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Did anyone ever think they could publish without bias? Perhaps this is me just speaking with my experiences as a History and English major, but in my experience every single person is biased. While of course in science those who study it like to eliminate their bias for the sake of their work, the validity and the truth of it, eliminating bias altogether goes against human nature. I find it impossible. I think it is something we should strive for, but it we ever make the assertion that "I am without bias" or "This is without bias," I think we'll only be deluding ourselves.
 

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The scientific method itself is supposed to eschew bias but most of the time it doesn't. I disagree that it's impossible. It's a matter of integrity that, as we know, is very difficult for most humans to maintain with consistency. In some basic research it's more natural and less awkward to eliminate bias. It takes a conscious effort, but it can be done. But in applied sciences, where the person or corporation who is paying for the research definitely has an interest in results that support the hypothesis, they do barge right in and sit on the researchers to ensure bias. Sadly, the disinterested part of the scientific method is largely a myth.
 

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The scientific method is the closest thing to a buffer zone that we can have between truth and rampant human prejudice. Unfortunately, it is still a relatively thin buffer zone.
 
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Some think a thought dehumanized of numbers whirring, gears turning, and clocks brrrriiiiinnngg
They do not see the universal for they lack Love
They mistake flashes of light in the meat sack of an ape's skull for Truth
They do not feel the cosmic dance reverbrating through their Soul
The Universe cannot be quantized
 

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Personally I think it depends entirely on the subject.

I really don't think *good* scientists will accidentally put bias into a report.

The big example is climate change. Some people truly think there's some kind of institutional bias, like scientists are all in it together, mutually supporting themselves with their own little trumped up ideology, all for the sake of higher research grants and salaries. Which is just bollocks and not true. As if every new research graduate, low-paid PhD student, and whole classes of climate science students, are in that field because they actively want to prove that the environment is going to pot.

In areas like this, I'm sure anyone worth their salt will be quite happily proven wrong.

But yeah, sure, in the more debatable areas there will surely be bias. Philosophy must be the biggest one for that. And history, since it's always gonna be down to interpretation. "Maybe Hitler's European reign was a good thing eventually." That kind of thing.

Meh it's all still interesting in some way. Intelligent thoughts and opinions.

Proper science does all it can to remain on a neutral footing, though. It's very hard to have your work taken seriously unless you can show in great detail how you made it fair, accurate, precise and flawless. Risk aversion and error analysis is a big part of scientific research.
 

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So basically, peer review. Except people pay people?

Uh huh.
Also, removing bias is a gigantic impossibility.
Not improbability, impossibility.
It's like removing every prejudice, misconception, assumption, etc from one person, to the whole community.
Because that's what bias comes from.
The best we can do is balance time, effort, and bias-reduction.
Quite frankly, adding more bureacratic processes into research is going to add another significant headache.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
So basically, peer review. Except people pay people?
No.

The key difference is a shift towards open/crowd sourced pre and post publication review and a move away from the idea that a paper must be trustworthy/high quality because a couple of referees accepted it into a reputable journal.

Likewise, a removal of paywalls.
 

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No.

The key difference is a shift towards open/crowd sourced pre and post publication review and a move away from the idea that a paper must be trustworthy/high quality because a couple of referees accepted it into a reputable journal.

Likewise, a removal of paywalls.
Subscription for research is an ass, but other than that, it is basically peer review except you add random people into the mix, so it'll be more like a forum. Have you ever seen forums like this actually being productive?
Besides, the main point of peer review and the main idea of the scientific method is that while one person IS biased, a gigantic group of people trying to not be as biased as possible having the same exact findings is incredibly close to unbiased. Highlight trying not to be biased. The scientific community is TRYING, can you say the same to the people this article is willing to add, for some reason?

And "being unbiased" is an impossibility.
If you have to ask why, in a psych forum. I will smack you with a trout.
Actually, this might be more of a sociology thing.
Eh.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Besides, the main point of peer review and the main idea of the scientific method is that while one person IS biased, a gigantic group of people trying to not be as biased as possible having the same exact findings is incredibly close to unbiased. Highlight trying not to be biased. The scientific community is TRYING, can you say the same to the people this article is willing to add, for some reason?
These changes are proposed as a result of the soul-searching of the scientific community. It is the scientific communicty that has declared that the traditional publishing model is flawed and needs new ideas on how to improve it.

And "being unbiased" is an impossibility.
I'm not sure why you mentioned this. I thought it was obvious from the title of this thread that it was not possible to eliminate bias, but that the scientific community should be increasingly vigilant to avoid it.
 

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These changes are proposed as a result of the soul-searching of the scientific community. It is the scientific communicty that has declared that the traditional publishing model is flawed and needs new ideas on how to improve it.
It is extremely flawed, but I still don't see how adding the untrained masses anonymously into the review step is going to make this problem easier.



I'm not sure why you mentioned this. I thought it was obvious from the title of this thread that it was not possible to eliminate bias, but that the scientific community should be increasingly vigilant to avoid it.
The "still" part kinda threw me off as snark, sorry.
 

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Did anyone ever think they could publish without bias? Perhaps this is me just speaking with my experiences as a History and English major, but in my experience every single person is biased. While of course in science those who study it like to eliminate their bias for the sake of their work, the validity and the truth of it, eliminating bias altogether goes against human nature. I find it impossible. I think it is something we should strive for, but it we ever make the assertion that "I am without bias" or "This is without bias," I think we'll only be deluding ourselves.
Yeah I was gonna say that, it's not possible to completely eradicate bias. I've done research myself and I think people who have not done research are not aware that research is not robotic, it has a real human element to it. Scientists are people and as such, will bring bias. Replication and other methods can reduce likelihood of bias misleading people but you can't completely eliminate it.
 

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I'm not sure why you mentioned this. I thought it was obvious from the title of this thread that it was not possible to eliminate bias, but that the scientific community should be increasingly vigilant to avoid it.
Actually, to be fair, the title of this thread is "After 350 years, scientists still haven't worked out how to publish without bias". If you wanted it to reflect the idea that the scientific community should be increasingly vigilant so as to avoid bias, I think a better title would have been "After 350 years, scientists still haven't worked out how to publish with minimal bias".
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Actually, to be fair, the title of this thread is "After 350 years, scientists still haven't worked out how to publish without bias". If you wanted it to reflect the idea that the scientific community should be increasingly vigilant so as to avoid bias, I think a better title would have been "After 350 years, scientists still haven't worked out how to publish with minimal bias".
I know, but there is a length limit on thread titles, just FYI.
 
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