IU paleobotanist identifies what could be the mythical ‘first flower’

The IU Newsroom put out a press release Aug. 17 about an IU paleobotanist’s identification of the “mythical first flower” – a flowering plant species potentially older than any previously identified – after being contacted about the upcoming article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by the lead U.S. researcher on the study, Department of Geology Professor Emeritus David Dilcher.

IU’s news release was posted under embargo a week prior to the journal’s publication date on EurekaAlert!, a news source for trusted science reporters operated by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Articles from major news outlets such as the Washington Post, Guardian and Discovery were among the first to appear online within minutes of lifting the embargo.

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Montsechia vidalii

Additional coverage from major U.S. media outlets included:

A number of English-language news outlets in the United Kingdom, Australia, India and elsewhere also reported on the study. Coverage included BBC News, Business Standard, The Daily Mail, The Independent, The Jakarta Post, The MirrorThe Rappler, The Register, The Scotsman, Tech Times, The Telegraph, Yahoo News UK and Youth Independent. Foreign-language coverage included Le Figaro (French), Kompass (Indonesian), ANSA (Italian) and Diario de Noticia (Portugese); ABC ScienceBBC Mundo, Canarias 7 and El Confidential (Spanish); and BBC Turkey (Turkish).

News sources specializing in science to report on the research included ABC Science Australia, Encyclopaedia BritannicaFuturityLive Science, Mental FlossScience Magazine, Science Recorder, Science World ReportSoftpedia and YouTube channel GeoBeats.

In addition, Prof. Dilcher wrote a piece for The Conversation, a news website featuring academics discussing topics in the news in their own words. This essay was later picked up by the Christian Science Monitor as a companion to their own article on the discovery.

Prof. Dilcher was also interviewed for NPR’s Here and Now (6-minute audio interview) and WTIU in Bloomington.

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