Alert! Some Big And Important And Exciting News!

I have no idea how well I managed to keep this secret – at least 20 people already know this for sure. But you should know as well. There have been some big changes in my life over the past couple of weeks.

My e-mail address, my cell phone number, even my snail-mail address will remain the same, at least for a while. But some other important things will change, as…

…I got an offer I could not refuse.

After the unfortunate Pepsi event, I left and wrote a couple of long, detailed posts about the new science blogging ecosystem, and even got together with a few friends and built a website that can help you track all the changes.

Many people expected I would join another network quickly, so they got progressively more curious as they noticed I did not join Scientopia, Guardian Science Blogs, PLoS Blogs or Wired Science Blogs. I kept getting questions. I heard gossip. But the day has finally arrived for me to announce.

I will be doing this:

Blog and Community Editor, Scientific American : New York, NY:

Scientific American seeks an editor to acquire and manage our expanding blogger network. The position requires at least three years of experience in online editorial positions for science-related outlets.

The ideal candidate will have a facile writing style and a demonstrable track record for successful online community development; a discerning eye for finding engaging scientists in various disciplines who want to engage directly with the public through blogging; the ability to develop editorial packages from the material for print and digital media; familiarity with the production of online material; and the ability to negotiate and manage rights and other associated administrative functions.

The job requires an organized, highly motivated individual who can work in a fast-paced environment and in our Manhattan offices.

Except, I will only be visiting Manhattan offices a few times a year, and will do most of the work from home, here in Chapel Hill. This may change a year from now – a move to NYC is definitely not going to be off the table at that time.

So yes, I will be working with the Scientific American editors and staff in conceptualizing, building, launching and then running a new science blogging network. How could I say No when given such a chance? To do what I love and what I think I can do well, and all of that under the banner of a magazine that was published continuously since 1845.

Mine is actually one of three new appointments at Scientific American announced today. The other two are Christine Gorman who will primarily edit health and medicine features, and Anna Kuchment who will edit the front of the book section of the magazine. You can read about all three of us in the press release. About my role, the press release says:

In this new role at Scientific American, Bora will recruit talented science bloggers and serve as moderator for the community, encouraging discussion and facilitating the exchange of ideas with both the bloggers and Scientific American readers.

Now, as you may know, blogging is nothing new to Scientific American. They have had six blogs for many years now: Observations written by SciAm editors and reporters, Expeditions written by researchers from the field, Extinction Countdown where John Platt introduces endangered species, Solar at Home where George Musser chronicles his attempt to solarize his house, Cross-check where John Horgan covers the news, Bering in Mind where Jesse Bering writes about the Brain and the Mind, and the Guest Blog which hosts the posts by a variety of invited science and blogging luminaries. Their international editions have their own multi-author blogs and networks in several languages.

And then there are all sorts of other cool things on the site, including podcasts, images, multimedia, Ask the Experts and much more.

There is a wealth of stuff on the site already, so we’ll now start figuring out how to build a fun and useful blogging network that is well incorporated into the rest of the site, well connected to the rest of the science blogging ecosystem, and will be a destination for many who are interested in science. It is too early in the game to say much, but I will keep you posted over the next couple of months as we start developing the network.

This also means that I am leaving PLoS after more than three years with the organization. This was a hard decision to make – working at PLoS was a fantastic experience, it opened so many other doors for me, and the office is full of great people I am happy to call my friends. I want to thank everyone there for a great time, for giving me all the opportunities, and for educating me about nuances of Open Access publishing (of course I will remain an OA evangelist!).

As recently as three or four weeks ago, I was involved in developing PLoS Blogs and was slated to move my blog there. But the offer from Scientific American changed that – I will either move this blog or start a new one at the SciAm network once it is ready to launch. My e-mail will be discontinued pretty soon and I assume I will get a new one from SciAm, but my personal address,, will always work. Or DM me on Twitter, FriendFeed or Facebook, or post a comment here on the blog. I am not going anywhere – if anything, you will see and here even more from me in the future!


110 responses to “Alert! Some Big And Important And Exciting News!

  1. Congrats, Bora- seems like a perfect job for you!

  2. Oh wow! Congrats! Well deserved, Bora!

  3. YAY! Congratulations!!! I think SciAm made the perfect choice. πŸ™‚

  4. Congratulations, Bora! SA is very lucky to have you. Really looking forward to seeing what comes next… πŸ™‚

  5. Congrats on the good news Bora — glad to see it being made public, and glad that the Triangle gets to hold on to you for at least another year.

  6. Pingback: Exciting times ahead for Bora | The Official PLoS Blog

  7. Oh, Bora! That’s awesome! I’m so happy, hopefully this position will help you pay the bills better than the last one. The listing sounded like it was custom-made for you.

  8. You are most certainly the best person for the job!

  9. Great news and congratulations. SA made a great decision here.

  10. Great news, Bora! What a fantastic opportunity for you, and what an amazing catch for SciAm!

  11. I am very happy for you Bora. You’ve worked really hard and deserve it. I hope you negotiate a great salary. πŸ™‚

  12. Awesome news, Bora. There isn’t a better person for the job! As I said when you first landed here, we’ll follow you.

    oh, and hey Bora, how many other people at SciAm have a science card? πŸ˜‰

  13. Congrats! At the risk of raining on your parade, I hope you might have some influence over their egregious price increases for institutional subscribers. Many of us have dropped them for this reason. If the blogs are open, we’ll catch you there πŸ™‚

  14. Congrats, Bora!

  15. Does this end the RU a Science Journalist? Debate? Congratulations Bora, and kudos to the SciAm team for recognizing your audacity and talent.

  16. This is great news. Congratulations.

  17. Congratubloodylations! As everyone says, the best man for the job. But Christina raises a good point, will ‘blog around the clock’ continue to operate as before (OA?)!

  18. Congrats, Bora. There are going to be a lot of slivo toasts at ScienceOnline2011!

  19. Congrats Bora. This is wonderful to see the merging of two institutions I’ve worked with and am fond of: SciAm & Bora. May both prosper from the union.

  20. Fantastic!

  21. Amazing news! Wow! Congratulations Bora! I’m sure PLoS will miss you, and what a treat for Scientific American!

  22. Pingback: The seeds of another science blogging network | Gene Expression | Discover Magazine

  23. congratulations Bora! I hope you endeavor to have the SciAm blog network will represent how truly diverse us scientist are!

  24. Congrats, Bora!!!! I can’t think of a better job for you, or anyone better-suited for this position πŸ™‚

  25. Mazel Tov! It’s a perfect match! You have worked so hard for so long for so little compensation. I hope Scientific American knows that they hit the jackpot.

    My condolences to PLoS (you guys have no idea what you have just let slip through your fingers, live and learn.)

  26. Awesome news! Congrats, Bora. Hope you have a lot of fun at SciAm πŸ™‚

  27. Congratulations! That’s awesome news! Well deserved and I’m sure you’ll do amazing things!

  28. SciAm lucked out! Congratulations, Bora!

  29. Awesome, Bora! Congratulations! BTW, I love SciAm’s RSS feeds page, which I hope you keep and enhance.

  30. Wow, Bora, that is SO COOL! Congratulations! I am so excited to hear more and I hope Sci Am realizes what an amazing, thoughtful, articulate and smart person they just brought on board :).

  31. Congratulations, Bora. It’s perfect for you.
    I’m so glad you won’t be leaving NC.

  32. Marla Broadfoot

    Congratulations, Bora! I am so proud of you. And thankful you won’t be moving, at least not yet…

  33. Bora, Congratulations and welcome to Scientific American! Great to have you on board.

  34. Pingback: Science blog networks now officially kudzu-esque | The Loom | Discover Magazine

  35. How exciting! Perfect fit. Bora always replys, so he seems like a friend to everyone. Best wishes and GOOD LUCK! JMP..

  36. Congratulations! I am very happy for you, and I’m sure you will do great things at Scientific American.

    Drinking a Pepsi will never be the same again. Science Blogging has changed more in the past two months than it has in a long time, and for the better.

  37. Congratulations! You’ve definitely earned it! πŸ™‚

  38. Congratulations!

  39. couldn’t happen to a nicer guy. Congratulations!

  40. I was telling them to do this YEARS ago. I am glad they finally got serious. Couldn’t have picked a better leader.

  41. Congratulations! I haven’t been blogging very long, but regard you as one of the best networkers and facilitators in science blogging. So the perfect job!

  42. Congrats, Bora! It couldn’t have happened to a better person. I am so thrilled for you!!

  43. Nice one Bora. Amazing how you managed to keep this one off the twitterverse. All teh best in your new job.

    Sorry to see you go from #PLoS though.

  44. Wooohooo! Bravo! Congratulations Bora:)

  45. Awesome news, Bora — mazal tov! I’m very happy for you and wish you great success and lots of fun in your new job. We are expecting great things from you at Sci Am.

  46. woooooooooooooooooooooooooooot!

  47. Bora! Congrats to you, but also to SciAm. I cannot wait to see the things you’ll do over there.

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  49. Mazel tov!!!

    Friggin awesome!

  50. Great news Bora!
    Good luck in your new assignment.

  51. Congratulations! I look forward to following you to SciAm! Good luck with everything!

  52. Fantastic news, Bora! Congratulations on the move! While PLos will surely miss your presence, SciAm will benefit tremendously.

  53. Congrats Bora! SciAm and NYC sounds great! …’Bora, the highly motivated individual who can work in a fast-paced environment’ well, that fits;-)


    PLoS will be suffering a hit here but the rest of the planet is getting an excellent deal. And so are you, it seems!

  55. Marko Zivkovic

    Congratulations to Scientific American for being so smart. We heard he is a Thomas Paine of science blogging and I would like to invite others to come up with their own comparisons. I suggest Gandalph.

  56. Wow, that’s great news! And I am impressed at SciAm’s sound judgement.

  57. Congratulations Bora.!You have been a great friend and colleague at PLoS, and you have done a great job here. I wish you every success in this exciting new venture!

  58. Congratulations, Bora! And happy community building with the crowd and your co-editors.

  59. With a broad job description like that, there must have been lots of competition. I mean, there must be hundreds of people with three years experience managing online science blogger communities. They might as well have written “and fluent in Serbo-Croatian.” They knew the there was only one person for the job and went out to get him. Good for them, good for you, and good for all of us.

  60. PS – Happy Anniversary.

  61. Congrats! And what everyone said about how you’re the perfect person etc. It was an obvious choice. That being said, I am as skeptical about yet-another-blog-network as Carl Zimmer, so I’m also supportive of you not instantly packing up your life and moving to New York. See how it goes. (Said she who packed up and moved to England to run a community blog, but I was ready to move to England anyway.)

    • Oh no, you misunderstand. This is hardly “yet another blog network.” You will see, perhaps for the first time, science blogging done right. SciAm did not choose just anybody for this job, they have successfully acquired a visionary, THE Master of networking, who is also a scientist, a wide and deep historical thinker, a feminist (in word and deed), who has the energy and can do the work of five people, thinks/acts on a global scale, champion of social justice, education (especially science education – and he continues to teach non-trad students with no background in biology – because he changes lives), has the highest ethical standards, is accountable for all of his words and deeds, co-organizer of the Science Online conference (which he does for FREE and, by the way, coincidentally achieved perfect gender parity last year). To summarize; he is NOT an ordinary science blogger starting yet another science blog, he is a genius and a mensch. I am surprised that Carl, you, or anybody else could or would imagine anything less than brilliant work from his efforts. My best advice to SciAm: give him the tools he needs, stand back (that is, give him the freedom to do what he wants), and be prepared to be amazed and delighted with the results. Science, creating networks, blogging and disseminating information is not his hobby, it is his life.

  62. Wow Bora! Congratulations. You know I’ve been following you around for years, so now you’re taking me to NY with you. All the best for you and Scientific American! I’m sure they realize how lucky they were to snatch you away from Plos.

  63. so so thrilled for you!

  64. That is very cool! Congratulations, you deserve this opportunity.

  65. Congratulations Bora! I’ll look forward to great things from SciAm blogs! Have a great time in your new position!

  66. So very happy for you! Sounds like a perfect match! W00t!!!!

  67. Čestitke, Bora! And I’m looking forward to see how you can help Open Access reach into those corners of the web.

  68. Congrats Bora!!! The ad for the job seems like it was written with you in mind! They couldn’t have chosen a better candidate to fill the spot!! Wishing you lots of success in your new job!

  69. Awesome Bora – congratulations!

  70. Congrats! Can’t wait what you develop at Scientific American (PLoS will miss you, I’m sure).

  71. Congrats Bora!

  72. Congrats! I’m looking forward to seeing what you do at SA.

  73. Ha ha! You’re MSM! πŸ˜‰

    Congrats Bora – very well deserved.

  74. So is it true that half of the (long defunct) Frink Tank boys wrote or write for Scientific American?

  75. Awesome! Congrats Bora!

  76. So thrilled for you! Congratulations to SciAm on landing you!

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  78. A loss for PLoS, but sounds like a good move for you, and for SciAm. Congrats.


  79. Marion Delgado

    Do I win something if I’m the millionth congratulator? I subscribe to absolutely every SciAm podcast, will I hear Bora?

  80. Congratulations Bora.

    Will we be seeing the implementation of HTML for the comments section at Scientific American? What is your plan on handling the increase in spammers there?

  81. Stagyar zil Doggo

    Congratulations Bora!

  82. Congrats Bora!

    So I can expect lots more chronobiology in my SciAm from now on?

  83. Thank you all!

    I am starting, officially, on Monday.

    I doubt I will have much influence on the rest of the site apart from the blogs, or on magazine’s policy, etc. This will take some time to put together…be patient.

    My own blogging? I intend to write more about science again – chronobiology, animal behavior, and comparative (ecological/evolutionary) animal physiology. But I will no doubt also keep blogging about the world of the media and how the technology is changing the way science is done, published, reported and taught.

  84. My most heartfelt congratulations! I enjoy your posts and tweets, and look forward to seeing more in the future. And as other commenters have already said more eloquently than I could, there’s no better choice for a builder of a science blog community. Good luck!

  85. Congrats Bora! They couldn’t have found a better guy

  86. Congratulations – this is great news.

  87. Late to the party, but….SQUEEEEEEAAAAAAALLLLLL!!!!!!!!

    That is EXCELLENT.

  88. Mary Jane Gore

    Hi, Bora — Best wishes as you bring all that energy to another type of scientific endeavor. I appreciate your reflections and look forward to your new forum. Go get ’em, Mary Jane

  89. Good for you! Always heartening when a deserving person lands the chance to do worthwhile work. Go get ’em.

  90. Well done and well deserved!

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  92. Belated congratulations, brother! A fantastic opportunity by a great organization (I only just learned during their recent anniversary that they have been publishing longer than even <emThe Nation!

    I want to thank you publicly for your support ever since I was a 10 viewer/day blog in 2005 all the way through the launch of PLoS Blogs and your role in my good fortune to be selected to blog there. I’ve learned so much from you about building community, as have all of us, whether it is local or international.

    The SciAm gig is a very well-deserved change in direction and I look forward to watching you shine.

    Na zdrowie!

    • David,
      Your generosity, thoughtfulness and kindness are, as always, absolutely stunning. There are no words. Saying “thank you” is simply insufficient.
      [You can’t see this, but I respectfully bow, with gratitude.]

  93. Great news for Scientific American and the rest of us. Hope it works out well for you, too!

  94. Congratulations to you, Bora, and to Scientific American!

  95. Bora! I’ve been out of touch for a while now and happened to log onto Friendfeed and saw you link. I’m so happy for you. Congratulations and I wish you all the best in your new job.