Guest Post by Willis Eschenbach
I thought I’d take a more detailed look at the claims of the recent paper entitled “Discrepancies in scientific authority and media visibility of climate change scientists and contrarians.”. The paper is discussed here on WUWT. I’m number 148 out of 386 on their list of contrarians, based on how many times I got mentioned in the media. But there are some bizarre oddities in their reckoning of media visibility.
One of their “media mentions” in my list is a hit piece on me over at PopTech. The guy who wrote it obviously hates me. I won’t link to it, it’s ugly and untrue. But this counts on their planet as media visibility. (Fools like PopTech don’t seem to realize that when they write such hit pieces, the reader naturally wants to know what the fuss is about, so they go read my work … but I digress.)
And this, of course, means that their lists are meaningless. People are always rubbishing climate skeptics by name, and since they are counting those as media mentions, their results will be wildly skewed.
Also, it seems that they do not cite most things that anyone has actually written for the web. I’ve written some 700 posts or so here on WUWT. Not one is mentioned. However, they did list three WUWT posts among my mentions … in one because I’m mentioned in the comments. Really? Only once was I ever mentioned by name in the WUWT comments???
For the other two, there’s a WUWT “Categories” aggregation page, which doesn’t mention me at all, and a “Tag” aggregation page where I’m listed as the author of one of the pieces linked to on the page … totally bizarre. I have the same visibility on literally dozens and dozens of WUWT aggregation pages.
However, it seems that if someone is mentioned in a comment to a post, it counts. So for example, Steve McIntyre wrote a post called “Willis Eschenbach on GISS Model E“. That appears on Judith Curry’s list of media referrals, and she’s only mentioned in a comment.
Even more bizarrely, that same post got onto Steve McIntyre’s list of media mentions, but not onto my list … go figure.
And it’s stranger than that. On Steve McIntyre’s list, some 22 posts on his own blog (out of hundreds he’s written) are included, and the rest are not. Say what?
Weirder yet. On Judith Curry’s list of media mentions, there are no less than 83 citations to the Laguna Beach Independent, a local California newspaper, with headlines like “Volleyball Open Returns” and “Student Musical Rolls The Dice”. At least upon a cursory inspection, not one of the eighty-two mentions Dr. Curry. I even looked at the “Source” version of the pages, where text can be there but not visible … but nothing there either.
Next oddity. Judith Curry gets two mentions for the same piece in Reason … and not only that, but she’s not mentioned in the Reason article at all. Nor would we expect her to be mentioned, it’s a piece about Ron Paul and Charlie Hebdo.
And out of all of the posts she’s written for her own blog, they list thirteen of them on her media mentions and not the others. Why not?
Since I was having so much fun, I thought I’d look at Anthony Watt’s “media visibility”. No less than seven of the mentions are by Slandering Sue over at hotwhopper … seriously, guys, that’s hardly “media visibility”. And how come I didn’t get any hotwhopper counts, she’s as vile to me as she is to Anthony …
Anthony also got two mentions over at Climate Audit … I greatly doubt that that is as many times as he is mentioned. Hang on, let me take a look … OK, a Google search for “site:climateaudit.org ‘anthony watts'” brings up no less than 813 hits …
He also gets three and only three hits over at Judith Curry’s blog … why only three? You tell me.
Next, Anthony gets exactly eight hits here at Watts Up With That … why eight? No idea. Why those eight? Not a clue.
(Let me note here that despite Anthony, Dr. Judith, myself, and others not getting credit for mentions on our own blogs … Marc Morano, the #1 “contrarian” by their count, got no less than 3,887 media mentions on their list from his own blog. Say what? With those, he’s at number one on the hit parade … and without them, he’d be down near me on the list.)
Anthony Watts did, however, get eleven hits at Amazon Japan, Italy, Netherlands, UK, Australia, Spain, and France for being listed as the lead author on “Climate Change: The Facts 2017”.
And Anthony got twelve hits at DeSmogBlog … no comment.
Then there are 51 links on Anthony’s list to examiner.com, all of which simply bounce you to axs.com … all the links are dead.
Next, here are the top twenty “contrarians” on their list, along with the number of media mentions that they got:
MARC MORANO: 4171
JAMES INHOFE: 2628
RICK PERRY: 1903
JUDITH CURRY: 1107
ROY SPENCER: 892
RICHARD LINDZEN: 878
CHRISTOPHER MONCKTON: 868
LAMAR SMITH: 831
BJORN LOMBORG: 770
JOHN CHRISTY: 723
WILLIE SOON: 711
ANTHONY WATTS: 699
ROGER PIELKE JR: 697
FRED SINGER: 626
PATRICK MICHAELS: 533
REX TILLERSON: 507
BOB CARTER: 505
DAVID ROSE: 437
MICHAEL FOX: 409
STEVE MCINTYRE: 374
MYRON EBELL: 369
A quick scan of the list reveals a fundamental problem with their analysis—many people on this list do no actual scientific research, and some have very little to do with the field … for example:
Mark Morano (#1) aggregates and publishes “contrarian” articles
James Inhofe (#2) is a US Senator
Rick Perry (#3) is the US Secretary of Energy
Lamar Smith (#8) is a US Representative
Rex Tillerson (#16) was the US Secretary of State and before that the head of Exxon
David Rose (#18) is an author and journalist
Michael Fox (#19, deceased) was the science and energy writer/reporter for the HawaiiReport.com
So … just who would you expect to get more mentions in the media, “T. Rex” Tillerson or Andrew Weaver? Who is Andrew Weaver, you may ask? Well, he’s a Canadian who is number 3 on their list of “Climate Change Scientists” … I’m sure you can see the problem with comparing media mentions of T. Rex and Andrew.
And the shabby scholarship knows no end … seeing so many links to stories in the Laguna Beach Independent, with none of them mentioning anything about climate, I thought I’d search the “contrarians” list to see how many links to the Independent there were in total.
There are 66,332 media mentions in total for all of the “contrarians”. Of these, amazingly, no less than 6,279, which is 9.5% of the total media links, are meaningless references to stories in the Laguna Beach Independent … and bizarrely, almost everyone who has any links to the Independent has the same number of links, 83. Other than that, one person has 82 links, one has 37, one has 17, and one has a single lonely link to the Independent.
As you might imagine, with the thousands of claimed media links for the 386 “contrarians”, I’ve only had the time (and the stomach) to look at a few of them … and in that few, the errors and bizarre choices are legion.
My conclusion? Like far too much climate “science”, this is lousy, sloppy, extremely poor scholarship … no wonder they’re trying to silence their scientific opposition.
In closing, let me note two tweets from Dr. Roger Pielke Jr. and one from Dr. Roger Pielke Sr. regarding the piece of bumpf in question. In the first one, Dr. P. Jr. objects strongly and reasonably to being lumped in with the “contrarians”
In the second one, he points out that the purpose of the paper is simple censorship:
And in the final one, Senior tells us what happened when he protested to Nature about the matter:
You’ve got to love the irony … in response to a reasonable, professional, valid, and 100% true complaint about the study, rather than deal with the actual issue, they just erase the entire Supplementary Information file, which contains (contained) a host of things showing that they are totally incompetent.
Good thing I downloaded the Supplementary Information file containing the links I referred to above before these latest scientific Stalinists simply disappeared the offending facts …
And so we end with the most outré situation of all—they’re so far into censorship that they’re even censoring themselves …
Ouroboros would be proud. The rest of us … not so much.
Best to all,
[UPDATE] I’ve put the Supplementary Information as a zip file on my Dropbox public folder. It’s 23 megabytes … I think Dropbox will handle it, but let me know if it doesn’t.