Extra Credit: Our pick of stories from around the web that bridge the gap between news and scholarship. Brought to you each Tuesday from the editors of JSTOR Daily.
A scientific hunt for a witch hunt (AP/US News)
by Mark Pratt and Rodrique Ngowi
The Salem witch trials were one of the most infamous episodes in American colonial history, but for a long time historians weren’t sure of the exact site where 19 innocent people were killed. Now, researcher have combined accounts of the executions with modern technology to pinpoint the spot.
My bacteria are your bacteria (The Atlantic)
by Ed Yong
We all know your friends help shape who you are. Now, research suggests that that influence goes all the way down to your gut. Chimpanzees pass microbes from peer to peer more than from parent to child, creating a “pan-microbiome” that the whole clique shares. The same may well be true for us.
With great power comes a great chance to be a lobbyist (The Washington Post)
By Jeffrey Jazarus
Which members of Congress are most likely to monetize their political careers as lobbyists after leaving the Capitol? Senators or House members? Republicans or Democrats? A new study finds the only clear predictor of going on to a lobbying career is having a powerful position.
The dangerous mix of research and PR (Vox)
By Julia Belluz
One deeply flawed university study on high-protein chocolate milk sheds light on the perils of both corporate-sponsored research and the college PR machines hyping new research.
Dr. Google is surprisingly competent (Pacific Standard)
by Elena Gooray
Lots of people experiencing strange medical symptoms bring their questions to a bunch of strangers on online message boards. And guess what? According to a new study, they typically get good advice.
Have you seen a story online that does a good job of bridging the gap between the news and scholarship? Or something that seems particularly well-researched? Let us know and we may include it in next week’s roundup. Email us at jstordaily_submissions (at) jstor (dot) org.