New Comment Settings

In response to a very drawn-out debate regarding complex scientific topics, I have changed the comment policy of ClimateSight. Thanks to the many commenters who helped shape this new policy, in particular Hank and Richard.

The new policy is as follows:

If you have something to say, you are more than welcome to leave a comment. However, if you make a scientific claim, like “modern times are warmer than any other period in the past millenium”, or “bristlecone pine data is unacceptable for use in proxy reconstructions”, you must provide an acceptable reference.

For our purposes, an acceptable reference must be peer-reviewed, whether it was published in a journal (but not Energy and Environment!) or is a statement from a professional organization like the NAS. The source cannot have been discredited since its publication.

Blogs don’t count. Reputable blogs will always reference their scientific claims, so all you have to do is take the extra step of checking out their citations. (If they don’t have any citations, what does that tell you?) This requirement eliminates a lot of the misrepresentation and drawn-out debates which are all too common on climate science blogs.

How does that sound? Any suggestions for further improvement?

You know, collaborating with others like this really helps me understand why peer review works. There’s no way I could make such improvement on ClimateSight without the help of our commenters.

Update: Thanks to all of your suggestions, I’ve altered the policy yet again. We’ll see how many revisions it’ll have to go through before it’s finalized. Peer-review at its finest. I’ll also put this comment policy in the sidebar so it’s visible on every post.

If you have something to say, you are more than welcome to leave a comment. However, if you make a scientific claim which is not already common knowledge – like a new theory or a recent statistic – you must reference a legitimate peer-reviewed source (ie, not Energy and Environment!). The source cannot have been recently discredited (ie, don’t reference the 1000-year temperature reconstruction by Sallie Baliunas).

Blogs don’t count. Most reputable blogs will reference all of their scientific claims, so all you have to do is take the extra step of checking out their citations. If they don’t have any citations, what does that tell you?

Any failures to comply with this comment policy will be deleted.