Zivkovic, who blogged about his experience Monday evening after being contacted by CJR to obtain details, was later granted press privileges, said AAAS Senior Communications Officer Earl Lane. “I questioned whether [Zivkovic] was a journal editor. He assured me he was a member of the communications staff at PLoS, and we offered him a newsroom credential on that basis,” Lane said.

Overall, press credentials for the AAAS annual meeting are offered to bloggers on a case-by-case basis, Lane said, and like other approved applicants for credentials, bloggers “should not have dual affiliations as marketing professionals, lobbyists, representatives of advocacy groups, or journal editors,” he said. “The online world continues to evolve and our newsroom policies will evolve as well. Bloggers who do original reporting and adhere to the standards of traditional science journalism are more than welcome at the AAAS Annual Meeting.”

He said that this year about 700 people registered with the AAAS newsroom, including about 200 from the international media. Even with increased online representation, there were nonetheless many U.K. and European newspaper and magazine reporters as well as traditional U.S. media, including the Associated Press, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and the Los Angeles Times, as well as coverage by the local daily paper, the San Diego Union-Tribune.

Editor’s Note: Cristine Russell organized and moderated the AAAS Symposium, “Facing the Uncertain Future of International Science Journalism.”

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Robin Lloyd and Cristine Russell are freelance science writers. Lloyd is currently on contract as the online editor for Scientific American and was previously a senior editor at LiveScience.com and SPACE.com. Russell is a CJR contributing editor, president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing, and a senior fellow at Harvard's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs.