I watched the BBC documentary science under attack presented by Sir Paul Nurse president of Royal Soc. This letter this is a letter to President as a feedback to documentary.
Regarding the position of press it is not surprising to me at all:
It is a case of: Private $ Power and New Media: The Case of the Corporate Suppression and Cherry picking of NEWS.
Just think who will lose if fossil fuel consumption decrease and it would not be hard to find the suspect.
Regarding GM food.
People are angry in many countries of laws passed by support of seed producer companies and respective lobbies. In Turkey selling of Turkish seed are prohibited. Only imported ones are allowed to sell. Many are angry just because sold seeds are sterile. They do not represent life, since they can not reproduce. These seeds cause extinguishing of life extinguish of local plant species.
Many are angry of capitalism: laws and rules support big & fat corporations, leaving large masses in poverty. Even in democracies people are no longer in charge. Banks, gov., media, large corporations.
Although you defended the peer review process it must be radically reviewed. It has many flaws.
I wrote an article about radiology when I was a resident in Radiology. It was published on Turkish J. of Radiology as an editorial without my name on the editorial. Another writing of me was published in same Journal unsigned. I was unable to protest since those who where going to exam me was those who did the wrong doing. I witnessed many cases of forgery and ghostwriting in Turkish journals. Many with forged publications became professors and peer reviewers. The practice is widespread in many countries. With current review system and balance of forces prevention seems unlikely. People of power own many major positions.
Articles submitted to European & American J.'s from other countries are cherry picked, delayed or instantly reproduced by scientists in those countries. Reports suspecting claimed efficiency of mammography was consistently unpublished when they came from other countries, while studies sponsored by film producing companies, drug companies, and device producing companies in western countries got full publication in medical journals.
Publishers get undeserved copyright for content they had no role in production. They neither pay scientists nor reviewers. Publishers have no role in sponsoring the research. They just use copyright to restrict access to knowledge for an excessively length of time.
So a new system of scientific publication is needed to allow fast and free expression, prevent, forgery, cherry picking and undeserved copyright, while allowing transparency, public and peer review/rating and evaluating of submitted materials for key components such as ethics, authenticity of authors, conflicts of interest, etc. validity of methods and findings.