Mapping the skeptical blogosphere – WUWT seems to be the most central blog

From the thanks for painting a target on my back department comes word of a new paper that attempts to figure our the mapping of the climate skeptic blogosphere.

Bishop Hill writes:

Readers may remember Amelia Sharman as one of the authors of the “Entrepreneur” paper, about the disreputable shenanigans that led to the EU’s biofuels mandate.

Amelia is now in the midst of a PhD looking at global warming sceptics and has just published a working paper, describing the results of a social network analysis of sceptic blogs.

The paper abstract is (full paper link follows):

==============================================================

Title:                           Mapping the climate sceptical blogosphere
Author:                      Amelia Sharmanab
Affiliation:                 a Department of Geography and Environment, London School of Economics and Political Science, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment

Abstract

While mainstream scientific knowledge production has been extensively examined in the academic literature, comparatively little is known about alternative networks of scientific knowledge production. Online sources such as blogs are an especially under-investigated site of knowledge contestation. Using degree centrality and node betweenness tests from social network analysis, and thematic content analysis of individual posts, this research identifies and critically examines the climate sceptical blogosphere and investigates whether a focus on particular themes contributes to the positioning of the most central blogs. A network of 171 individual blogs is identified, with three blogs in particular found to be the most central: Climate Audit, JoNova and Watts Up With That. These blogs predominantly focus on the scientific element of the climate debate, providing either a direct scientifically-based challenge to mainstream climate science, or a critique of the conduct of the climate science system, and appear to be less preoccupied with other types of scepticism that are prevalent in the wider public debate such as ideologically or values-motivated scepticism. It is possible that these central blogs in particular are not only acting as translators between scientific research and lay audiences, but, in their reinterpretation of existing climate science knowledge claims, are filling a void by opening up climate science to those who may have been previously unengaged by the mainstream knowledge process and, importantly, acting themselves as public sites of alternative expertise for a climate sceptical audience.

==========================================================

The full open access paper can be seen here.

There is only one little fatal mistake IMHO on sentence one of the paper:

Evidence supporting the reality of climate change and its anthropogenic cause is overwhelming in the peer-reviewed literature (J. Cook et al. 2013; Doran and Zimmerman 2009).

Apparently she’s not following just how messed up the Cook et al. paper is. Maybe she and Dr. Richard Tol can talk.

This made me laugh:

While the academic literature to date has focused on the manifestation of climate scepticism in mainstream media forums (Boykoff 2007; Schmidt et al. 2013), little work has been done to understand why climate sceptical blogs exist and what their role may be as public sites of knowledge contestation.

She has no idea why we exist? Better not tell her then, its a big Exxon-Mobil trade secret /sarc. Or, maybe she can ask her Grantham Institute co-worker and ex punk rocker Bob Ward, who I’m sure has an opinion about the matter.

On the plus side, there is this:

Table 7 shows that WUWT is an extremely central node according to this test. The results of this test are interpreted against the mean betweenness score. WUWT has a score of 3971.52, significantly higher than the mean score of 180.31. As anticipated, there was a large overlap between the results for this test and those for Freeman’s in-degree centrality, with six blogs appearing in both sets of results. Accordingly, Climate Audit, ICECAP, JoNova and No Frakking Consensus also join the short-list of the most central blogs.

skeptical_blog_rank_table7

I think the mean score of 180.31 is a typo, likely 1800 and change.

WUWT is an extremely prolific blog, with 190 posts for  March 2012 alone; however, the posts analysed had several reoccurring sub-themes under the overall category of science, with a predominant interest in alternative explanations for climate models, temperature data or human-induced climate change, largely in the form of scientifically-based challenges to published science.

The conclusion is also interesting, an excerpt:

The most noteworthy finding of this research however is that the blogs identified as the most central predominantly focus on the scientific element of the climate debate. Within this overall focus, providing a direct scientifically-based challenge to mainstream climate science, or a critique of the conduct of the climate science system (such as individual climate scientists’ actions or institutional decision-making) appear to be particularly important themes. As highlighted above, the direct scientific challenge that the climate sceptical blogosphere provides may be thought of as either trend or attribution scepticism (Rahmstorf 2005). The blogosphere’s focus on the scientific element of climate scepticism is important because it stands in direct contrast to research carried out among the general public, where the prevalence of trend and attribution scepticism is low compared to other types of scepticism, such as scepticism regarding the need for mitigation policies (Akter et al. 2012). This result also contradicts claims that climate science is ‘adrift in the blogosphere’ (Schäfer 2012: 529) because even though few climate scientists themselves blog—and are suggested to mainly focus on addressing the “pseudoscience” implied as existing within the climate sceptic blogosphere (Schäfer 2012)—this does not mean that science itself is not an active topic of discussion.

Still, that won’t stop climate zealots like Joe Romm and others from claiming WUWT and other skeptical blogs are “anti-science”, since that’s a convenient label for them to pitch to their low-information readers.

As always, thanks to my contributors, readers, and moderators for helping to put WUWT at the center of the climate blogosphere.

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162 Responses to Mapping the skeptical blogosphere – WUWT seems to be the most central blog

  1. Dyrewulf says:

    “From the thanks for painting a target on my back department….” +10 points! That literally made me chuckle out loud for the first time today…

  2. DaveG says:

    “little work has been done to understand why climate sceptical blogs exist”
    To expose the real science method and proven/realistic facts!

  3. Mike Jonas says:

    Anthony – Write to Amelia S right away, point out her fatal error with full supporting documentation. Seriously. It could give her a one of those defining moments.

  4. P Walker says:

    At least she admits that WUWT is science based .

  5. Roy Spencer says:

    Apparently, you can get a PhD these days just for using a bunch of multi-syllable words.

  6. JimS says:

    The skepticism is settled.

  7. Pathway says:

    What many people fail to realize is that there are more scientist alive today than in the whole sum of history. WUWT probably has more people who are actively engaged in science or have worked in science research than any other forum.

  8. Kevin Lohse says:

    “…direct scientifically-based challenge to mainstream climate science,…” A more accurate description would be ,”consensus climate science”, but maybe such a significant nod to the politicisation of the discipline could lead Ms Sharman into asking uncomfortable questions which might affect her grant. Anyway, good luck to her.

  9. Congradulations Anthony. Some well deserved recognition here!

  10. philjourdan says:

    While her bias does show through, I will hand it to her that she appears to be trying to do an unbiased evaluation.

    I wonder how the team will spin it.

  11. RHS says:

    Pathway – I think you hit the nail on the head! It’s been a while since I’ve heard that. It stands to reason with so many people looking at problems, we will have more debate, cynics, sarcasm, and disagreement before a “consensus”.

  12. John F. Hultquist says:

    WUWT = 3971.52
    I’m wondering about that ’2′ .

  13. jorgekafkazar says:

    Joe who?

  14. Mike Edwards says:

    Pathway hits the nail on the head – there are now a lot, lot more trained scientists out in the big wide world than there are in academia. Many who are experts in one or other of the aspects of science employed by climate scientists – Steve McIntyre is a shining example. Add in the extraordinary communications vehicle of the internet and the cosy old academic club approach to science comes in for a very hard time…

  15. tarran says:

    The conclusion was pretty interesting:

    The most noteworthy finding of this research however is that the blogs identified as
    the most central predominantly focus on the scientific element of the climate debate. Within this overall focus, providing a direct scientifically-based challenge to mainstream climate science, or a critique of the conduct of the climate science system (such as individual climate scientists’ actions or institutional decision-making) appear to be particularly important themes. As highlighted above, the direct scientific challenge that the climate sceptical blogosphere provides may be thought of as either trend or attribution scepticism (Rahmstorf 2005). The blogosphere’s focus on the scientific element of climate scepticism is important because it stands in direct contrast to research carried out among the general public, where the prevalence of trend and attribution scepticism is low compared to other types of scepticism, such as scepticism regarding the need for mitigation policies (Akter et al. 2012).

    The sort of debate she describes is precisely how the scientific method weighs and judges competing hypotheses. It’s just happening outside of academia in blogs.

  16. Auto says:

    “A network of 171 individual blogs is identified” from the abstract.
    “Table 7 shows that WUWT is an extremely central node according to this test. The results of this test are interpreted against the mean betweenness score. WUWT has a score of 3971.52, significantly higher than the mean score of 180.31″ from the extract above.

    180.31 seems to be the mean of 171 ‘betweenness’ scores, so perhaps the polysyllabic prophetess is right – on that, at least . . . .

  17. starzmom says:

    I am still trying to wrap my head around the idea that studying the blogosphere has some relationship to geography.

  18. rtj1211 says:

    The person who wrote this needs to study ‘politics in scientific research funding 101′: if they did that they wouldn’t be in the least surprised at the things being said.

    ‘Little is known about why climate skeptical blogs exist’ = gissa grant for me to find out why and publish a paper telling you.

    ‘Global warming is incontestable’ = I need another grant now this study is finished and saying this keeps me on the right side of the political funders.

    There are three constants in scientific papers:

    1. The prevailing political climate is always supported.
    2. More research is always needed.
    3. Angles where new funding could be secured are always alluded to.

  19. Riki says:

    Such elegant use of language! The “mean betweenness of node centrality!” Ah, sociology…psuedoscience at its best.

  20. Bob Greene says:

    Congratulations, Anthony

  21. Mike Maguire says:

    I’ve been an operational meteorologist for 31 years. Radio, then television for 11 years and since then trading commodities using the influence of the weather on crop yields and energy demand. I spend much of the day looking at weather maps and market information but over the last several months have included checking in daily, to see what’s on WUWT.

    The reasons?
    1. Authentic, science based information from fellow scientists based on ideas rooted in the real world.
    2. An incredible number of articles, that often contain many profound comments which include additional thoughts/links.

    No need to spend a great deal of time trying to find the latest papers or breaking news. Anthony finds it and posts it here.

  22. ossqss says:

    She should be asking whay skeptics exist. Blogs are just an outgrowth of such. That would lead her to the real question she doesn’t see yet.

    Why is mainstream climate science so easily debunked?

    A real study needs to be done with respect to recurring distributions of climate funding and the nature of the projects supported by such funding. That will paint a very vivid picture as to how we got here and why.

    It is about money in the end, no?

  23. Theo Goodwin says:

    WUWT does the heavy lifting in criticism of climate science. Alarmists are now talking about natural regularities and natural variability. That is new talk for them and it came directly from WUWT. Alarmists are talking about ENSO and the AMO. That came from Bob Tisdale and others at WUWT. In the near future, the Alarmists that remain will be talking about Willis’ cloud hypotheses. At this time, talk about actual physical hypotheses begging for empirical investigation is a bridge too far.

    It is ironic that WUWT is the leader in criticism of climate science. In the natural order of things, the most severe critics of a science are supposed to be those who created the science. In the natural order, Gavin Schmidt’s blog should offer the most severe criticism of climate science.

  24. DirkH says:

    “Or, maybe she can ask her Grantham Institute co-worker and ex punk rocker Bob Ward, who I’m sure has an opinion about the matter.”

    Ah! Depressive alarmist theme song:
    The Damned / I Just Can’t Be Happy Today

  25. Susan P says:

    I would read the whole paper, but I have to get to work calculating my Betweenness Scores for my PhD thesis on which cute cat/cute dog videos provide the most laughter and enjoyment/life enhancement per minute spent watching.

  26. DirkH says:

    “little work has been done to understand why climate sceptical blogs exist and what their role may be as public sites of knowledge contestation.”

    She wonders because she has learned that all grassroots organisations are founded and funded by socialist billionaire foundations – like the Soros-controlled website junkyard – or totalitarian ultrastates such as the EU – who control zombie orgs like Friends Of The Earth.

  27. John Mason says:

    On the one hand it’s interesting to see the number of studies trying to understand the skeptical mind.

    On the other hand it’s disturbing to see the base assumptions being made that make these authors believe skeptics need to be studied rather than any possible consideration that the supposed consensus is flawed.

    Quoting Cook, of course, underscores how backwards this study is.

    In another positive and weird observation, the author finds, almost surprisingly, that the mighty center of this alternative to scientific information actually seems to have a basis of discussing the science rather than being ideologically based.

    Slaps forehead……

  28. Kev-in-Uk says:

    Roy Spencer says:
    September 9, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    Sir, that is precisely what my initial thoughts were! – but it also illustrates why I refused to continue in academia also after my brief M.Sc.return in 80′s. I just felt their was too much self justification and not enough actual justification….

  29. kwinterkorn says:

    I think Sharman’s work is complimentary to WUWT, perhaps inadvertently or perhaps because her exposure to WUWT made her a closet “skeptic”. After all, her statement is that WUWT is focused on the science of climate and is this not true?

    I admire WUWT because of its principled focus on scientific method, climate theory, the limitations of our current knowledge of climate-related facts (eg How accurately do we measure temperature in the real world of climate science?), and the difference between real science and “post-normal science” (which is not really science, but politics).

    Everyone who is not a “post normal” scientist knows that good science is skeptical.

  30. Nick says:

    She should of course do the same for the alarmists, and where they get their cash, referee each other’s papers, ….

  31. tarran says:
    September 9, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    The sort of debate she describes is precisely how the scientific method weighs and judges competing hypotheses. It’s just happening outside of academia in blogs.

    I find the lack of consideration of alternative explanations in 95% of published climate science really startling. Whatever the results, it was CO2 that did it.

  32. vigilantfish says:

    ‘It is possible that….these blogs serve as an “echo chamber”, within which users are ‘consuming news that mesh with their worldview and ideology’ (Boykoff 2013: 15), thus contributing to
    Hoffman’s (2011a) concept of a logic schism within the climate debate. ‘

    Good thing that there are lots of threads showing WUWT participants at each others throats (metaphorically speaking) over issues of religion/unbelief and by our resident left-wing participants taking umbrage over right-wing participants’ characterizing CAGW as lefty group-think. Perhaps Ms. Sharman should go deeper than meta-analysis of data….

    What goes on here is really not a secret, nor are we conspiracy theorists. FYI, Ms. Sharman, it was my existing skepticism over how science was being conducted and presented in this debate that drew me – a university professor and historian of science with a science background – to WUWT – because of the challenges WUWT posed to shoddy science.

    Mainstream western science has under its belt both phrenology and eugenics. It also has the rejection of continental drift or the bacterial origins of ulcers — and countless other theories that turn out in the end to be closer descriptions of what is going on than the accounts accepted by ‘mainstream’ scientists. These serve as testaments to how wrong the kind of science that you want to accept – or believe in – can be. Historians of science should know better than to accept the current theory being defended in any science as being necessarily correct – and so should scientists.

  33. Reg Nelson says:

    “because even though few climate scientists themselves blog”

    She obviously didn’t research this paper very well. Gavin has a blog. Cook (who she cited) has blog. GISS & NOAA use websites to push there agenda, and Mann uses Twitter to disseminate his propaganda.

    And that’s just off the top of my head.

  34. Annie says:

    I couldn’t believe the amount of gobbledegook but managed to get some idea of what she was trying to say eventually….I think. Are people awarded degrees and doctorates for this sort of thing?

  35. Steve C says:

    Why do climate sceptical blogs exist? Because there are still too many scientifically literate people out here who can quickly recognise the sort of pseudoscientific tosh pumped out by the blatherskites promoted as “climate scientists”, and who want to see real science restored to its pedestal. And, btw, who will fight every attempt by the political class to turn real science into some sort of fluffy feelgood rubbish like the social “sciences”, for ever and ever, amen.

    And every credit to our excellent host here, and the others, for helping that process along. (Except, it seems, financial “credit” from Big Oil … ;-)

  36. rogerknights says:

    I’m surprised “Climate etc.” isn’t among the top ten. Didn’t she consider it skeptical enough to be included in her survey?

    For a good general critique of government-funded science she should read Henry Bauer’s Dogmatism in Science and Medicine. See this WUWT thread on it at:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/11/05/dogmatism-in-science-and-medicine-how-dominant-theories-monopolize/

  37. clipe says:

    While mainstream scientific knowledge production has been extensively examined in the academic literature, comparatively little is known about alternative networks of scientific knowledge production. Online sources such as blogs are an especially under-investigated site of knowledge contestation. Using degree centrality and node betweenness tests from social network analysis, and thematic content analysis of individual posts, this research identifies and critically examines the climate sceptical blogosphere and investigates whether a focus on particular themes contributes to the positioning of the most central blogs.

    “knowledge production”? What about facts?

    http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/181349/Albert-Einstein/256586/Coming-to-America

  38. DirkH says:

    vigilantfish says:
    September 9, 2013 at 1:38 pm
    “What goes on here is really not a secret, nor are we conspiracy theorists.”

    Of course we are. “Conspiracy theorist” is the official US American name that the controlled media system uses to label everyone who has a deviating opinion.

  39. Latitude says:

    Just so I’m clear on the concept…..are these the same type of people that berate Christians?

    I suppose this could be reworded to something of the effect of…..”why do atheist blogs exist”

    …using that comparison

    Global warming atheist blogs exist because people do not believe……

    (I ate a lot of chocolate a little while ago…I’m on a sugar and caffeine rush)

  40. DirkH says:

    clipe says:
    September 9, 2013 at 1:57 pm
    “”While mainstream scientific knowledge production has been extensively examined [...]”
    “knowledge production”? What about facts?”

    Production as in Hollywood CGI movie production.

    Same technology.

  41. Barry Woods says:

    If you can get past the Doran and Cook citation. There is much of merit in the paper.

    Not least that the majority of blog are science based scepticism. Which will upset dome, the consensus police might have a some words to say about that (that’s SkS) Also that sceptic blogs by and large are not political or motivated by ideology. Everyone might find stuff to criticise, but this is not a paper about ‘deniers’ and her earlier work was of some interest as well. Not a closed mind.

    Read the ‘entrenpeneur’ ref at Bishop Hill.

    I have taken up Amelia’s request to particpate in her research. Had a chat on twitter. And sent her a copy of – The Consensus on the Consensus.

    Ref WUWT post. What else did 97% of scientists ssy?

  42. pokerguy says:

    “Apparently she’s not following just how messed up the Cook et al. paper is. Maybe she and Dr. Richard Tol can talk.”

    Good point, but of course even if she were made aware, perhaps by first tossing a [trimmed by author request] into that echo chamber she lives and works in, it wouldn’t matter. She knows what she knows, because well, she just knows it. Warmists are good, intelligent, and right, deniers are bad, stupid, and wrong.

    Of course the very last thing she’d be engaging in, in her pursuit of a PhD , is original thinking.

  43. wobble says:

    Apparently she’s not following just how messed up the Cook et al. paper is. Maybe she and Dr. Richard Tol can talk.

    I would bet that she will want to amend her paper after she actually takes a look at Cook et al.

  44. Jimbo says:

    ….little work has been done to understand why climate sceptical blogs exist…

    I will save you the bother of work. Climate sceptical blogs exist because a combination of greens, politicians and the media decided for themselves that the debate was over. They then proceeded to shut out sceptical climate scientists, block their papers, tried to sack journal editors, deleted FOIA emails, fabricated hockey sticks and smear them as cranks and shills of oil.

    The debate has never been over, the science has never been settled. The debate is only hotting up now as a raft of papers lowers climate sensitivity and the temperature hiatus can no longer be ignored.

  45. Tom in Florida says:

    Roy Spencer says:
    September 9, 2013 at 12:29 pm
    “Apparently, you can get a PhD these days just for using a bunch of multi-syllable words.”

    Yes, but the affiliation is with the “London School of Economics and Political Science” so that means as much as Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize. On second thought, perhaps slightly more.

  46. Matthew W says:

    I remember wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy back when Icecap was my daily go to site before I found WUWT!!

    Congrats to everyone that makes skeptical blogs possible and FULL OF SCIENCE !!

  47. NZ Willy says:

    I would have a subtly different take than AW does on some content — remember, this is an academic work, and as such, it phrases things in a detached fashion. So my comments:

    AW: There is only one little fatal mistake IMHO on sentence one of the paper:
    PAPER: Evidence supporting the reality of climate change and its anthropogenic cause is overwhelming in the peer-reviewed literature (J. Cook et al. 2013; Doran and Zimmerman 2009).
    AW: Apparently she’s not following just how messed up the Cook et al. paper is.

    My comment: I think the author was talking about the presentation of evidence here, not the evidence itself which I don’t think she is investing in. I suspect this has been left vague to assist the prospects for publication.

    AW: This made me laugh:
    PAPER: While the academic literature to date has focused on the manifestation of climate scepticism in mainstream media forums (Boykoff 2007; Schmidt et al. 2013), little work has been done to understand why climate sceptical blogs exist and what their role may be as public sites of knowledge contestation.
    AW: She has no idea why we exist? Better not tell her then, its a big Exxon-Mobil trade secret

    My comment: The author’s comment was strictly about what has appeared in the peer-reviewed literature, and not about her own view at all. As a matter of fact, this sentence is probably part of the justification given for presenting this paper, that is, it states that it is remedying a void in the literature. This is often done in a paper’s introduction.

  48. Eric Worrall says:

    In Atlas Shrugged, after argument, debate, appeal to emotion, threats and flattery all failed, they hooked John Galt up to a torture machine – the “Ferris Persuader”.

  49. DirkH says:

    Tom in Florida says:
    September 9, 2013 at 2:10 pm
    “Yes, but the affiliation is with the “London School of Economics and Political Science” so that means as much as Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize. On second thought, perhaps slightly more.”

    She’s at the LSE? Then she can slip right in to the Fabian Society or GLOBE international and contribute personally to the destruction of the West.

  50. Dave says:

    I’m a PhD candidate and have been running numerical simulations on material behavior for the past 25 months and I have at least one more month to go before I’m done. It’s been a long haul, but it’s supposed to be. When reading a description of the “work” that Ms. Sharman is doing for her PhD, I have to wonder whether she spent a long weekend conducting her “research”.

    Good grief…

  51. Green Sand says:

    What is this need for “academics” to label everybody? Why the need to devise an ever changing “new” system of boxes into which to place people?

    Smacks of insecurity, go give yourself a label, I am secure in not having the need for one!

    I am not a number, I am a free man!

  52. hunter says:

    If she accepts at face value the Lewadowsky/Cook scam, what is the point of her paper other than to help deceitful AGW [promoters]?

  53. Apoxonbothyourhouses says:

    Nice one Jimbo. And further to Tom in Florida’ comments US readers may need reminding that the LSE are the mob that took Gadaffi money seemingly in exchange for accepting his son into a course – such are their standards. “…knowledge contestation. Using degree centrality and node betweenness tests …”. Wish I’d said that through a mouthful of marbles and cannot wait to use in my next Understanding English curriculum if only I knew what it meant.

  54. Max Hugoson says:

    Dave says:
    September 9, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    I’m a PhD candidate and have been running numerical simulations on material behavior for the past 25 months and I have at least one more month to go before I’m done.

    Dave! David, DAVY, my Man! Please, you reek of “Engineer” all over. Don’t try to pull the wool over our eyes. You would be LAUGHED out of the “Orals” if you went in JUST with the numerical simulations. I’d bet REAL MONEY that you have a bunch of ACTUAL TEST DATA on real materials to compliment the “numerical simulations”. You see, you naughty boy, you’d be ashamed to “show your face”, publishing something merely based on “numerical simulations”. You will NEVER be able to be a “hoity toit scientist”. I banish you to a life of making SIGNIFICANT contributions to the betterment of humankind, for having such an obstinate attitude. I hope you feel appropriately chastened!

  55. David Riser says:

    Hmm, how exactly is this paper worthy of PHD work?

  56. GORE LIED says:

    As the owner/blogger of the GORE LIED blog I can’t for the life of me figure out why my blog scored so highly in this study since I haven’t posted anything new in over a year and a half, and stopped posting regularly over a year before that. The only reason I might be included is that my blog had one of the longer blog rolls in the skepticsphere, and I did note that “blogroll” was mentioned in the Table 7 that Anthony included.

    For those wondering, I’m a non-scientist citizen who blogged regularly while I suffered through the Great Recession, but who after about four years of blogging found out that I’d said most of what I wanted to say – so I moved on (while continuing to pay my hosting fees). I did enjoy some measure of success, and Anthony even linked to me a couple of times, including for a Quote of the Week. :)

    Anyway, since I’ve not posted new content in a long time, my traffic has gone down to almost nothing. For example, I just logged-in to my blog’s Admin for the first time in a long time and I see that in the last week I’m averaging only a little over 50 hits a day since I’ve got stale links and no new content lately that would keep me relevant on Google.

    In conclusion, I think that my blog’s inclusion in this paper is evidence that this paper is crap.

    (NOTE: By the way, I’d sell my blog/domain for very little money to any person if I was convinced that person had the right stuff to carry on.)

  57. george e. smith says:

    This is an essay entered into the Bulwer Lytton prize competition, isn’t it ?

    I mean that gobbledegook abstract above.

    Well as they say, doing a PhD teaches you more and more about less and less.

  58. ATheoK says:

    “Reg Nelson says: September 9, 2013 at 1:43 pm

    “because even though few climate scientists themselves blog”

    She obviously didn’t research this paper very well. Gavin has a blog. Cook (who she cited) has blog. GISS & NOAA use websites to push [their] agenda, and Mann uses Twitter to disseminate his propaganda.

    And that’s just off the top of my head.”

    Valid data Reg!

    I was thinking along similar lines, only I was wondering just how many of the ‘climate team’ who might have told Amelia Sharman that they don’t or rarely blog; but regularly show up here or at other of the top ten sites and Lucia’s to ‘blog’ anonymously. Seems they’re trying to tilt the apparent climate blogosphere as being the domain of the otherwise employed instead of the failure of the pro AGW web sites.

    It’s getting so even budding PhDs seeking real life data on climate science are lied to by the CAGWers.

  59. george e. smith says:

    I thought about getting a PhD; in Ice cream Making; But then I found out I could walk into a shop, and buy 57 varieties of ice cream; one for each State in the Union. And according to my research, 97% of those taste pretty good.

  60. Dave says:

    Max, I do indeed feel chastened! Unlike the models constructed by the global warming enthusiasts, I validate my candidate models by using them to make predictions based upon independent environmental data (i.e., data not used for model calibration). After such predictions are made, I then make statistical comparisons to test measurements in order to ascertain accuracy. You are right… had I not used this approach and tried to simply present models/predictions at my oral defense, I would undoubtedly be laughed out of the room. But in reality, this would never happen. My advisor will make the decison as to when I’m ready for my oral defense and he won’t let me attempt to defend the indefensible.

    The pseudo-sciences should adopt such practices…

  61. george e. smith says:

    “”””””……..Abstract

    While mainstream scientific knowledge production has been extensively examined in the academic literature, comparatively little is known about alternative networks of scientific knowledge production. Online sources such as blogs are an especially under-investigated site of knowledge contestation……””””””

    So this is “abstract” in the Picasso sense; except with random words, rather than shapes and colors.

  62. oMan says:

    Congrats, Anthony; and congrats also to the many co-bloggers whose excellent comments and threads find a home on WUWT. I think Sharman is wandering close to enlightenment when she says this. Certainly it’s true for me; I’ve learned a great deal by reading here, and at JoNova’s blog, and Climate Audit, ICECAP, Bishop Hill; and many more:
    “It is possible that these central blogs in particular are not only acting as translators between scientific research and lay audiences, but, in their reinterpretation of existing climate science knowledge claims, are filling a void by opening up climate science to those who may have been previously unengaged by the mainstream knowledge process and, importantly, acting themselves as public sites of alternative expertise for a climate sceptical audience.”

  63. george e. smith says:

    A “Betweenness Node” is an Oxymoron, isn’t it ?

  64. Jimbo says:

    ….little work has been done to understand why climate sceptical blogs exist…

    Read the following from the Guardian:

    Guardian
    Sceptics such as Andrew Montford and Anthony Watts agree with the mainstream view that the greenhouse effect brings about atmospheric warming as a result of carbon emissions, but dispute levels of climate sensitivity. However, others offer far more fundamental challenges to climate science, such as fringe sceptic group Principia Scientific whoreject this orthodox view of atmospheric physics….

    Watts found himself under frequent challenge by members of the group on his blog, leading him to post his own experiments on YouTube to disprove their claims. As well as being a nice example of scientific claim and counter-claim on the web, Watts’s actions also helped position himself as a “mainstream” sceptic who can challenge key areas of climate science without entering into pseudoscience, a brush he had previously been tarnished with………….
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/07/30/im-gobsmacked/

    Yet we are called “anti-science”. Far from it, we insist on the science, observations and less on emotions and polar bear cubs.

  65. Jeff L says:

    Most important conclusion is that there is recognition that this blog & those who contribute are focused on science. After all, this is supposed to be a scientific debate, right ? So, warmists, bring us your science, not your politics , & let’s hash this out – that is if you are actually interested in science & not politics.

  66. Tilo Reber says:

    Roy, I call them opinion PhDs. If you have the right opinion, you get a Phd. There are now so many “X Studies” departments, that you can get a Phd for your opinion in almost anything.

  67. Jay says:

    We come here to explore the truth.. What bothers me is they are starting to model the people who oppose their views.. Just like the climate, through understanding comes control.. Your politics, point of view and science run through a smoothing curve.. Not to enhance your words but to put words in your mouth..

    I wouldn’t give them the time of day.. The WUWT science factory can speak for itself, If your intelligent enough to follow what all these smart men and women are talking about.. Your already in the door..

    I bet hard core warmists sneek in here to up their game :)

  68. Jimbo says:
    September 9, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    ….little work has been done to understand why climate sceptical blogs exist…

    “I will save you the bother of work. Climate sceptical blogs exist because a combination of greens, politicians and the media decided for themselves that the debate was over. They then proceeded to shut out sceptical climate scientists, block their papers, tried to sack journal editors, deleted FOIA emails, fabricated hockey sticks and smear them as cranks and shills of oil.

    The debate has never been over, the science has never been settled. The debate is only hotting up now as a raft of papers lowers climate sensitivity and the temperature hiatus can no longer be ignored.”

    No doubt that Amelia Sharmanab will read the thread on this post. Great summation on why climate sceptical blogs exist. I hope she reads your post Jimbo. (she is probably a closet WUWT reader as someone else already stated).

  69. pokerguy says:

    Mods…
    Re my last comment, I just realized something I said might be taken literally. I was speaking figuratively, but should have been more careful….

  70. David Ball says:

    WUWT? engages in something unfamiliar to many other blogs, particularly pro-AGW blogs. Freedom of speech. What patrons have to bear in mind, is that although you are allowed to speak freely, you must also be accurate and be prepared to defend that which you post. Perhaps this idea is lost on Amelia Sharman.

  71. Congratulations to Anthony on his betweenness node centrality. I’ve always wanted one of those – at least, I think I have.

    In fact the paper is very complimentary about the science-based, prejudice-free environment here at WUWT, and that’s a great tribute to Anthony’s calm vision. Three cheers for him, and for Climate Audit and Jo Nova too.

  72. Dr. Deanster says:

    Pathway …
    WUWT probably has more people who are actively engaged in science or have worked in science research than any other forum.

    NOW .. this would be an interesting poll to take on WUWT patrons. I wonder just how many of the readers have indeed published. I know of a few, some of the “Household” names … but that would be an interesting little exercise to define the quality of the readership of WUWT.

  73. GORE LIED says:

    Since my earlier comment does not appear here, I’m trying to post a short comment (as Anthony suggests in the FAQs) to see if I’ve been blocked by mistake.

  74. Dr. Deanster says:

    On another note … EVERY ALARMISTS .. who’s material is lucky enough to make it to WUWT, should personally thank Anthony.

    I mean .. really, just how much exposure would most of this garbage get if not for WUWT and other Skeptic Blogs serving as a post-it board. I’ve never heard of this chick until now.

  75. Ken Adams says:

    I think she’s missing some data here. Her survey discovered only 171 skeptic blogs, but the record for Watts Up With That? on the blog tracking site Blogshares (http://www.blogshares.com/blogs.php?blog=http%3A//wattsupwiththat.com/) shows 421 incoming links when last updated in July. Is she missing a significant portion of the population in her sample by only considering the blog rolls?

    Anthony – I maintain Blogshares and am willing to pull further data if you are interested.

  76. Jeff L says:

    Dr. Deanster says:
    September 9, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    NOW .. this would be an interesting poll to take on WUWT patrons. I wonder just how many of the readers have indeed published.

    —————————————–
    Count me in as one who is published in peer review literature

  77. Billy Liar says:

    Susan P says:
    September 9, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    I have to get to work calculating my Betweenness Scores for my PhD thesis on which cute cat/cute dog videos provide the most laughter and enjoyment/life enhancement per minute spent watching.

    Can I get a copy of your paper when your done? :)

  78. Billy Liar says:

    Oops, grammar! (previous post) your = you’re

  79. SMS says:

    When I hear suggestions that PV is economical, I have to wonder if the author is in-bed with the industry. We see claims of a Er/Ei of 6 given by the manufacturers but when those not in the industry crunch the numbers, the Er/Ei is less than one. That means that any battery used to store energy only contributes to the negative ROR of this form of sustainable energy production.

  80. Gunga Din says:

    Why do climate blogs exist?
    She’ll need to ask the bloggers.
    Why are they read?
    Individuals will have their own reasons.
    Perhaps a topic for another poll?
    A few possible answers:
    “I don’t believe the science is settled”
    “To learn more on the topic.”
    “I don’t trust the politics involved.”
    “To let off some stream.”
    “To add my 2 cents.”
    “Al Gore”
    “All of the above.”
    I’m sure the readers could add more suggestions.

  81. lurker, passing through laughing says:

    The better title for her first paper about corrupt alternative fuel industry would have been “Profiteer”. While the author is doing some network analytics, she is not willing to look at the reality of the matter: Skeptics are on the right side of this matter.

  82. Jtom says:

    Dr. Deanster: knowing how many here have been published would be interesting, but I think you need to define what you mean by ‘published’. I have been published in the proceedings of technical conferences, but that’s a far cry from a published paper in a peer-reviewed, scientific journal. OTOH, I’ve seen better researched-based work published in such venues as the Optical Fiber Conference proceedings than some of the research published by recognized science journals. Not sure how or where to draw the line on ‘published’.

  83. jai mitchell says:

    except that it promotes the idea that the medieval warming period was warmer than today and global in scope. These claims have been completely discredited as the following video clearly shows:

  84. Philip Mulholland says:

    Eventually the political panicists will enact legislation to decree that skeptics are not licensed to practice Science and so can be penalised for conducting an illegal enquiry.
    Panicists are the fiscal parasites of politics and their activities burden the Poor.

  85. Gail Combs says:

    “little work has been done to understand why climate sceptical blogs exist”
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Perhaps because we understand the Scientific Method and therefore can recognize when someone is B.S.ing us?

  86. Gail Combs says:

    Pathway says:
    September 9, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    What many people fail to realize is that there are more scientist alive today than in the whole sum of history. WUWT probably has more people who are actively engaged in science or have worked in science research than any other forum.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    My count is over a hundred people with degrees in some sort of science, math or engineering.

  87. Brad Weaver says:

    Anthony,
    I suggest you consider buying a bullet-proof vest if you have any $ left over from the AGU fund!!!

  88. OssQss says:

    Gunga Din says:
    September 9, 2013 at 4:40 pm
    Why do climate blogs exist?
    She’ll need to ask the bloggers.
    Why are they read?
    Individuals will have their own reasons.
    Perhaps a topic for another poll?
    A few possible answers:
    “I don’t believe the science is settled”
    “To learn more on the topic.”
    “I don’t trust the politics involved.”
    “To let off some stream.”
    “To add my 2 cents.”
    “Al Gore”
    “All of the above.”
    I’m sure the readers could add more suggestions.

    _————–

    I would certainly add this one !

    ——————
    Gail Combs says:
    September 9, 2013 at 5:03 pm
    “little work has been done to understand why climate sceptical blogs exist”
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Perhaps because we understand the Scientific Method and therefore can recognize when someone is B.S.ing us?

    ————————-

    Bingo !

  89. Gail Combs says:

    Barry Woods says: @ September 9, 2013 at 2:04 pm
    ….I have taken up Amelia’s request to particpate in her research. Had a chat on twitter….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Then perhaps you can alert her that her paper is being discussed and she might want to defend it herself.

  90. MinB says:

    What really bothers me about this paper is the phrase “mainstream science”. Excuse me, but isn’t science…SCIENCE? I understand mainstream media, but mainstream science? What branch is that? Does she understand that the mainstream media label is often used derogatorily, as in a group associated with shallowness, sensationalism, and pandering to what sells at the moment? Oh yeah…maybe she does get it.

    I suggest she uses “institutionalized”, “academic”, “commercialized”, “government subsidized”, or “paid” science as being more specific and accurate. And maybe she needs to add some context by including a summary of important discoveries made in the NON-mainstream science domain.

  91. davidmhoffer says:

    Perhaps at some point we’ll get a study about people who study skeptics?

  92. dp says:

    Since she is starting from a position of complete ignorance she has nowhere to go but toward improvement. Best to embrace and educate her than to watch her become groomed by the flawed non-consensus side of the debate. Anyone up for taking on a climate noob?

  93. Gail Combs says:

    george e. smith says……
    “It was a dark and stormy night when the Climastrologists gathered to elect the devil molecule, Carbon Dioxide, as the control knob of climate and the means of taxing and controlling all of humanity.

  94. dbstealey says:

    jai mitchell says:

    “…it promotes the idea that the medieval warming period was warmer than today and global in scope. These claims have been completely discredited…”

    As if.

    You will understand if I don’t waste twenty minutes on your silly alarmist propaganda video, but the fact is that the MWP is recognized by the vast majority of geologists as being warmer than the current [natural] global warming cycle.

    The planet is still emerging from the Little Ice Age — one of the coldest episodes of the entire 10,700 year Holocene. With any luck, we will warm an additional 1º – 2º C, with all the attendant benefits. At that point we will be on a par with the MWP. Further, it will not be due to “carbon”, or other human factors.

    The earth warms. The earth cools. Natural cycles are fully sufficient to explain all observations. The entire global population could easily fit within a one kilometre sphere, with room to spare. Termites emit 10X more “greenhouse” gases than all human activity. Human activity simply does not have the effect claimed by the climate alarmist crowd.

    But if you need to be scared, you’re not alone: Chicken Little believed that an acorn meant the sky was falling…

  95. Michael Putnam says:

    Doesn’t this mean the WUWT is now classified as the equivalent to a gateway drug? Start here and it’s a downward spiral to skepticism.

  96. Steve from Rockwood says:

    Roy Spencer says:
    September 9, 2013 at 12:29 pm
    Apparently, you can get a PhD these days just for using a bunch of multi-syllable words.
    —————————————————————————————————————
    “Using degree centrality and node betweenness tests from social network analysis, and thematic content analysis of individual posts, this research identifies and critically examines the climate sceptical blogosphere and investigates whether a focus on particular themes contributes to the positioning of the most central blogs.”

    Translation…

    We looked at some popular, sceptical climate science blogs to see what was up.

    That’s the BSc version.

  97. RockyRoad says:

    This study confirms that WUWT is an Army of won.

  98. csanborn says:

    The left just can’t stand it that people can reason; and discern truth.

  99. RockyRoad says:

    Gail Combs says:
    September 9, 2013 at 5:08 pm


    My count is over a hundred people with degrees in some sort of science, math or engineering.

    Is that all?

  100. Mariss says:

    It’s always better to be underestimated by your adversaries.

  101. Jake says:

    @Gail Combs
    MSEE here with concentration in Signal Processing, so +1 on your estimate even though I seldom comment and have no guest commentaries.
    Avid reader on this site on a daily basis.

  102. dp says:

    I’ve just realized the author has dumbed down the conversation to a sub-plebeian level. By corralling the three blogs within her threat circle she has conveniently reduced the scale of the capable opposition and marginalized all the rest. She may be ignorant but she ain’t stupid. Bishop Hill, for example, wallows with the pigs at the more radicalized knee-jerk anti-warmist sites at the stroke of her pen.

  103. StefanL says:

    Let’s give the lady some credit for being reasonably open-minded.
    However, would someone (who has decided to engage in her study) please ask her not to quote results to 5 significant digits — and explain why it detracts from her credibility.

  104. LdB says:

    @Dr. Deanster says:
    September 9, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    NOW .. this would be an interesting poll to take on WUWT patrons. I wonder just how many of the readers have indeed published. I know of a few, some of the “Household” names … but that would be an interesting little exercise to define the quality of the readership of WUWT.

    Now if you really were a good scientist you would realize that is very unscientific.

    Try reading Einstein’s 1901 paper should we have gauged the value of Einstein from this paper it would have been truly better he never published it at all because the paper makes reasonably accurate predictions for heavier hydrophobic molecules, but fails totally for lighter molecules.

    Whether someone has published at all or published a really really bad paper tells you nothing about the persons science ability … history alone tells you that if you missed the memo in your science methodology lessons.

    Many engineers and hard sciences graduates would likewise have probably have better understanding of science than half the mentally challenged with PhD’s that publish papers. The number of papers on GR/SR which is blatantly wrong from people with PhD’s and even the odd Nobel science prize is legendary try looking at the recent events around “A Black Hole Mystery Wrapped in a Firewall Paradox”.

    Oliver K Manuel has 145+ publications to his name. [Is] he the sort of lunatic that would improve the commentary on the site because he is published? I understand he has equally scientifically brilliant insights into climate change … lol.

  105. Gunga Din says:

    dp says:
    September 9, 2013 at 6:56 pm

    I’ve just realized the author has dumbed down the conversation to a sub-plebeian level. By corralling the three blogs within her threat circle she has conveniently reduced the scale of the capable opposition and marginalized all the rest. She may be ignorant but she ain’t stupid. Bishop Hill, for example, wallows with the pigs at the more radicalized knee-jerk anti-warmist sites at the stroke of her pen.

    =====================================================================
    An attempt to “divide and conquer”?
    Such a move would only succeed if the other bloggers have an ego problem. I doubt if Bishop Hill or many of the others have a problem with another site getting more “hits” or attention than theirs.
    If that were the case, why do they link to each other?
    I’m not saying she or others may not try to use her work with that in mind but I don’t think it will work. How could pointing more people to this and other sites possibly help “the cause”?

  106. Gail Combs says:

    RockyRoad says: @ September 9, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    Is that all?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Those are only the ones who have come out of the closet (mentioned their education) in the last six months to a year. I started counting because of the nasty comment from an alarmist troll.

    What can I say, I like real data.

  107. Gail Combs says:

    Gunga Din says: @ September 9, 2013 at 7:34 pm
    An attempt to “divide and conquer”?
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    I certainly do not see that working. Many of the skeptic blogs have an interconnecting audience and often point out interesting stuff at another blog.

  108. LdB says:

    @Dr. Deanster says:
    September 9, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    It took some searching around the internet but I finally found it here is Oliver K. Manuel views on climate change

    http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/

    His Qualifications
    NSF Postdoctoral Fellow, University of California, Berkeley, Physics and Mass Spectrometry, 1964.
    Ph.D., University of Arkansas, Nuclear Chemistry and Mass Spectrometry, 1963.
    M.S., University of Arkansas, Nuclear Chemistry, 1962.
    B.S., Kansas State College, Pittsburg, Kansas, Chemistry and Mathematics, 1959.

    He even has the catchy byline … yeah he worked for NASA

    - Oliver K. Manuel
    Former NASA Principal
    Investigator for Apollo

    [snip]

    So this is the sort of reader and commentary we should encourage is it Dr Deanster?

  109. jai mitchell says:

    the actual paper can be found here:

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0277379104003105

    The CH4 concentration measured in Vostok ice fell to ∼450 ppb, and CO2 values to ∼250 ppm. These natural decreases contrast with the increases in recent millennia and support the early anthropogenic hypothesis of major gas emissions from late-Holocene farming.

  110. Joe says:

    It seems to me there are so many climate blogs because you don’t have a lot of published work that supports your side. You have to resort to arguing against most current research and promoting unpublished work.

  111. Reg Nelson says:

    jai mitchell says:
    September 9, 2013 at 4:57 pm
    except that it promotes the idea that the medieval warming period was warmer than today and global in scope.

    And yet it was. Antarctic Ice cores have confirmed this. You’re not too knowledgeable about the matter, are you Jai?

    Perhaps youtube is not your best source of scientific information.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/04/11/evidence-for-a-global-medieval-warm-period/

  112. dbstealey says:

    Joe says:

    “It seems to me…”

    Well, there’s your problem right there.

    And to easily refute your belief that scientific skeptics are not published, here is just one skeptic’s publications. Note that there are hundreds of papers published by that one individual.

    There are tens of thousands of skeptics, as shown by the 31,400 OISM co-signers, who dispute the false belief that CO2 is harmful. The truth of the matter is that scientific skeptics far outnumber climate alarmists. Skeptics are the true “consensus” [for whatever that's worth in science].

    You’re just reading thinly-trafficked alarmist blogs. That explains your misinformation.

  113. RACookPE1978 says:

    rtj1211 says:
    September 9, 2013 at 1:10 pm

    The person who wrote this needs to study ‘politics in scientific research funding 101′: if they did that they wouldn’t be in the least surprised at the things being said.

    ….. ….

    There are three constants in scientific papers:

    1. The prevailing political climate is always supported.
    2. More research is always needed.
    3. Angles where new funding could be secured are always alluded to.

    There are three
    four five constants in scientific papers:

    1. The prevailing political climate is always supported.
    2. More research is always needed.
    3. Angles where new funding could be secured are always alluded to.
    4. Any single experiment in one paper authored by five people will be published in five papers written by five different lead authors.
    5. The Department Head will be lead author on all papers written while the Department Head is in charge of funding subsequent papers in that Department. This is why authors work for other departments doing field experiments.

  114. RACookPE1978 says:

    Gail Combs says:
    September 9, 2013 at 7:41 pm

    Those are only the ones who have come out of the closet (mentioned their education) in the last six months to a year. I started counting because of the nasty comment from an alarmist troll.

    And what about those of us with multiple scientific degrees?

  115. Thanks, Anthony. Very well done!
    Yes, WUWT is a most valuable scientific resource.

  116. John Blake says:

    Amelia Sharman strikes us as just another warbling sycophant. Why is it that such verbalizers virtually never provide context-and-perspective in their tarradiddling adumbrations?

  117. Joshua says:

    As always, thanks to my contributors, readers, and moderators for helping to put WUWT at the center of the climate blogosphere.

    Interesting interpretation. Of course, it is wrong. That isn’t the the finding of the paper. Let’s see whether you and/or your readers, contributors, and moderators can even find the mistake. Seems like the error would be obvious to those who are at the center of the climate blogosphere.

  118. ConTrari says:

    Any reference to Cook and Doran immediately contaminates the value of this work. A theologist should soon write a paper about the “dogma of 97%”, this number seems to hold some magic / sacred meaning, which it is beyond the reach of science or common sense to fathom.

  119. davidmhoffer says:

    It has been some time since I first posted this, but in light of the arguments by Joe and Jmitchell, I humbly present:

    The Physicist and the Climatologist

    Climatologist; I have a system of undetermined complexity and undetermined composition, floating and spinning in space. It has a few internal but steady state and minor energy sources. An external energy source radiates 1368 watts per meter squared at it on a constant basis. What will happen?

    Physicist; The system will arrive at a steady state temperature which radiates heat to space that equals the total of the energy inputs. Complexity of the system being unknown, and the body spinning in space versus the radiated energy source, there will be cyclic variations in temperature, but the long term average will not change.

    Climatologist; Well what if I change the composition of the system?

    Physicist; see above.

    Climatologist; Perhaps you don’t understand my question. The system has an unknown quantity of CO2 in the atmosphere that absorbs energy in the same spectrum as the system is radiating. There are also quantities of carbon and oxygen that are combining to create more CO2 which absorbs more energy. Would this not raise the temperature of the system?

    Physicist; there would be a temporary fluctuation in temperature caused by changes in how energy flows through the system, but for the long term average… see above.

    Climatologist; But the CO2 would cause a small rise in temperature, which even if it was temporary would cause a huge rise in water vapour which would absorb even more of the energy being radiated by the system. This would have to raise the temperature of the system.

    Physicist; there would be a temporary fluctuation in the temperature caused by changes in how energy flows through the system, but for the long term average… see above.

    Climatologist; That can’t be true. I’ve been measuring temperature at thousands of points in the system and the average is rising.

    Physicist; The temperature rise you observe can be due to one of two factors. It may be due to a cyclic variation that has not completed, or it could be due to the changes you alluded to earlier resulting in a redistribution of energy in the system that affects the measurement points more than the system as a whole. Unless the energy inputs have changed, the long term temperature average would be… see above.

    Climatologist; AHA! All that burning of fossil fuel is releasing energy that was stored millions of years ago, you cannot deny that this would increase temperature.

    Physicist; Is it more than 0.01% of what the energy source shining on the planet is?

    Climatologist; Uhm… no.

    Physicist; Rounding error. For the long term temperature of the planet… see above.

    Climatologist; Methane! Methane absorbs even more than CO2.

    Physicist; see above.

    Climatologist; Clouds! Clouds would retain more energy!

    Physicist; see above.

    Climatologist; Ice! If a fluctuation in temperature melted all the ice less energy would be reflected into space and would instead be absorbed into the system, raising the temperature. Ha!

    Physicist; The ice you are pointing at is mostly at the poles where the inclination of the radiant energy source is so sharp that there isn’t much energy to absorb anyway. But what little there is would certainly go into the surface the ice used to cover, raising its temperature. That would reduce the temperature differential between equator and poles which would slow down convection processes that move energy from hot places to cold places. The result would be increased radiance from the planet that would exceed energy input until the planet cooled down enough to start forming ice again. As I said before, the change to the system that you propose could well result in redistribution of energy flows, and in short term temperature fluctuations, but as for the long term average temperature…. see above.

    Climatologist; Blasphemer! Unbeliever! The temperature HAS to rise! I have reports! I have measurements! I have computer simulations! I have committees! United Nations committees! Grant money! Billions and billions and billions! I CAN’T be wrong, I will never explain it! Billions! and the carbon trading! Trillions in carbon trading!

    Physicist; (gasp!) how much grant money?

    Climatologist; Billions. Want some?

    Physicist; Uhm…

    Climatologist; BILLIONS

    Climatologist; Hi. I used to be a physicist. When I started to understand the danger the world was in though, I decided to do the right thing and become a climatologist. Let me explain the greenhouse effect to you…

  120. CRS, DrPH says:

    WUWT = peer review, not pal review!

    Congratulations, Anthony! I wouldn’t worry about the “target on your back,” the CAGW crowd has a habit of shooting blanks.

  121. jbird says:

    Wow. It doesn’t take much to get a Ph.D. these days.

  122. sean.fr says:

    Not having heard of some the “central” sites I had a look. “Algorelied.com” triggres my anti-virus detector. – AVG free version.

  123. tobias says:

    Holy cow and she trying to complete a PhD on Global Warming? by using phrases like:
    “Knowledge contestation’,?
    ” degree centrality and node betweennes tests”?
    “Thematic content analysis”?
    ??? She will surely convince the lot of us.
    Even my spell check couldn’t keep up with that.! Oh I get it now, reminds me a lot of Northern Cali in the 60″s. but the drugs must be A LOT stronger these days and thanks again davidmhoffer it always makes me chuckle :).

  124. Ms. Amelia Sharmanab’s betweenness node (one between her ears) lacks centrality.
    What a viscous empty verbiage she produces!

    The fact that mountebanks of her ilk are able to earn their living off our sweat and blood by producing nothing but harmful verbal waste is the central problem of our society.

  125. TImothy Sorenson says:

    ANYONE, know why climate audit has been silent for nigh-on 40 days and 40 nights?

  126. Peter Miller says:

    Sceptic blogs exist because a lot of smart people out there do not like:

    1. A “science” which routinely manipulates data to “prove” its point.
    2. The existence of natural climate cycles being declared a heresy.
    3. The Global Warming Industry whose only goal is its own self-perpetuation and therefore the comfortable lifestyle of its leaders.
    4. Bad science in general.
    5. Scary prophecies based on flawed computer models and manipulated data.
    6. The denial of such self-evident facts like UHI.
    7. Trying to cure a non-problem by bankrupting the western world’s economies.

    The list seems endless

  127. PhilM says:

    Congratulations to you , Anthony, and to your climate-realist friends who assist in getting the truth out to us all.

    Something I’ve learned from you – Scientists are entitled to their own proofs, they are not entitled to their own data!

  128. I remember when I first stumbled across WUWT. My first article read here was, “Earth’s Magnetic Field Has Massive Breach – scientists baffled”. That was back on Dec.16, 2008.
    I was caught up in the 2012 craze of magnetic pole shifts and I set out to find out what was fact and what was fiction.
    I found WUWT refreshing. After having had ran the conspiracy gauntlet of such sites like ATS and the like, I could tell there was something different here.
    Here we are nearly 5 years later and still, I am no where closer to any real evidence to confirm or deny its legitimacy. Such is science.
    There is one quality that this site, like the other skeptical sites have, and that is the varied views of the commentors.
    You can’t get that with the Schmidts, Taminos, and Cooks of the world. I am sure everyone here has been confronted with censorship that alarmists are known for.
    But as anyone can see, even alarmists comment here.
    I think it’s because they want to debate, and they can’t back on their own turf. Nothing good has ever come from secrecy and all this censorship on their part is backfiring on them.
    If I were you Anthony, I’d thank Ms Sharman for the free advertising.

    P.S. I would also like to give advice to all the alarmist trolls that wish to come here and flame…..you guys better go back to whatever warmist site you come from and tell the moderators there to start opening up to the debate, or find those sites withering up and dying like AGW.

  129. Jack Savage says:

    The scary aspect is that you seem to be so few. At least the ones prepared to put their heads above the parapet. Congratulations and heartfelt thanks once again for all your efforts.

  130. Fabi says:

    A Baccalaureate Scientia here. Perhaps I will receive bonus points for having earned it from a notable institution: The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH).

  131. Jack Savage says:
    September 10, 2013 at 12:45 am
    “The scary aspect is that you seem to be so few”

    Welcome to the real world Jack, Looks like you took the red pill at last.

  132. Mr Green Genes says:

    jbird says:
    September 9, 2013 at 9:47 pm

    Wow. It doesn’t take much to get a Ph.D. these days.
    ==============================================
    I hope you don’t mean that the way it looks. My son worked extremely hard over more than 3 years for his doctorate on X-ray crystallography, as did his (now) wife for hers on plant genetics. Not all Ph.D. subjects are useless and not all of those who undertake the research are wasters.

    Try “Wow. It doesn’t take much to get a Ph.D. in certain subjects these days.”

    Please forgive me if I come over as a little over-sensitive – I am immensely proud of what they have both achieved and don’t like to see that belittled.

  133. rogerknights says:

    Amelia Sharmen should look at a WUWT thread on the topic she’s researching–http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/09/11/a-review-of-the-seminar-the-contrarian-discourse-in-the-blogosphere-what-are-blogs-good-for-anyway/

    It reviewed a Masters degree paper Franziska Hollender of Vienna presented at a conference in the US.

  134. dbstealey said @ September 9, 2013 at 5:57 pm

    jai mitchell says:

    “…it promotes the idea that the medieval warming period was warmer than today and global in scope. These claims have been completely discredited…”

    As if.

    You will understand if I don’t waste twenty minutes on your silly alarmist propaganda video, but the fact is that the MWP is recognized by the vast majority of geologists as being warmer than the current [natural] global warming cycle.

    Not to mention historians. Winemaking with medieval technology is currently only possible in the UK one year out of ten. During the MWP, the regular stipend for a monk was a gallon a day. And no, they did not import it!

  135. Fred Byrne says:

    Was that paper written in the Queen’s English or Esperanto? I find it impossible to understand let alone to read.

  136. johnmarshall says:

    You cannot argue that climate change happens but claiming that there is overwhelming evidence that we caused it is a damn lie. There is zero evidence that we do any such thing. In fact there is zero evidence that CO2 has any input into temperature increase.

  137. Bloke down the pub says:

    Anthony, congratulations on the recognition of your work, unfortunately it’s all you’re likely to benefit from it. As you are so central to the inter-connecting web of sceptics, could I suggest you review your blog-roll to ensure it is up to date?

  138. Mickey Reno says:

    Riki says: Such elegant use of language! The “mean betweenness of node centrality!” Ah, sociology…psuedoscience at its best.

    Thank you. My reaction was exactly the same.

    My fearless prediction: by 2050, CAGW will be considered as little more than sociological case study in mass hysteria and political dysfunction, with minors in governmental corruption of science, and general scientific malpractice.

  139. TimC says:

    Isn’t this quite positive: from the Abstract – “It is possible that these central blogs in particular are not only acting as translators between scientific research and lay audiences, but, in their reinterpretation of existing climate science knowledge claims, are filling a void by opening up climate science to those who may have been previously unengaged by the mainstream knowledge process and, importantly, acting themselves as public sites of alternative expertise for a climate sceptical audience.”

    That’s a fair definition of a “team B” (or “loyal opposition”) role – creating a forum in which the public are engaged, actual debates occur and hypotheses can be falsified, which is not “anti-science”, but true science in action. Congratulations Anthony – recognition that you are providing a valuable, world-wide scientific resource here.

  140. Brian H says:

    Anthony;

    I think the mean score of 180.31 is a typo, likely 1800 and change.

    No, that list is only the top 10. The mean refers to the average of the whole population of sceptic blogs.

  141. Brian H says:

    What is #4? Never heard of it, and Google just gives me generic references based on the separate words. It’s not in your blogroll, either.

  142. Ric Werme says:

    Bloke down the pub says:
    September 10, 2013 at 3:19 am

    Anthony, congratulations on the recognition of your work, unfortunately it’s all you’re likely to benefit from it. As you are so central to the inter-connecting web of sceptics, could I suggest you review your blog-roll to ensure it is up to date?

    Anthony is a pretty busy guy, perhaps you could do it for him.

    BTW all, the ENSO meter broke this week or last. It looks like NOAA moved the service I use to get the data from one system to another. I chased things down this AM, and it looks happy again. We didn’t miss much, the 0.0 displayed the last couple of days should have been +0.1.

    data from 00Z11AUG2013 to 00Z10SEP2013
    “———-”
    -0.314397
    -0.331909
    -0.00674132
    0.112998

  143. Chuck Nolan says:

    Billy Liar says:
    September 9, 2013 at 4:31 pm
    Susan P says:
    September 9, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    … I have to get to work calculating my Betweenness Scores for my PhD thesis on which cute cat/cute dog videos provide the most laughter and enjoyment/life enhancement per minute spent watching.

    Can I get a copy of your paper when your done? :)
    ————————
    It’ll be behind a paywall so you’ll have to ….pay!
    cn

  144. Dodgy Geezer says:

    …WUWT is an extremely prolific blog, with 190 posts for March 2012 alone; however, the posts analysed had several reoccurring sub-themes under the overall category of science, with a predominant interest in alternative explanations for climate models, temperature data or human-induced climate change,…

    What? I thought that we were discussing Intelligent Design, 9/11 conspiracy theory and the faking of the Apollo Moonshots?

    Didn’t she find any evidence of our attempts to uncover the Illuminatii and develop a better design for the tinfoil hat?

  145. TheLastDemocrat says:

    I have not read the paper – probably won’t. I am helping too many grad students get through theses and dissertations of their own. But social network analysis is a recognized tool, and thematic content analysis is a recognized methodology for analyzing qualitative, narrative data, such as blog discourse. I looked at the article briefly to look at the rationale and support for these two methods. SNA is explained, justified, and maybe minimally referenced, and thematic content analysis is pretty much not explained, not justified, and barely referenced. Peer reviewers in social sciences will call her on this and ask for more.

    As Feyerabend and others recognized very well, science is a social enterprise. This is why, ultimately, he toyingly advocated for methodological “anarchy;” to keep us from getting too locked-in to one style of method and practice of science, such as peer review. I was just thinking about this recently as I was asked to nominate four peer reviewers for my submission to a recognized journal with an admirable impact factor. This “nominate your reviewers” piece of current science is definitely a fad and not an essential aspect of science. I play along.

    As in the physical and physiological world, we believe that the social world generally operates in an orderly fashion, and that we can discover its rules and laws. “Social networks” exist more assuredly than black holes exist. So, it is a legitimate endeavor to strive to understand what they are, and how they work. We need methods and tools to do this.

    There is nothing wrong or un-scientific about this.

    The author has an agenda.

    When I teach on science, I teach that, for the most part, we usually have an agenda. I normalize this, Plus, I note that the principles of science are intended to allow us to hash out our competing agenda on a playing field – science – where we all agree to the same rules.

    We have the concept of “disclosure” to acknowledge that financial interests can engage in science, as our pharmaceutical companies do, but that we should know about it so we can take the results with a grain of salt of proper size.

    Would we discount our health-preserving meds because the researchers had an agenda? Sometimes we should, but the alternatives are few for pragmatically having a viable drug pipeline.

    So, this study is naïve, and the author may be unaware of the internalized agenda promoted. However, it is not a legitimate complaint or criticism to say that this is not science because there are some analytic methods that some of us do not know.

  146. John Whitman says:

    ‘Mapping the climate sceptical blogosphere’, by Amelia Sharmanab

    1. Introduction

    [. . .] Arguments that may be considered as “climate sceptical” include, inter alia, that climate science is factually incorrect in terms of its scientific basis, a conspiracy among scientists to maintain or increase funding opportunities, or a politically-based rationale to increase regulation or taxes (Oreskes and Conway 2010). This debate about climate science, as well as controversy regarding mitigation or adaptation policies, provides fertile ground for
    blogs {2} . [. . .]

    - – - – - – -

    Amelia Sharmanab,

    You have missed some areas in your purview.

    One area you have missed follows. Blogs that are significantly critical of IPCC centric alarming bias have sometimes focused on the frequent absurd conspiracy theories promoted by types of people like Oreskes, Cook, Mann. Mostly the conspiracy theories promoted by those types of individuals have these paranoias : 1) skeptics are conspiring with big fossil interests to hamper climate science; 2) skeptics support a political party that is conspiring to hamper climate science; 3) individual skeptics are personally conspiring to harm reputations of individual climate scientists out of hate for science.

    So, I suggest you fit that into your rather artificially constrained purview.

    John

  147. DirkH says:

    TimC says:
    September 10, 2013 at 5:02 am
    “That’s a fair definition of a “team B” (or “loyal opposition”) role – creating a forum in which the public are engaged, actual debates occur and hypotheses can be falsified, which is not “anti-science”, but true science in action.”

    The LSE, where the woman operates, is a purely Fabian institution. The MO of Fabians is the gradual transformation of the entire world into a socialist utopia (with them controlling ALL resources). To infiltrate all other parties they have created GLOBE international (GLOBE international has its global headquarters in the same building as the Fabian Society.)

    Fabians are not interested in a “loyal” opposition but in infiltrating. “Engaging” the public means to them representing the public with their own patsies (think NGO’s) that they then call “stakeholders”. Et voila, here’s YOUR representative, don’t you just love him, never heard of him? Don’t share his opinions? Think he’s a socialist loon? Well, TOUGH and now P.O. you ungrateful prole. After all that we’ve done for you.

    So understand; the woman explores the skeptic network to help them to get it under their control. They are not interested in a “loyal” opposition; only in a CONTROLLED opposition. (Hegelian dialectic; Hegel being the teacher of one Karl Marx)

  148. Henry Galt says:

    This is useful research.

    If we know which blogs are most visited we may suggest, efficiently, in posts at those places that we ‘allow’ sites such as 97% at the Guardian to wither on their vines.

    If we regularly ask readers to NOT go to any Guardian, SS or ClimateProgress links we can get our message over much more easily than going there, attempting to engage but getting censored, deleted and mobbed.

    Let the alarmist blogs, opinion pieces and commentary all become the echo chambers they so richly deserve to be.

    We have sufficient numbers now for new skeptics to find the meat and potatoes of our argument without suffering the Romm’s, Cooks and Nuticelli’s sickly, weak soup.

    ;)

  149. Theo Goodwin says:

    TheLastDemocrat says:
    September 10, 2013 at 6:50 am

    “Would we discount our health-preserving meds because the researchers had an agenda? Sometimes we should, but the alternatives are few for pragmatically having a viable drug pipeline.”

    You surely are a Democrat, though that is irrelevant.

    You ask for science to be evaluated on the same standards as medicine, the most egregious of your errors. Physicians do not serve the truth first and foremost. Physicians are not using patients for the sake of experimentation. First and foremost, physicians endeavor to relieve suffering. That goal lies entirely outside of science. The surgeons who decided to cut a hole in a patient’s leg and thread a balloon through an artery to the heart did so because it was the last chance to relieve suffering. They were not practicing science, though their work might have made use of past scientific discoveries.

  150. TimC says:

    DirkH says “The MO of Fabians is the gradual transformation of the entire world into a socialist utopia (with them controlling ALL resources).”

    Isn’t this “reds under the bed” approach now rather dated? So long as WUWT remains privately owned “the woman” (per your description) will have no possibility of controlling it – and I feel confident (even if it remains a “Team B” player with sceptical views not ultimately winning the argument) that it will be seen to remain loyal to scientific principles…

  151. John Whitman says:

    DirkH on September 10, 2013 at 8:06 am

    [. . .]

    (Hegelian dialectic; Hegel being the teacher of one Karl Marx)

    - – - – - – -

    DirkH,

    I extend that.

    Kant being fundamentally the metaphysical and epistemological platform that Hegel used.

    We should raise a toast to the study of the history of philosophy. Cheers!

    NOTE: I know nothing of Fabians, Free Masons or Hermetic Societies.

    John

  152. I come here for the science, not for a “feel-good fix” in support of a personal climate ideology. Glad to see I’m not alone. And congrats to WUWT for being the BIGGEST climate blog (in terms of betweenness, anyway) because you’re the BEST (in terms of sticking to real science).

  153. Colorado Wellington says:

    Amelia Sharman is concurrently working on another paper investigating obscure but interesting connections and networks among an 18th century group of individuals under the title “Mapping the British Colonials in North America”.

    Using Freeman’s approach of degree centrality and betweenness centrality her research indicates that among the most central nodes contesting British colonial rule seem to have been George Washington, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin and Alexander Hamilton.

    She writes that “evidence supporting the acceptance of British ownership of the colonies was overwhelming in peer-reviewed papers (Ford, Worthington C. et al (1775): ‘Quantifying the consensus on dominion over American colonies’, Lloyd’s Evening Post)”.

    She notes, however, that “little work has been done to understand why these [colonial nodes and networks] existed” and “little is known about the what their role as public instances of sovereignty contestation” may have been in the American colonies in the 1770s.

    It is obvious that more research is needed.

  154. John Whitman says:

    Pathway says:
    September 9, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    What many people fail to realize is that there are more scientist alive today than in the whole sum of history. WUWT probably has more people who are actively engaged in science or have worked in science research than any other forum.

    - – - – - – - -

    Pathway,

    I am a retired engineer but let me restate that with some self mockery added for levity . . .

    Who am I?

    I am just a lowly, lowly cook engineer

    Source => That was paraphrased from the Casey Ryback character in the Steven Seagal movie ‘Under Seige’. In the movie, this response to that line came from a female character,

    Jordan Tate: “Oh, my God, we’re gonna die. ”

    NOTE: I was going to show a YouTube of it but there was a little bit too much bare woman flesh . . .

    John

  155. Dave F says:

    You can get a PhD for this kind of thing? Really?

  156. Eric Sincere says:

    Dr. Deanster says:
    September 9, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    NOW .. this would be an interesting poll to take on WUWT patrons. I wonder just how many of the readers have indeed published.

    —————————————–

    Troll Alert! I’ve seen this tactic used before, as an attempt to “out” people who use online anonymity. The objective is to get people to post their real names and work they have done, so they can be targeted. We all know being published is the only metric for intelligence, right? Read the tone of the message, it is negative. Do you ever refer to yourself as a patron? Please don’t fall for this troll tactic.

    Eric

  157. C3 Editor says:

    Seriously? Where’s Tom Nelson? Marc Morano? Steve Goddard? ‘C3 Headlines’…WTF?

    After reviewing the actual paper, it became obvious why my ‘C3′ blog got ranked so high. I’ll accept being in the top 10 with a hearty laugh. (I guess it pays trying to help other bloggers of the skeptical persuasion.)

    And this paper does explain a rash of visits to my blog roll over the last few months, from the same site. Since I keep the ‘blog roll’ on a separate page (http://www.c3headlines.com/favorite-climate-blogs.html) it’s easy to keep track of visits for that specific info. I was scratching my head as to why one site would keep visiting that page. Now I have an answer.

  158. _Jim says:

    “Nullius in verba” is the operative phrase here Amelia Sharman, “Nullius in verba”*

    .

    .

    .
    * (In case you need help Amelia: Latin for “on the word of no one” or “Take nobody’s word for it” absent sufficient proof and the release of ‘good’ data, the methodology, etc.)

    .

  159. RACookPE1978 says:

    But Jim, is that not now “Nonsense et eternal verbose”

  160. _Jim says:

    re: RACookPE1978 says September 12, 2013 at 11:05 am

    Maybe when “off property” (literally: away from the office out amongst the public) – or reading her paper (which looks more like it originated in ‘sales’ rather than the engineering or science depts.)

    .

  161. catweazle666 says:

    “Using degree centrality and node betweenness tests …”

    WTF???

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