Got data? Survey of 2017 March for Science doesn’t make the grade

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Got data? Survey of 2017 March for Science doesn’t make the grade‘Science Magazine

Got data? Survey of 2017 March for Science doesn’t make the grade

Tens of thousands braved the rain last year in Washington, D.C., for a March for Science that will be repeated this weekend.

A group of researchers has released the first results of a large survey of those who participated in and supported last year’s March for Science. Some social scientists say the analysis is fundamentally flawed and reflects poorly on an organization that champions scientific rigor. March organizers acknowledge the survey’s limitations but say it has provided them with important insights into what motivates their supporters.

The volunteer organizers of the 22 April 2017 march, an ambitious experiment in global science advocacy, were eager to learn all they could about the more than 1 million people who had participated. So, 6 weeks after the event, they notified their more than 200,000 supporters that a survey developed by researchers at George Mason University (GMU) in Fairfax, Virginia, was available online. The 72-question survey asked for demographic information, as well as why respondents had marched and what they thought about government policies and public attitudes toward science.

Last week, days before the second annual march on 14 April, the GMU researchers posted the results. A solid majority of the 20,000 respondents said they thought the country was headed in the wrong direction, a situation almost all blamed on the policies of President Donald Trump and the Republican-led Congress. Their biggest fears were that those government officials would disregard scientific evidence and cut research funding, although only about half thought the march would forestall either action.

The results probably won’t surprise march supporters (including AAAS, which publishes ScienceInsider) and those who have followed the effort. But social scientists who do surveys for a living say the data don’t pass the smell test.


While you’re here, how about this:

Why aren’t more black kids going pro in esports?

With multibillion-dollar gaming industry, there is a pronounced and growing racial gap in the player pools

The professionalization of sports changed the math for millions of young African-Americans, both male and female, providing careers, scholarships and a pathway to fame and further fortune.

Now esports is quickly rising to become the next iteration of big-stakes competitive play. Boasting a digital-first, broadly global audience, the esports marketplace raked in $696 million in 2017, with projected revenues to exceed $1 billion by 2020.

But within the esports juggernaut, there is a pronounced and growing racial gap in the player pools. African-American representation on the major teams and in the highest-profile events is abysmal. There are high-profile players of color, such as Zaqueri ‘Aphromoo’ Black and Dominique ‘SonicFox’ McLean, but why are there so few other black players making it to the top of the various leagues?

The answer may lie in the foundations of esports ‘ the actual video games many of us played growing up. PC games, such as Dota, League of Legends, StarCraft and Counter-Strike, grew into their own ecosystems. Over time, spectators gathered, communities grew and funding started to flow. But for console games such as Call of Duty, Super Smash Bros., Halo and Street Fighter, the communities grew but the same funding and opportunities didn’t materialize. As esports matures, one thing has become crystal clear: The PC/console divide has inadvertently become a racial divide, with white and Asian players featured most heavily on the PC side and African-American and Latino players on the other.


Caffeine hit: The rise and rise of Irish coffee culture

You can’t swing a recycled cardboard cup in the capital these days without hitting one of the new generation of gourmet coffee houses. Distinguishable by their enthusiastic use of poured concrete and exposed piping, succulent plants on every table and bicycle parts hanging on the wall, these are places that want you to know they take their coffee seriously.

In practice, ‘taking their coffee seriously’ means eschewing bells, whistles and flavoured syrups for a focus on smaller cups sizes and cooler milk temperatures to draw attention to the flavours in the coffee, which will have been prepared with care by a trained barista, and usually sourced from one of a handful of Irish micro-roasters. You can be sure there isn’t a tub of chantilly cream or a 22oz cup to be found within a 5km radius of any of them.

If Nescaf’ and Maxwell House represented the first wave of coffee, and the big coffee chains such as Starbucks and Costa the second wave, this is the third wave of the coffee movement ‘ and Irish consumers can’t seem to get enough of it.

One in three Irish people now buys a coffee at least once a day ‘ an increase of 10 per cent on the previous year according to a 2017 survey of 1,011 people by Allegra World for UCC Coffee Ireland. The number of specialist coffee houses grew by 8.5 per cent in 2016, according to Euromonitor, while the overall market for coffee in Ireland will grow by seven per cent over the next five years, UCC predicts.

Seventy per cent of Irish people now drink more than one cup a day. And we’re spending more too ‘ consumers surveyed by UCC said they were willing to spend ‘3.08 on a great cup of coffee, up 21 per cent since 2013. One in ten would be happy to pay more than ‘5 on a single cup.


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Why aren’t more black kids going pro in esports?
(since Mar, 2018) (Pew Research Data, which is often cited, tends to blend video games into console, computer and mobile device and often looks at attitudes more than specific play practices.) An ESPN Fan survey of the esports landscape conducted in 2017 does provide a

Caffeine hit: The rise and rise of Irish coffee culture
(since Mar, 2018) One in three Irish people now buys a coffee at least once a day ‘ an increase of 10 per cent on the previous year according to a 2017 survey of 1,011 people by . and maybe it doesn’t need whipped cream and syrup.’ The Starbucks and the Costas

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