Daily Star victory as boffins concede its fine to call them boffins

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    Boffins campaigning to ban the term ‘Boffin’ have finally, reluctantly, conceded it can be used if the boffin in question likes being called a boffin.

    In a victory for the Daily Star, the clever clogs have issued a climbdown in their battle to end the word boffin. An executive at The Institute of Physics said it was now a matter of "personal taste" if an egghead liked being branded a ‘boffin’.

    She also said she was fine with the idea of pub quiz teams being called things like Brilliant boffins. It’s a huge win for your Daily Star as we’ve battled for months to maintain the wonderful term of endearment for the nation’s much-loved, and highly respected, brainiacs.

    READ MORE: ChatGPT down as users 'can't finish assignments' with workers demanding CEO return

    For the latest news and updates from our favourite boffins around the world, click here.

    The Institute of Physics launched their campaign earlier this year, wanting the media to call all boffins and boffinesses "scientists".

    But the body’s deputy chief executive Rachel Youngman has now conceded: "To be clear, the IOP isn’t seeking to ban the word. If a pub quiz team, say, wants to be called ‘Brilliant boffins’ that’s fine and if scientists don’t mind the word, then we would consider that a matter of personal taste.

    The boffins’ “Bin the boffins” campaign has featured on the Daily Star’s front page twice this year as we defended our use of the term and our intention to continue using it.

    The IOP campaign claimed “boffin” was an outdated slang term and catch-all to describe any scientist, technician, researcher or expert.

    Batting back on behalf of the boffins and brainiacs, Rachel Youngman said: "We believe that boffin is a lousy way to talk about scientists.

    "The term has negative impacts – it is poorly understood, strongly associated with the male gender and is confusing." In a survey last year, IOP members said the term was unhelpful and inaccurate, with younger members saying it put them off science.

    Rachel said: "When it comes to reporting important discoveries, trends in science, breakthroughs and new techniques, we believe the media should use something more accurate, such as ‘scientist’."

    She added: “When young people are deterred from studying physics, which still happens far too often, they are missing out on the many benefits it brings.

    "They are denied the opportunity to explore how their world works and to contribute to shaping the future as informed citizens, as well as losing the opportunity to play a role in the technological and scientific challenges of our age.

    "That’s why we will continue to campaign and why we will ask, politely but firmly, for the media to ‘Bin the boffin'."

    Stop AI taking over

    Oxford University professor Ben Ansell reckons social media algorithms have the power to control society if we don’t take action. He told the Radio Times: “Polarisation is made worse by our addiction to social media. Artificial intelligence algorithms guide us to things we already like, which is harmless if it’s romantic comedies or jazz.

    "But with politics, it pushes us to the extremes. So, one quick fix any of us can do is go on a social media diet, or deliberately read things we don’t always agree with. We can lobby our government to push tech firms to take more responsibility for the political effects of their algorithms."

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