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The ethical questions raised when science and society meet can take us in some very unexpected directions! Feeling lost? Our scientists will be here tonight to guide us on a compelling and enjoyable tour through a variety of current issues. Discover what young people think about social media advertising, what can happen when you use online DNA based ancestry services and how reliable clinical trial reporting is. On the way, you’ll have the opportunity to ask questions and win Pint of Science prizes. It’s not the destination, it’s the journey!
The brand in the hand: What do young people think about being targeted in social media?
Our children and young people are actively targeted by digital advertising for unhealthy foods and drinks. Advertisers call it ‘the brand in the hand’. Who targets them and how? Does this kind of advertising affect young people? Are they @dware? Concerned experts think that we should protect kids from the persuasive and deceitful powers of social media marketing. But do young people agree? Within the @dwareness study, we explored teens' awareness and their views on social media marketing of foods and drinks. Magda will present you with their voices to spark a debate.
Beyond the birds and the bees: Searching for your relatives online by DNA linking
Searching for ancestors or relations online using databases that make links by matching people’s DNA is growing in popularity. These sites have enabled people conceived using donated gametes – eggs and sperm – to find their donor and donor-conceived siblings (other people conceived from the same donor), whether they have been actively looking for them or not! Lucy will discuss what people should know before they use these sites and explore how people deal with what they find.
What happened when we tried to correct the record on 58 mis-reported clinical trials
Do the self-correcting mechanisms of science work? The COMPare trials project team, led by Dr Ben Goldacre, systematically wrote correction letters to the world’s top medical journals for any trials that contained outcome switching - an important source of bias that can exaggerate the benefits and downplay the harms of new drugs and therapies. Project team member Aaron will show how the responses they received from medical journal editors and clinical scientists cast a fascinating light on how well our institutions of research reporting live up to the scientific ideal.