Yesterday I mentioned that we had been invited to make a post at the Nature blog. The invitation was withdrawn today. On May 10, we received the following invitation:
As you know, there was a recent post on our Climate Feedback blog by Hans Von Storch that discussed the hockey stick, without discussing your work co-authored with Ross McKritik.
Although many of the comments highlighted this oversight, we wish to invite to respond to this with a post on our site, to clarify the point for readers who may not have read through those comments.
We sincerely hope that you will be willing to respond to this crucial issue in climate science. I realize that this issue has been well discussed within the climate science community and on other blogs in the past. However, the readership of our blog includes the scientific public, some of whom will not be familiar with the details of the hockey stick. Your contribution would therefore be of great value in explaining the significance of this work to climate science and to where climate science is at today,
We immediately accepted the invitation. On May 11, von Storch and Zorita posted more personal criticism, to which I did not respond, because of the apparent opportunity to post our view of the matter in more temperate terms. On May 14, I mentioned this invitation on the blog yesterday. One day later on May 15, I received the following message:
As you know, it was decided last week that we should allow both you and Michael Mann and co-authors a right to reply to Hans Von Storch’s post.
Now, in light of the fact that this issue has been hashed out at length elsewhere and is beginning to dominate discussions on our blog, we will not proceed with these posts, though we will leave the comment thread open.
We will, however, post a statement on how we will be going forward on the blog over the next couple of days to clarify this. I apologize for any inconvenience arising from this change of decision.
The curious viewpoint of von Storch and Zorita in this blog entry has hardly been “hashed out” at length elsewhere. There have been only two posts to the von Storch thread during the past week, which have hardly “dominated” discussion at their blog. Since the issue has not “dominated” discussion at the blog, it is hard not to wonder whether someone higher up in the Nature organization specifically intervened to ask the blog editor to withdraw our invitation and to further wonder whether Nature received any communications urging that this invitation be withdrawn.