Notes from the talk I gave on 14th November, on Social Networking for Scientists. What follows is by no means an exhaustive list of links, ideas and suggestions for improving the profile of scientists in Western Australia.

As a not-a-scientist (my thesis is in the measurement of paranormal and pseudoscientific beliefs), but a former Media and English teacher, I have collected a number of useful strategies over time in order to best handle social networking – some of the more useful ones include:


  • Blogging – online journal, “biographical-log” – analysis, comments and reflections, online personal journal with reflections, comments, and links.

Science Blogs
Wired Science Blogs
SciBlogs New Zealand
Discover Blogs

I ended up blogging my literature review for my thesis; I currently blog at Freethought blogs with other scientists and writers, including PZ “Pharyngula” Myers.

Podcasts mentioned in reference to blogging: An Interview With James Byrne and An Interview With Bec Crew, Alex Brown And Cara Santa Maria and An Interview With Daniel Keogh


  • Twitter – ‘micro-blogging’ – networking that enables sending and reading of text-based messages of up to 140 characters.

Bora Zivkovic
Ed Yong
Ben Goldacre
Jennifer Ouellette
Brian Schmidt
Jennifer L. Rohn

Many of the presenters here have their own Twitter accounts – the number of Tweets and information can be handled through lists, selective following and use of hashtags and sites like Storify.

Podcasts mentioned in reference to Twitter: Interview With Hayley Stevens

Storify by Kylie Sturgess – includes conferences like #solo12wis – Tweets From SpotOn London 2012: Women in science and Profs and Pints Event in Perth.

Storify by ScienceRewired – conference held in Adelaide last month; next in early 2013.

Guide to Twitter –


  • Podcasts – digital media (typically audio), consisting of an episodic series of audio, video, PDF, or ePub files subscribed to and downloaded through web syndication.

Naked Scientists Podcast
Science Friday / Science in Action
Astronomy Cast
Token Skeptic

Podcasts mentioned in reference to Podcasting: Interview With Dr Pamela Gay and Fraser Cain and Derek Colanduno With Eugenie Scott And Steven Novella

Podcast guide


It was through the rallying of blogs that David Attenborough decided to include Perth on his recent tour; it’s the recent announcement that the closure of the Naked Scientist radio show that has had ripple effects internationally; because the podcast of the show is so popular world-wide (in fact, it’s won seven national and international awards for science communication since 2006), even though it’s being called a ‘local Cambridge radio show’ by the regional head of the radio station.

There are a great many blogs and podcasts out there already, which promote science and engage people – but I don’t often see or find it easy to locate local names or talent online. So my suggestions to begin with is are as follows:

  1. Networking through groups such as the Australian Science Communicators to identify what blogs there are that focus on or tap into WA Science and encourage them;
  2. To consider featuring on a podcast, such as mine, in order to get the word out about WA Science – much like the recent ScienceRewired conference series I did;
  3. A possible Wikipedia Editing Day or Week, where we target a number of pages and people in WA Science to focus on, akin to the recent Royal Society’s efforts with Ada Lovelace Day, where they improved the pages and appearance of a number of women in science.

Even if you’re not a blogger or a podcaster or know how to edit Wikipedia, I know that there are people who are keen to help and, like myself, are interested in learning more.

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