Science comms that really rate

The Australian Academy of Science reports 1.2m Facebook followers, in its annual report released yesterday

This is up from 1m in October (CMM October 5).

Academy accomplishments: Big, but not the biggest achievement – yesterday the Academy’s Facebook page reported 1.5m followers and the Academy’s “Curious” website, “where we publish our science articles and videos for a broad audience,” had 961 000 visitors last year.

What they watched says a great deal about the popular audience for serious science. They liked Sir David Attenborough talking about “civilisation at risk,” and University of Sydney mathematician Nalini Joshi.  A video series on immunisation had 4.2m views.

Why this matters: Science is a hard sell in the social media marketplace, where real research competes for attention with hawkers peddling persiflage. Peter Yates explained how hard in CMM yesterday. But there is a huge audience for serious science that can be reached in ways that were not possible when broadcast and print media set the agenda.

The Academy shows how it is done.


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