Thursday, July 08, 2010

The PepsiCo Blog

UPDATE: Scienceblogs has quickly caved and removed Food Frontiers from their lineup.

The science blogosphere is up in arms about Scienceblog's (a division of Seed magazine) decision to introduce a blog written by PepsiCo ("Food Frontiers") and its scientists. Some Scienceblogggers are resigning (David Dobbs and Rebecca Skloot -- Carl Zimmer is keeping a rundown here), and I've seen calls for the National Association of Science Writers to write Scienceblogs a letter expressing their displeasure.

Let's note: The PepsiCo blog hasn't even written anything yet, besides a simple introduction.

This suppression of speech not yet even expressed is disappointing, merely because a mob shouted it down. Imagine if this had happened in, say, climate science, where perhaps a Limbaugh- or ClimateDepot-inspired mob floods federal agencies and science organizations until a certain grant is revoked or a speaking invitation taken back.

It would have been far better to keep the blog up and let commenters chew it to pieces (as they would), if the science really was bad.

Intolerance and prior suppression of speech is unacceptable no matter where it happens.

1 comment:

Dano said...

On first read I agree with the 'speech suppression' sentiment.

But upon reflection I think the expression of dismay about corporations infiltrating and cornering the discourse of every single last corner of our lives is important as well.

So I'm not sure outrage at likely corporate greenwash sharing space with knowledge is de facto suppression.

PepsiCo surely has enough money to start their own blog somewhere. Let them get an account on WordPress.



(word verif apparently agrees: uproe)