Living the ketchup effect

So, we submitted a set of manuscripts this spring and summer. And they have been bouncing back and forth. If a study is good enough, the report will eventually get accepted somewhere in some scientific journal. And we are having that now, several of these papers have been published or are about to get published. The ketchup-effect again, first nothing happens, then everything happens. It is, of course, incredibly fun to be in the middle of such process.


But the publishing of a study is also the last few moments that study will be alive in the science-factory. The whole submission-publishing process is one where the intensity is raised all the way till the day after the paper is published. After all revisions and communications, when the paper gets accepted, a new process starts. One that is sliding from bureaucracy (filling in forms and communicating agreements with the journal) to public relations. Usually, the final week is pretty intense. A good press release needs to be produced and published, and if the press release is good enough, the media will get back to you. If it is a good study, and if the press release has been well written, there are usually two extremely intense days with journalists. The day before the paper goes on line, and the day after it has come online. Then it usually just dies and almost completely disappears from your life. There are exceptions (like our warrior lady that held attention for a good two weeks), but usually a good study coming on-line is followed by 24 hectic media hours, and then it goes completely silent. A good study will of course live on for years in the scientific discussion, but the intensity-drop that follows about 24 hours after a paper is published is one of the most noticeable particulars in the life of a scientific study.