Clarifying the insanity of rumor and false information.
Friday, July 27th, 2012
Clarifying the insanity of rumor and false information.
There seems to be a lot of confusion going on. What Sally is writing is correct (see her note below), and as a scientist who is subject to this process I can concur that the process is correct. The DNA project is not a secret, everyone knows about it. But there are aspects of the project that needs to have some confidentiality to which Sally Ramey communicated these points effectively.
Let’s make some clarifying statements. When we talk about silliness of secrecy we are referring to anonymous posters, anonymous sources, and secrecy of what some groups are doing, but not secrecy in the scientific process which to a degree is required for the integrity of the study. When anonymous sources are used in posts, articles, emails, and so on, it eliminates credibility and validity in claims, stories, and accusations and so on. This is why there is so much disinformation, falsehoods and false claims going around about this DNA project and other projects.
Bigfootology feels, at times, like it is the parent attempting to get children to play well with each other. We choose to not get into the politics of the Bigfoot world. Our attitude is we care only about the science which is why have taken the wait and watch attitude towards the genome project and have openly communicated that for months. We do not condone attacks on people, attempts at character assassination, or the degradation of people or research groups. We talk only about what is, not what rumor taints.
Summary: Peer-review process
by Sally Ramey on Saturday, July 16, 2011 at 4:58pm
Lots of people have recently been wondering about the process of publishing scientific papers. Here is the basic process, based on my experience doing PR in higher ed: The researcher prepares a paper about their findings and submits it to a scientific journal for peer-review, which can take
MONTHS. The paper is reviewed by a team of scientists with expertise in the discipline(s) involved in the researcher’s work. They decide if the research was conducted according to standards and practices accepted by the scientific community, and review the findings to see if they pass muster. It’s like a professor checking your work in college. If the review team has questions, they can ask the researcher to provide more info, run more tests, get someone else to run tests that replicate the work, etc. This can delay publication but it is sometimes necessary. ONLY after the review team is satisfied is the paper accepted for publication. Publication in a peer-reviewed journal is the scientific community’s “stamp of approval” that the work is valid.
The journal must then figure out when to publish the paper. Some journals work weeks/months in advance, adding further delay. Some work faster, meaning that the paper might run within a few weeks. At some point, the researcher is notified that they have a “pub date.” In my experience, you often only know about three weeks out when your paper will publish. Once there is a pub date, the researcher (typically university-based) works with their campus PR folks and the journal editorial and PR staff to be sure that images are prepared for publication, news releases are written and reviewed, and everyone is prepared for the announcement.
If the news is HUGE, the researcher will be interviewed by the science media, under a strict embargo, the week before the pub date. Most journals publish on Fridays and most embargos lift on Thursday afternoons. The science media, journal PR folks and university PR folks all post their stories and news releases upon the lifting of the embargo. This is why big science news seems to be posted everywhere at once. – it actually is.
If the story is HUGE HUGE HUGE, any news conference would be held when the embargo lifts, unless the journal allows it to happen early due to scheduling conflicts – the journal drives the schedule – no one else. And NO ONE can publicly discuss the paper, its pub date, what journal is involved, the findings or other contents in advance of the embargo or the journal will not publish the paper. This preserves the credibility and sanctity of the peer-review process. Hope this info is helpful.
Bigfootology thanks Sally Ramey for adding a voice of reason to the mania currently going on in the Bigfoot community.
I also feel compelled to post the following relevant and import responses from JC Johnson and David Paulides.
From JC Johnson:
The more I read this dribble, the more I know how little these people actually know! I am in regular contact with Dr. Ketchum. I too am under NDA, but with her permission, I would like to clear a few things up.
1. There are no bodies from …the alleged shooting. A single piece of flesh was sent in. There were not samples from two bodies, one human, and one not. How that got started who knows? “Single Piece of Flesh”…Got it?
2. This study is not the Erickson Project. Yellow Journalism likes tag names. Erickson has some samples sent in. He has spent around $70,000 to have his samples tested. He did not pay for anyone else. He has about three million tied up in his project and documentary, not this study. As I have said before. There are “hundreds” of samples sent in on a global scale for analysis in this project. Lose the tag name. “Not the Erickson Project”…Got it?
3.The Jibber Jabber back and forth casting a bad light on all of us, is not from anyone involved in the study. Those of us in the study have for the most part kept our mouths shut. If Richard Stubstad, had not shared information on the samples he had knowledge of before “leaving” the study, you would not have heard anything on any of this until the Scientific Paper was published. If the world of Bigfootery, and the “Bigfoot Community” are taking pot shots back and forth on the information, that’s between them. “There is no infighting with study members.”…Got
In the days to come, as we get closer to the revelation of this new species, you can look for all kinds of articles being written with 5% information and 95% disinformation and hear say.
It would seem in this final hour, there are those of you who would like to reinvent the circumstances and people involved in this study? Too late. The i’s are dotted and the t’s are crossed. The hundreds of samples have been sent out for a double blind engagement, and it comes back good.
There are indeed other cryptids out there to discover. Start small, maybe get your hands on some Chupacabra DNA? Then from there those of you who will, can appoint your own experts, scientists, and PhD’s.
From David Paulides as posted by JC Johnson at Bigfootology:
David Paulides said…
As the Executive Director of the group that started the Bigfoot DNA Project and the person who represents the group with the most specimens submitted, I can guarantee for an absolute fact 95% of what Mr. Fasano states… is complete fabrication (He did get the names spelled correctly in his narrative). He has never spoken to anyone associated with our study, he has never submitted a specimen and has no idea the results of our testing. How this man can attack a credible study like this is absolutely mind-boggling.
It is true that the Olympic Project did supply one tissue specimen and many, many other credible specimens that they did collect. The leader of the Olympic Project, Derek Randles has addressed this point multiple times and he will gladly answer the same questions again, I’d refer to Derek on all issues regarding their specimens. Mr. Fasano, you claim the tissue sample is a hoax, have you seen the DNA report on it? Do you know who did the testing on this sample? Right, then how can you make a 1000’ leap to claim that any sample is a hoax when you haven’t been privy to any
I think that Mr. Fasano needs to conduct more research on the background of our study. First, Dr. Ketchum’s science has never been questioned, ever. Early in our organization of this effort we knew that a very few researchers that didn’t take part in our study, believers in the ape theory, researchers that were jealous and unable to find viable specimens on their own and general people in the community that live off bashing/hating others would be overly critical at the earliest opportunity. Dr. Ketchum and our entire team knew this would happen and expected responses such
as this would start to creep into the community.
The bigfoot samples were initially screened by a hair and fiber expert when they arrived at DNA Diagnostics. Once the expert validated the sample, they went back to Dr. Ketchum’s lab where they were itemized, logged, photographed and then sent to a variety of other labs for testing. No, Dr. Ketchum didn’t conduct all of the testing on the majority of specimens, independent labs came to the same conclusions of the samples on their own. All pundits please re-read the last sentence, independent labs worked the samples and did the genetic testing and came to the same independent conclusions, is that clear enough?
Nobody in my organization has had any relationship or communication with anyone associated with the Erickson effort. Why Fasano would bulk a movie effort into a three year science study is beyond my logic.
The study has over 100 specimens from dozens of independent people and research groups. The idea that Mr. Fasano can unilaterally make a statement that the study is a hoax is beyond the realm of basic logic. Mr. Fasano, you were a friend of mine on Facebook, you saw my writings about this topic, why not contact me and allow us to discuss your concerns? Why would you publicly try to humiliate people you’ve never met or communicated? You and I have never spoken or communicated in any way, why fall into a realm of hate that does nobody, including your own research effort any good whatsoever?
I’m personally and professionally sorry that my clarifying updates have to continue. It would appear that certain elements of our community continue to be destined to destroy the good faith efforts of some in an apparent effort to gain their 15 minutes of fame, or to continue to propagandize their own hypothesis.
Thanks to everyone who has continued to take a “wait and see” approach to this issue, that is all we are asking. Sally Ramey wrote a great article (Facebook) about the formation of a scientific white paper and why there is an absolute need for NDA’s for all involved and the rationale for the extensive time these studies do take.
Thanks for your patience.
Bigfootology appreciates the responses by JC Johnson, David Paulides, and as well as Sally Ramey’s contribution to this discussion. Bigfootology maintains its long established attitude towards this project and that is we are watching and waiting to see what the outcome is.
We also understand the frustration that David and JC are experiencing, because it affects and is experienced by Bigfootology as well. This is the political side of the Bigfoot world and is very distasteful and something that we seek to stay away from and why I have stayed away from forums for all of the years because there is more misinformation and deceit in the Bigfoot world than truth and people are too willing to believe rumor and consider anonymous sources and posters as truth, and that is not usually the case.
Bigfootology is only interested in the science; that is it. In our attempts to remove the politics from this field, we do our best to not allow personal attacks or attempts at character assassination on people or groups based on rumor, innuendo, and what have you. Bigfootology is satisfied to allow a discussion about the clarification of all of this misinformation by primary players like David Paulides, and appreciates the comments by JC and Sally as well to help put to rest this growing annoyance of muckraking and slinging of misinformation hoping something will stick. Bigfootology hopes that the Bigfoot community is above believing everything that comes down the pike, but unfortunately, people tend to believe what is written when there is no substantive response to those accusations and rumors. That is why Bigfootology is thankful to David, JC, and Sally for their posts.
Maybe we can now stop the silliness and focus back on the science, the integrity of the field.
-Rhettman A. Mullis, Jr., MS, MHP
Category : Bigfootology Field Report
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