More From RC On Their Moderation Policy!

Perhaps unintended, but Michael Mann has provided some further comment on RC’s role and moderation policies in one of the e:mails from the CRU hack (now acknowledged by Dr Phil Jones to be genuine):

From: “Michael E. Mann” To: Tim Osborn , Keith Briffa Subject: update Date: Thu, 09 Feb 2006 16:51:53 -0500 Reply-to: Cc: Gavin Schmidt

guys, I see that Science has already gone online w/ the new issue, so we put up the RC post. By now, you’ve probably read that nasty McIntyre thing. Apparently, he violated the embargo on his website (I don’t go there personally, but so I’m informed).

Anyway, I wanted you guys to know that you’re free to use RC in any way you think would be helpful. Gavin and I are going to be careful about what comments we screen through, and we’ll be very careful to answer any questions that come up to any extent we can. On the other hand, you might want to visit the thread and post replies yourself. We can hold comments up in the queue and contact you about whether or not you think they should be screened through or not, and if so, any comments you’d like us to include.

You’re also welcome to do a followup guest post, etc. think of RC as a resource that is at your disposal to combat any disinformation put forward by the McIntyres of the world. Just let us know. We’ll use our best discretion to make sure the skeptics dont’get to use the RC comments as a megaphone…


— Michael E. Mann Associate Professor Director, Earth System Science Center (ESSC)

Department of Meteorology Phone: (814) 863-4075 503 Walker Building FAX: (814) 865-3663 The Pennsylvania State University email: University Park, PA 16802-5013

Thanks to MikeN and An Inconvenient Comment for alerting us to this e:mail.


19 Responses to “More From RC On Their Moderation Policy!”

  1. rcrejects Says:

    MikeN posted a comment relevant to this thread in the “Post Your Rejected Comments” thread below.

    MikeN Says:

    November 21, 2009 at 4:54 am edit

    The censoring appears to be off for now. Every so often, we see Gavin’s arrogance pop up again, but all comments appear to be getting through, including my last one.

    Perhaps the editor will declare Mission Accomplished and close shop.

  2. rcrejects Says:

    Some commenters are noting that RC seems to be following a more liberal moderation policy in response to the CRU hacking episode. Richard Sycamore wouldn’t agree!

    From CA “CRU Correspondence” Thread – post 218

    Richard Sycamore: November 20th, 2009 at 9:40 pm

    Posted to RC:

    “Richard Sycamore says: 20 November 2009: Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    With this disclosure of corrupt hockey stick climate reconstruction science, will you be correcting the flawed hockey stick graphs on your Hey Ya!(mal) thread? Thanks.”

    Richard updates us on the same CA thread – post 240

    Richard Sycamore: November 21st, 2009 at 12:41 am

    My comment above did not survive the censorship process at RC.
    I have asked the following:

    “Richard Sycamore says: 21 November 2009: Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    What is your censorship policy for this thread?”

  3. Concerned of Berkeley Says:

    I am so annoyed with the RC crew about all this, that I have decided to post my rejected post at RC, even though it is likely that my POV is likely very different than regular visitors to this site.

    Quote: Concerned of Berkeley says: 21 November 2009 at 2:54 AM.
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    What a disaster! I have long been concerned by the sheer incompetence of the RC/IPCC team in getting your message across in a professional and credible fashion. How come, when there is a strong scientific case, does the team so successfully shoot themselves in the foot, AND bring the roof down. The damage to climate science is too horrible to contemplate. I fear that you have given the game to the skeptics. By comparison with your antics, they look like the epitome of probity – perish the thought.

    If Fenton IS advising you, I seriously suggest you think about appointing a new PR outfit. Clearly they have been totally ineffectual in helping you guys do the job that you have been tasked with doing.

    Now, two weeks ahead of Copenhagen, we have a disaster on our hands. What chance to we have now of getting the government initiatives that are so sorely needed.

    How tragic. \Quote

  4. rcrejects Says:

    hunter (11:24:32) :

    WUWT. “CRU Emails – searchengine now online” thread.

    Hunter: 11:24:32 on 21 November 2009

    RC does not seem to actually be as open as may seem.

    I posted a very mild piece over there yesterday, and it showed up.

    The posts I made today, which were not inflammatory at all, do not even get posted:

    If you found out your 401-k was being managed like these guys are managing climate science, what would you do? Would you trust what they told you? Would you keep your money with them?

  5. rcrejects Says:

    RC. “The CRU Hack” thread – post 619

    gt4 says: 21 November 2009 at 4:20 PM

    As a long time reader of CA and RC I can testify to one dramatic difference between the skeptics and the believers, the skeptics are more tolerant of dissent. In fact, CA encourages discussions with the believers and the most interesting discussions are often between McIntyre (or others) and a person on the establishment side. Prior to this thread, I have personally had every post I put on RC deleted. All were on point and relevant the the current discussion. After reading the email talking about managing the message on RC I don’t feel so bad.

    I would suggest you open your website to more critical posts and stick to the facts instead of personal attacks.

    [Response: And I’m sure you have made exactly the same point elsewhere… – gavin]

  6. mondo Says:

    It would appear that RC is currently allowing posts that would normally be rejected, but is still inclined to edit those that don’t suit. Here is one.

    Real Climate thread The CRU Hack – 794

    mondo says: 22 November 2009 at 2:53 AM

    Re #713: “However this cuts both ways in a very serious way. Given that no other explanation has been offered for this “divergence problem” perhaps the explanation is the utterly obvious one: cold-adapted trees grow faster when it warms up but then suffer when that warming becomes too hot. Extrapolated into the past this would mean that some tree ring proxies would indeed not only hide hot periods but make them look like cooling periods.”

    There is another possible explanation for the ‘divergence’ problem. Isn’t it entirely possible that the trees are actually demonstrating the true situation, while the temperature records have been affected by poor quality stations, UHI effects, and ‘adjustments’ intended to support the AGW hypothesis. [edit]

    [Response: Tell that to the glaciers, or the pine bark beetles, or the ocean SSTs, or the Arctic sea ice etc. etc. – gavin] End post.

    The past that was edited out said: “Given the record of the real climate scientists, this alternative explanation surely deserves re-examination – if we can find the data, that is.”

  7. rcrejects Says:

    From RC “CRU Hack” thread – Post 940

    CM says: 22 November 2009 at 3:30 PM

    The thread on this is the Augean stables and Gavin’s doing the work of Hercules fielding it all. Fantastic.

    To all those who “congratulate” RC on the “new openness” in its comments policy, however, don’t get your hopes up. RC mainly screens out tiresome crap innuendos of scientific fraud. The only difference with this thread is that, for once, tiresome crap innuendos of scientific fraud are on topic.

    [Response: 😉 Still screening out the people who find it interesting to wish various nasty diseases upon us, encourage us not to breathe anymore, or whose fantasies regarding prison life reveal a little more information about them than I’d ever want to know. – gavin]

    We can’t let this pass without a comment or two. First, a wry smile 😉 from Gavin. Poor bloke is working hard, so its nice to see a smile.
    Second, anyone who has perused rejected comments posted here would know that RC doesn’t just screen out “the people who find it interesting to wish various nasty diseases upon us, encourage us not to breathe anymore, or whose fantasies regarding prison life”. In fact, in all the post here, we have never seen a single one that has those attributes. Plenty are asking rational, but inconvenient, questions, and it seems likely that Michael Mann’s points about moderation policy are probably more pertinent than Gavin’s.

  8. rcrejects Says:

    An exchange in the CA “Judith Curry” thread – Posts 9 and 10

    9: Karl B.: November 22nd, 2009 at 6:17 pm

    This is incredibly embarrassing to every scientist. Climate scientists need to get their field in order because this is not how good scientists conduct their research. We do not hide data, We do not hide methods.

    I am also embarrassed for some of the journals that these scientists have published in. If they required methods and data be made available, much of this wouldn’t have happened.

    You praise Real Climate but they are well known for censoring opposing views. They haven’t this past week, but how long will that last? It is a propaganda mouth piece for some of the scientists at the center of this story.

    10: Raven: November 22nd, 2009 at 6:29 pm

    Re: Karl B. (#9): RC is still censoring posts. I make a post that made some of the same points as Judy but it never saw the light of day.

  9. rcrejects Says:

    CA “Curry: On the credibility of climate research” thread – Post 14

    Mike Lorrey: November 22nd, 2009 at 6:50 pm

    Please don’t even try to present Real Climate as any kind of model of transparency or fair/balanced discussion. I think over the last five years possibly one of my comments there was allowed through. Their censorship of skeptical/inquiring minds is legendary among everyone who has spectatored this field. If Gavin is changing policy, he needs to first offer a mea culpa for the email in the hacked data proving that he and Mann intentionally offered RC as a biased forum which would intentionally censor skeptical commentary.

    As it is, I’m going to see that he and his ilk are investigated on ethics charges with their employers. These emails are such a smoking gun that if we’d had anything similar from Bellisiles (who faked probate records to try to prove early Americans didn’t own guns in significant numbers) email box back in the day, getting him fired from his university would not have taken two years. If the entire Hockey Team has to be ejected from the scentific world to clean things up, so be it. The degree to which these people have allowed their personal political agendas to commit boundary issue ethical violations of their scientific objectivity makes them unfit to be scientists.

  10. rcrejects Says:

    CA “Curry: On the credibility of climate research” thread – Post 16

    Jonas N: November 22nd, 2009 at 6:57 pm

    Karl B: Yes, they have censord comments also these recent days at RealClimate. And comparing the very moderately phrased questions och critical viewpoints the chose to block out, with the tone and rancid rancor of some of the comments the let through ..

    .. has removed all doubt about them not being interested in clarifying the science or furthering knowledge, at least o me. And judging from those leaked emails, that was never the purpose either.

  11. rcrejects Says:

    More from CA, same thread. Post 23

    Jason: November 22nd, 2009 at 7:12 pm

    Until this moment, I hadn’t realized how drastically my opinion of RC has changed over the past year.

    One year ago, after reading Judith’s email, I would have immediately headed over to RC to investigate Gavin’s explanations of the various emails.

    Now, I’m not going to do that unless I’m bored (unlikely), or I become interested in a specific email based on something I see on some other website.

    What’s changed is that a year ago I expected to read things on RC which I might disagree with, but which I nonetheless believed represented the honest views of the RC authors.

    After this past year, I now expect Gavin and Mann to say only that which advances what Judith would refer to as their tribal interests, even when their own views are different.

    There is something intellectually stimulating about understanding the views, logic and arguments of somebody you disagree with. Somewhere between Steig and Ya-mal, that thrill disappeared.

    Its not any fun engaging somebody who doesn’t honestly represent their own views. [Sorry if personal pleasure isn’t supposed to enter into these things. I wouldn’t be here at all if not for that element.]

  12. rcrejects Says:

    CA. Same thread. Post 81

    scp: November 22nd, 2009 at 9:10 pm

    Re: Raven (#10),

    (I think) I’ve noticed a pattern over the years at RC. It seems to me that they censor less at the beginnings of threads and more at the end. Thus creating the impression for a future reader that a vigorous debate was held and the opposition lost.

  13. rcrejects Says:

    An interesting suggestion from Chris S. Also CA, same thread. Post 90

    Chris S: November 22nd, 2009 at 9:40 pm

    [first part edited as not relevant to our topic – mod]

    To me, this is more of the same old same old that I’d expect to find over at RealClimate.

    BTW; Try anonymously posting a polite but contrarian comment at RealClimate and you’ll soon see what a schmidt Gavin is.

    Those wanting to learn more about RC’s moderation/censorship policies might want to follow Chris’ suggestion for themselves.

  14. rcrejects Says:

    CA Mirror Site. Judith Curry thread.

    Karl B: 2009 November 22

    RC is still censoring. I sent in a post congratulating Gavin on his current approach to posts and to suggest he disown one Barton Paul Levinson who is advocationg censoring posts that are inimical top the CRU and associates. The post vanished without trace.

  15. rcrejects Says:

    CA Mirror. Same thread.

    EddieO: 2009 November 23


    You surely cannot be serious about Gavin’s adoption of a “transparency” at RC? I for one have been “disappeared” from RC over the weekend for daring to highlight his complicity in this affair and I am sure dozens of other posters have been treated similarly.
    As an experiment to prove my point why don’t you try posting anonymously at RC in a critical manner? Gavin only lets through criticisms that he thinks he can counter effectively so that he can present the illusion of transparency.

    By the way thanks for contributing to this fantastic blog.

  16. rcrejects Says:

    CA Mirror. Judith Curry thread.

    Howard: 2009 November 23

    Transparency is not what Gavin is doing right now at RC. It is known as a “limited hangout” in classical propaganda. Watch how the moderation will slowly return to the previous level of spin control. Although, I doubt we will see Dr. Mann popping up anytime soon out of his bunker.

    One thing that is obvious by this event is how insignificant Gavin is on the team. His primary role is cheerleader and PR Flack. His loyalty to jackals who would sell him down the river for a comment paragraph in Science continues unabated: I actually feel sorry for him.

  17. rcrejects Says:

    CA Mirror. Judith Curry thread.

    Mario: 2009 November 23

    You say: “Gavin Schmidt’s current efforts at realclimate are a good step in the right direction of increasing transparency.” I think it’s just a desperate PR move.

    But censorial habits are still hard-wired at RC, and if there’s hope to remain hidden automatically step forward to cancel what hurts feelings and/or is difficult to be answered.

    Two days ago I posted this in the RC CRU thread:
    “You wrote: “As a long time reader of CA and RC I can testify to one dramatic difference between the skeptics and the believers, the skeptics are more tolerant of dissent.”

    That is not my experience.”

    It’s mine: a simple and telling example: CA presents RC in his climatesite-links “Blogroll” sidebar. RC shows not CA in his “Other opinions” sidebar. This should makes clearer the meaning of “tolerant”

    My post never went past the “Your comment is awaiting moderation” phase…

    Somebody is suprised?

  18. rcrejects Says:

    An interesting post from National Post blog, “Skewed Science” thread that mentions RC censorship. We reproduce the whole post to give context to the RC mention – bolded.

    by ehmoran: Nov 26 2009. 8:40 PM


    The data (e-mails) are right in Man-made global warming supporters face and they still refuse to see the evidence.

    These same scientists threatened my job as a scientist with the US Geological Survey because I tried to publish a study showing with higher confidence that global temperature changes were completely natural caused solely by Earth’s physical processes. Additionally, these same scientists would not even discuss or refute the science and facts presented. Instead, they took two days to personally attack me and my family.

    I always knew that when man-made global climate change was showed to be insignificant that people would lose faith, note the word “FAITH”, in science. But this event and exposure is way worse for the science community as a whole. Remember: “Truth is the daughter of Time (Francis Bacon)”.

    Several USGS scientists got fired for the same thing when discussing data manipulation for models developed for the Nevada Nuclear Test Site. But no outcry and defense for those scientists?

    IF you can’t see any problem with this and you don’t wonder if there’s been some misleading of the public by these scientists, then you definitely are not scientists, you’re in denial and would buy any bill of goods sold, and you have no moral principles to stand on.

    On 25 November 2009 at 12:15 PM, I tried to post comments on concerning this matter. That website obviously refused to post my comments because they know me, which is another attempt to silence objective parties on this subject and since they were the ones that threatened my job…..

    Now, think about this. Al Gore PUBLICLY states that the Earth’s Mantle temperatures are MILLIONS of DEGREES. The man doesn’t even have the morality, decency, and/or courage to publicly admit he was WRONG. WHY SHOULD these scientists admit they are wrong? They can’t, because if they do, the gig is up…….

  19. rcrejects Says:

    From Bishop Hill Blog, “Gerry North on McIntyre” thread.

    vsaluki: 29 November 2009

    I have written about the orchestration of victories in the climate debate, that happens on the AGW website Real Climate, before. This is the leading AGW alarmist web site, and they seem to have more credibility than others because the people who run the site are published climate scientists and they are cornerstones of the IPCC. I have noticed in the past that there is a pattern to the way that Gavin Schmidt and the other contributors moderate the site so as to appear to be engaging in open discussion and letting skeptics have their say, while at the same time, they censor any and all comments for which they have no adequate answer.

    In other words, the outcome of the debates are known because Gavin Schmidt, Michael Mann, and the others will always censor their way to winning the arguments. Of course complaints about RC censoring can be found all over the net from hundreds if not thousands of people. I wrote a short piece about my findings regarding RC here:

    I also took some screen shots of comments that I made that were subsequently deleted here:

    Notice the quality of the debate that Schmidt is not screening out in the comment before mine. That comment passed moderation.

    So now it turns out that Climategate has exposed the reality of RC’s debate orchestration policy in Michael Mann’s own words:

    Michael Mann: “Anyway, I wanted you guys to know that you’re free to use RC. Rein any way that you think would be helpful. Gavin and I are going to be careful about what comments we screen through, and we’ll be careful to answer any questions that come up to any extent we can.”

    Not only does Mann reveal that RC tactic, but he also reveals a second one that I had suspected but was unsure about. During the Briffa/Yamal debate on RC I asked some questions and made some points concerning those issues. I noticed that my comments remained in a state of moderation for two or three hours at a time. In the meantime, other comments that were posted after mine continued to flow through. So I knew that there was a moderator at work. I wondered why he didn’t simply post my comments or delete them. It occurred to me that Gavin didn’t know how to answer the comments and so he asked for help, either from Keith Briffa, or from another dendrochronologist But I had no way of confirming my suspicion. Now my suspicion has been clearly confirmed by one of the Michael Mann emails.

    Michael Mann: “On the other hand, you might want to visit the thread and post replies yourself. We can hold comments up in the queue and contact you about whether you think they should be screened through or not, and if so, any comments you’d like us to include.”

    My long held comments were eventually deleted. So I assume that Briffa, or whoever Schmidt went to, was unable to respond to my points.

    But the bottom line comes to this, RC may be run by peer reviewed, published, climate scientists that contribute to the IPCC, but they are fraudulently pushing the AGW propaganda on their climate site none the less.

    November 29, 2009 | vsaluki

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