Mea culpa: No Pacific trash as Donors Choose prizes

Dear DSN readers,

Sometimes it’s easy to let one’s enthusiasm for science and blogging get the better of one’s common sense. Exhibit A: Myself. A couple days ago in a attempt to raise awareness for the Ocean Bloggers for Education Challenge, I offered up a prize (a vial of Pacific trash) that was not mine to offer. Federal law prohibits the sale of property and/or scientific samples collected with funding from the federal government. These laws are in place for a good reason, and I am in full agreement with them.

There will be no scientific samples offered as prizes for this contest, and just to be safe I am withdrawing the tour of Scripps as well. To avoid any appearance of impropriety, I am also personally refunding the money of the two people who donated while the post was up.

I regret making offers that I cannot follow through with. I hope that you continue to support Donor’s Choose.