Friday, May 2, 2014

"Bellman's Fallacy" - Popeye & Spinach - take care using Citations

"Bellman's fallacy" re Popeye & Spinach is common.
Students might relate to the following Popeye story showing how important it can be to follow citations back to the original source of info.

You might find the following 28 page article followed by 6 pages of References interesting re the importance of ensuring that researchers evaluate the info before they cite even when found in respected journals by esteemed doctors / scientists etc. with cited sources.

SPINACH, IRON and POPEYE:
Ironic lessons from biochemistry and history on the importance of healthy eating, healthy scepticism and adequate citation

by Dr Mike Sutton
NOTE:  "The Author is Reader in Criminology, Nottingham Trent University, UK."
              "This article is dedicated to undergraduate and post graduate students everywhere, but is aimed equally at their tutors and professors."


http://www5.in.tum.de/~huckle/Sutton_Spinach_Iron_and_Popeye_March_2010.pdf
QUOTE:
This article provides a salutary lesson by showing exactly what can happen when authors fail to reference their assertions and neglect to study original published materials. As you will see, it is better to be on the outside looking in and laughing at the published lies and factual errors of others than to be stuck forever on the inside of a story such as this.
UNQUOTE:
 ---------------------------------------------------
Michael Sutton
Staff Directory webpage
at Nottingham Trent University
http://www.ntu.ac.uk/apps/staff_profiles/staff_directory/125080-3/39/michael_sutton.aspx


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I emailed Mike Sutton to let him know that I had posted on my blog re his  paper.
I appreciate his comment to this post which contains a link to his further research re Popeye myth.

1 comment:

Mike Sutton said...

Dear Anne

Your readers might also be interested to learn that I followed up on the mythbusting and got to the bottom of the myth - here: http://www.bestthinking.com/articles/science/chemistry/biochemistry/the-spinach-popeye-iron-decimal-error-myth-is-finally-busted

Moreover, on this same topic of citations, failure to cite his sources - indeed deliberate plagiarism by Charles Darwin is now proven beyond all reasonable doubt - see: http://www.bestthinking.com/articles/science/biology_and_nature/genetics_and_molecular_biology/internet-dating-with-darwin-new-discovery-that-darwin-and-wallace-were-influenced-by-matthew-s-prior-discovery

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