Clicking on a link simply for its robust and enticing title is a fast way to get in trouble on the internet, where “you will never believe why this person injected uranium into their blood stream, what happened next will leave you speechless.” The web is full of clickbait, William Connolley’s article “The WTO Just Ruled Against India’s Booming Solar Program?” is both an example of clickbait and a (claimed) reaction to clickbait. Yet, I found myself on the front page of ScienceBlogs enticed by this title, assuming that it wasn’t clickbait. I was right in this assumption, yet what I found was much more disturbing.
In my opinion, free speech is something that is important for expression and I understand that Blogs are a way of expressing an opinion. Yet, I believe that when presenting an argument in the scientific community it is necessary to keep a moderately professional nature. Getting heated and impassioned is great. Do it. Get fired up, people love seeing fire in a writers eyes while they blow apart somebodies article. Just leave the racial slurs out of it. William Connolley wrote a very heated reaction to the Huffington Posts article “The WTO Just Ruled Against India’s Booming Solar Program,” he claimed that the Huffington Post is “…so busy being outraged they barely tell you what the actual issue is.” The issue is very important and both perspectives (Connolley and Huffington post) have key points, Huffpost is focusing on the ethics of the US halting India’s pursuit of a homegrown national solar plan; one that, to start up, will only use solar panels made in India. Connolley contrasts this by stating, India’s refusal to import cheaper solar panels will leave them with fewer and lower quality solar panels.
Connolley makes one point that I hold as valuable, and that was the WTO (World Trade Organization) sided with the “US zillionaires,” a clear comment on the corruption found with wealth. The rest of the heated argument that Connolley produced was riddled with racial remarks and derogatory terms. He went as far as using racial slurs (which I refuse to repeat) and called Indian government weasels. This blog, found in a scientific community, is one that does not hold the right to contribute to science, this is not the first time Connolley has made racial, derogatory, or offensive remarks, he even seems happy that he is offending people. ScienceBlogs is is a place for scientific blogs, not a place for Trumpisms and trolls. If he wants to plaster his absurdities, hate, and racial remarks on the internet he should start a blog that holds no ties to the scientific community. Science is a place for world collaboration, where we can only move forward if we look past our differences and work together to better the future.