I could describe my research to other perceptual psychologists, or to other cognitive psychologists, or to other psychologists, or to other scientists, each time taking a step away from the specific knowledge of the context of distance perception research. But these steps are encouraged, the journals that reach wider audiences have more credibility and more impact. But then if I take one more step beyond Science and Nature, to the lay public, all of a sudden it becomes not science but science outreach? This seems like a bit of an arbitrary distinction. Maybe it is just that Science and Nature are super competitive, and the selectivity itself is what is solely responsible for their high currency in the scientific world?
It may be arbitrary, but drawing the line at when the audience contains scientists who might use your research or are potential collaborators doesn’t seem all that unfair. However, the observation that people outside that circle might still have useful information to share is a good one. It’s not uncommon to make a “discovery” in one field only to find it’s a very well-known phenomena in another and only a matter of where you’ve drawn these boundaries of who your audience is (or in what audience you place yourself). Cross-pollination in science, by reaching a broader audience, is quite likely to yield better science.