Saturday, September 06, 2008

Phrase of the day: Data paparazzi

Here's what they did:

An Italian-led research group's closely held data have been outed by paparazzi physicists, who photographed conference slides and then used the data in their own publications. [...]

... At least two papers recently appeared on the preprint server showing representations of PAMELA's latest findings ... Both have recreated data from photos taken of a PAMELA presentation on 20 August at the Identification of Dark Matter conference in Stockholm, Sweden.

"We had our digital cameras ready," says Marco Cirelli, a theorist at the Institute of Theoretical Physics in Gif-sur-Yvette, France, and one of those who took pictures. The preprints fully acknowledge the source of the data and reference the presentation photographed.

You really ought to read Janet Stemwedel's post discussing the ethics of this controversial method of 'collecting' data.


  1. Anonymous said...

    "Theory Vultures" is the term used in CERN, they who haunt data report meetings, dark and long and broody...could be "data Vultures" too, I guess.