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Twitterati and Paperati: evidence versus popular opinion in science communication
  1. Áine MacNamara,
  2. Dave Collins
  1. Institute of Coaching and Performance, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Áine MacNamara, Institute of Coaching and Performance, University of Central Lancashire, Preston PR12HE, UK; AMacNamara1{at}uclan.ac.uk

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Science communication has traditionally been the remit of peer-reviewed journals with information being shared, almost exclusively, within the academic community. For those working at the coalface the limited scope of this traditional discourse in terms of access and consumption by key stakeholders (eg, coaches, National Governing Bodies of sport, sport scientists) is of concern. In fact, traditional peer-reviewed publication does not seem to be the most effective mechanism for scientists to engage with the public and to disseminate knowledge.

Reflecting these concerns is the trend to use social media to communicate science—tools such as Twitter are an increasingly important part of the scholarly ecology1 ,2 and a powerful influence on professional environments. However, the extent to which the information transmitted by social media is evidence-based rather than opinion-based is questionable. Of course, these concerns are not to say that the academic world should be the only gatekeepers of knowledge, but in a Web 2.0 world where knowledge is made available at a …

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