• Denby Weller

On Nick Hopwood's guide to communicating research

Updated: Oct 22, 2020

Hi Nick! I just read your 'How to make sure people care about your research'. It was great. All I have to say in terms of a response is: Democracies in the Western World are being overrun by a rise in right-wing populism.

This populism is often based on concerted campaigns of misinformation, disinformation and malinformation.

My research aims to track the material impacts of this kind of 'fake news' in the real world, so we can see if it's really at the heart of the breakdown of democracy.

The street art in Christchurch really rocked my world. But this photo is actually about the light. I was there in January, and I was really shocked at how bright (and cold!) the light was. I hadn't taken any filters with me, preferring to use my camera settings, but I consistently overexposed my shots. It was a good lesson in working the camera on manual settings and not trusting the image in the camera's screen, which was consistently about two stops darker than the photo I'd shot.

I think part of the problem was that Christchurch does suffer from that extreme unfiltered sunlight you get when you're at higher latitudes. So I was standing in this 'distorted' sunlight when assessing my photos in the camera screen, and I couldn't distinguish the problem because I was immersed in it myself. It wasn't until I was out of the sun, inside a room with artificial lighting in the evenings, that I realised how many photos were blown out.

It was a good lesson in perspectives.

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