Don't be a Dodo: Watch Showtime Tonight @ 830

I've got my DVR set to 830pm EST tonight in order to record in high definition the world television premiere of Flock of Dodos: The Evolution-Intelligent Design Circus.

This past spring, I contributed to a Center for Social Media and Ford Foundation report evaluating the social impact of documentary film. Beyond any influence on general audiences, Randy Olson's Dodos has had what I describe in the report as a significant "social movement" impact, and in this case, by movement I mean scientists. As we noted in our Framing Science thesis, the film painfully demonstrates the tendency for scientists to condescend to or even attack citizens' core social identities (see notably, the now famous "Poker game" scene.) By taking his film on the road over the past two years, in an entertaining and informative way, Olson has generated greater attention among scientists and their organizations for the pressing need to question assumptions when it comes to broader public communication.

Now that the film is premiering on Showtime and available this summer on DVD, you can expect impact to grow.

Why a federal judge ordered White House to restore Jim Acosta's press badge

A federal judge ruled that the Trump administration likely violated the reporter's Fifth Amendment rights when it stripped his press credentials earlier this month.

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 16: CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta (R) returns to the White House with CNN Washington bureau chief Sam Feist after Federal judge Timothy J. Kelly ordered the White House to reinstate his press pass November 16, 2018 in Washington, DC. CNN has filed a lawsuit against the White House after Acosta's press pass was revoked after a dispute involving a news conference last week. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Acosta will be allowed to return to the White House on Friday.
  • The judge described the ruling as narrow, and didn't rule one way or the other on violations of the First Amendment.
  • The case is still open, and the administration may choose to appeal the ruling.
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Russian reporters discover 101 'tortured' whales jammed in offshore pens

Protected animals are feared to be headed for the black market.

Politics & Current Affairs
  • Russian news network discovers 101 black-market whales.
  • Orcas and belugas are seen crammed into tiny pens.
  • Marine parks continue to create a high-price demand for illegal captures.
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Water may be an inevitable result of the process that forms rocky planets

New research identifies an unexpected source for some of earth's water.

Surprising Science
  • A lot of Earth's water is asteroidal in origin, but some of it may come from dissolved solar nebula gas.
  • Our planet hides majority of its water inside: two oceans in the mantle and 4–5 in the core.
  • New reason to suspect that water is abundant throughout the universe.
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