For the last few months arguably the most contentious life sciences debate online has concerned how scientists should communicate important or controversial issues to the media and public.
The debate was sparked by an article in Science entitled "Framing science", which argued that stating the facts is not enough if scientists want to communicate technical complexities in the news. The authors, Matthew Nisbet and Chris Mooney, proposed in this article and elsewhere that scientists should pare down complex technical issues and learn to actively "frame" the information to make it relevant to different audiences.
Almost immediately the science blogosphere was filled with heated discussions on the topic. (You can find an exhaustive list of the blog posts and discussions here.) Critics said that "framing science" is just another way of saying spin, and that scientists should never sacrifice the facts or the message no matter who their...

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