I’m taking a minute this week to plug a neat campaign that one of my friends is putting together. Archaeologist Dr. Emily Holt, currently at the Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle in Paris, is crowdfunding a peer-reviewed video journal called Dirt & Words. Emily and I have spent some time talking about this at the SAAs and over email, and I think it’s a fabulous idea. In Emily’s own words:
“Although many archeologists are passionate about communicating with the public, we do it less than we’d like – and less than we should. Why? Because communicating with the public isn’t considered “real” scholarship, so we aren’t rewarded for doing it. But if public scholarship had to go through the same rigorous process of assessment that our professional articles go through – a process called peer review – scholars would know that our public outreach is good science – with real impact.
That’s why I want to produce Dirt and Words, a freely accessible online videojournal of public scholarship about the past. All Dirt and Words videos will go through peer review, where professionals in the field assess the quality of the research and public consultants decide whether the video is compelling public scholarship. Whenever you watch a Dirt and Words video, you’ll know you’re getting the best and most current information we can give you.”
For those of you who are visual learners, here’s a video describing the project that touches upon some of Emily’s archaeological research.
I’m advertising this both because Emily is currently soliciting donations to get the video journal off of the ground, and because I want this to be on people’s radar, especially archaeologists interested in public outreach and scholarship. If you’re curious, take a look at the indiegogo page, where you can find more information about Dirt & Words. I definitely plan on submitting a video myself in the future!