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Science poos all over Nature

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Image via the Centers for Disease Control

Comments: 2

In respective articles on the discovery that human bodies and, in particular, human guts, “harbor viruses as unique as the people they inhabit,” Nature and Science faced off today in a clash that displayed vast ideological differences. The battle ground? The correct representation of the word “shit” in scholarly context.

From Nature

In the latest exploration into the universe of organisms inhabiting our bodies, microbiologists have discovered new viral genes in faeces. They find that the composition of virus populations inhabiting the tail ends of healthy intestines (as represented in our stools) is unique to each individual and stable over time.

And Science:

The researchers collected and purified the poop three times over the course of a year—to better track the microbial community’s changes over time—and then sequenced the viral DNA, or viromes, the poop contained.

In the great poo standoff between the major science journals of America and Britain, the American version wins. Sorry, Britain (also: you misspelled “feces”).

Poop: The Scientific word for shit.

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2 Responses to “Science poos all over Nature

  1. avatar Paul says:

    Dear Sir:
    I respectfully disagree with your ass assessment. I think the Brit’s have their shit together more in this context. I also will kindly point you to the thesis that faeces isn’t necessarily misspelled (unlike “consits” in the robot graffiti post). In fact, you take quite an American-centric view of spelling. Since you take the name “anorak,” the British slang for geek, as a category for various tidbits (or titbits in Brit), I do think you should give full faith and credit to our forbearers across the pond and take a less narrow view of terminology and spelling.

  2. avatar Kevin Morris says:

    Way to miss the point, Paul. I’m aware that faeces is the British spelling of feces. Which means they spelled it wrong.

    Also: read the graffiti post again. The word in question is in a QUOTE. So someone else misspelled it, and I’ll look like like an anal asshole if I put a [sic] after a stupid typo.

    Finally: who came up with “anorak?”