A prank that goes wrong shows just how widespread chemophobia truly is

This is what happens when most of our media only share stories about harmful chemicals. It creates chemophobia- even the fear of water, one of our very best friends!  I think it’s an “excellent” example of what a bad job we’re (scientists and educators) doing educating the general public not just about chemicals but making others comfortable with basic researching and finding good resources. It’s also a real shame that these DJs have gotten into so much trouble for it.

“Florida country radio morning-show hosts Val St. John and Scott Fish are currently serving indefinite suspensions and possibly worse over a successful April Fools’ Day prank. They told their listeners that “dihydrogen monoxide” was coming out of the taps throughout the Fort Myers area. Dihydrogen monoxide is water.

The popular deejays are mainly in all this trouble (potentially of a felony level) because their listeners panicked so much — about the molecular makeup of their drinking water, however unwittingly — that Lee County utility officials had to issue a county-wide statement calming the fears of chemistry challenged Floridians.”

Check out the full story here!

Update on March 3, 2013: The DJs have been reinstated as of this morning!

 

Tap Water Photo is By Pemanducomm via Wikimedia Commons

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