting to benefit the scientific community. Hypertext links to posts which transfer readers to our website are also welcome. However, the authors retain all other rights to the posts including the rights to republish elsewhere and to charge for access. The authors also prohibit other uses including copying or republishing entire or substantial portions of posts without the author’s permission, but do allow quoting small sections as allowed by fair use law for purposes of commentary and criticism.