URL right

I changed the title of my previous post, because I was worried it would mislead people, or at best look like a crap pun.


From the Guardian/Observer article linked below, poll by Opinium

It was originally called “A boost in testing times”. The potentially misleading — and entirely unintentional — pun here was that it could have made people think I had some information on speeding up COVID-19 tests, which I don’t, and which is too serious a thing to make clickbait puns about, frankly.

(The excellent and intended pun of course was the elision of the Lorentz boost of the Higgs boson in the measurement in question, the boost it gave to us testing the nature of said boson, and the boost to my morale of seeing a measurement I’d proposed more than ten years ago finally done.)

You can see the old title still in the URL of the post. Much as you can in this Guardian article, where the URL (or the “slug” bit) is “trust-wanes-in-uk-ministers-handling-of-coronavirus-pandemic-poll”, while the (current, at least) headline is “Public trust plummets in Britain’s handling of pandemic, new poll reveals”. As with wordpress, this would imply the original author wrote “wanes”, which is justifiable given the graph above, while someone (possibly motivated by traffic and search engines) changed it later to make it more dramatic but much less accurate.

I’m not  fan of this Government, and I am a bit of a fan of the Guardian (despite them closing their science blogs), but this kind of thing isn’t a smart move and I think it wanes peoples’ trust in the end.

And sorry if you thought I’d boosted testing times.

PS I realise now, having tweeted this, that I have written a post with a title that when tweeted makes it look like I am correcting a link in a previous tweet. I did this because of the pun involved, obviously. This is getting so meta now that I’m just going to leave it and make dinner.

About Jon Butterworth

UCL Physics prof, works on LHC, writes (books, Cosmic Shambles and elsewhere). Citizen of England, UK, Europe & Nowhere, apparently.
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