There’s right Googling, and there’s wrong Googling

There’s right Googling, and there’s wrong Googling.
There are a couple of fun stories making the rounds today about our friend, the Web, and research. It seems the producers of the upcoming NBC sweeps disaster miniseries 10.5 have a few scientists ruffled, because nobody contacted them about the veracity of the plot. Seismologists told the Associated Press that the idea is preposterous.

The faults that underlie California would not be capable of generating such a huge temblor, experts said. Such a quake could be theoretically possible elsewhere, but the largest earthquake in recorded history was a magnitude 9.5 off Chile in 1960.

“The production is blatantly inconsistent with everything we know about earthquakes,” said Lucy Jones, scientist in charge of the U.S. Geological Survey office in Pasadena. “It’s complete science fantasy, but as long as people know that nothing about it could be true, they can sit back and enjoy it.”

But here’s the best part.
Asked whether he consulted scientists in developing the project, (Executive Producer Howard) Braunstein said: “Not really. We went on the Internet for backup research.”
Oops! Meanwhile, Poynter’s Amy Gahran correctly asks why it took a citizen to Google the names of 3 school superintendent candidates and not the Fort Collins Coloradoan, which reported the story yesterday. Sigh.

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