'MegaLab UK' : Participatory science and the mass media
For the past two years, the 'MegaLab UK' initiative has carried out huge participatory science demonstrations on national television, radio and in newspapers. This paper outlines the methods and results of two MegaLab experiments. The first of these examined whether the public were better able to detect lies on television, on the radio or in the press. A second experiment examined whether first or last impressions were more important in an interview broadcast on television and printed in a national newspaper. These demonstrations helped to communicate the basic building blocks of experimental design and conveyed the feeling of excitement associated with the scientific enterprise. In addition, scientists can rarely carry out experiments with such large cross-sections of the populations and actual media, so the results have real scientific value.