Pointman's: The scorning of William Connolley


Pointman writes: I think we’ve all had that pleasant surprise when something totally unexpected just drops out of the sky and into your lap. That happened to me last weekend when a creature called William Connolley attempted to comment on a piece I’d written about the Bengtsson scandal. If you’re unfamiliar with him, he’s infamous for editing thousands of Wikipedia articles on climate and anyone significant in the area. You can find several articles on his activities over at WUWT.

His idea of truth is somewhat idiosyncratic to say the least, but let’s just say if you were any way sceptical, you weren’t going to get a glowing entry. When the skeptics tried to correct the foul calumnies for their entry, they were promptly changed back, a loop they went around until he banned them from being able to edit anything.

I’m actually quite knowledgeable about him, since I’ve been a fawning admirer and stroker of his ego for as far back as his days co-founding the joke site called Real Climate with Gavin Schmidt and others of a similar ilk. Needless to say, it’s under one of my dark side Eco-Annie personas. The site is pretty much moribund these days but it did get a sniffy mention in the climategate emails by Phil “hide the decline” Jones, as being there just to disseminate propaganda.

He was never particularly significant in the self-declared pantheon of climate demigods, more like their technical gopher despatched as required to cobble together various bits of HTML for them. In his Wikipedia heyday, he built up a small but dedicated following of fanboys but since Wiki banned him and nobody sane reads his blogging attempts, he’s of late been at a loose end, cruising around the skeptic blogosphere, trolling for all he’s worth and generally leaving a terrible stench behind him.

As it happens, I’ve a personal score to settle with him, and one I never thought I’d get the chance to do but this looked to be a heaven-sent opportunity, if I could just play it right. Picking an appropriate way would undoubtedly come down to making use on his own rather inflated idea of his importance in the general scheme of things climatic, but in just the right way. He’s used to swimming around in a little pond of mutual fishy admirers and as far as I’m aware has never had a good kicking, so I laced up my steel-toed boots and thought about an appropriate bait to fix on the hook.

Read the rest of this entertaining post here: http://thepointman.wordpress.com/2014/05/29/the-scorning-of-william-connolley/


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WC has been trolling all the blogs lately trying to get readership for his own sorry excuse for a blog. He posts links to it constantly. And of course has learned nothing from either the Wiki episode or now the Pointman one. His biggest problem is that no one is reading his blog, just laughing at him.


Kudos to Pointman! It was a tough job that was done successfully ! 🙂


good grief, is he still around?…..I mean WC


I am not sure baiting a nonentity like Connolley is worth it. He is a frustrated little man. He has maths quailifications but became a low level coder instead. I presume he found being a mathematician too difficult. He has become a minor irritation in the climate debate but no one is interested in listening to him. I believe he has aspirations to be a Green MP, best place for him (even less people will listen to him them).
I am sure he will continue with his puerile outbursts – but no one cares!

Steve Keohane

Well done. While this is a satisfying result, WC has ruined the potential for integrity that Wiki might have had as a open-sourced resource.

A stoat is a weasel. Apt.

michael hart

I think I may have traced the source of the problem.
In climategate email #4349 the Real Climate “rapid-response” team lists:

on behalf of the RealClimate.org team:
– Gavin Schmidt
– Mike Mann
– Eric Steig
– William Connolley
– Stefan Rahmstorf
– Ray Bradley
– Amy Clement
– Rasmus Benestad
– William Connolley
– Caspar Ammann

As you can see, William Connolley’s name crops up twice. Perhaps this is what gave him the determination to make sure he always gets his retaliation in early.

I’m on Pointman’s list. I read it yesterday. Very amusing.


God forbid I ever cross Pointman. The line, “If a sequitur ever managed to take up residence in that vast cavernous vacuum between his ears, it’d die of loneliness.” is one of the funniest I have ever read. Artful.


It seems to me that Connolley is bitter about his present situation relative to his peers. He is one of the original members of “The Team” yet he has nothing to show for it. Millions of people read his propaganda on Wiki while no one reads realclimate or SKS yet the other members of realclimate appear on major TV networks. I’m sure that the personal and financial success Mr. Cook has had eats away at poor William. Cook goes from being an unemployed loser a researcher at a major university and the author of a paper that President Obama cited. Connolley has fallen behind and he knows it. Now he is screaming for people to pay attention to him. He wants the fame that he thinks he deserves.


Bravo. Pointman’s blog should be on the blogroll here as a pointer to sophisticated historical insight into climate cultism, and tips on strategic thinking that individualist temperament skeptics desperately need more insight into to get them out of the choir and out onto news sites where commenting is free as can be and sorely lacking in fact checking voices.
Connolley even outright denied he was the subject of an exposure article about his Wikipedia corruption, even defending his claim using word games about the incorrectness of the headline text used that meant it obviously wasn’t referring to the same William Connolley:

Alex E

Well done. While this is a satisfying result, WC has ruined the potential for integrity that Wiki might have had as a open-sourced resource.

no, it exposed it. Wiki’s format means that anything controversial will eventually be decided by a popularity contest.

The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley

A very enjoyable read. Can’t stand Wiki, myself – because of odious toads like WC.

@Alex E
It’s worse than that. All it takes is someone who is a fanatical gatekeeper like WC who refuses to give up when someone inserts something they don’t like. They eventually wear down anyone who disagrees with them.


Alex E says: Wiki’s format means that anything controversial will eventually be decided by a popularity contest.
Agreed. If you have to use it I would always advise looking at the talk pages. It’s often surprising how controversial to a few people an apparently bland subject can be and how much bitter in-fighting is going on under the surface.


@Alex E
I think Wikipedia’s format ensures that the editor with the highest degree of obsessive compulsive disorder prevails.

Wikipedia could have been a very valuable resource for the world. But because of William Connolley in particular, it is nothing but a propaganda blog. It has no credibility outside of its small head-nodding clique of catastrophic AGW True Believers.
That’s a shame. Wikipedia could have been a contender.


Guess I’m missing something. I confess I only made it about 3/4 of the way through. I just kept having the thought, “is this really worth the effort?” Never been a fan of the sneer and jeer, though I admit to indulging myself from time to time.

The Pointman showed us that the WC needed cleaning.
Then Pointman decided it was un-cleanable so he quarantined the WC.
Good decision Pointman.

> is this really worth the effort?
Well, its about me, so obviously yes. Though otherwise I find it hard to see the point. If you want to see the other side of the conversation, its at (not worth checking, especially since it’s a very cheap trick to drive up visits.)”



G. Karst

Pointman, you have crossed over to the dark side. Quickly! Come back to the light. Follow my voice and you will see it. Come back into warmth and light. GK

WC accepts soliloquist MM’s “..a debate where none should exist”. So let WC lapse into solipsism’s lonely realm of recursive debatelessness.


Pointman’s writing is always enjoyable, this was fun but not one of his classics.
He has a brilliant turn of phrase.

Willy! You’ve broken cover at last. I was beginning to think I’d scarred you for life. Come on over to my gaff. I’ll let you in if you pass a few little tests. Just for you, I’ll make them really simple. You won’t even have to look the answers up in Wikipedia; they won’t be there anyway and if they are, they’ll probably be wrong anyway.
You know you want to do it and I’ll only pose you suitably simple questions. Gowon, let’s do the rematch. The whole blogosphere is watching. Your chance for another 15 minutes …


I too had a couple of ‘meetings’ with that guy, if I recall correctly. One was on the ‘chaos theory’ Wikipedia page, where I added that the difference between the system state and the measured values (that is, measurement error) is enough for obtaining the big difference (well, not with those exact words). He quickly removed the change, letting there only what it is today: the mention of the numerical errors only. His claim was that ‘it was confusing’. Of course, it is confusing for the ‘science’. They wouldn’t want people realize that measurement errors can lead to the wrong ‘prediction’.
Another ‘pleasant’ meeting was on the Wikipedia temperature page. I removed the average temperature maps, claiming that they have no place on a page about physical temperature. The same old things, temperature being intensive, you’d better not add it to make an average, and besides, there is no such thing as a physical temperature for a system that is not in thermal equilibrium. Anyway, he quickly reverted the changes, as typical.
I think that guy might be posting now on Facebook with some fake accounts…


Too funny. What mental illness would cause that guy to keep coming back for more?

> I removed the average temperature maps, claiming that they have no place on a page about physical temperature.
This is the Essex stuff, isn’t it? No-one believes that. Just look at posts on this blog. Everyone is entirely happy to talk about average temperature.
The edit you mean is https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Temperature&diff=next&oldid=361297510 I think. There was some discussion on the talk page (now archived: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Temperature/Archive_3#Mean_temperature) in which you ( didn’t really contribute to.

William Connolley will live on in history long after most of us are forgotten. He will be used as an example of mindless propaganda, stupidity, small minded mean spirit, and arrogance. Wikipedia was a grand experiment and had my full support for years, but Connolley singlehandedly showed me that Wikipedia is useless. Years from now when this current political scam by the socialist has been abandoned a few men will be pointed to as outrageously criminal and Connolley will be in that lineup.

more soylent green!

Willy must surely have a lot of free time on his hands to go to the effort of begging to be allowed to post comments on that blog. Is he banned everywhere else? I’m pretty sure he’s allowed to post on WUWT, but his comments get so much scorn I don’t think his ego can handle it.

William, my hero William, don’t let that beastly denialist Pointman get the best of you. This is like that bit in Top gun where Maverick re-engages after running away. Turn around in your carbon-neutral F-14 Tomcat and engage with him.
Do it or lose me forever.


All I can say Pointman, is……. Thanks…. NOT !!
He has now directed his putrid persona at the JoNova site.
Perhaps you could come over and have a discussion with him 😉

> I’m pretty sure he’s allowed to post on WUWT
Its a lottery (as I write, my comment #1 on this thread is published, but #2 is stuck in moderation. This is #3). After I dissed AW’s faulty memory of his wiki-adventures (http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2012/05/02/so-long-and-thanks-for-all-the-1/) I got banned (see-also AW’s http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/10/09/death-by-stoat/#comment-1106998). If you see this comment, then I guess that’s no longer true.
> but his comments get so much scorn I don’t think his ego can handle it.
Dahling; I wilt under the ravishing eloquence of your disdain. But come on Shaw-y.

“William Connolley says: May 30, 2014 at 1:26 pm

> is this really worth the effort?

Well, its about me, so obviously yes. Though otherwise I find it hard to see the point. If you want to see the other side of the conversation, its at (not worth checking, especially since it’s a very cheap trick to drive up visits.)

I visited Pointman’s journal of wicked Willy’s trolling attempts; an incredibly uplifting read. As is Pointman’s wont, he lays out both sides of conversation well.
I especially enjoyed where Pointman was ‘thinking out loud’ about ‘Ictor Enema’; do check it out!


Hi Pointman,
I understand why you went through all the effort but I’m really not sure it was worth the time and energy.


I would suggest that Mr Connolley go hang out with someone like Scooter Nuccitelli. Scooter might understand what it means to be a little attack puppy with no real qualification, that few take seriously and who regularly get punted across the room due to their nasty little ankle-biting antics.

Green Sand


Rud Istvan

Having some experience at this elsewhere (Judith Curry’s more scientific site), let me offer an opinion. WC and his ilk have little to no standing, and little to no scientific credibility. Engaging them directly gives them what they desire yet have not. Best policy is silent shunning, like they practiced on Bengtsson.
Never engage an idiot, lest you might be reduced to their level.
Advice includes engaging President Obummer. Election coming. Use it like AUS did.


Sorry but WC and his sock puppets still have Wikipedia by the balls on some articles, he never went away just changed hats . Its a weakness of Wikipedia that its ‘in-crowd’ become untouchable [as] they look after each other .

Pointman is the Mickey Spillane of climate blogging. (Warning Will Robinson. Strong language ahead!)

Wrong Link!


Most of the time I would avoid these types of conversations due to the negativity but in this instance I applaud Pointman. Comments from some people such as Connolley – notice I do not use Mr. – give me a reaction similar to stepping in dog poop. Pure nastiness. Being banned from a blog and a bit of verbal sparring is the least of what he deserves. Connolley – you would do yourself a world of good to stfu and just read. You might learn a thing or two – If not about the topic then maybe general decency.


Ah I can see it now a Lewandowski blockbuster expose “The Psychological Warfare tactic of Pointman invading (eroding?) the mind of William Connelly” – watch this space – with cooky and nutso in the mix!!

Bill Illis

Its pretty clear that any research paper, comment on any website, Wikipedia edits/deletions or radio repair as is his current profession, by William Connolley has been screwed up and done completely wrong.
Why anyone would let him try to post anything on anything is beyond me.
If only the Wikipedia creators knew beforehand that William Connolley would take their brilliant idea and completely destroy it, the whole world would be a different place today. (Wiki had the potential to be the greatest benefit to mankind of almost any other invention as well as the potential to be worth billions of dollars to the original creators, but Connolley more-than-anyone- else turned it into untrustworthy joke). (I imagine that all of William Connolley’s former employers/colleagues have a similar feeling today).


[snip – over the top – Anthony]


Steve from Rockwood

WC proved beyond a shadow of a doubt how useless Wikipedia really is. A heart-felt thanks for that. I never click on a wiki anymore. I’d rather rewrite history myself.
I’ve dropped into Pointman’s site a few times. He can write! Will make a greater effort.


I’ve finally been snipped, fairly.

I enjoy Pointman’s strategic mind.

Stay out of this you [shameless hussy]. It’s between man and stoat.
[Language changed by request .mod]