BREAKING: No comment will be heard from “jewel in the crown” … alarmist headline intact

UPDATE: August 2, 2013

I returned to the MyClimateAndMe site today to see what the latest version of this page might be. Much to my surprise, when I followed the link, I discovered that the site has had a facelift – and they’ve “disappeared” the evidence:

Click for larger version

U.K. Met Office “disappears” evidence (click for larger version)

And do check out their new “Our Buddies” page which includes a link to “Mummy Met Office”

UPDATE June 11, 2013

During a discussion on Bishop Hill, today, Richard Betts advised me that:

The [MyClimateAndMe] article on Marcott was updated on 12th May on my request. The wording of the revised post came from me.

For the record, the title of this March 12, 2013 post at MyClimateAndMe now reads “Article Removed”. The revised wording concludes:

In the light of this statement from the authors, we no longer consider our headline to be appropriate.

==========

In my previous post, I had noted (inter alia) that this “jewel in the crown, of British science and global science” was participating in the passive perpetuation of alarmist propaganda.

One notorious example was found in a March 12, 2013 post on the My Climate and Me blog, which (if you read the very fine print on the logo) is produced “in association with” the Met Office.

As of yesterday, the site still showed:

From My Climate and Me April 23, 2013

From My Climate and Me April 23, 2013

Although I did observe that there was a comment containing a link to my previous post, in which I had written:

I have yet to see a reasonable explanation from this “jewel in the crown, of British science and global science” as to why:

  • they chose to post without examining the so-called “science” on which the press release was based
  • they have chosen to leave this clearly alarmist “headline” intact, some six weeks after it was firmly established that it is not supported by the underlying paper

And while Betts did respond:

I don’t know why the headline on the Marcott paper is still there on My Climate and Me. The original post about it was removed at my request. It was a mistake to post about an area of science that the Met Office does not work on – we have asked My Climate and Me to stick to areas of Met Office expertise in future, and they will do this.

this is not exactly what I would call a “reasonable explanation” for either of the points I had noted above.

I didn’t actually check, yesterday, but my recollection is that their Team page (at least on the 23rd) appeared to give top billing to Richard Betts. They’ve changed it (without noting the date):

The Climate Science Advisors assist the My Climate & Me team by helping us answer the questions we receive, but the articles and content of the site does (sic) not necessarily represent their views.

Our Advisors include:

Richard Betts […]

Top billing now goes to “Rob Hutt – Director & Presenter”. According to his bio:

Areas of expertise:

Communication
Innovation process and creative behaviours
Video Production

Career Background:

Rob joined the Met Office in 2007 as an Aviation Account Manager selling forecast services to the aviation industry. […] One area in particular that interested Rob was the massive amount of climate science expertise in the Met Office and the difficulties faced when attempting to communicate this complex subject to the public. It was this challenge that prompted Rob to develop My Climate & Me as a new communications channel that aims to bridge the gap between climate scientists and the public.

Well, I have some bad news, folks. The latest and greatest attempt to “bridge the gap” on this passive promotion of alarmist propaganda is an epic fail, IMHO.

Here’s what the post looks like now (well, at least as of 10:56 p.m. PST when I took this screen capture):

From My Climate and Me April 26, 2013

From My Climate and Me April 26, 2013

Gee, I wonder where one might find this “extensive media coverage” which highlights the problems with this report – not to mention the over-selling contained in the still intact headline.

Put yourself in front of the monitor of a newbie who happened to stumble across this post at My Climate and Me. Would you have any idea at all from the above that the headline was inaccurate (I’m trying to be diplomatic!) or that one Met Office scientist’s:

(non-palaeo expert) view on Marcott is that it is an interesting attempt to reconstruct temperatures over the last 11000 years or so, but its significance has been over-sold. It does not appear to support claims of “unprecedented rates of warming” because the time resolution is too low. [emphasis added -hro]

And this is the way that the U.K. Met Office – “a jewel in the crown, of British and global science” – chooses to engage and “bridge the gap between climate scientists and the public.”? I’m not sure what “gap” they think they might be “bridging”, but it certainly couldn’t be an ever-widening credibility gap.

Amazing. Simply amazing.

8 thoughts on “BREAKING: No comment will be heard from “jewel in the crown” … alarmist headline intact

  1. Pingback: These items caught my eye – 27 April 2013 | grumpydenier

  2. The My Climate and Me web site, presumably under advice from the Met Office, have now admitted that their previous post was inaccurate but fail to address any of the questions that had been raised in the comments.

    Judith Curry on her blog recently discussed signs of intellectual honesty/dishonesty.

    One sign of intellectual dishonesty: Avoiding/Ignoring the question or … Anybody who refuses to admit that their argument is weak in an area and, worse still, avoids answering difficult questions in that area is being intellectually dishonest.

    The comments raised far reaching questions about the role of the Met Office and cowardiceness of climate scientists in general in failing to draw attention to bad science that attempts to support the popular view of CAWG – particularly after having helped to publicise it in the first place.

    (1) Dr Vicky Pope, head of climate change advice at the Met Office, calls on scientists and journalists to STOP misleading the public …

    (2) Met Office responds by reporting that “New Analysis suggests the Earth is Warming at a Rate Unprecedented for 11,300 Years”.

    (3) Met Office fails to correct this news report despite incontrovertible evidence to the contrary.

    The Met Office clearly has the contacts necessary to discuss any aspect of this paper. They could even have invited Steve McIntyre to respond. But the Met Office has no intention at all of ceasing to mislead the public about the nature of global warming.

    My Climate and Me (and by extension, The Met Office) are being intellectually dishonest.

    Unfortunately, we have become accustomed to that.

    • Well said. Too often, alarmist news are published even when wrong information is included, and nobody ever address the question to make a complete scientific correcting statement to tell the public that they had been had in a kind of propaganda or scam concerning the global warming.

  3. Well done for being tenacious in this area Hilary. As Richard Betts seemed to indicate to Steve McIntyre in the previous thread, it’s meant as a compliment :)

    Interesting that Richard himself seems to have been downgraded as an adviser to My Climate and Me. Is that the price of truth-telling on the inside, even with something this crass? Allowing MCaM to issue this most misleading of ‘corrections’ without of course the benefit a link to Steve’s substantial criticisms of Marcott for the interested third party.

    As I say, stay tenacious.

  4. The My Climate and Me website now says:

    “Due to the fact the science contained in the original article did not originate from the Met Office and that the media coverage surrounding this report has already been extensive we have made the decision not to approach a Met Office scientist for comment.”

    S.L.B.T.M. Richard Betts of the Met Office stated:

    “. Yes, the article on Marcott was removed at my request – I hadn’t realised the headline was still there.”

    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2013/4/15/chatham-house-on-biofuels.html?currentPage=2#comment19935226

    “Due to the fact the science contained in the original article did not originate from the Met Office…”
    However, that has not prevented RB from responding to comments on other MC&M postings.

    • The My Climate and Me website now says:

      “Due to the fact the science contained in the original article did not originate from the Met Office and that the media coverage surrounding this report has already been extensive we have made the decision not to approach a Met Office scientist for comment.”

      Yes, and as noted in my post, it has been saying this since (at least) April 26.

      However, that has not prevented RB from responding to comments on other MC&M postings.

      Richard’s a nice guy, but consistency has never been his forté.

      Strange isn’t it that now that RB indisputably knows (and has for some time) that the misleading, inaccurate and unsustainable “headline [is] still there”, neither he nor anyone else associated with MC&M seems capable of pointing this out to future readers of this March 12 post – nor of directing readers to the underlying paper, or to Climate Audit where the credibility of the headline’s claim was shredded, a mere few days after it first appeared.

      And they wonder why so many are so skeptical of the pronouncements and “science” that emanate from this “jewel in the crown, of British and global science”.

  5. Although, as you point out, the My Climate and Me web site says “In association” with the Met Office, there is no question it is actually a Met Office site.

    – Rob Hutt is a Met Office employee (According to his LinkedIn page)

    – I FOI’d the Met Office for a My Climate and Me web page in its original version and they provided it.

    • Martin,

      I’ve never doubted for a moment that My Climate and Me is a Met Office site – notwithstanding Richard Betts’ best efforts to pretend give the impression that it is an organization unto itself; e.g. his “,,, we have asked My Climate and Me …” I don’t doubt that those “responsible” for MC&M are in a different warren of this den of obfuscations department of this “jewel in the crown …”, but that’s no excuse for his choice of phrasing.

      But it is so typical of these human-generated CO2 as primary “cause” fundamentalists to want everything both ways, isn’t it?!

      Did you notice that Betts’ only comment on Doug Keenan’s latest at BH (after being deafeningly silent for almost 24 hours) was to post the full text of Doug McNeall’s E-mail (without even mentioning Keenan’s response thereto) with the preface that:

      I’d encourage folks here to read it carefully, as there are important points here about what is meant by “significant”

      Which is somewhat of an (IMHO) intellectually dishonest diversion, since the issue Doug Keenan and Lord Donoughue had raised pertained to “statistical significance”. But I digress …

      Hutt’s bio on the site also indicates that he’s a Met Office employee, btw [see quote in my post above].

      Just out of curiosity, which web page did you FOI (and how long did it take them to respond)?!

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