Research News

The research story that keeps on giving

For better or for worse, what’s posted online, stays online. That embarrassing photo, the awkward comments, your less than stellar PowerPoint? Yep, they’re still there.

For those of us in the research communications business, the elephantine memory of the Internet allows our stories to continue to reach readers for years after the embargo lifts. We’ve experienced this benefit over the last month, when viewers started trickling, and then pouring, in to a research story first posted Oct. 2, 2008. Since Dec. 11, the story has been viewed 25,000 times, after having not been viewed even once for two years before that.

We know the majority of the traffic originated on Facebook, but we’ve yet to track down the obviously very popular person who posted it.

This story had a lot going for it from the start – interesting brain research, musicians, creativity – that contributed to its popularity. Most recently, it had the benefit of catching the eye of someone active in social media, who shared it with his or her friends, who started whipping it around the Internet on Facebook, Twitter and blogs. It’s our hope that the new readers learned a little bit about neuroscience and the brain as a result; it’s our challenge to keep finding these stories and making them as accessible as possible to further engage the public with what is happening in laboratories across our campus.



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