A plea to mankind, news outlets and even scientists
Species name notation is not rocket science, does not require one to be a brain surgeon and in some ways help communication at large. Now that science, thanks to the internet, in getting more tangled into our lives (even companies and political parties have DNA), it is important to have some standard, especially in written text in order to make information exchange easier.
I know is easy to understand that when someone is writing homo sapiens, he or she is referring to a human of the species Home sapiens, or when someone writes E.Coli, it’s clear that Escherichia coli is the target. Most newspapers (with blogs and online presence) have writing standards and manuals; maybe including a rule that species names have to be written following the Binomial Nomenclature:
* Species names are usually typeset in italics; for example, Homo sapiens. Generally the binomial should be printed in a font different from that used in the normal text; for example, “Several more Homo sapiens were discovered.”
* The genus name is always written with an initial capital letter.
* In current usage, the species name is never written with an initial capital.
For example, the entire tiger species is Panthera tigris
Simple, eh? So, on your next seminar, C. elegans might be correctly set to C. elegans
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- 02.16.11 / 4pm