John Toon is a scientific writer for Georgia Tech, so whenever he writes for an article, he has a clear bias towards Georgia Tech. This is apparent in his article titled “Robot Helps Study How First Land Animals Moved 360 Million Years Ago” from the Georgia Tech News. Toon talks a ton about how a bunch of Tech people participated in the creation of this robot to try and appeal to the Georgia Tech audience who is reading his article. Samantha Cole’s shorter “Robot Replicates How Our Ancestors First Walked on Land” gives a short mention of Georgia Tech to quickly say that they were involved in the experiment, but does not focus on that bit like Toon does. Cole’s article is pretty much just a quick, non-scientific summary of Toon’s article which makes it lose a significant amount of credibility in my book. It honestly looks like Cole’s article was actually created from a summary of Toon’s with the intention of dulling it down and shortening it for the audience of Popular Science. This is great example of a transformation and a translation. It is a translation because it is taking a very similar text and adapting it to what the writer wants it to become. It is a transformation because it takes the original article and changes the scope and moves it to a different place on the internet.
My question for John Toon: Do you actually go through the whole press release yourself and determine what is going to be important to have in your article or does someone else do that for you?