Some Thoughts on Blog Moderation
Posted by Jeff Id on January 8, 2010
Today(as pointed out by several readers), a blog called fragilecologies put up a post titled SKEPTICS, SHOW US YOUR EMAILS: ‘turn-about’ is fair play.” Mickey Glantz, DAY 4 at COP 15. The post wasn’t that exciting for me, it went on about how climategate is no big deal because “skeptics do it too” basically. So why not just release all the ‘skeptic’ emails and make the advocates happy? Unfortunately for the advocates, my emails include every single comment at tAV, they include some business with Tiawan, some personal emails and a few other things unrelated to climate. The CRU whistleblowers took time to filter these sorts of things out. In the past year and a half, tAV has received 14,783 comments mixed in with all these emails. The correspondance with other bloggers is a very very small fraction of those, and the vast majority is right here in public. I actually considered it still but it wouldn’t have the same impact when you consider that the lack of ‘hide the rise’, would only mean my implied evil doings were sanitized before release. If you want the true impact, hack away.
It doesn’t matter though because this is an open blog, people trash bad work here faster than you could make it. Steve McIntyre once wrote that he appreciates disagreement, my reply on his thread was something like ‘screw up more, we’ll help you out’. The long time readers here know that unfortunately, I screw up fairly often. My saving grace is to finish with a respectable job of admitting it, even though like the rest of you, I don’t want to. The point isn’t to be perfect right out of the box, but rather to come to the right conclusion. Hell, I’ve got a CRU post from only a week ago which we still haven’t figured out what’s wrong.
So what’s the point of all this long winded self gratifying rubbish…
I CAN’T TRICK PEOPLE EVEN IF I WANTED TO.
…..It’s NOT possible because everything is in the open!!
……..Go ahead, try it in the comments, be open with your math and see what Kenneth, Steve McIntyre, Steve Mosher, Roman, Ryan, Lurk, Nic, John, etc. on and on….do to you.
Everything is in public, my posts here cannot perform a “trick” to “hide the decline” or “hide the rise” and neither can the guest posts here. And I would bet anyone here that even the slickest among you could not convince Steve McIntyre to post bad math to “hide the rise”, decline or even tweak the result an unnoticeable microscopic bit. I’m still waiting to bust him screwing up! — Missed by only two hours on his Yamal work 😉 – BECAUSE HE FOUND IT HIMSELF FIRST!!
This is the relationship of skeptics.
So according to the title, we should talk about moderation. Even before becoming such a big fan of CA, tAV was unmoderated. It’s the only way to do science. Moderated blogs imply that things cannot be heard, very unscientific in my firm opinion. Real climate is such a blog and we know very well that they moderate to prove themselves right as much as anything.
A reporter once asked how this blog keeps such a good tone while anyone can comment unmoderated. Among other things, I told him graphs scare trolls – haha. In retrospect, the truth is that people who understand lurk here, and the community is quite willing to explain errors in thought to anyone here, including me (you guys could give a little room for the host). The point is, were this blog moderated, it would have no credibility whatsoever.
So after all that jabber, I left this comment at the blog linked above regarding the climategate emails. Not ironically — it’s currently in moderation….
Some people left comments at tAV so I thought it might be worth checking out your post. You’ve missed an important point.
I (like climate audit) do almost everything in public so when something is wrong, it’s challenged in moments. It’s simply impossible to eliminate points, make up fake data or hide the decline.
Try posting a bad equation or bit of code in the comments at CA and you’ll find out usually in under an hour about it. I know this first hand. Do you have any idea how long it would take for Steve M to be slaughtered if he did bad math in a post?
My last post had too much slope in the result for skeptics, I was told several times that it confirmed hadcrut – not a denial post. I didn’t agree because the grid weighting wasn’t fair to the SH which has far less warming, when it is though, it very well might confirm the replication of CRU but it’s a perfect illustration of the difference in thought process.
If it doesn’t match CRU because it has a mistake, I’m going to be tossed under the nearest set of tires by the readers faster than you can blink. Skeptics are pretty well skeptical of well…. everything. And rightly so.
The scientists were not honest in their presentation of fact. They were not open with their methods or data. They have been shown in some cases to have an agenda first mentality. All of this is impossible on an unmoderated blog — try it.