When someone doesn’t want me to write about something, it makes me curious. So when people tried to warn me off my long-read article on ‘novel psychoactive substances’ (NPS) just published in Chemistry World, I got curious. I was hunting someone who actually made NPS — sometimes called legal highs, now banned in the UK. So I went to the ‘research chemical’ community, who buy substances that may get you high but are too new to have been banned. Some were helpful, some outright hostile.
‘Do you know how many micrograms it takes to make a caterpillar dance?’This cryptic question – sounding like it’s from Alice in wonderland, but in fact deadly serious – is typical of the psychoactive substance developer known as Dr Zee. It relates to a scientific project that he worked on at an Israeli company in the early 2000s, seeking to control crop-eating pests.
Defendants prosecuted for supplying nitrous oxide under the UK’s Psychoactive Substances Act 2016 (PSA) have had the last laugh, after judges ruled the gas exempt from the drug law. Trials in late August in Southwark and Taunton Crown Courts concluded that ‘laughing gas’ qualified as a medicinal product. As the PSA excludes medicinal products, the defendants were acquitted.
Muck Rack makes it simple to find people, tweets, or articles that mention any name, keyword, company, hashtag etc. We've compiled this guide to help you make the most of your search.
Selecting a term
Start searching tweets, articles from media outlets, articles mentioned in tweets, journalists'
names, titles and bios with some suggested searches:
Companies or Topics (e.g. iPhone, Microsoft)
Phrases (e.g. "cloud computing") — use quotes to keep the terms together
Twitter handles (e.g. @username) — returns those who have mentioned or replied to
Names (e.g. "David Pogue")
Hashtags (e.g. #sxsw, #london2012)
Bio details (e.g. vegan, Olympics, father)
Muck Rack's Advanced Search allows for many boolean operators.
Find results that mention multiple specified terms, use AND or
+. For example, ensure each result contains both Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg by
searching Obama AND Romney or Obama + Romney.
Use the operators OR or , to broaden your search when you'd like either of
multiple terms to appear in results. (This is the default behavior of our search when no operators
are used.) For example, search for democrat OR republican to find results that refer to
Democrats and/or Republicans.
Use NOT or - to subtract results from your search. For
example, searching Disney will yield results about the Walt Disney Company as well as Walt Disney
World Resort. To exclude mentions of Disney World, search for Disney -World or Disney
When using one of these operators with a phrase, enclose it in quotation marks. For example, you can
find results about smartphones excluding Apple's iPhone 4S by searching smartphone -"iPhone
Exact case matching or punctuation
If you're searching for a brand name or keyword that relies on specific punctuation marks or capitalization, you can
find results that match your exact query by adding matchcase: before the keyword you're searching for, like matchcase:E*TRADE .
Use parentheses to separate multiple
boolean phrases. For example, to find journalists talking about having fun in Disney World or
Disneyland, search for ("disney world" OR disneyland) AND fun.
An asterisk can be used to search for any variation of a root word truncated by the asterisk. For example, searching for admin* will return results for administrator, administration, administer, administered, etc.
A near operator is an AND operator where you can control the distance between the words. You can vary the distance the near operation uses by adding a forward slash and number (between 0-99) such as strawberries NEAR/10 "whipped cream", which means the strawberries must exist within 10 words of "whipped cream".