Gavin’s “Mystery Man” Revealed

On Monday, Feb 2, Gavin Schmidt explained some “ethics” to realclimate readers as follows:

[Response: People will generally credit the person who tells them something. BAS were notified by people Sunday night who independently found the Gill/Harry mismatch. SM could have notified them but he didn't. My ethical position is that it is far better to fix errors that are found than play around thinking about cute names for follow-on blog posts. That might just be me though. - gavin]

As readers know, I was interested in who was the scientist that, unbeknowst to me, had “independently” identified the problem with Harry – a problem overlooked by BAS, NASA GISS for a year or so anyway; and a problem which had been missed by his realclimate coauthors, Steig and Mann, during their preparation of Steig et al 2009, and which had been missed by the Nature peer reviewers. And remarkably this had been “independently” identified just after I had noted the problem at Climate Audit and Climate Audit readers had contributed ideas on it, even during the Super Bowl.

Yesterday, I inquired about the identity of Gavin’s “mystery man”? Today (Feb 4) the British Antarctic survey revealed the identity of Gavin’s “mystery man”. It was…

GAVIN.


Screenshot Feb 4, 2009 ~10.50 am Eastern. The comment dated 2/2/2009 originally did not acknowledge the contributor, but was modified today to credit Gavin’s contribution.


407 Comments

  1. Malcolm
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:47 AM | Permalink

    Here was I thinking that the only Man of Mystery was Austin Powers.

  2. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:56 AM | Permalink

    This episode has been like playing a game of “Clue” — Was it Mr. Green in the dining room with a revolver?

  3. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:58 AM | Permalink

    Sure, Gavin, whatever you say…

    But meanwhile, however, over at http://www.antarctica.ac.uk/met/READER/temperature.html, Steve does at least get credit for his corrections to Chatham Island, as noted already in #175 and 177 of the Dirty Harry 4 thread:

    Note! Notification was received from Steve McIntyre on the 3rd February 2009 of incorrect values of 1.0 in the temperature record from Chatham Island for January 1988, March 1988, October 1988, January 1989, February 1989, May 1989, October 1989 and November 1989. These values have now been removed.

    There is some justice, anyway.

    Steve: That has no bearing on the Gavin matter. But there’s an amusing back story here that I’ll tell some time.

  4. Craig Loehle
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:00 AM | Permalink

    How am I supposed to get any work done when I am laughing so hard?

    • Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:39 AM | Permalink

      Re: Craig Loehle (#4),

      How am I supposed to get any work done when I am laughing so hard?

      Same predicament here, barely being able to answer all those stern emails. Thanks so much for all this entertainment Steve!

  5. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM | Permalink

    As we say in German: lies have short legs…

    • David_Jay
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:17 PM | Permalink

      Re: Gaudenz Mischol (#6),

      As we say in German: lies have short legs…

      A Lie is a Dachshund ???

    • Ivan
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:08 AM | Permalink

      Re: Gaudenz Mischol (#5),

      As we say in German: lies have short legs…

      Interesting, “lies have short legs” in Serbian also. Maybe our Anglo-Saxon friends, like Steve, should use this Serbo-German sentence to describe Team’s activities in general. :)

      • rafa
        Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 12:14 PM | Permalink

        Re: Ivan (#327), add spanish to the anglo-saxon-serbo-german list. We have exactly the same idiom in spanish :-)

  6. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM | Permalink

    #3. there’s a little back story here.

  7. Tamara
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM | Permalink

    How is it possible to chastise someone else about ethics from the position he is in? This really makes me ill. I guess we can all trust that it was just a happy coincidence that you both discovered an error that doesn’t “matter” to the overall result at the same time.

  8. Paul C
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:03 AM | Permalink

    Well, that pretty much drops Gavin’s cred into the toilet. Apparently the insignificant data change was significant enough for him to run to mommy calling for change without so much as a professional courtesy as how he came upon the info. Which leads to a fundamental question of the scientific method: Where goeth scientific integrity when personal integrity is filtered out of the dataset?

  9. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:04 AM | Permalink

    Steve — Thanks for providing a dated screenshot, instead of just a link to http://www.antarctica.ac.uk/met/READER/data.html.

    It will be fascinating to see how this URL evolves over the next few days.

    What was your timestamp?

  10. Darryl
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:10 AM | Permalink

    wmanny:
    February 3rd, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    From “Tamino” [Warm Reception, #171] on RC:

    “But I’m not going to [check Steig's code]. I actually trust those guys.

    Yet Gavin is busy checking, even on his weekends.

    Are you sure those guys are on a team?

  11. Peter
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:16 AM | Permalink

    This is borderline creepy.

  12. AJ Abrams
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:17 AM | Permalink

    I’ve read some funny things on this site, in fact it often has my chuckling to myself, but this had me rolling.

    So Gavin is going to take credit eh? He independently found this after it was posted on CA? Is that a pig I see flying past yonder window?

  13. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:23 AM | Permalink

    Can anyone grab a screenshot of Gavin’s comment at http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/01/warm-reception-to-antarctic-warming-story/langswitch_lang/de#comment-111344, before it disappears? I don’t know how to do this.

    • BillA
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:16 AM | Permalink

      Re: Hu McCulloch (#13),

      Can anyone grab a screenshot of Gavin’s comment at

      Try Irfanview:

      http://www.irfanview.net/

      (Be sure to grab the plugins as well to extend the set of extensions it can handle.)
      Free, fast and light on resources. Can crop the result.
      You may need to put the file somewhere on the web so that CA can fetch it.

  14. Dr. James
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:24 AM | Permalink

    I cannot believe Gavin would even claim to be any sort of reputable scientist now. This sort of thing just demonstrates global warming is less about science than it is about pushing an agenda which I finally truly sad. SM does the work and it is Gavin playing the games. I am laughing and at the same time saddened that this is the state of science when it comes to our climate.

  15. wkkruse
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:27 AM | Permalink

    I wonder if someone at BAS is playing with Gavin? I don’t mean that it’s not true that Gavin reported it, but that someone at BAS thought it would be funny to let it out of the closet.

  16. Paul C
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

    So, post facto, they added Gavin’s name. Now, was that to embellish his rep, or hang him out to dry? Inquiring deniers want to know…

  17. theduke
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

    My ethical position is that it is far better to fix errors that are found than play around thinking about cute names for follow-on blog posts. That might just be me though.

    Or not.

  18. Soronel Haetir
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:31 AM | Permalink

    Steve,

    At least you know Givin pays attention to what you do, even if he won’t admit it.

  19. Ron Cram
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:31 AM | Permalink

    Steve,

    As I mentioned in a comment on the earlier post, this might be an interesting FOIA. How many times did Gavin email BAS? At least one of them had to be after your final blog post because you had not yet identified all of the problems. I seriously doubt Gavin did any real searching and found the other years.

  20. AJ Abrams
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:33 AM | Permalink

    [URL=http://img150.imagevenue.com/img.php?image=65238_Gavin_122_543lo.jpg][IMG]http://img150.imagevenue.com/loc543/th_65238_Gavin_122_543lo.jpg[/IMG][/URL]

  21. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:33 AM | Permalink

    Hu McCulloch 12

    just done it. I don’t know how to post it, but I sent it at your email.

  22. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:33 AM | Permalink

    Can anyone grab a screenshot of Gavin’s comment at http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/01/warm-reception-to-antarctic-warming-story/langswitch_lang/de#comment-111344, before it disappears? I don’t know how to do this.

    Hit the “Print Scrn” key, open Paint and past or ctrl-V, safe as jpeg.

  23. AJ Abrams
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:33 AM | Permalink

    Stever can you erase my last try or at least get it to post correctly?

  24. MikeU
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:34 AM | Permalink

    Reporting the bad data to BAS was a great thing for Schmidt to do. Failing to credit the source and hiding that fact so he could claim that Steve is “playing games” was stupid, childish, unprofessional, and yes… a little creepy. One of the reasons I moved to the “skeptic” column several years ago was precisely because the scientists on the alarmist side are so demagogic, so utterly hostile to any other viewpoint, so “certain” about science which is anything but. These sorts of embarrassing episodes only hurt their message and credibility, yet they keep on doing them anyway. Strange.

  25. jae
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:34 AM | Permalink

    ROFLMAO. I sure hope Gavin enjoys the taste of crow.

  26. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:37 AM | Permalink

    This is disgusting, I think gavin deserves our support on this, rather than some peoples scorn. After all he claims he found the error independently then we should take him at his word. It is possible after all, I mean consider his well earned reputation in the industry. A reputation garnered — no forged, through hours of tedious examination of climate papers resulting in the widely publicized and numerous corrections he has made to climate papers and data.

    We should give credit where credit is due.

  27. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:41 AM | Permalink

    RE wkkruse #14,

    I don’t think BAS is playing, or did this to be funny.

    The fact that on the same day they Said Steve’s Name with respect to the Chatham Island corrections demonstrates that they are committed to giving credit where credit is due, even if it’s to a self-styled “gadfly” who takes pleasure in biting them on the b***. See #3 above.

    Had they not done this, they could have been taken to be siding with Gavin on Harry by truthfully indicating where they got their information. They just have a sense of decency.

    But their duty done, they’re probably privately just as ROTFL as the rest of us!

  28. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:43 AM | Permalink

    Gavin the Mystery Man

  29. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:43 AM | Permalink
  30. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:44 AM | Permalink

    Try this…

    http://www.mijnalbum.nl/index.php?m=fto&a=73&id=117227927&key=Y8DEN4UN

  31. tetris
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:50 AM | Permalink

    A scary example of the pathological consequences of cognitive dissonance.

  32. Paul
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:53 AM | Permalink

    If it was indeed Gavin who discovered the error I was wondering why he just didn’t say so in the first place, rather than leave realclimate readers with the impression that it was a third party.

  33. Vinnster
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:55 AM | Permalink

    When I read this I could not stop laughing. When I finally did, I posted a reference to it on RC, who censored it.

  34. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:57 AM | Permalink

    ROTFL – Can’t work.

  35. theduke
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:00 AM | Permalink

    Gavin in a response to Steve Mosher:

    SM should have contacted BAS. I’m sure BAS are grateful that someone told them about the data mess up – it just didn’t happen to be SM. If he wasn’t so set on trying to embarrass people or stir up fake ‘accusations against Hansen’ then he’d probably find people would be more willing to deal with him. But it is the same pattern every time. Some trivial thing is blown out of all proportion and the greek chorus start piling on, because of course, they knew it was wrong anyway. SM could have easily seen that the typo in the Table was just a typo (the actual lat/lon used are here) – but he chose not to bother for some reason, thus sprouting all sorts of ill-informed nonsense. By continually overblowing trivialities, he lacks credibility on anything more serious. Science is not a game of gotcha,. . .

    Steve Mc has gotten into Gavin’s head . . .

  36. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:04 AM | Permalink

    Gavin has commented on being revealed as the International Man of Mystery as follows: Bernie asked:

    I do not understand why you would not simply have said this and acknowledged what alerted you to the issue. The way you stated this earlier clearly suggests that whoever alerted BAS did so after independently identifying the issue. That I am afraid is now extremely hard to believe.

    Gavin:

    [Response: Why? SM made a coy point about Harry, I looked, worked out (independently) that the Gill and Harry had been mashed together incorrectly and let BAS know - others worked it out too. If he'd said what he knew when he knew it instead of playing games, there would have been no need for me to do anything. As it was, he didn't report what the data error was. I stress, the most important thing when finding errors is to get them fixed, not jump up and down declaring how clever you are to see them. - gavin]

    There’s another important issue that’s raised by this, that no one’s discussed yet. On Sunday night, Gavin knew that there were defects in an important series that was used in Steig et al 2009 and was under discussion. It’s all well and good to notify BAS of the problem, but it was far more important under the circumstances to notify realclimate readership that there was an error in the data used in Steig et al. Did Gavin so that on Sunday night? Nope. Did he do on Monday morning? Nope. Did he tell Steig of the problem? Did Steig report it to realclimate readers? Nope.

    As of 6 pm Sunday, I referred to a problem with Harry and then went off to do family things (hardly unreasonable). I hadn’t figured out the Harry-Gill though I was able to do so later that evening. A CA reader pointing to the Argos numbers was helpful in pointing towards data tho the issue was a little different. I knew that there was a problem with Harry at 6 om, but wasn’t holding the splice back – it was the discrepancy in GISS versions that I knew about, as well as the non-existence of HArry before 1994; I didn;t know about Gill at 6 pm, but, having spotted the problem, it was something that I was likely to find.

    So Gavin went to work. Instead of reporting the problem to his readers (or Steig reporting to the problem to his readers), they reported it to BAS, who, by the next day, had erased the version of Harry used in Steig et al. Had someone started with the sanitized data, it would be much harder to detect the problem in Steig et al because Steig had not archived the data as used in Steig et al – merely pointing to the READER database, which by Monday had now been sanitized.

    As it happened, I’d figured out the Gill-Harry splice by Monday and had saved all the relevant versions and wrote about it on Monday morning. On Monday afternoon. Gavin responded to inquiries to readers, but, if for some reason, I had been unable to figure out the Harry-Gill splice, when did Gavin plan to report the problem to his readers?

    • Dave Dardinger
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:20 AM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#37),

      So… Why didn’t Gavin just humble himself a bit and post a message here saying,

      “Thanks for pointing out there was an error with Harry. I’ve verified it and just sent a message to BAS (who actually maintains the data), asking them to make the appropriate correction.”

      Instead he has egg on his face. (And he might want to wash it off, as it can ruin a paint-job if left to dry.)

    • Ron Cram
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:20 AM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#37),
      Let me try to put the facts together.

      First of all, he admits you found the error first… which we know was on Super Bowl Sunday. In an effort to keep you from getting any credit for your work, he rushes off an email… or possibly the first of a series, to BAS. He claims he worked out (independently) that Gill and Harry had been mashed together. However, one of the posters here found a couple of years were identical and then you commented that it was more than just the two years he found and that you would comment more on Monday. This gave Gavin enough to go on to “independently” work out the error you found.

      Is that pretty much the way you see it? Or am I missing something?

      What bothers me is I think Gavin probably sent more than one email. I bet one email had to do with the lat/lon issue of the site being moved around and another email detailing the identical data at both sites.

  37. Phillip Bratby
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:06 AM | Permalink

    Gavin Schmidt has no credibility. Has the rest of the Team left him hung out to dry?

  38. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:06 AM | Permalink

    By continually overblowing trivialities, he lacks credibility on anything more serious. Science is not a game of gotcha,. . .

    who could have said it better than he himself. Does he realise what game he is playing? There is little hope…

  39. Will J. Richardson
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:08 AM | Permalink

    Gavin has admitted he was the “independent” source who notified BAS after seeing SM’s comment. See:

  40. Will J. Richardson
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:10 AM | Permalink

    Did not do the link right. The comment is number 111538 at RC. Try this:

  41. Tom C
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:12 AM | Permalink

    #36

    Steve Mc has gotten into Gavin’s head . .

    .

    Yes, but we knew that when he got upgraded from “He Who Cannot be Named” to “SM”.

  42. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:12 AM | Permalink

    I wonder if Gavin is doing any work at all or if he just reads the comments on RC und posts inline comments?

    Luckily this is not my tax money he’s waisting:-))

  43. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:14 AM | Permalink

    there would have been no need for me to do anything

    Does anyone really believe that SM wouldn’t have pointed out the problem to BAS? Maybe Steve didn’t consider it a SuperBowl preempting emergency.

  44. Tim
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:26 AM | Permalink

    Yes – Gavin’s a clown. This only goes to prove what we all already knew. However, let’s not shame the guy too much — better to continue to focus on the problems with the study else it begins to sound like superficial nitpicking.

  45. Paul C
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:27 AM | Permalink

    Steve can speak for himself, but there is also the possibility that he was handing a bone to Steig to do the right thing himself. Of all the players who surfaced in this little theatre, Schmidt is probably the last one who should have gone running to BAS with the shriek of “me first”. Speaks volumes to who Gavin Schmidt is.

  46. Jon
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:28 AM | Permalink

    Why didn’t you simply notify BAS when you spotted the problem?

    • George
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:43 AM | Permalink

      Re: Jon (#51),

      Its called Super Bowl Sunday? I’m suppressed Steve had the time to look at this at all. Must not be much of a fan. Or he just cant get past that 4 downs, 11 players, 100 yard field thing. Gavin on the other hand … somehow I’m not surprised to find out that he doesn’t like sports. He looks like a guy who spent his youth reading by the light shining through the slits in locker.

    • Ron Cram
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:44 AM | Permalink

      Re: Jon (#51),

      Geez Jon, are you serious? It was Super Bowl Sunday. It can’t wait until Monday? I wouldn’t have thought BAS would be in the office on Sunday. Besides, the Steig paper had already been published. What was the rush? Steve has a very good record of notifying people when he finds their errors. GISS has thanked him, although I understand it is their policy not to do so in the future since Steve is “He Who Must Not Be Named.” Ask Gavin sometime why he calls Steve SM instead of Steve McIntyre. It is all so childish.

    • MrPete
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:53 PM | Permalink

      Re: Jon (#51),

      Jon — you are not listening.

      1) This blog is a contemporaneous lab notebook. Steve stopped for the day at the point of knowing there was a problem but not having verified in sufficient detail to confidently report the details. And had not written up the details. He briefly blogged his status and quit for the day… knowing that readers might well come up with additional information.

      He’s done this before, and not as an attention-getter but to stay in touch with the community. Think of it as a brief end-of-day status meeting if you will.

      2) Steve does send updates to the appropriate people, but only after having meticulously verified everything. If you read a bit on this site, you’ll find that many times he will post details of what he’s worked out with the audience here, before he sends the report to the “authorities.” Again, not for attention but because there happen to be a lot of qualified professionals in this community who can provide good feedback.

      You appear to be of the opinion that it’s better to keep things quiet, never admit a mistake in public but instead attempt to fix the mistakes “behind the scenes” before anything embarrassing might be revealed.

      That’s good PR strategy for those who have something to hide.

      That’s not how Climate Audit works. Nor how good science works. Reveal your work, don’t hide it. This isn’t about personalities, it’s about the truth.

  47. bernie
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:29 AM | Permalink

    This is funny and silly, but mostly sad.
    I politely commented on the BAS revelation on RC and it has yet to appear. Technically speaking the issue with the Harry data may be of little import. The reactions to Harry at RC is mind numbing and troubling. I guess they don’t realize how much this kind of condescension and hubris is likely to motivate the unwashed masses. It is a “let them eat cake” moment.

  48. henry
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:31 AM | Permalink

    [Response: Why? SM made a coy point about Harry, I looked, worked out (independently) that the Gill and Harry had been mashed together incorrectly and let BAS know - others worked it out too. If he'd said what he knew when he knew it instead of playing games, there would have been no need for me to do anything. As it was, he didn't report what the data error was. I stress, the most important thing when finding errors is to get them fixed, not jump up and down declaring how clever you are to see them. - gavin]

    I agree, the most important thing about finding errors is for them to get fixed.

    But, also, it’s nice that BAS fixed it promptly – and notified their users of the change – this rarely happens.

    And that BAS credited the source – this is also rare.

    And actually having a member of the Team admit to data errors, and “independently” turn them in is rare.

    So if any other errors have been found (or will be found) in other papers, will you be on the front lines demanding the data be fixed promptly?

    • Ron Cram
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:48 AM | Permalink

      Re: henry (#53),

      You must not know Steve very well. Steve has a very good record of telling people about data errors so they can be fixed. He has been thanked a number of times and other times people have fixed the data without thanking him. I guess that is why they call it a thankless job. But no one in possession of the facts can honestly say Steve finds errors and does not tell the keeper of the data set. It is just ridiculous.

    • MarkB
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:37 PM | Permalink

      Re: henry (#53),

      [Response: Why? SM made a coy point about Harry, I looked, worked out (independently) that the Gill and Harry had been mashed together incorrectly and let BAS know - others worked it out too. If he'd said what he knew when he knew it instead of playing games, there would have been no need for me to do anything. As it was, he didn't report what the data error was. I stress, the most important thing when finding errors is to get them fixed, not jump up and down declaring how clever you are to see them. - gavin]

      I agree, the most important thing about finding errors is for them to get fixed.

      No, actually, the most important thing about finding errors is to publicize them. If they “get fixed” without being publicized, then the errors are likely to happen again, and people are left trusting the source. Sunshine is the great disinfectant in science, as in many other fields. The fact that the authors of the paper didn’t catch the error is important for readers to know. We’re not talking about catching an error during surgery here – the error in the data existed for quite a while, and no one died.

      snip OT

  49. Adder
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:34 AM | Permalink

    Steve #37. So do I get it right – if a find an error in a scientific paper, my duty is to report it on blogs, not notify the journal or the authors (whoever is responsible for correcting it)?

    Steve:
    If you’ve issued press releases and operate a blog and otherwise deal with the public, then, in my opinion, you have an obligation to promptly report problems when they come to your attention. If you are a third party journal reader who is not dealing with the public, then you can do whatever you like, including nothing. Neither Steig nor Schmidt are third parties here.

  50. Jon
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:50 AM | Permalink

    By his own admission he had spotted the problem before 5pm that Sunday. He took the time to cryptically hint about a problem in his post.

    He could have taken the 30 seconds to email BAS at that time but chose not to.

    • Tom Gray
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

      Re: Jon (#58),

      By his own admission he had spotted the problem before 5pm that Sunday. He took the time to cryptically hint about a problem in his post.

      He could have taken the 30 seconds to email BAS at that time but chose not to

      And the implications of delaying for a few days, would have been what?

      • Jon
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:03 PM | Permalink

        Re: Tom Gray (#61),

        Nothing if receiving credit wasn’t the intent. As it is I fail to see the problem. The cost of doing business in such a manner is entertaining readers vs. receiving credit. I am sure the blog traffic is more than compensation for not being the person to actually notify BAS.

    • MikeF
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:10 PM | Permalink

      Re: Jon (#58),
      Steve knew that there was A problem. He did not know what the problem was. Do you routinely run around raising alarm without making sure exactly what it is?

      • Jon
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:18 PM | Permalink

        Re: MikeF (#69),

        If he didn’t know what the problem was and someone else figured it out and reported it, then once more, I fail to see the problem.

        Re: Mark T. (#71),

        Mad? How bizarre. He chose to whet his readers appetites rather than confirm and report the problem- which he has every right to do. This whole enterprise is largely based around an attention rather than a publication/recognition model, so I would say he made the correct choice. He will receive a great deal more attention the way this played out than had he notified BAS when he became aware of the problem.

        • MikeF
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:28 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#74),

          If he didn’t know what the problem was and someone else figured it out and reported it, then once more, I fail to see the problem.

          Again, I mast make emphasis on the problem vs a problem. Despite years and countless number of “peers” looking at the data nobody noticed anything wrong with it. Steve did. Which prompt Gavin to find out what the problem was. And not credit Steve with original discovery. You don’t see problem here? Wow.

        • Jon
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:39 PM | Permalink

          Re: MikeF (#80),

          With BAS crediting the person who reported the issue to them? No, I don’t see the problem. Had he wanted to, Steve could have emailed them. Instead he chose to whet his readers’ appetites by dropping a cryptic hint. As he has every right to do.

          Re: Mark O (#81),

          No. There is no comparison there. One group contributes to the understanding of climate largely through publication and blogs as a side project. Quite the opposite here, which he has every right to do.

        • MikeF
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:50 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#90),
          This is not about BAS. They got e-mail from Gavin and they did what they supposed to do – gave credit to him for reporting the error ( which I’m sure Gavin didn’t want them to do). Gavin, on the other hand, had to give credit to Steve, which he refused to do. And that is where I see the problem. Don’t you?

        • Jon
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:57 PM | Permalink

          Re: MikeF (#98),

          For what? Cryptically hinting at a problem? He did so (see 88).

          Steve could have emailed BAS when he discovered the problem. He chose instead to hint at something in order to generate reader anticipation. This is all to the good when attention rather than correcting the data or acknowledgment is the goal.

          Someone else discovered and reported the actual problem to BAS. This is what one does if correcting the data or acknowledgment is the goal.

        • Ron Cram
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:44 PM | Permalink

          Re: MikeF (#80),

          Your take is not exactly precise. See the comment by Tim C and the following comment by Steve on Monday morning. I believe Gavin sent an email on Sunday night to BAS regarding the lon/lat issue and that after these comments on Monday morning Gavin sent another email about the data being identical. BTW, congrats to Tim C for finding part of the issue. I suppose Tim C is the “others” Gavin mentioned. But even Tim C did not find all of the information needed to correct the data.

          I still think a request to find out how many emails Gavin sent on this issue and their dates and times would be approprate. If BAS is cooperative, then no FOIA request is necessary. If they are not, then an FOIA may be appropriate.

        • Richard M
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:41 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#74), Jon, think about what would have transpired if Gavin had not got involved. Steve would have finished double checking the data and sent BAS an email (like he’s done previously) on Monday (or maybe later). Please tell us what is wrong with that approach. Be specific now, tell us exactly what damage would have been caused by waiting an extra day or two.

          The fact Steve uses his blog as a diary of his actions would be well known to you if you took the time to really understand what’s going on. This allows others to get involved early and help understand the problem. Do you really think this is bad?

        • Jon
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:47 PM | Permalink

          Re: Richard M (#93),

          There’s absolutely nothing wrong. From an attention getting perspective this was absolutely the best way to proceed.

        • Richard M
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:56 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#97), Sorry, Jon, that is unrelated. You’re attempts to make this about “attention” show YOUR agenda. Steve, has always made it clear he wants to get to the TRUTH and if that supports AGW, so be it. Trying to redefine motives to your liking will get you nowhere.

        • Jon
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:59 PM | Permalink

          Re: Richard M (#102),

          Telling people to “stay tuned” for an upcoming post is explicitly designed to generate attention for that post. This is what one does when attention rather than correcting the data or acknowledgment is the goal.

        • Mark T.
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:13 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#104),

          Telling people to “stay tuned” for an upcoming post is explicitly designed to generate attention for that post.

          Or it is explicitly designed to provide time to do proper fact-checking. But you cannot admit that because, well, then you’d have to admit your true motive here (as well as your anger that Gavin was outed).

          Re: Jon (#106), Mis-direction, aka, a strawman. You cannot directly address Gavin’s hypocrisy, so you create some sort of issue with Steve not emailing BAS immediately. You say you have no problem, yet you continue to harp on this one point. Yes, you are transparent Jon, and mad to boot. It is humorous how easily people like you are unmasked.

          Mark

        • Jon
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:31 PM | Permalink

          Re: Mark T. (#113),

          How does telling people to “stay tuned” for something in any way have to do with fact checking? It does not. It was an imperative to look for a subsequent post. Nothing more, nothing less. Mad again? Bizarre.

          Re: Richard M (#115),

          I know what I would do if I wished to see data corrected expeditiously or receive acknowledgment for reporting a problem. It would not consist of telling persons uninvolved with handling the data to stay tuned for a future blog post.

          Re: Scott (#114),

          Not at all. Of course then one really can’t expect to be acknowledged for reporting a problem that one had not yet pin-pointed much less reported to the relevant people.

        • Richard M
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:35 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#128), Thanks, Jon. By ignoring the questions I put to you, you have verified that you are, in fact, a troll. That’s all I needed to know.

        • Richard M
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:13 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#104), That’s how you get others involved, Jon. It also allowed Steve to double check his results. AS I already mentioned and you ignored, Steve uses his blog as a diary of his actions. Did you even bother to read the previous articles Steve posted?

          You are ascribing motive to behavior and you have yet to tell us your opinion of Gavin. Do you believe that he demonstrated ethical scientific behavior?

        • Dave Dardinger
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:29 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#104),

          Folks, Jon is a troll. Trolls like to draw attention to themselves (by disagreeing with those they post to.) This makes it ironic that he’s accusing Steve M of trying to draw attention to his blog, but trolls aren’t big on introspection. My suggestion; ignore him.

        • Jeff Norman
          Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 3:02 PM | Permalink

          Re: Dave Dardinger (#126),

          You are right. The thread read much better when I followed your advise.

        • Jaye Bass
          Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 3:24 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#104),

          I disagree. It was a question of “I’ve gotten this far, but have personal things to do, so here you go will investigate later”. Only somebody with a serious agenda would see it differently.

  51. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    Contrary to allegations, I have a good record of notifying agencies. I notified Hansen of the Y2K problem and the October 2008 Siberia problem (noticed by a CA reader and more or less concurrently by a WUWT reader), drawing jeers from Gavin for the latter. I’ve notified WDCP of various dendro issues that I’ve noticed. I don’t make a practice of doing so without double and even triple checking. Sometimes I like to reboot my computer and redo the analysis, which is not always convenient if I’ve got a couple of things on the go. I contacted BAS on Feb 3. Normally I would have done so on Feb 2, but I spent part of the day at the hospital with my granddaughter and have been pretty much a dead man walking the past few days – doing this only as a distraction from what’s really been on my mind. (I’m feeling better about things today, but I’ve not been in a frame of mind to tolerate a whole lot of foolishness.)

    There was no urgency to correct the BAS record on Sunday night. In this particular case, because a tainted record was used in Steig, it was equally important to preserve the tainted record for benchmarking. A better question is why there was such a preemptive rush to remove the incorrect Harry version used in Steig et al from the public domain. I had to ask BAS to restore the old record (which they did very promptly.)

    People who take Gavin’s claim that fixing the Harry record was a matter of Jack Bauer urgency might review the history of the Chatham Island correction.

  52. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:58 AM | Permalink

    Here is a screenshot of Gavin’s RC comment, courtesy of Art Smalley. Suitable for framing, right next to the BAS screenshot!

    Its direct URL is http://www.climateaudit.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/gavin-quote-screen-shot1.jpg. It may be a little more legible full size.

  53. PeterS
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

    It looks to me that Gavin swung into operation a planned Team strategy to pre-empt – and therefore avoid – yet another hugely embarrassing ‘SM Moment’ (formerly ‘HWMNBN Moment’). Only to land himself in… yet another hugely embarrassing ‘SM Moment’.

    This is much more fun than telly.

  54. Mark T.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:02 PM | Permalink

    You’re right, Jon, it’s some sort of data conspiracy. Obviously the fate of the world hinged on this being released IMMEDIATELY. Since Steve M. also spends 100% of his time doing this, it was clearly a setup to goad Gavin into making such an embarrassing mess out of things. His ploy worked, and we were all in on it to boot. Still waiting for my check, btw.

    Mark

  55. Jeff C.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:02 PM | Permalink

    You got to give these guys credit, they are consistent in their use of the word independently. MBH independently verified despite using the same basis (the proxies). The Harry/Gill mashup independently found despite using the same basis (Steve’s initial post).

    Re: Adder (#54),

    “Duty” is a strange word to use for a guy who does this entirely on his own dime. Aren’t duties reserved for those who are being paid to get this stuff right?

  56. Paul C
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:04 PM | Permalink

    Henry and Adder:

    There was nothing urgent or climate-shattering about updating BAS immediately. Steig’s paper was published, the data was being reviewed, McIntyre was following his nose to verify what he was reporting, all in good time. Other parties were participating. It was, after all, Super Bowl weekend. Schmidt, once he clued in to what was going on, seized a moment for self-aggrandizement and rushed out an update to BAS, to his eternal shame. Yes, it is important the data be updated. No, its not actually important who updates it. But in the circumstance there was good reason to be co-operative. The blog conversations are elaborative and useful. Ideally, Steig should have been the one to update BAS. But the Team has poisoned the well so badly, you result in the antics of Schmidt. This is no longer a scientific issue, it is an ethical one. You could go so far as to hyperbolize that these “games” weigh more heavily against the future of mankind than AGW… [/sarc]

  57. Hank
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:07 PM | Permalink

    I’ve always admired Gavin as an able debater, able to hold a perspective with great strength and determination. I also thinks he deserves credit for choosing to work in the colonies. When I saw this last post of Steve’s, a contest that I hadn’t thought of in ages popped to mind. It’s so odd the way the mind calls up associations – often involuntarily.

    Its been a delight to see Steve cape and torment Gavin the bull with the mastery of a matador. I laugh so hard only because I am confident that Gavin will shake it all off and charge again.

    • Ron Cram
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:22 PM | Permalink

      Re: Hank (#67),

      I don’t doubt that Gavin will charge again. But each time he does, he comes back with a little less credibility. If the guys at RealClimate would simply put the science first, a great deal of this entertaining side show would evaporate. Steve McIntyre is the one truly contributing to our understanding by focusing on getting the science right.

  58. Richard M
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:10 PM | Permalink

    This is getting even funnier as time passes. Now we have a few Team advocates complaining that Steve should have dropped everything on Super Bowl Sunday and immediately notified BAS of a year old problem even before he had time to double check it. I can hardly keep the tears out of my eyes. Do these folks have any idea just how silly they sound?

    Come on guys, suck it up. Gavin screwed up bigtime and nothing you can say can change that fact.

  59. Aaron Wells
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:11 PM | Permalink

    gavin Says:
    2 February 2009 at 6:30 PM

    The other key point is that science works because it builds on the work of others…

    Yeah, but you’re not supposed to do it secretly!!! You can’t make this stuff up. What irony!!

  60. Mark T.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:13 PM | Permalink

    I get it… Jon’s mad that Steve made Gavin look bad.

    ^Richard M: apparently NO, they do not. If they did they’d instead be saying “jeez, Gavin, you should meter your own comments a bit.” Instead you get the cheerleaders in here trying to find some reason to chastise Steve. Yes, Steve, your ethics are abominable because you did not put down the chicken wing, or, as in my case, that chip with chili-cheese dip on it, to notify BAS immediately.

    Mark

  61. Reed Coray
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:15 PM | Permalink

    I have to disagree with Peter (11). There’s nothing “borderline” about it–it’s just plain creepy.

  62. Dishman
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:17 PM | Permalink

    I believe the key word in Gavin’s claim is “independently”, as highlighted by Steve McIntyre.

    He subsequently admitted that it was not, in fact, independent, but rather prompted by Steve’s post.

    In the meantime, he attempted to discredit Steve McIntyre on a false claim.

    • AnonyMoose
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

      Re: Dishman (#73),
      We’re running an open lab notebook here.
      Gavin got told there was something going on in our lab, looked at our notes while our boss was taking a break, then polished our work and rushed off to the newspapers to announce his independent invention.
      He’s Master Scientist, doing Science!

  63. rephelan
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:20 PM | Permalink

    There is an issue here that people seem to touch on only tangentially. As a college professor (ok, a lowly, unpublished adjunct instructor) I am appalled at the lack of intellectual integrity I find in students. It is disheartening to find it in emminent scientists. This is the text of a response I left at RC which is being moderated:

    Dr. Schmidt:

    In your response to Bernie at 11:01 AM you have essentially admitted to taking the insights of another researcher attempting to replicate the results of a study, insights you did not develop on your own, and then raced to preempt him. If one of my students had done such a thing I would very seriously consider bringing charges before the university’s disciplinary committee. I am very disappointed that a scientist of your stature and position isn’t a bit more sensitive to the ethical message he is sending.

    R.E. Phelan

  64. BDAABAT
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:21 PM | Permalink

    Would be interesting to see if NASA GISS has specific policies related to ethics of it’s employees.

    “…people independently found about the Gill/Harry mismatch.” appears to not have been “people” and appears not to have been “independent”.

    Bruce

  65. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:23 PM | Permalink

    Was it Mr. Scarlet in the darkroom with a computer?

    • Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:57 PM | Permalink

      Re: Dave L (#78), Dave, you almost made me spray herbal tea all over my keyboard! (blueberry)

      But was it Mr. Scarlet in the darkroom with a computer? Or was it Mr. Green in the w.c. with a GCM?

  66. Andy L
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:25 PM | Permalink

    If anything, this speaks to the fact that Steve has a huge amount of credibility with the realclimate team. If anyone other “outsider” had posted a brief note hinting that he might have found a data inconsistency, it would have been ignored. The fact that Gavin immediately swung into action says Steve’s tremendous skill as an auditor is being recognized.

    Also, in Gavin’s response:

    I stress, the most important thing when finding errors is to get them fixed, not jump up and down declaring how clever you are to see them

    I would say that he misses the hardest and most important step. Finding the error.

  67. Mark O
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:32 PM | Permalink

    Jon: Comment #74

    Are you really trying to compare the amount of attention seeking between SM and the team at Real Climate? I doubt you are going to convince anybody, but you can keep up your crusade if you like.

  68. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:33 PM | Permalink

    I posted something similar on RC. It’s fascinating to me how people are holding SM to standards they don’t hold themselves to or don’t hold their fellow scientists to. Somehow he is expected to report a data error immediately to the data owner. Would that such speed be required of people who actually own and control the data. For some strange reason people like Santer and Thompson and others can delay archiving data, but the data detective who finds the error must drop everything and call the authorities. Gavin accuses steve of playing games and being coy. I accuse SM of being a brilliant writer. CA reads like a serialized mystery. and what’s best about it is that we get to play along. Steve posts a hint:
    Something’s amiss with Harry. That does 3 things:

    1. It lets us play a role in solving the mystery. And folks here who found
    things credit SM with putting them on the trail. This is participatory
    story telling.
    2. It give’s SM time to double check his work.
    3. It drives readership to see the mystery revealed.

    Now, the absolutely hilarious thing in all of this is that gavin himself drives this plot forward unwittingly. he creates another character and participates in the very kind of thing he criticizes SM for. gavin accuses SM of being coy and then is coy himself, insinuating himself in the drama and extending in a most ironical way.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:44 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#82),

      Only if he wants to be acknowledged by BAS for pointing out the problem. No more, no less. As this blog is primarily focused on attention rather than publication, he made the right decision.

      Far better to whet the readers’ appetites and draw things out over multiple posts rather than simply contact BAS and report the problem if attention rather than acknowledgment is the goal.

    • Ron Cram
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:52 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#82),

      Mosh, well-said.

  69. Steve J
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:33 PM | Permalink

    Everyone seems to agree that scientific errors need to be reported and fixed. So who’s going to tell Nature about the problems with their cover story so that their readers know about the incorrect Harry data?

  70. joshv
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:35 PM | Permalink

    Perhaps I haven’t read thoroughly enough, but it appears people have missed the possibility that Gavin and possibly others knew about the issue previous to Sunday night and Steve’s post on the matter.

    • Andy L
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:40 PM | Permalink

      Re: joshv (#84), Gavin acknowledges implicitly that he discovered the error as a result of Steve’s post: here (comment 207):

      [Response: Why? SM made a coy point about Harry, I looked, worked out (independently) that the Gill and Harry had been mashed together incorrectly and let BAS know - others worked it out too. ... - gavin]

      • joshv
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:05 PM | Permalink

        Re: Andy L (#91),

        That quote only implies a string of sequential events. And it doesn’t imply much of anything about when “others” may or may not have worked out the issue. All I am saying is that nothing Gavin has said is inconsistent with the idea that he may have known about source data issues with this paper for some period of time before Steve’s post.

  71. RH
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:35 PM | Permalink

    Steig should have alerted BAS to the Harry problem before he published his paper.

  72. Luis Dias
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:36 PM | Permalink

    This is utterly stupid. I generally agree with all the posters here. Gavin was childish, hurrying to steal “SM”‘s error, and dismissing aknowledgments by saying that science isn’t about who’s “cleverer”. I guess science must be about stealing as fast as possible. This was done to supress the growing myth of “SM”, the “Auditioner” who creeps above the “team”, and is always right. It would be troublesome, for the letter against M2008 has been published already and now this error. They would be ridiculed.

    The idiocy is that now because of this, and because of the public nature of blogs, they’ll be ridiculed squared by people that are watching carefully, while SM will be painted as a lonely grumbling contrarian that had a recent stroke of paranoia by RC’s fans (and all the rest)

  73. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:36 PM | Permalink

    In our survey of Harry titles, we should have thought of Dumber and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd. Carrey et al 2003 show an interesting example of rushing off in all directions.

    • Urederra
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:36 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#87),

      In our survey of Harry titles, we should have thought of Dumber and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd. Carrey et al 2003 show an interesting example of rushing off in all directions.

      I was going to suggest “The third man” in your last Thread “Gavin’s Mistery Man”, just because a poster, KevinUK, Re: KevinUK (#14), suggested that the mistery man was Gavin himself, and this fits with the plot of the movie. (The main character, Martins, tries to find who is the mistery third man who carried his friend’s corpse out of the crime scene. He was killed shortly before he arrived at Vienna)

      I didn’t post any comment because of Gavin’s remmark about us playing with threads names, and since I was the one who started the survey, I decided not to pile in unnecessary comments.

      Now, If you read the plot of The Third Man at wiki, You’ll find that the Third Man was Martin’s friend, who staged his murder. The name of the Third Man was Harry Lime.

      • Jeff Alberts
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:06 PM | Permalink

        Re: Urederra (#171),

        I’d go more for “The Manchurian Candidate” (the original, of course)

  74. Paul C
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:38 PM | Permalink

    I would think that that should now fall to Gavin. Since he decided to pre-empt both Steve and Steig, the paper author, it should fall to him to embarrass said author in the journal. Karma’s such a b*tch…

  75. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:41 PM | Permalink

    So the big deal here is simply that Gavin’s ego kept him from clearly identifying Steve as the source of the correction?
    That is hardly a scientific misdemeanor let alone a high crime.

    RC now *insists* the error was of no consequence wrt the Nature article. If true, why are so many suggesting this … matters?

    Unlike the Hockey Stick / Bristlecone controversies this seems to be a trivial data error rather than any kind of smoking gun.

  76. Scott
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:45 PM | Permalink

    Looks like someone is going back over the data used in this report. It seems there were some problems with another one of the stations as well.

    Note! The aws data for Racer Rock since April 2004 has been removed from the READER website as the values appear to come from a different station even though they were transmitted on the GTS (Global Telecommunications System) as 89261 which the WMO (World Meteorological Organization) still list as being Racer Rock (4/2/09)

    The incorrect data file for Racer Rock temperatures can be accessed here

    http://www.antarctica.ac.uk/met/READER/data.html

  77. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:53 PM | Permalink

    Hu, do you have time to collect the info on Racer Rock into a thread – cut and paste will do, as it’s now in play as well.

    • Scott Brim
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:08 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#100),

      Steve McIntyre:
      February 4th, 2009 at 12:53 pm
      Hu, do you have time to collect the info on Racer Rock into a thread – cut and paste will do, as it’s now in play as well.

      Does this mean that two pucks are about to be in play?

  78. Mark T.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

    It has nothing to do with attention, either. This is simply Jon’s manufactured excuse for posting in the first place. The post is about Gavin’s double standard, his hypocrisy, which is ever present and growing worse with every utterance. Jon is simply trying to marginalize this without seeming like a cheerleader. He is even more transparent than he credits Steve in this regard. Steve doesn’t need attention, nor credit, nor increased web traffic (if anything, it causes issues).

    Mark

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:04 PM | Permalink

      Re: Mark T. (#101),

      Then why didn’t he simply email BAS when he discovered the problem rather than dropping hints about it?

      • Scott
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:13 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jon (#106),

        Then why didn’t he simply email BAS when he discovered the problem rather than dropping hints about it?

        Is it inconceivable to you that maybe Steve knew something was wrong but had not finished running down exactly what it was yet? Some people actually like to make sure they’ve got all of their information in order, before presenting what they’ve found. It saves egg on the face later.

  79. kazinski
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:00 PM | Permalink

    I don’t think what Gavin did is that egregious, after all he did figure out the problem semi-independently after Steve pointed out there was a problem with Harry, of course. There is nothing wrong with him looking into the problem, and reporting it to BAS. As to not giving Steve credit, we don’t know the contents of Gavin’s correspondence with BAS, he may well have referenced Steve and CA, though I will allow any reference wouldn’t be likely to be complimentary.

    What is disturbing to me, is BAS disappearing the old data, until Steve requested that it be restored for reference. The fact that Steig did not archive his data as used, if the old data was permanently disappeared would it have been possible to go back and reconstruct the effect of the revised data on Steig’s reconstruction of Antarctic temps? It would at least be a lot harder.

  80. Glacierman
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    I think it is interesting how closely the Team is monitoring this site. Based on the way this went down, with emails flying on Super Sunday, etc. it must have really struck a nerve. An awful lot of effort to go through to try to steal someones thunder. Still none of it changes the fact that the data had errors and that the Steig et al paper relied on that data.

    • Mark T.
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:16 PM | Permalink

      Re: Glacierman (#107), They’ve even sent in their cheerleaders to put us all in our proper place.

      Mark

  81. Manfed
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    the BAS may credit the person who discovered the error and the person who notified them.

    however, in this case they should not credit gavin schmidt, because this person claims to have “independently” found the error, what after all is very likely not the truth.

  82. Alan S. Blue
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:13 PM | Permalink

    Making a report “There’s a problem with X” to essentially any bureaucracy anywhere will get you precisely nowhere Jon.

    A concise, checked, proofed error report with offers of details if desired does tend to get results.

    The “6pm” email would have been pointless.

    A 6pm blog post turned up additional detail, a couple potentially useful areas to explore, information on how the splicing is done, and several dead ends with declarations “Explored here, fruitless!”

    In other words: the 6pm email would have been completely worthless to everyone involved. But a 6pm blog posting provided a goodly chunk of useful information – that was actually enough information to get the problem resolved. By Gavin – true.

    But you give credit for -the-spark- as well as the grunt work. Exactly as in publishing a paper – you don’t disparage the grad student that actually performed the work just because you had the idea. Or vice versa.

    You certainly don’t say “Oh, their contribution was negligible, I actually got the idea from a different colleague!”

    I’ve self-sniped extensively, but I’m delighted that Gavin has outted his own professional ethics.

  83. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:13 PM | Permalink

    One thing’s for sure, gavin has spent a lot of time today deleting comments on the RC thread.

    Re: Jon (#106),

    Come on, it was Sunday, who would be in the office anyway. Steve is famous for getting data corrected, I don’t see what the point of rushing for the correction is at all.

    There isn’t any rush to reveal the code for the paper Steig is even making the false claim that the code has been available for a long time actually taking time to post a link to the Matlab manual.

    • Molon Labe
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:16 PM | Permalink

      Re: Jeff Id (#112),

      “post a link to the Matlab manual.”

      Not sure what problem you are having downloading the code from the site Steig links to.

  84. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:15 PM | Permalink

    Dunno – but BAS has pulled their Racer Rock data after Hu put this name into play. The posts are building up.

    Racer Rock is in the top 6 AWS 1979-2003 trends – Harry (which supposedly doesn’t matter is #1). Butler Island already mentioned is #5.

    Uranus Glacier, Limbert and Ferrell round out the top 6 AWS trends and each would be worth examining. I can set up holding threads.

    • Gary A.
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:32 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#116),
      As I mentioned in the Dirty Harry 4 thread, I’m not sure how much trust should be put into this database right now. Two stations have already been acknowledge as corrupted (Harry and Racer Rock). How many more stations with less obvious discontinuities are also corrupt? The owners of the database need to do a complete audit and determine how these errors are occurring and fix the data and the process so it does not continue to happen. These errors have been around 4 years.

  85. Jeff C.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:20 PM | Permalink

    “Steve McIntyre:
    February 4th, 2009 at 12:53 pm
    Hu, do you have time to collect the info on Racer Rock into a thread – cut and paste will do, as it’s now in play as well.”

    Looks like more fun to come. I’m not surprised to read that Steve and Hu have been quietly working behind the scenes on other sites.

  86. Jon
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:20 PM | Permalink

    So there is acknowledgment that rather than contact BAS about the issue, he decided instead to hint about a problem and wait to post a subsequent blog entry about it? And that in the mean time someone else discovered the splicing and promptly reported it to BAS?

    Again, the way things played out are excellent in terms of whetting reader appetite. Not for being acknowledged for reporting an error or expeditiously correcting data.

    • Richard M
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:28 PM | Permalink

      Re: Jon (#120), More fluff Jon. You are sooooooo transparent. You still haven’t reported back what damage would have occurred without “expeditiously correcting data”. Of course, everyone knows why you ignored this question. No damage would have occurred. All this does is highlight YOUR motives. Now, once again, your opinion on Gavin’s actions?

      • Jon
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:35 PM | Permalink

        Re: Richard M (#124),

        No damage(?) at all. If one does not report a problem, one can hardly be credited for doing so. I know that if I were interested either in expeditiously correcting data or receiving acknowledgment, I would choose to correspond with those persons who handle the data, rather than address a group of people unrelated to the data handling and instruct them to stay tuned for a future message.

    • RomanM
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:34 PM | Permalink

      Re: Jon (#120),

      Trolls like Jon just don’t get it. Presenting the arrogant and pompous in a satirical light has been a tradition in literature for centuries. That Steve wishes to do so with the fine deserving folks from RC while he does some good math and stat work uncovering the flaws in the work of those-who-cannot-ever-be-wrong turns this blog from cold number-crunching to a fun and interesting read. But it sure irks the toadies…

      • Jon
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:38 PM | Permalink

        Re: RomanM (#131),

        Literary tropes are all well and good for entertaining an audience. That is certainly the case here.

    • JimR
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:59 PM | Permalink

      Re: Jon (#120), You seem focused on missing the point that the blog post was about a problem and that details of the problem came later. Take some time to read the blog and you can see it play out as readers examined the data and offered insights. The process was very transparent.

      Contrast that with Gavin’s chastising Steve for being coy, then claiming the errors were discovered and reported “independently” and later having to admit he reported the errors after being alerted to them in Steve’s post and digging deeper. (what definition of “independent” does Gavin use?)

      Gavin is well aware that Steve has a history of promptly informing agencies when such errors are discovered and verified.

      Jon, why do you think Gavin rushed on a Sunday night to discover exactly what the specific problem was and report it?

      And why didn’t Gavin simply admit that he was the one who reported the errors after following up on Steve’s discovery instead of claiming it was reported by “people” who “independently found” the errors?

  87. Mark T.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:24 PM | Permalink

    If it doesn’t bother you, Jon, why do you keep bringing it up?

    Mark

  88. Glacierman
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:24 PM | Permalink

    RE: Mark T. #117

    Yea, I see that. Funny how much effort and attention is paid to some silly blog. If their work stood on it’s own, there should be no fear of someone trying to recreate their results. Just put archive the data and the code (methods of calculation) and state your conclusions. Someone may disagree with the conclusions, but at least they could verify that the data and methods were done as stated and are recreatable. Better yet, ask SM to review the paper before publishing. Then you could difuse any auditable part of the study – conclusions aside. This is all pride and CYA. Sad.

    • Mark T.
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:28 PM | Permalink

      Re: Glacierman (#122), The Team would save themselves a lot of time and effort if they asked Steve to review their papers, of that I am sure. However, Steve has been a reviewer in the past, and as I recall, they got mad at him for being thorough.

      Mark

  89. Molon Labe
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:31 PM | Permalink

    At this site, under “Installation”, there is a link to the matlab modules.

    • Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:41 PM | Permalink

      Re: Molon Labe (#127),

      Yup, do you see any code for an antarctic warming paper? I don’t. Just a manual for the use of RegEm. The paper claims they used a modified form.

      It is quite disingenuous for Eric Steig to make the claim of transparency in what they did and paste a link pointing to a reference manual.

      There are even five items listed at the bottom of the page you and Eric Steig link to for different implementations. Which did they use? How did the data get processed before use?

      I am one who actually believes the paper may be true, I would sure like to know.

      • Molon Labe
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:55 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jeff Id (#138),

        Suggest you back down from hurling “disingenous” allegations at Steig when the frigging code is available at the frigging link.

        And how you interpret “Possible Modifications” as “Different Implementations” is also dubious.

        • Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:05 PM | Permalink

          Re: Molon Labe (#139),

          If you want to get mad, the air vent is a fine spot – Click my name, but if you want to tell me where the code for the paper is I am extremely interested.

  90. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:38 PM | Permalink

    RE 95. Jon you really don’t get it. who found the problem with harry?
    who found it? who reported it to BAS? If I point at spinach between your teeth and you pluck it out…. say thank you! and don’t pretend you found it on your own and dont pretend that the fact that your finger removed the spinach has anything whatsoever to do with who found it first. I honestly can’t believe the lengths people go to to defend gavin and attack steve. If gavin told the simple truth the whole thing disappears. “dear BAS, based on a hint from SM I had a look at the data for harry. I found the following, confirming SMs doubts about the accuracy of the data”
    Just tell the story as it happens.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:08 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#134),

      I didn’t attack anyone. I think that this blog succeeds remarkable well in doing what it sets out to do.

      Re: Mike Walker (#137),

      I concur with that completely and have said as much myself. It is absolutely his right to choose to instruct his readers to stay tuned for a future blog message while someone else identifies the specific problem and reports it to the relevant people. Thank you! I don’t understand why others are having trouble with this concept.

      Re: JimR (#140),

      Independently presumably refers to identifying the nature of the problem (rather than where the problem was). I know that if I were interested in either acknowledgment or expeditiously correcting the data my first action would be to contact persons who handle the data rather than instruct a group not involved in the data handling to await a message in the future.

      • Jon
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:09 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jon (#147), “remarkably“, obviously.

      • Michael Smith
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:06 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jon (#147),

        I know that if I were interested in either acknowledgment or expeditiously correcting the data my first action would be to contact persons who handle the data rather than instruct a group not involved in the data handling to await a message in the future.

        It is a non sequitur to assert (or imply) that any action other than an immediate notification to BAS proves that Steve was not interested in seeing the data corrected. Under the circumstances, taking time to verify one’s findings and to fully understand the nature of the problem are obviously legitimate steps to take before notifying those handling the data.

  91. Stuart Harmon
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:39 PM | Permalink

    I think you guys need to calm down regarding Gavin Schmidt otherwise you may be in danger of cloning into Real Climate? Where vitriol seems to be their stock in trade.

    With conspiracy theories I lose the plot, however if Real Climate has an environmentalist agenda then surely they have succeded, look at the BBC web site the headline ain’t going to be changed regarding global warming.

    Gavin’s not a bad lad, he is just very idealistic and more importantly he also let me post a joke at his web site.

    Having woke up in central London on Monday morning with 8 inches of snow and the city a ghost town I took time to reflect on Polar Bears, following an earlier post by Mr McIntyre:-

    There appears to be a stand off at the car. The polar bear is eyeing up the driver then along comes the local Greenpeace activist.

    GP Activist : BE CAREFUL THE BEARS AROUND HERE ARE HUNGRY AND HE COULD EAT YOU!!

    Man at Car : Dont worry mate I’ll be ok.

    GP Activist : How come?

    The guy turns around and shows his T shirt on which is printed the following:-

    ” Antartica is Warming Say Experts”

    Man at Car : See mate not even the Polar Bears around here will swallow that one?

  92. Mike Walker
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:46 PM | Permalink

    RE: Jon (#133).

    I suppose if Steve had discovered a tsunami rolling towards New York City your argument might make sense, but this data wasn’t going anywhere. If Steve chose to only post the problem here and let someelse report it to BAS (and be formally credited), that is his choice. What harm would/did occur?

  93. Billy R
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 1:47 PM | Permalink

    re Jeff ID (#112)

    Come on, it was Sunday, who would be in the office anyway.

    BAS is in the UK, right? If so, it was Sunday evening here and the wee hours of Monday morning in the UK as all of this was coming down. My guess is the guys at RC were up all night doing their data checks, emails and/or phone calls, which may explain why they were so grumpy on Monday.

  94. Stuart Harmon
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:00 PM | Permalink

    “Antarctica is Warming say experts”
    Man at Car : Not even the Polar Bears around here will swallow that one?

  95. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:04 PM | Permalink

    I’ve had to reboot the site 4 times today. I’m going to play squash soon so CA may be down for hours. As to the impact of delays caused by my doublechecking and further investigating results before notifying BAS, Lucia observes that Gavin has already opined on this re the October Siberia fiasco where the data error affected news:

    No decisions are made on whether one months data was erroneous and available for less than 24 hours. No one died, no one lost out, nothing happened. Therefore there is no cost that could have been avoided.

    Applies more so here. And Jon and others might ponder the fact that Gavin hasn’t updated his own record of Harry at GISS dset1.

    • Ron Cram
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:09 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#142),

      And Jon and others might ponder the fact that Gavin hasn’t updated his own record of Harry at GISS dset1.

      That’s hilarious.

    • Ron Cram
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:11 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#142),

      Perhaps you should send a quick email to GISS to let them know about this error. I am certain they would love to give you credit for helping them get the data right!

      Steve:
      Done :)

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:12 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#142),

      Since you were so kind as to call me out by name, would you care to answer the question I posed at #51?

    • Mark T.
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:16 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#142),

      I’ve had to reboot the site 4 times today.

      Which proves my point about your site not needing increased attention, i.e., it is actually a bad thing often.

      Re: Jeff Id (#144), It is on that website, Jeff Id, but you have to click on the link that says “tar.gz-file” which is actually the code (it is in the installation section). As I understand it, this is not exactly what Steig used, just what they based their code on, so you may be half right.

      Re: joshv (#145),

      Gavin has said is inconsistent with the idea that he may have known about source data issues with this paper for some period of time before Steve’s post.

      I would hope he did not as that would only serve to make him look even more hypocritical for the comments he made in Steve’s direction. In other words, claiming to be ethical while saying “I knew all along” hardly helps his case.

      Mark

      • Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:24 PM | Permalink

        Re: Mark T. (#155),

        Mark – Which half? All I said was that this is the general function, not the actual code. If I say I released my code for calculation of the atmospheric amplification and put a link to the gaussian.filter algorithm I used, what would you say? IMO Steig did it to make the appearance of openness without the potential for problems cropping up but there’s no meat.

        • Mark T.
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:28 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jeff Id (#159), Uh, that half… at least, what I was replying to was that the website wasn’t “just a manual,” but some code was actually there. Yes, I agree, however, that the code apparently is not what Steig used. I guess, in a sense, the link is just as good as “just a manual” because the only thing you can really get out of it is the basic RegEM implementation.

          Mark

        • RomanM
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:50 PM | Permalink

          Re: Mark T. (#164),

          Some naive people seem to think that all need to do to replicate the study is to get the data and “run” the modules. It ain’t that simple – there are many choices to be made. For example from the accompanying paper to the matlab stuff (bold mine):

          If a problem is regularized by truncating a principal component analysis, high-frequency or small-scale components of the solution, represented by higher-order principal components, are filtered out. The truncation parameter, specifying the degree of regularization, or, for spatial data, the degree of smoothness, is a discrete regularization parameter, which is often determined with ad hoc techniques.

          Without a clear indication of what they did, guessing at the ad-hockery is a toss up;

          … and Jon’s becoming tiresome. I move we vote Jon off the island. :)

        • Mark T.
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:42 PM | Permalink

          Re: RomanM (#174), “Naive people” often seems to include the authors of the very stuff that’s being audited. It is a travety.
          Re: Glacierman (#179),

          Mad at him for being thorough?

          Oh, yeah, haven’t you read those threads? They threatened to have him removed as a reviewer – I cannot recall which panel/publication – when he asked too many questions. Don’t ask, don’t tell, indeed! ;)
          Hay MrPete, how about that fantastic weather we have today! My targets are flying out back (towplanes and gliders)… I need to get outside to test now that the cold isn’t threatening to rend limbs from my body.

          Mark

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:27 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#142),

      And while we’re on the subject, are you suggesting that GISS should alter the data themselves rather than updating it after BAS makes their changes?

      Steve:
      I was surprised when they manually corrected Chatham Island last June when this was under discussion here. :) They reported the manual edits on their Updates page without crediting CA – perhaps they identified the Chatham Island errors independently. I assumed that they would notify BAS since they were aware of the problem. In the light of recent events, I double checked to see whether GISS had communicated the error to BAS and they hadn’t. So I notified BAS the other day, leading them to make the change some eight months after GISS learned of the error.

  96. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:08 PM | Permalink

    @Jon: McIntyre identified the problem: the pre-1994 data for Harry were bogus, since Harry was installed in Nov 1994. Then a commenter (Tim C) observed that the ’87-’89 data attributed to Harry were identical to Gill’s data for that period. McIntyre added, “And not just for 1987-89. Right up 1994.”

    What exactly did Gavin figure out “independently”?

  97. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:11 PM | Permalink

    Molon, I’m 100% with Jeff on the code. While the Schneider function was almost certainly used, there are many other aspects of the processing that this doesn’t explain.

    At present, I don’t know the ultimate of effect of Harry on the AWS recon – as I’ve asked readers to keep in mind. MAybe it’s negligible as Steig says – but I’ve enough experience with Mannian methods to know that individual sites can have very large effects (e.g. bristlecones). Maybe Harry is different, maybe not. Too early to say. In Steig’s shoes, I’d be moving heaven and earth to stop speculation about the impact by getting working code in front of people so they could see for themselves. Code that really works, not a pointer to a 2001 manual. Otherwise, this is just going to get more and more attention. I think that he’s making matters worse for himself by being stubborn about releasing his code, but that’s up to him.

    • Molon Labe
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:19 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#152),

      I agree that it will be worse for Steig if the code he links to is insufficient to reproduce his results. But to complain about it before one even attempts to use the code he references is petulant. It’s also unfair to call it a “manual”. The RegEM code is available at the site.

      • Mark T.
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:24 PM | Permalink

        Re: Molon Labe (#157), If I’m not mistaken, this code is well-known and has been used by many at CA (I’ve looked at parts of it, but not recently). Apparently it’s not exactly what was used for the paper, and the paper itself says as much.

        Mark

  98. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:12 PM | Permalink

    Well, RC & company are sure spending a lot of time on this. Of course as I said a while back, they would say the error does not matter. Maybe Dr. Trenberth hit it when he questioned how you can create weather observations in no man’s land (paraphrased). But we are not done yet??
    It does show that the Team spends a lot of time here at CA.

  99. David Porter
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:13 PM | Permalink

    137
    reply and
    paste link
    Stuart Harmon:

    Stuart, the reason Gavin allowed the post was because the joke went straight over his head. I thought it was pretty good.

  100. Zer0th
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:16 PM | Permalink

    (c) Lucia

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2008/11/mountains-and-molehills/langswitch_lang/tk#comment-102796

    Gav:
    No decisions are made on whether one months data was erroneous and available for less than 24 hours. No one died, no one lost out, nothing happened. Therefore there is no cost that could have been avoided.

  101. Layman Lurker
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:25 PM | Permalink

    #151

    Steve, have you seen Gavin’s ammended comment to Bernie’s post (#148). He corrects:

    “As for the implications of the errors in the BAS Harry file on the study, that too is visible in figure S4b – removing Harry (and a bunch of other AWS stations) doesn’t change the answer in any meaningful respect.”

    with this:

    “correction it has no impact on any of the reconstructions made with the AVHRR data. Thus the answers to the ‘questions that are being raised’ were obvious all along. We might post some more on this later. – gavin]”

    Sorry if this change has already been noted.

  102. Tom C
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:25 PM | Permalink

    This is all great fun, but some larger points are being missed.

    “SM” discovered this error with periodic efforts over the course of 48 hours or so. It should take weeks of work by several individuals to fully audit (or whatever term one wishes to use) a complicated analysis like this. So, the important question right now should be “what else is out there?”. If Steig cared about his paper and reputation he should quit blogging and spend several days re-checking the datasets.

    Given all the obvious challenges with siting and maintaining temperature stations in a place like Antarctica, I would be amazed if the data were not rife with systematic biases. The very notion that you can confidently discern 0.1 C trends over decades and rule out systematic measurement bias seems preposterous.

    New Law: As work time/blog time approaches 0, accuracy of science approaches 0.

  103. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:27 PM | Permalink

    #51. Normally I would have notified BAS on Monday, but did not do so until Tuesday. Since you ask, I spent part of Monday visiting my granddaughter in the hospital, then I drove to another hospital to retrieve MRI’s and re-deliver them to Sick Kids and quite frankly I was worried sick and was posting things and puttering around with Harry as a distraction from crushing personal worries. (Things look more optimistic today than they did a couple of days ago.) So you’ll forgive me if I have little less patience than I normally do.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:30 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#162),

      I’m a bit confused. You had the time to add a teaser to your post, but not drop an email to BAS?

      (Sorry to hear about your granddaughter- I hope she has a speedy recovery!)

      Steve: Because I double check things. Also the problem that I noticed first was between GISS versions and I wasn’t sure how this tied in to BAS data or to source data. Absolutely no reason to notify them just yet. If some person who was unaware of the CA discussion had notified BAS, then no problem – snooze, you lose. The issue re Gavin is twofold – why was it so pressing for him to have the BAS records altered? why didn’t he properly credit CA as a source? IMO people are not thinking enough about the first question.

      • Jon
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:34 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jon (#166),

        Referring to Sunday, not Monday, obviously.

      • Craig Loehle
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:44 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jon (#166), One more time Jon, on Sunday night Steve had found that there was a problem but not what the problem was. Then he had to go do some real life stuff. What should he have told BAS “I think something is fishy”? I don’t think so.

    • Robert
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:47 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#162),
      Steve,
      I appreciate your commitment to supporting this blog. However, if it is not theraputic for to read posts and continue to post here, I recommend that you take a break for a few days. There is far too much negative energy directed toward you and RC.

  104. Paul Penrose
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:28 PM | Permalink

    I still find it amusing that Steig and Gavin are claiming that errors in the AWS data don’t matter when the fact is that they have not conducted a robust enough sensitivity analysis to detect this, especially in light of the extremely small warming trend they are reporting. I’m not even convinced yet that this reported trend is even statistically significant.

  105. Alan Bates
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:31 PM | Permalink

    In #59, Steve said:

    “Normally I would have done so on Feb 2, but I spent part of the day at the hospital with my granddaughter and have been pretty much a dead man walking the past few days – doing this only as a distraction from what’s really been on my mind. (I’m feeling better about things today, but I’ve not been in a frame of mind to tolerate a whole lot of foolishness.)”

    This was the important message I got from the thread. Whatever the problem, I hope things have resolved for your granddaughter. Family privacy is important but are you prepared to give an update?

    best wishes from one Grandpa to another.

    (feel free to delete if you wish.)

    Steve: Some time maybe. For now, readers will understand that, far from the last few days being fun and “games” as Gavin alleged, they have been fraught with worry.

  106. Gary Hladik
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:31 PM | Permalink

    Gavin, your mother called. She wants you to call her back right away.

    (Sorry to take up bandwidth here, Steve, but this is the fastest way to reach Gavin). :-)

  107. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:33 PM | Permalink

    RE Scott #96 and Steve #100,

    I’m afraid I have to write a midterm right now, and then must grade it.

    Meanwhile, the Racer Rock saga has been raging on Monday’s Dirty Harry 4: When Harry Met Gill thread, beginning with my post #170. It seems that it’s another badly screwed up AWS station used by Team Steig without scrutiny. BAS yanked the wrong data this morning, but then added a note to that effect a few hours later, archiving the wrong data. See that thread for details.

    FWIW, I didn’t tell BAS, so either they are reading CA or a CA reader alerted them. Or maybe Gavin discovered this independently as well…

    In fact I thought the problem was with Steig’s reconstruction, until tty saw it was with the READER data itself.

    Gotta run.

  108. Alan Bates
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:40 PM | Permalink

    Sorry, Steve. I was preparing #167 for a few minutes and the others came through since I looked previously.

    My message reads wrong now. Please delete.

    The feeling for you is the same, however. And I still feel the sentence I quoted from you is the most important thing on this thread

    Alan

  109. henry
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:50 PM | Permalink

    Jon: 95,103,104 et al:

    Someone else discovered and reported the actual problem to BAS. This is what one does if correcting the data or acknowledgment is the goal.

    Try this scenario, then:

    Someone finds a fault in a paper, or the data used in a paper, and reports the actual problem to the appropriate person (author or data source). This is what one does if correcting the data or acknowledgment is the goal.

    How many times have we seen the mistake be ignored, or data requests refused, or a “don’t contact me” email sent?

    This is what one does if hiding the data or ignoring the mistake is the goal.

  110. PhilH
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:52 PM | Permalink

    “And why didn’t Gavin simply admit that he was the one who reported the errors after following up on Steve’s discovery instead of claiming it was reported by “people” who “independently found” the errors?”

    I thought after I first read that comment on RC that he wanted his readers to believe, or be able to infer, that the errors had been found by others before Steve did; perhaps well before. In other words, “independently” in both time and effort. I certainly considered that possibility. The way he wrote it, anything was possible. And still would be, if BAS hadn’t outed him.

    Jon: Your record is stuck.

  111. MikeF
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:53 PM | Permalink

    I would like to offer this hypothetical situation, which I’m sure number of people had experience.
    It’s Friday afternoon. You are at the weekly status meeting (I did say hypothetical situation). When reporting status of your projects you mention that one of the susbsystems is behaving strangely. You are not sure why, but you have few ideas. You had pinpointed the problem down to pretty small range, but you need more time to confirm what it is. You talk a bit about it, describe some of you theories but you don’t want to go much further with this till you have some time exploring it. Your plate is pretty full, it’s friday, problem is not an emergency, so you going to get to it some time next week.
    Right after the meeting, one of your co-workers, who was at the meeting, rushes to his desk and starts working on the problem. He works through weekend, and when you get back to work on Monday, you see an e-mail showing that he had found the problem and fixed it. He makes no mention of you and pretty much proclaims himself a hero that found a solution to emergency.
    Does this sounds familiar?

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:40 PM | Permalink

      Re: MikeF (#177),

      The “pretty much proclaims himself a hero that found a solution to emergency” part bears zero resemblance to reality.

      Re: MrPete (#178),

      That’s a bizarre and frankly bass-ackwards characterization of saying that I would notify the persons in charge of handling the data rather than tell a group of people who have no connection with the data handling to “stay tuned” for a future message.

      • Gaelan Clark
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:57 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jon (#184),
        What is completely “bass-ackwards” is your insistence of what you think SM should have done and when he should have done it.
        Why don’t you ask the appropriate question of, why does Gavin lurk on this site? SM undertook the task of finding out that the circus of media proclamations that the ANtarctic continent was heating up faster than ever, which–if you have been following this–flies in the face of Gavin’s RC post of “knowing how cold Antarctica was” or something “clever” like that.
        SM found this Stieg paper to be quite flawed, and IN A FLASH OF AN INSTANT, Gavin “independently” is awash with brilliance and somehow at the same exact time that SM is working this through, WAIT< WAIT, WAIT, —-Gavin did it.(please, turn on the sarcasm)
        I wish to answer the question that I proposed that you ask Gavin—he lurks here because SM does the work he wishes he could do, so he scrambles away, feverishly working on a problem he should have already found and/or known about.
        Jon, what is truley “bass-ackwards” is you.

        • Jon
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:35 PM | Permalink

          Re: Gaelan Clark (#191),

          I don’t think he should have done anything differently- I have said numerous times that his actions were spot on for achieving what he achieved.

          As to anyone “lurking”- I have no knowledge of that, obviously. I can say that people email things to RealClimate posters seen on other sites.

          Re: Michael Smith (#194),

          I don’t doubt that he would have eventually notified BAS, nor have I written anything implying otherwise.

          Re: kim (#195),

          I’m not sure what reaction you’re hoping to elicit by such a post. Meh.

        • Michael Smith
          Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 8:30 AM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#200),

          I don’t doubt that he would have eventually notified BAS, nor have I written anything implying otherwise.

          No, what you’ve attempted to do is concoct a false alternative: namely, that Steve’s choices were limited to “expeditiously correcting the data” or “attracting attention” — so that you can then argue that failing to do the former proves a preference for the latter, with the clear implication that such behavior is bad, unscientific and/or unprofessional.

          That argument might have been quasi-tenable about 250 comments ago — but not after all the facts that have been brought to you attention. The fact that you still cling to it tells us merely that you are desperate to find something to criticize in Steve’s behavior, no matter what facts you have to evade to do so.

          Steve: Enough on this. I contacted BAS in a timely fashion once I confirmed the results though I had no obligation to do so. I informed Climate Audit readers first as I’m entitled to do.

        • Jon
          Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 9:03 AM | Permalink

          Re: Michael Smith (#316),

          I’m not criticizing anything at all. I’ve said several times that he is excellent at doing what he sets out to do. I don’t why there is so much effort to portray this as anything other than complimentary.

          Re: Steve McIntyre (#317),

          Would you mind terribly answering the questions posed at #290 and #294? Thanks!

          Steve:
          I sleep sometimes.

      • MrPete
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:54 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jon (#184),

        That’s a bizarre and frankly bass-ackwards characterization of saying that I would notify the persons in charge of handling the data rather than tell a group of people who have no connection with the data handling to “stay tuned” for a future message.

        So, are you saying you would:

        * Tell those in charge of handling the data that while you do not know what the issue is, you are pretty sure there’s a problem?
        * And you would do so without bringing it up with your colleagues?

        And… you still have no clue about the “group of people” here. We do have a connection to the data handling.

        * Many of us are interested parties, as we pay for the work being done.
        * Some of us are highly qualified scientists (including climate science).
        * Some of us are highly qualified in statistics.
        * Some of us are highly qualified in mathematics.
        * Some of us are highly qualified in data management.
        I could go on.

        We just happen to be humble enough about such things that we don’t trumpet it to the skies.

        Bottom line: Climate Audit, for all its warts and for all the “peanut gallery” goings on, also happens to be a community that’s serious about good science and getting things done right.

        You couldn’t ask for a much better review board for a lot of scientific work.

        And (for now) it’s a lot less costly than other mechanisms.

        • Jon
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:09 PM | Permalink

          Re: MrPete (#202),

          If you aren’t claiming to be part of BAS, then I think you’ve missed the point of “connection with the data handling”. If you concede that someone else identified the nature of the problem and reported it prior to him figuring it out, I’m not sure what the fuss is about.

        • MrPete
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:06 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#212),

          If you concede that someone else identified the nature of the problem and reported it prior to him figuring it out, I’m not sure what the fuss is about.

          That’s because neither Gavin, Steig, nor you are willing to concede that none of the following would have happened if Steve had not done the work he’s done on this:
          * Identifying that there’s a data issue
          * Reporting the issue to BAS
          * Discovering still other data issues
          * Recognizing that the data was not properly vetted
          * Recognizing that the paper was not properly vetted

          In the big picture, it doesn’t matter if the results remain the same. Each of the above represents a likely breakdown in the process. And it’s the process that is of concern to many of us. Issues such as these reduce confidence in scientific work… not only in climate science but across the board.

          None of you are willing to recognize that a hat tip to Steve is the least that could be done. (And no, not a disingenous h/t for “attention”.)

          Speaking of attention, I hope Gavin enjoys the attention this brings; this certainly has and will increase his visibility, and that of Steig as well.

        • jae
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:17 PM | Permalink

          Re: MrPete (#230),

          Speaking of attention, I hope Gavin enjoys the attention this brings; this certainly has and will increase his visibility, and that of Steig as well.

          I don’t think he appreciates it.

      • Jeff Alberts
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:16 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jon (#184),

        Wow, you really are a willful idiot.

        I know, snip!

  112. Glacierman
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:02 PM | Permalink

    RE: Mark T – 125

    Mad at him for being thorough? Man that says it all, and makes my point that involving someone with his expertise in the beginning would save a lot of trouble later on (not to mention advancing the science). I think the first one that does this will be ahead of the curve. But they won’t due to peer pressure and pride.

  113. JohnH
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:05 PM | Permalink

    There is another aspect to this mystery/comedy that interests me. A sort of conversation goes on between CA and RC. This conversation is below the surface and invisible to most readers of both blogs. But the reason that it is invisible differs between RC and CA. Steve can communicate with Gavin by posting on CA. Gavin or other RC faithful read Steve’s communications but do not respond, so CA readers are unaware that this side of the communication has taken place. The other side is that CA readers attempt to communicate with RC by posting there. But the posts are deleted if they are inconvenient to RC’s belief system. So most readers of RC do not see them.
    But the communication is taking place.

  114. per
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:11 PM | Permalink

    well, i for one am very impressed by gavin. Not only does he work full-time, but it seems he even spends his Sunday afternoons scouring blogs for hints of problems in climate science. On the basis of one such hint, from a man that eric describes as having “lack of integrity, or, at best, a remarkable lack of competence”, Gavin went off, did detailed checking, and improved the scientific record !

    full marks to gavin !

    per

  115. Daniel J.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:12 PM | Permalink

    Re: 87
    Equipment buried in the snow; British AS; bumbling confusion–surely Fawlty Towers is in the running.

  116. Molon Labe
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:29 PM | Permalink

    The following note now appears at Steig’s site

    Note: Minor corrections to the AWS-based reconstruction are required, due to the discovery of errors in two of the AWS stations. See note under “Raw Data” below. A revised reconstruction will be posted here. The resulting differences in the reconstruction are too small to be discernable on the Figure S3, or in the trends for individual stations given in Table S1 in the Supplementary Information that accompanies the paper in Nature. (Corrections for all stations in the Table S1 are in the third decimal place (that is <0.01 degrees C/decade)). The mean trend for Antarctica changes by less than 0.004 degrees C/decade. The mean trend for West Antarctica changes by less than 0.02 degrees C/decade. Note also there is a typo in Table S2. The correct coordinates for station ‘Harry’ are 83.0 S 238.6 E.

    • Craig Loehle
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:44 PM | Permalink

      Re: Molon Labe (#183), I thought Eric was off in Antarctica and incommunicado…who posted that? And really? Have Harry and the other site (redrock?) already been straightened out?

      • Molon Labe
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:52 PM | Permalink

        Re: Craig Loehle (#186),

        Not incommunicado, he’s been commenting at RC. It’s startling that such drastic changes to relatively sparse input data have such an insignificant effect on results. I guess if we had the code we could sort it out.

    • RomanM
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:47 PM | Permalink

      Re: Molon Labe (#183),

      I find it curious that correcting something that played no role in the reconstruction could actually produce a change in the final result. Must be teleconnection…

    • TerryS
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:41 PM | Permalink

      Re: Molon Labe (#183),

      I wonder if the “minor corrections” Steig refers to also involves minor corrections to the, as yet unreleased, code used to calculate the trend.

      • Molon Labe
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:00 PM | Permalink

        Re: TerryS (#199),

        I don’t know, but veiled insinuations and loaded terms like “duplicity” and “disingenuous” are not going to get the code released any faster.

        • Terry
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:37 PM | Permalink

          Re: Molon Labe (#205),

          The most prevalent peg was the fact that the study appeared to reverse the “Antarctic cooling” meme that has been a staple of disinformation efforts for a while now.

          Direct quote from Gavin, in the “Warm reception to Antarctic warming story” post. I don’t think the “veiled insinuations” are a one-way street in this matter. And thanks for independently discovering the error, Gavin – your long record of tireless devotion to correcting data is duly noted, not that it mattered for the study anyway, again, right?

  117. Mark T.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:45 PM | Permalink

    Hey Jon, at least you are beginning to admit that you really are aggravated with what Steve did. No more facades required to keep up appearances of objectivity are required. I’m glad you were able to have this breakthrough and, in the spirit of this thread, shouldn’t you be thanking all of us for helping you to come out?

    Mark

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:55 PM | Permalink

      Re: Mark T. (#187),

      Not in the least! I think the way he handled it was masterfully successful. He is achieving exactly what this blog intends to do.

  118. Mark T.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:47 PM | Permalink

    Hey Jon, at least you are beginning to admit that you really are aggravated with what Steve did. No more facades required to keep up appearances of objectivity. I’m glad you were able to have this breakthrough and, in the spirit of this thread, shouldn’t you be thanking all of us for helping you to come out?

    Mark

  119. Harry Eagar
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:48 PM | Permalink

    Eric Steig writes at RC: ‘The point is that we all have to make decisions in life, and we can’t possibly all research everything in great detail.’

    Well, maybe, but as a taxpayer I demand that since I’m paying you, you research it in more detail than Mr. McIntyre, who does it for free.

    If I did what he did, I’d be fired.

  120. Dave Andrews
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:52 PM | Permalink

    Just a question,

    Steig says the error will result in “minor corrections” that will result in differences in the reconstruction that “are too small to be discernible”. If this is the case why did they bother trying to cite Harry in the first place?

    • RomanM
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 3:58 PM | Permalink

      Re: Dave Andrews (#188),

      It was my understanding that Harry was not used in the reconstruction. How could it have had any effect on the result in the first place? Maybe, it was teleconnection…

      • Laws of Nature
        Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 1:37 AM | Permalink

        Re: RomanM (#194),
        “It was my understanding that Harry was not used in the reconstruction. How could it have had any effect on the result in the first place?”

        Hi there,

        I am very much wondering about the same thing :)
        Also: 46 stations are cited totally, why are only 15 used?
        Steve or anyone, do you know anything about the selection criteria?
        It might be interesting, what a slight alteration of these criteria does to the resulting trend, same question for the starting year . .

        And of course best whishes for your grandchild! You will see, these younglings recover in no time!

        Cheers,
        LoN

    • NeedleFactory
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:37 PM | Permalink

      Re: Dave Andrews (#188) asks:

      Steig says the error will result in “minor corrections” that will result in differences in the reconstruction that “are too small to be discernible”. If this is the case why did they bother trying to cite Harry in the first place?

      Assuming good faith, as we should absent contrary indications, Steig used Harry because Harry was there with all the other stations and because he did not notice any problems with Harry.

      • Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:56 PM | Permalink

        Re: NeedleFactory (#222),

        They knew there would be corrections immediately. Gavin makes the call, no credit for CA. Maybe it was a Super Bowl emergency after all.

  121. kim
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:08 PM | Permalink

    jon, are you aware that you are making a clown of yourself? Your speculations about intentions are projection at best and quite mad at worst. For the moot in Steve’s eye you’re missing the blog in Gavin’s.
    ===================================

  122. Steve W.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:09 PM | Permalink

    This is great stuff. Thank you Steve. The thing that interests me now is exactly how much the Steig paper is affected by these two stations (Harry, Racer Rock). Some might say “not at all”, but it requires analysis. Keep up the good work!

  123. JR
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:37 PM | Permalink

    Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.

    This is fall-down funny duplicity.

  124. Punch My Ticket
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:47 PM | Permalink

    Let me go back to gavin’s original comment here.

    As for the implications of the errors in the BAS Harry file on the study, that too is visible in figure S4b – removing Harry (and a bunch of other AWS stations) doesn’t change the answer in any meaningful respect.

    The last phrase is now struck out, presumably in accord with Steig’s comment at his website. May I therefore conclude that …

    removing Harry (and a bunch of other AWS stations) does change the answer in a meaningful respect.

    If so, does that change the conclusions of the article?

    • Mark T.
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:55 PM | Permalink

      Re: Punch My Ticket (#201),

      If so, does that change the conclusions of the article?

      Doubtful. It’s already been noted that merely moving the start date for the “trend” yields a something not significantly different than zero, i.e., it’s been pretty flat for over 40 years, if not slightly negative.

      Mark

    • Alan Wilkinson
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:08 PM | Permalink

      Re: Punch My Ticket (#201),

      I would expect the investigations of the ground station data reliability will not only change the trends but also reduce confidence in their accuracy.

      There is far to go before the depths of the flaws in this study are revealed IMHO.

      As for RC/Gavin, less said the better. These events speak for themselves.

    • Gary A.
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:08 PM | Permalink

      Re: Punch My Ticket (#201),

      Hmmm. From Steig’s site:

      Note: Minor corrections to the AWS-based reconstruction are required, due to the discovery of errors in two of the AWS stations. See note under “Raw Data” below. A revised reconstruction will be posted here. The resulting differences in the reconstruction are too small to be discernable on the Figure S3, or in the trends for individual stations given in Table S1 in the Supplementary Information that accompanies the paper in Nature. (Corrections for all stations in the Table S1 are in the third decimal place (that is <0.01 degrees C/decade)). The mean trend for Antarctica changes by less than 0.004 degrees C/decade. The mean trend for West Antarctica changes by less than 0.02 degrees C/decade. Note also there is a typo in Table S2. The correct coordinates for station ‘Harry’ are 83.0 S 238.6 E.

      (My bolds).
      So West Antarctica was around 0.1C/decade and changed by 0.02C/decade. Would that not be a 20% error? I don’t usually think of a 20% error as being “Minor”.

  125. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 4:54 PM | Permalink

    This has been entertaining. Reminds me of a band joke. “How many lead female singers does it take to screw in a light bulb.” ans. One. She just holds the bulb and the world revolves around her.

  126. Mark T.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:04 PM | Permalink

    Good thing then that Steve hasn’t used those terms, right?

    Mark

  127. Rathtyen
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:05 PM | Permalink

    I think the scary aspect of all this is that Gavin Schmidt represents the so-called professional or scientific side in this whole debate, but look at just how childish his actions were.

    I think those that believe he acted out of ego, to get in first, are mistaken. It was desperation to make sure Steve didn’t get in first. The whole “it was someone” who beat Steve to it, rather than admitting it was Gavin himself, is unbelieveably immature.

    I found this all funny at first, but not on reflection. Think of all the wasted resources, all the money diverted from real environmental issues into the meaningless blackhole of climate change, primarily because of a fairly small group of clowns who play the sort of games you’d expect in kindergarten.

    To Steve, Anthony, Jeff and others, my thanks for exposing this farce (in the broader sense), and please keep it up. Lets get those resources back to where they should be rather than propping up mediocre academics who are too lazy to even check that their base data is correct.

    snip -policy

    I get some satisfaction in knowing that Gavin and the team obviously read this site in detail. Steve, take heart, Gavin must be a fan!

    • RomanM
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:15 PM | Permalink

      Re: Rathtyen (#207),

      I think the scary aspect of all this is that Gavin Schmidt represents the so-called professional or scientific side in this whole debate, but look at just how childish his actions were.

      I think those that believe he acted out of ego, to get in first, are mistaken. It was desperation to make sure Steve didn’t get in first. The whole “it was someone” who beat Steve to it, rather than admitting it was Gavin himself, is unbelieveably immature.

      Yes, I agree that the actions were misguided and unprofessional. However, I disagree somewhat as to the reasons. My suspicions are that he somehow (unrealistically) felt that he could defuse a potentially harmful (to his fellow Climate Scientists) issue by getting the incorrect data replaced as soon as possible. It backfired!

  128. rcrejects
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:10 PM | Permalink

    Re Jeff Id, post #112 at February 4th, 2009 at 1:13 pm

    One thing’s for sure, gavin has spent a lot of time today deleting comments on the RC thread.

    Just a reminder that you can put up posts rejected at RC at http://www.rcrejects.wordpress.com if you like.

  129. Mark T.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:11 PM | Permalink

    Rathtyen wins the thread.

    Mark

  130. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:11 PM | Permalink

    re 99. Thanks. I knew all those grad courses in literature would come in handy someday. And I love participatory art. The real mystery… would William Connelly who has left RC, use his position at BAS to out Gavin? and why?

  131. Mark O
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:21 PM | Permalink

    I can’t believe Jon is still going on about how SM should have handled the error issue. Give it a rest man, you are only making yourself look silly.

    As someone with kids myself, I can honestly say I am amazed that SM could even concentrate with a granddaughter in the hospital, much less have the time to do data analysis and post updates to his blog.

    And Steve, I am glad your granddaughter is doing better and I hope everything turns out OK for her!

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:35 PM | Permalink

      Re: Mark O (#217),

      I’m not. I’m saying what I would have done were acknowledgment or expeditious correction of the data my priorities. I certainly never claimed they were his and thus he should have done X.

      Re: steven mosher (#218),

      I would never ascribe such puppeteering to anyone, hardly flattering. And you are correct that lots of attention was gained, rather than a direct communication to BAS. No argument there.

  132. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:24 PM | Permalink

    re197. jon.

    “I have said numerous times that his actions were spot on for achieving what he achieved.”

    Jon, well lets see what he has achieved. he got gavin and others to look at the data. he got, through gavin, BAS to look at the data and fix it. (and it looks like there is another suspect site under investigation.) Steig looks like he is re running his code. yes SM followed the Horatian tradition of dulce et utilite. he delights and instructs. You however only make me laugh, thanks for that though.

  133. Peter Ashwood-Smith
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:41 PM | Permalink

    Right after the meeting, one of your co-workers, who was at the meeting, rushes to his desk and starts working on the problem. He works through weekend, and when you get back to work on Monday, you see an e-mail showing that he had found the problem and fixed it. He makes no mention of you and pretty much proclaims himself a hero that found a solution to emergency.
    Does this sounds familiar?

    Yes, I had a patent idea which I shared with some co-workers for feedback, one of them tried to patent it before me. He was let go.
    Most big corporations have strict ethical guidelines (we have to recertify evey year). NASA and other research institutes I’m sure have ethics certification that all of its employees must take and sign up to periodically.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 5:53 PM | Permalink

      Re: Peter Ashwood-Smith (#223),

      I missed the part where someone tried to take credit for something he or she didn’t figure out. Can someone clue me in? Several CA readers have made it very clear that they believe that as of Sunday night the splicing hadn’t been discovered on his end which is why he couldn’t possibly have sent an email to BAS notifying them of the issue at that time.

  134. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:01 PM | Permalink

    In November in “Mountains and Molehills”, Gavin said,

    “No decisions are made on whether one months data was erroneous and available for less than 24 hours. No one died, no one lost out, nothing happened. Therefore there is no cost that could have been avoided.

  135. KlausB
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:02 PM | Permalink

    I’ve added following post on RC (will see tomorrow if it has been rejected/deleted):

    # KlausB Says:
    4 February 2009 at 6:48 PM

    Previewed comment:

    Dear Dr. Smith,
    I do read both, here and CA.
    I do still admit, that human action does contribute to emissions, CO²
    But I am still asking, how much?
    And on the ‘how much’, RC wasn’t very helpfully, right from it’s very beginning. When I started searching for more informations, I did start here. I still do come here from time to time. But you successfully transformed me from a believer into a sceptic.

    snip

  136. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:05 PM | Permalink

    re 220. jon.

    I didnt say it generated attention. I said:
    1. it got GAVIN to look at the data, something to which you concede
    2. it got GAVIN to inform BAS
    3. it got BAS to fix the data
    4. it got Steig to re run his code.

    not bad for a gadfly’s days work. But I’m most interested that you now require DIRECT communication with BAS. Not only fast but direct. Well, email relies on somebody somewhere running a server, and snail mail relies on the postman, and a phone call depends on carriers, so are those forms of indirection are ok? Now let’s suppose that SM had asked me to send them a mail ” hey mosh, you’re up late all the time, drop old BAS a note for me” would that be direct? or indirect? or indirect direct?
    In fact, the most EFFECTIVE way to get an institution to update it’s data is to have someone they “trust” deliver the message. How many times have we noted Mann’s geography errors only to see them repeated? So, I’d plausibly argue that the best method for SM to get things changed is to embarass the crowd at RC so that they take action. And they would be wise in the future not to beclown themselves as we look better in harlequin that they do. Now, since SM was so kind as to answer your question about his whereabouts on monday, let’s see if you can answer a question. When gavin knew he was the proximate cause of the data being changed, was it or was it not his obligation to tell his readers quickly and forthrightly that HE informed BAS, rather than being coy and suggesting that “people” informed BAS? I eagerly await some scholasticism from the RC apologist.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:13 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#229),

      I don’t require anything. What an odd assumption. Also, I never asked what his whereabouts were on Monday. I asked about Sunday night, which is when the problem was reported. As to your question, I think he answered that not too long ago in the RC thread.

    • NeedleFactory
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 7:03 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#229) said:

      they would be wise in the future not to beclown themselves as we look better in harlequin that they do.

      Usufruct & the Gorilla! ROTFL!

  137. Rickl
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:13 PM | Permalink

    Gavin’s tap dancing to diminish Steve’s contribution is really quite amusing:

    [Gavin Response to Les Johnson: Wrong on all counts. i) discovering that Gill was mismatched with Harry was found independently by at least three people (SM, myself, and a poster on CA). ii) the source of the confusion was indeed found and not given to me by anyone else, iii) we are all dependent on many things, including that SM had alluded to data problem at Harry - I don't see anywhere that I denied this. And BAS were notified by ‘people' (plural) - not just by me. - gavin]

    Les Johnson posting: So, it wasn’t independent, then. You would not have found it without SM’s alluding to the problem.

    “Found” would also be the wrong word, as SM had already “found” it. “Confirmed” would be more accurate.

    [Response: I disagree. I had no idea what SM thought he had found. I don't think I can confirm something I didn't already know. - gavin]

    Particularly amusing is “we are all dependent on many things”. Yup, Steve’s pointing out that there was something wild about Harry is just one of “many things”. Being the first person to identify that there is an error in data that has been available for a year is just one of “many things”. Now, others may say that it is the realization that there was an error that was the crucial part. Once you know the error exists, identifying the cause is rather trivial – after all we know that at least three people were able to do so in a very short time period after Steve’s post.

    In my company, Gavin’s actions would probably be grounds for dismissal.

  138. Dave Dardinger
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:26 PM | Permalink

    You know, I’m wondering if perhaps Gavin is sort of working his way to our point of view. Yeah, he wasn’t good about admitting what he’d done, but growing up in a dysfunctional team makes politeness difficult to achieve. But the CA crowd has grown up with Steve presenting a problem, or dropping a hint and those who have some time and ability running out and solving the puzzle or producing a graph, or writing a poem, etc.

    So Gavin had some time and noticed the puzzle Steve has set and figured, what the hay? He had the tools and perhaps he’s secretly been studying R or something and decided to check things and sure enough he was able to find out what was wrong with the data. And he got so excited he sent it off to BAS then he realized, Oops! Steve will find out. So he tried to cover it up with a snark.

    I think if we’d patted him on the head and said, “Good job, young man”, he might have moved another step away from the dark side. But now….

    • Steve Reynolds
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 7:33 PM | Permalink

      Re: Dave Dardinger (#235),

      Dave: “I think if we’d patted him on the head and said, “Good job, young man”…

      I sort of tried that at RC (replying to 225) and sincerely meant what I wrote, but they censored as usual:

      Chris: “a) No scientist or organization is under obligation (or should be expected) to follow the news coming out of every science blog out there.”

      Then surely we are fortunate that gavin thinks a certain blog is especially worthy of being closely monitored (even on a Sunday afternoon) so that this error could be fixed so quickly.

  139. Robert in Calgary
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:27 PM | Permalink

    Come one everyone!

    Jon’s entire purpose here is to “make noise” in his bizarre little vendetta to hold Steve and only Steve to some supreme standard of perfection.

    Look at how much effort he has expended in this thread. Sad.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:51 PM | Permalink

      Re: Robert in Calgary (#236),

      Vendetta? Absurd. I’ve actually been quite complementary to him in these comments. I think he is wildly successful at what he does.

  140. Robert in Calgary
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:33 PM | Permalink

    Re: 233 and the link to Prometheus.

    I love Pielke Jr’s concluding paragraph in the original post from today. Spot on!

  141. theduke
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 6:42 PM | Permalink

    I don’t require anything. What an odd assumption. Also, I never asked what his whereabouts were on Monday. I asked about Sunday night, .

    More semantic quibbling . . .

  142. oakgeo
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 7:06 PM | Permalink

    I think Gavin’s response to Les Johnson (as reported by Rickl #231) is fairly clear. His Point (i) acknowledges that SM, Gavin and a poster were on the job; Point (ii) indicates that Gavin figured out the EXACT nature of the problem and reported to BAS; and Point (iii) clearly acknowledges SM’s role in initiating Gavin’s investigation.

    Gavin is suggesting that he was independent of SM and dependent on SM at the same time, and while that is a neat trick it is dependent on your definition of independence. As we have seen in countless proxy studies, independence as claimed by the Team is an interesting phenomenon and entirely consistent with Gavin’s claim of independence from SM on this matter, i.e. he says he is (but he really isn’t).

  143. Mike Bryant
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 7:07 PM | Permalink

    Don’t ever stop reading CA, Gavin… (Yeah, we all know you are there…)
    This blog just might be your best chance of receiving the recognition and adulation you know you deserve, or not.
    Mike Bryant

  144. DJ
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 7:16 PM | Permalink

    For those who are interested, I found this at Roger Pielke Jr. Site! Gavin isn’t too happy with Him! It says this in the first paragraph:Quote!

    Gavin Schmidt at NASA has just now written an email to the director of CIRES and the Director of the Center for Science and Technology Policy Research (but not to me), where I work at the University of Colorado, demanding that we take down this post and extend to him an apology.

  145. Carrick
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 7:21 PM | Permalink

    More semantic quibbling . . .

    That appears to be the sum of what Jon is capable of doing. Can we move on now?

    This is starting to resemble spam.

    Steve, my condolences on your grand daughter and I pray everything works out well for her.

  146. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 7:25 PM | Permalink

    re 238.. I knew he couldnt resist.

  147. Punch My Ticket
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 7:55 PM | Permalink

    Not having the journal in hand, I’m relying on the webbed SI. Take a look at Figure S4(b). Impressive as hell, especially compared with S4(a).

    What’s the difference? 15 instead of 42 weather stations. Which 15?

    In a subset reconstruction, we used only those
    15 data sets (denoted by asterisks in Table S2) with the most available data coverage since 1957.

    Now look at Table S2. See Byrd? It has an asterisk. Data’s here. Pretty solid 1957-1970, 11 spotty months over the next 5 years, then nothing, about 180 records overall.

    See Campbell? No asterisk. Data’s here. Solid 1961-1980, summer only 1981-1994, solid 1995-1999, about 380 records overall.

    I haven’t looked at any other ground station records. No idea what I’d find if I did. No idea if Byrd or Campbell helps / hurts any thesis.

    Simple question: If I’m looking for stations with “most available data coverage”, why pick the 180 month record and ignore the 380 month record?

    Simpler question: WTF?

  148. Gary Hladik
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:15 PM | Permalink

    I believe I’ve figured out Steve M’s ingenious plan:

    Now that Gavin has been nicely set up, Steve soon hints about a possible problem in yet another station dataset, but withholds details “for fear of pre-emption”. The twist–and this is the truly diabolical part–is that he hasn’t even looked at the data!

    Will Gavin nevertheless find a real mistake? (Not that unlikely in light of recent history). Or will he waste endless hours on a wild goose chase? Either way, it’s a brilliant coup for CA.

    Sorry to spill the beans, Steve, but I just can’t let you get away with your nefarious plot. Poor Gavin has suffered enough. :-)

  149. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:29 PM | Permalink

    Here is the quizzical thing. gavin informs BAS. He then says “someone” informed BAS. Now, he had to believe that BAS would never credit him, either that or he wasn’t thinking clearly.

    • Richard M
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:38 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#251), Most likely the latter. He probably assumed they would do what he would have done.

      • Peter
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:08 PM | Permalink

        Re: Richard M (#253),

        I guess somebody at BAS is just not a Team player……….

    • Terry
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:53 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#251),

      They also felt the need to censor these “controversial/off-topic” (my guess) questions:

      Gavin, did you also find the problem with the Racer Rock data? If not, did you at least inform the RAS about it?

      Controversial (or trollish) stuff, I suppose? I thought it was a legitimate question…

    • Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:05 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#251),
      During the period when we didn’t know gavin was the anonymous person who found the error ‘independently’, we couldn’t really quiz him for an explanation of his definition of ‘independence’. Once BAS credited gavin, people asked. We learn that ‘independece’ means gavin learned there was a problem with Harry through SteveM at CA. Then, instead of asking SteveM for details, he decided to look at the data for Harry, learn a few specific details that had not been mentioned, inform BAS and call this finding the error “independent”.

      In this case, anonymity may have helped gavin craft sentences to strip SteveM of credit for uncovering the problems. Once gavin lost that, it became clear that SteveM was the person who identified the problem with Harry, which gavin did not discover “independently”. He discovered it only because he’d learned SteveM had uncovered a problem with Harry.

  150. J.Hansford.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:31 PM | Permalink

    The real story is that Gavin tried to keep his readers at RC in the dark…. He didn’t inform them that CA had a case, that Steig’s work had flaws and that He (Gavin) was in the process of taking Steve McIntyre’s suggestion and looking into Harry’s data problems that Steve had identified… Instead Gavin pre-empted Steve in contacting BAS about the problem of where Harry met Gill without informing his RC readers. BAS subsequently changed the data without leaving a correction notice and maintaining the old wrong data so that people could compare…. The rest is history.

    It is all very shabby and telling. snip

    It’s very sad and if I was a Real Climate reader of integrity, I’d be extremely upset with the attempted s – sni[ …. I don’t think I am being harsh when I portray Gavin’s actions as – snip

    • Richard M
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:40 PM | Permalink

      Re: J.Hansford. (#252), No, you are not. I imagine a psychologist would have a field day with this episode.

  151. Terry
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:46 PM | Permalink

    Has GISS updated their dataset yet? I’ve been searching around for a link, but my search-fu is weak tonight, apparently.

  152. Henrik Oelund
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:53 PM | Permalink

    To Gary Hladik
    Thanks to you my stomach cramped up for 15 minutes.
    To all the regulars thank you – you are awesome.
    And a speciel robust thank you to Dr. Schmidt, that was absolutely priceless – I can´t wait to see your next trick!

  153. Mick
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:53 PM | Permalink

    So Gavin’s ethical position doesnt extend to cute blog post titles, but doesnt stop him stealing credit for other people’s hard work. What a – snip

  154. Bernie
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 8:55 PM | Permalink

    At this point the psychology pervading discussions at RC and CA is akin to that in sports bars in New York and Boston during the baseball season, namely tribal and emotion laden. When I made my earlier comments on RC, I actually thought that Harry provided an opportunity for rapprochement. An acknowledgement by Gavin that Steve had raised an interesting point – before or after Gavin notified BAS – would have helped defuse some of the animosity. Instead, Gavin chose to lob another rocket (all the independent mystery person stuff) a la Hamas and now has unfortunately to reap a whirlwind. Gavin then chose to escalate the entire thing by picking a fight with Roger Pielke Jnr. As I said before this is all kind of sad.

    I am not attributing motives to anyone. Frankly, they are not needed. Gavin’s behavior – and many of the commentators here and at RC is largely counterproductive – which is the primary problem. What I am looking forward to is a further analysis and explication of Steig et als paper. This fracas has brought an enormous amount of talent and analytic power to a relatively tractable data set. I personally expect to learn a lot about the climate in Antartica and the underlying modelling techniques.

  155. DJ
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:00 PM | Permalink

    Here’s the Hall of Record Blog account on what’s going on here for those in the “Know”!

    http://hallofrecord.blogspot.com/2009/02/remember-antarctic-warming-that.html

  156. jae
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:08 PM | Permalink

    The Bard would probably have entitled this comedy, “Much Ado About Gavin.”

  157. Bobzorunkle
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:09 PM | Permalink

    Just a suggestion to “SM” for a future post. “I am going over the Mann 2008 data and I think I’ve found something really juicy. I’ll report further in a couple days!” It should result in some bleary eyes arounf NASA and who knows, maybe even some corrections.

  158. Terry
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:13 PM | Permalink

    Yow, didn’t take long for this to go from “awaiting moderation” to being deleted:

    I guess I’ll take the deletion as a “no”

    So Harry had no effect. Racer Rock probably doesn’t either. As we’re getting down to a fairly small number of stations, perhaps you could enlighten us on which stations actually do matter to the study? Thanks!

    I kind of feel bad for the poor cuss hitting F5 over there and deleting deleting deleting.

  159. jae
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:16 PM | Permalink

    It is truly exciting to imagine the prey cornered, even if it is not!

  160. Bernie
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:20 PM | Permalink

    Comments on the relevant thread at RC are now closed.

    • Guy
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:42 PM | Permalink

      Re: Bernie (#268),
      It is more accurate to say that it has moved to a new thread – under the new article “Antarctic warming is robust” just posted.

      Given the comment from Eric on that earlier blog:

      “Your understanding is wrong, because McIntyre has misled you. Yes, fair enough, it was useful to catch the error in the automatic weather station data. But then you say “the resulting output was used to make a point which would not have been justifiable if the correct data had been used.” SM doesn’t show that. He insinuates it, but it is wrong.”

      I am very interested to see what the CA reaction to the new article is.

      • Bernie
        Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:01 PM | Permalink

        Re: Guy (#269), You are right about the new thread, but the previous ending statement on the old thread simply said comments were closed. Gavin has now, helpfully, added a note pointing to the new thread and asking for comments to be added there. I guess timing is important.
        I too am interested in how the discussion and analysis develops. Gavin’s appeal to Bayesian priors will probably pull other experts in to the discussion. Somehow I would have thought that the fact that 2 out of 46 stations had noticeable errors would make me a bit more cautious about my conclusions and that particular prior certainly has to be lower than it was on Sunday before Steve found the problem with Harry.

        • Jon
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:09 PM | Permalink

          Re: Bernie (#275),

          So he found the splicing issue on Sunday and chose not to notify BAS, but rather write a teaser? When I suggested this I was met with… disagreement. I’m curious to see if your comment receives the same.

        • Bernie
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:29 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jon (#276), Jon: I honestly have no idea what you are driving at. My point is simply that whereas prior to Sunday one might have ascribed a certain probability as to the accuracy of the underlying BAS data, today it must be lower.

        • Guy
          Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:14 PM | Permalink

          Re: Bernie (#275), “but the previous ending statement on the old thread simply said comments were closed.” Thanks – I hadn’t appreciated that.

  161. krghou
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:38 PM | Permalink

    There is a new tread up at RC on the subject.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/02/antarctic-warming-is-robust/

    • Bernie
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:44 PM | Permalink

      Re: krghou (#269),
      Still no acknowledgement of SM on the new thread. But there appears to be more clues as to what was actually done or at least what Steig’s method reveals. One interesting aside: Gavin is expressing considerable ownership for this piece of analysis and clearly has access to code that others have asked for.

    • John Baltutis
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:30 PM | Permalink

      Re: krghou (#268),

      WRT to gavin’s new post at RC, Bayesian priors = subjective beliefs. There are no facts and IMO has no place in a statistical analysis.

  162. R DeWitt
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:45 PM | Permalink

    With regard to the matter of indepenence of the error discovery, I think what we are seeing here is an example of the Schmidt orthogonalization process.

  163. oakgeo
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:45 PM | Permalink

    The last paragraph of Gavin’s latest post at RC:

    “There is a big difference at Harry of course – a reduction of the trend by about half, and an increase of the trend at Racer Rock (the error there had given an erroneous cooling), but the other points are pretty much unaffected. The differences in the mean trends for Antarctica, or WAIS are very small (around 0.01ºC/decade), and the resulting new reconstruction is actually in slightly better agreement with the satellite-based reconstruction than before (which is pleasing of course).

    Huh? Can this be right? Did the satellite-based reconstruction have a smaller warming trend than the original, pre Harry/Gill/Racer Rock results in Steig et. al.? And is the “pleasing” comment of Gavin a chastisement of Steig? What am I missing here??

  164. Gary A.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:53 PM | Permalink

    Steig at his site had said .02 C/decade error, Gavin says .01 C/decade error. The article said about .1C/decade warming. So either a 20% error or 10% error. Does not seem minor.

  165. John Andrews
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 9:59 PM | Permalink

    OK Steve,

    Just sent another donation. Thanks.

  166. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:22 PM | Permalink

    oakgeo–
    Evidently, on correction, the Harry trend dropped. The Racer Rock trend rose. So, evidently, if those are the only two changes, the overall trend didn’t change much. I don’t think the pleasing comment by Gavin is a chastisement of Steig. If the methods are good and the data contains enough signal, the two reconstructions should. So, having the land based reconstruction and the satellite based reconstruction is more pleasing.

  167. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:23 PM | Permalink

    RE 276. Jon do you believe that gavin asked BAS to credit him with the discovery?
    If not why not? As for teasers, folks should stay tuned

  168. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:30 PM | Permalink

    No credit to CA. That’s why it was a Super Bowl preempting emergency to notify BAS.

    I did a little post politely requesting the code. Um.. again.

    http://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2009/02/05/steigs-code/

    • stephen richards
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 10:46 AM | Permalink

      Re: jeff Id (#283),
      Jeff

      I read their reply to you, OUCH

      • Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 4:02 PM | Permalink

        Re: stephen richards (#326),

        You know what’s funny about that – Dhogooza or whatever put a link to my post on the hockey stick CPS distortions and hundreds of what I assume are RC regulars have stopped by to read it. They’re checking all of the Mann 08 hockey stick stuff I did which originally got me banned from RC (without ever actually posting there). Its nearly a record day at the Air Vent. I’m surprised the link hasn’t been killed.

        • RobT
          Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 6:47 PM | Permalink

          Re: Jeff Id (#369),

          Its seems your posting at RC has led to a rather candid admission on the part of one their readers. Aaron Lewis, in affirming the correctness of censoring your claims, writes (no. 31):

          When correcting a myth or falsehood, NEVER repeat it. This is the advice that public relations firms always give their clients. Lawyers do NOT repeat the charges brought against their clients, they simply deny all wrong doing. At the highest level, White House press briefings for the last few years often did not even answer questions, they simply recited their side of the story. These guys (and gals) were pros. Watch the tapes and learn. Unfortunately, we have a more complex storyline to put across. Go take a course in public relations. Public Relations is different from teaching, because in a teacher-student relations are sustained and the student expects to be tested.

          Lets see… If I understand the analogy correctly, RC’s role is similar to the accused in a criminal trial, or a government official trying to obfuscate their true actions. “Do NOT repeat the charges and deny all wrong doing!”

  169. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:31 PM | Permalink

    Michael Mann’s Penn State says:

    Using someone else’s words or ideas without properly giving credit is plagiarism…. Even if you don’t use someone else’s words, but you refer to an idea or concept from another source, you must also give credit.

    The go on:

    When do you need to cite your sources? The short answer is that you should cite a source that is not yours unless it is common knowledge. The term common knowledge refers to any knowledge that you can reasonably expect other people to know. For instance, the fact that there are bilingual speakers in the United State is common knowledge. You would not have to cite any sources.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:52 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#282),

      Can you clear the air and state whether or not you believe that your “idea was stolen” as is claimed on the Prometheus blog?

      Re: Bernie (#279),

      Thanks for the clarification, I read “on Sunday before” to be that day. My mistake and apologies for misunderstanding.

      Steve:
      For clarification, I’ve expressed no opinion to date on the matter nor did Pielke suggest that I had expressed an opinion. Pielke’s opinions are his own. I’m not an academic and have no experience in academic misconduct cases. If I wanted to express an editorial opinion, I would have. For now, I would like to listen to opinions of others for a while. What do you think?

      The argument was made at Pielke’s by a poster that Schmidt did not commit misconduct because he did not seek to personally appropriate credit. It’s an unusual case in that Schmidt did not seek to appropriate “credit” personally, but led people to believe that unknown third parties were involved. This would not be a successful argument in a conversion tort, but perhaps it would be in an academic misconduct case. What do you think?

      I don’t think that his original claim to have identified the problem “independently” of Climate Audit would stand up in any review, but I don’t know whether this falls into any academic misconduct category. What do you think? Also since he is a NASA employee, I don’t know whether he’s subject to academic codes of conduct. It would have to be reviewed under applicable codes of conduct.
      .

      • Jon
        Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:19 AM | Permalink

        Re: Stephen McIntyre(#290),

        Thanks for your response. As for my opinion, I doubt supremely that anyone who analyzed the situation objectively would characterize the events as wrongdoing, let alone outright “theft” as Pielke is doing on your behalf (though apparently without your endorsement). Gavin stated that the Harry/Gill mismatch was found independently (which does not seem to be challenged by anyone in this thread) [Steve: I categorically disagree with both Gavin's claim to have found it "independently" and with your claim that this was not challenged.] and stated several times that you hinted at some issue with Harry, acknowledging that aspect of the situation. He made no attempt to seek credit for notifying BAS, [Steve: he preempted whatever minor credit might have accrued to me] and it was only after (if I’m reading the timeline correctly) someone asked BAS to list who the person responsible for contacting them was that BAS subsequently attributed the notification of errors to Gavin, well after the notice that errors had been discovered was posted. If I’m not mistaken, and I am by no means making an accusation or anything of the sort here, it looks as though the prior post where ignorance is affected as to the identity of the person who contacted BAS was written after one or more people had been in contact with BAS and were aware that Gavin was the person in question.

        I’ll confirm the sequence of events as best I can with BAS. Any further input from you or your readers is cheerfully appreciated.

        Steve:
        If you wish to discuss Pielke’s views, then please do so with him over there. When I wrote the Mystery Man post, I had reason to believe that Gavin was his own Mystery Man. Nonetheless, before saying so, I provided him with an opportunity to voluntarily disclose his behavior. Gavin chose not to. I think that there are reasons to wonder why Gavin was so desperate to get the BAS data changed. He has no prior history of concern over urgency of correcting station data -quite the opposite – and took no steps to change the equally important GISS data set. That’s a question that peope should be wondering about.

  170. J.Hansford.
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:41 PM | Permalink

    A new thread at RC! Ah Gavin decides to illuminate his readership. Better late than never I ‘spose.

    But of course with the new thread, there will be an astounding story of how Gavin spotted simple errors, informed the appropriate people and then upon studious examination found that the flaws far from being fatal, are actually of very little consequence and that the Antarctic, according to Mannian equations, is warming “robustly”…. The team marches steadily towards total enlightenment, complete with a fifth dan, black belt in blogging to boot…. But alas, not in Science ; )

    Keep up the good science Steve and Co.

  171. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:48 PM | Permalink

    At 3.30 pm today, I sent the following email to Hansen:

    Dear Dr Hansen,
    you may wish to correct your records for GISS station Harry.
    Regards, Steve McIntyre

    Wasn’t updated as of 11.45 Eastern.

  172. Gary P
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:49 PM | Permalink

    I most impressed at the speed at which papers by the “team” are being found faulty by Steve. If we were to fit a linear progression on the time between a Mannian paper and Steve finding serious problems, we could predict that by the end of 2009 we will see a posting telling us, “A week from now a new paper by Michael Mann, et al, will be published with the following flaws…….”

    Gavin will still be unhappy with the timeliness of the reporting.

  173. theduke
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:50 PM | Permalink

    For those of you who might have missed it, R. E. Phelan hit the nail on the head with post #75:

    rephelan:
    February 4th, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    There is an issue here that people seem to touch on only tangentially. As a college professor (ok, a lowly, unpublished adjunct instructor) I am appalled at the lack of intellectual integrity I find in students. It is disheartening to find it in emminent scientists. This is the text of a response I left at RC which is being moderated:

    Dr. Schmidt:

    In your response to Bernie at 11:01 AM you have essentially admitted to taking the insights of another researcher attempting to replicate the results of a study, insights you did not develop on your own, and then raced to preempt him. If one of my students had done such a thing I would very seriously consider bringing charges before the university’s disciplinary committee. I am very disappointed that a scientist of your stature and position isn’t a bit more sensitive to the ethical message he is sending.

    R.E. Phelan

  174. Edward
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:58 PM | Permalink

    Gavin with a new post at RC has fixed the errors in Steig’s data and concluded that the results are unaffected and that the “warming is robust”.

    The post states: “In summary, speculation that the erroneous trend at Harry was the basis of the Antarctic temperature trends reported by Steig et al. is completely specious, and could have been dismissed by even a cursory reading of the paper.”

    And also: “There is a big difference at Harry of course – a reduction of the trend by about half, and an increase of the trend at Racer Rock (the error there had given an erroneous cooling), but the other points are pretty much unaffected. The differences in the mean trends for Antarctica, or WAIS are very small (around 0.01ºC/decade), and the resulting new reconstruction is actually in slightly better agreement with the satellite-based reconstruction than before (which is pleasing of course).”

    In other words there’s nothing to see here now move along.

    • Jeff Norman
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 3:00 PM | Permalink

      Re: Edward (#292),

      Gavin with a new post at RC has fixed the errors in Steig’s data and concluded that the results are unaffected and that the “warming is robust”.

      Does this mean that Gavin has access to the data and the RigEm process used despite not being one of the co-authors of the initial paper?

  175. François GM
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 10:59 PM | Permalink

    I posted the following at RC:

    Dr schmidt,
    I just realized you’re the one who identified the errors in the Stieg paper. Congratulations.

    Gavin’s response was amazingly funny. It went something like this : ‘There were no errors. And I’m not the one who spotted them.’

    The post was promptly deleted.

  176. Alan S. Blue
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:21 PM | Permalink

    It would probably be PST, Steve’s in BC.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:22 PM | Permalink

      Re: Alan S. Blue (#292),

      That’s why I am asking…

    • Armand MacMurray
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 12:27 AM | Permalink

      Re: Alan S. Blue (#292),
      No, as he sometimes mentions in his posts, such as in this thread, Steve’s in Toronto, which is rather distant from BC.

  177. theduke
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:25 PM | Permalink

    A scientific auditor’s insights were taken and used as the basis for corrective research that would not have happened in the timeframe in which it occurred without the offending party having the benefit of those insights.

    The offending party then further compounded the offense by claiming the results of the corrective research were arrived at “independently,” while failing to identify himself as the person who reported the errors to the appropriate scientific organization.

    After the surprise public announcement by the scientific organization that it was indeed the offending party who had reported the errors, said party was reduced to arguing that the word “independent” could also mean “dependent.”

    Jon: Steve’s idea wasn’t “stolen.” It was purloined.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:33 PM | Permalink

      Re: theduke (#294),

      I’d like to hear it straight from the horse’s mouth, but thanks.

  178. Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:26 PM | Permalink

    Steve knew that there was A problem. He did not know what the problem was. Do you routinely run around raising alarm without making sure exactly what it is?

    Well, this is the Team after all….

  179. Bill Illis
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:28 PM | Permalink

    How did gavin know so quickly there really was an error?

    It was obvious after reading the thread on CA that there was going to be a problem given the Harry station had the exact same numbers as Gill (hundreds of miles away), but there was no way to confirm the problem in such a short time that warranted rushing off an email to BAS.

    There is a history with such errors in these reconstructions that looks suspiciously as though Mann and others know about these errors beforehand and exploit them or just leave them uncorrected to start with.

  180. theduke
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 11:39 PM | Permalink

    I’d like to hear it straight from the horse’s mouth, but thanks.

    Don’t hold your breath. He’s not Mr. Ed.

  181. Fred
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 1:42 AM | Permalink

    He must be using a definition of the word “independent” that I’m not familiar with. He admits he got the idea a particular paper might have data issues from someone else’s work. He admits he got the exact station to check from someone else’s work. And he admits it was you. So, how exactly is this “independent”? Independent of what? The truth?

  182. anon
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 2:02 AM | Permalink

    IMHO Steve is under no obligation to tell anything to anyone. Since seems to have led Gavin to look for an error, the correct thing for Gavin to do would be, in his email to BAS, to credit Steve with prompting him (Gavin) to find this error. If Gavin read about the details of error (rather than a hint) at CA then he
    should have emailed to BAS that the error was found out at CA. A gracious person
    would even if they actually did something independently have emailed to BAS that a few people independently found the error.

  183. Phil
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 2:12 AM | Permalink

    From: Recent variability and trends of Antarctic near-surface temperature, published 22 February 2008. [Steve: http://polarmet.mps.ohio-state.edu/PolarMet/PMGFulldocs/monaghan_bromwich_jgr_2008.pdf%5D

    From Table 2, footnote d on page 6:

    Harry Station data are suspicious after 1998

    and cited by:

    Schneider, D. P., and E. J. Steig (2008), Ice cores record significant 1940s Antarctic warmth related to tropical climate variability, Proc Natl Acad Sci, 105(34), 12154, doi:10.1073/pnas.0803627105.

    • Gary A.
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 7:52 AM | Permalink

      Re: Phil (#207),

      Harry Station data are suspicious after 1998

      I assume the paper does not elaborate on why they think Harry is suspicious after 1998. So it is confirmed bad up to 1994, and a paper referenced by Steig claims it is suspicious after 1998?

  184. kim
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 3:33 AM | Permalink

    Steve, at 10:31PM. There’s the out; it’s common knowledge. ‘Struth.
    ======================================================================

  185. pete m
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 4:38 AM | Permalink

    As Steve mentioned, the non-attribution point is not really the main issue here.

    Why did Gavin, on Superbowl Sunday, pore over the data and fire off emails to BAS before Steve would complete his analysis? Combined with their insistence that they do not need to save their data and only direct you to the data source …

    But of course the results are “robust”.

    Well may be so, but don’t blame people for being a tad skeptical if they cannot access the data you used, and the RegEm, before you take action to have data corrected (aka removed).

    That to me goes to the heart of the issues anyone wishing to duplicate results has had with these legendary papers on climate change.

  186. Dean McAskil
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 5:02 AM | Permalink

    I have read a lot but not all (307 replies!!!) and make a couple of comments re earlier posts:

    After a small error I ignored that led to a monumental c*ckup to this day I remember the quote from one of my old tutors, if your doing maths nothing, nothing, is trivial.

    The characters at RC are getting creepy. If you ever meet one I suggest keep smiling and back away slowly. Make no sudden moves.

  187. Gerry Morrow
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 5:56 AM | Permalink

    If Harry isn’t important and hasn’t been used in the reconstructions then why the fuss from RC?

    -snip

  188. Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 6:18 AM | Permalink

    Junk Science picks up the story…

    http://junkscience.com/

  189. Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 6:24 AM | Permalink

    Just looking at the corrections over on realclimate – they seem to have two additional data points at the racer rock entry. Another error?

  190. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 8:39 AM | Permalink

    I moved Phil’s interesting reference from the Dirty Harry thread (Phil has some other interesting refs there.) Here is the table that Phil refers to showing that problems with Harry noted in early 2008 in the Peer Reviewed Literature. The reference goes on to say:

    Harry Station data are suspicious after 1998; data used in analysis are through 1998.

    Monaghan et al 2008 is cited by Steig et al 2009 on a number of occasions.[ their ref 7.]

    Previous reconstructions of Antarctic near-surface temperatures have yielded inconsistent results, particularly over West Antarctica, where records are few and discontinuous5–7

    Our reconstructions show more significant temperature change in Antarctica (Fig. 2), and a different pattern for that change than reported in some previous reconstructions5,7 (Fig. 3)

    Although ref. 7 concluded that recent temperature trends in West Antarctica are statistically insignificant, the results were strongly influenced by the paucity of data fromthat region. When the complete set of West Antarctic AWS data is included, the trends become positive and statistically significant, in excellent agreement with our results12.

    RegEM is an iterative algorithm similar to principal-component analysis, used as a data-adaptive optimization of statistical weights for the weather station data. Unlike simple distance-weighting5,6 or similar 7 calculations, application of RegEM takes into account temporal changes in the spatial covariance pattern, which depend on the relative importance of differing influences on Antarctic temperature at a given time….We assess reconstruction skill using reduction-of-error (RE) and coefficient-of-efficiency (CE) scores as well as conventional correlation (r) scores. Such verification metrics are lacking in previous Antarctic temperature reconstructions5–7, but are required for demonstrating skill relative to the climatological mean and are therefore critical for confidence in the calculation of temporal trends10.

    Three different points.

    It’s interesting that a statement in the Peer Reviewed Literature that Harry data was “suspicious after 1998″ did not drive Gavin Schmidt into a an paroxysm of interest in station data, one that is unprecedented during the history of realclimate – but a comment at Climate Audit did. I guess we take that as a compliment on the respective authoritativeness of the two publications.

    It’s interesting that the statement by Monaghan et al 2008 did not prompt Steig, Mann or any of the other coauthors to assess the issue with Harry mentioned by Monaghan et al (tho one assumes that the Monaghan precaution was itself insufficient given the ultimate diagnosis of the problem.) We also don’t know exactly when Harry met Gill. My interest in this sttion was attracted by an inconsistency between two GISS versions – which would indicate that the problem was introduced in first half 2008, but I don’t know that for sure. One coauthor of Steig was a coauthor of Monaghan (Comiso), but we don’t know that Comiso actually read either paper or whether the coauthorship was recognition of AVHRR data provision.

    Third, Monaghan et al thought enough of the Harry problems to notice and deal with them. While Steig now says that Harry doesn’t “matter”, obviously Monaghan et al thought that problems with Harry mattered enough not to at least use data after 1998.

    Given that Steig et al contrasted their results with a study that handled HArry differently, I’m sure that Steig and Schmidt will understand if people take under advisement their assurances that their use of incorrect Harry data does not “matter”.

    • EW
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 1:00 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#317),

      At the RC they state, that Monaghan said he likes the Steig’s study and remade his analysis that now says exactly the same as Steig’s. Harry or not.

      • Leon Palmer
        Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 1:22 PM | Permalink

        Re: EW (#346),

        A reanalysis omitting bad data gets the same result as the original analysis using bad data … isn’t that a sign that the approach is suspect, That neither analysis is producing a statistically significant result and the approach is suspect?

  191. Gary A.
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 8:45 AM | Permalink

    So is Harry correct now or does it have additional problems after 1998? They are clearly still using new Harry in their updated results.

  192. Craig Loehle
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 9:11 AM | Permalink

    I note a whole lot of snip snip going on–it’s a hint people.

    I predict that BAS has NOT completely fixed Harry and that some other problems are going to be found with other stations now that the hounds are loose.

  193. Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 9:28 AM | Permalink

    It’s interesting that the table notes problems with harry but they don’t know what the problems are.

  194. Arthur Dent
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 9:56 AM | Permalink

    Jon #319
    I’m not criticizing anything at all. I’ve said several times that he is excellent at doing what he sets out to do. I don’t why there is so much effort to portray this as anything other than complimentary.

    That is because many of the readers, including myself, think that you are implying that Steve’s sole purpose for running this blog is self-agrandisement which would be very uncomplimentary. If this is not what you are suggesting perhaps you would like to state in simple terms what you think Steve is trying to do.

    Your many comments on this thread demonstrate that you have little idea of how this blog operates: Steve uses the site to pose problems that he has identified and to seek help from the wider scientific community in developing answers, just like a virtual university department. This is very powerful and a useful model for other parts of the scientific community since it can harness a wide variety of expertise in different continents in a simple and highly cost effective manner.

    Sure there is a bit of grandstanding and a lot of lurking, but in general Steve runs a tight ship, keeping posters to the point, abjuring questions of policy as opposed to science and trying with considerable success to keep the level of invective undercontrol. The latter being very impressive in view of the degree of vilification that has been poured on his own head.

    His treatment of the Harry data set is typical, he identified an inconsistency, which for personal reasons could not immediately give it more attention himself but posted the issue for others to work on in his absence, which they (including Dr Schmidt) then did.


    Steve:
    Enough on this. I appreciate the support, but editorially enough people have commented. The facts pretty much speak for themselves.

  195. Steve H.
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 10:10 AM | Permalink

    snip – piling on and over-generalizing

  196. DaveM
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 10:35 AM | Permalink

    To paraphrase a certain gangster character from a Bugs Bunny cartoon: “Shut-up shuttin’ up!” ;)

    As always, it is terrific to have such a resource available that is so rich with intelligent points and commentary. I am grateful for the privilege of visiting this site in furthering my own understanding.

  197. jae
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 10:42 AM | Permalink

    RegEM is an iterative algorithm similar to principal-component analysis, used as a data-adaptive optimization of statistical weights for the weather station data. Unlike simple distance-weighting5,6 or similar 7 calculations, application of RegEM takes into account temporal changes in the spatial covariance pattern, which depend on the relative importance of differing influences on Antarctic temperature at a given time….We assess reconstruction skill using reduction-of-error (RE) and coefficient-of-efficiency (CE) scores as well as conventional correlation (r) scores. Such verification metrics are lacking in previous Antarctic temperature reconstructions5–7, but are required for demonstrating skill relative to the climatological mean and are therefore critical for confidence in the calculation of temporal trends10.

    Can one of the statisticians out there put this in a verbal form that even a dumb chemist can understand?

    • RomanM
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 2:33 PM | Permalink

      Re: jae (#325),

      RegEM is an iterative algorithm similar to principal-component analysis, used as a data-adaptive optimization of statistical weights for the weather station data.

      This method which we sort of invented (or at least changed a bit) is a way to decide what weight to place on each weather station when we are calculating averages to reconstruct what the temperatures might have been in other locations. It involves lots and lots of computer recalculation (until the numbers stop changing) using matrices.

      Unlike simple distance-weighting 5,6 or similar 7 calculations, application of RegEM takes into account temporal changes in the spatial covariance pattern, which depend on the relative importance of differing influences on Antarctic temperature at a given time….

      Our weights not only depend on how far our location is from the stations, but they may also depend on which ones are getting warmer and which ones are cooling (i.e. how they relate to each other) at a given time and our method may change our weights accordingly for different times.

      We assess reconstruction skill using reduction-of-error (RE) and coefficient-of-efficiency (CE) scores as well as conventional correlation (r) scores. Such verification metrics are lacking in previous Antarctic temperature reconstructions5–7, but are required for demonstrating skill relative to the climatological mean and are therefore critical for confidence in the calculation of temporal trends10.

      We use some made up measures (along with some real correlations) for justifying that our results are pretty good. Other researchers didn’t use these methods but we think they should have because these checks can make the results showing warming really believable!

      • Gary Hladik
        Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 4:31 PM | Permalink

        Re: RomanM (#358)

        I assume your translation was tongue in cheek, but I found it very helpful. Thanks.

  198. Phil
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:11 AM | Permalink

    Re: Phil (#207), in the Dirty Harry 4: When Harry Met Gill thread:

    Steve, in that post I noted a study that referenced 6 more stations that I don’t believe were included in Steig’s paper. The stations are so-called Automated Geophysical Observatories (AGO). They do not appear in your Figure 1 (Location of Steig Table S2 Stations in West Antarctic Stations) of the Dirty Harry 4 thread.

    The study in question is: Antarctic Surface Temperature Comparison Study On Satellite Approximations and Land-Based Measurements by Jesse Docken and Noel Petit and the locations of the AGO stations are shown in Figure 4 on page 6 as AP1-AP6.

    The AGO stations can also be located on this image as AGO-1 through AGO-6.

    Given the scarcity of station data in Antarctica, would it not have made sense to use these stations for calibration of the satellite “temperatures” as well? Of course, that is what Docken and Petit did and they found very large differences between the satellite “temperatures” and the ground measurements:

    The satellites and ground stations match most closely to each other during the Antarctic winter, most likely due to a lack of cloud coverage and solar activity. During all other seasons the satellite is often off in its readings by up to 20°C

    It was confirmed by the AGO stations that the satellite observations of the Antarctic continent were fairly accurate during the Antarctic winter, when there was a minimal amount of sunlight and cloud coverage to obfuscate the readings. There were significant errors in the satellite data during all other seasons, however, which may need to be addressed.

    Is it possible that Cohen and Petit‘s study invalidates Steig’s paper? Just a thought.

  199. Leon Palmer
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:25 AM | Permalink

    What I find interesting, and maybe Steve has an opinion on, is Steig was able to effect “a statistical blending of satellite data and temperature data from weather stations.” using bad weather station data and get a statistically meaningful result (in his eyes). Shouldn’t that result alone invalidate the approach?

  200. Glacierman
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:25 AM | Permalink

    Jon, say hey to Gavin for us.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:47 AM | Permalink

      Re: Glacierman (#331),

      I don’t converse with Gavin, nor do I post at RC.

      Re: Stephen McIntyre (#329),

      Thanks for your response. That is more or less what I expect to hear from BAS. BTW- I didn’t realize discussing the posts at Prometheus was off-topic (I was made aware of them by several comments in this thread after all), but I will say no more about them here. [Steve: it's not off-topic per se; I, not infrequently refer people to originating blogs to discuss those issues there and I thought that this was appropriate here.]

      As to why Gavin felt the need to contact BAS on Sunday, I could only speculate, but nothing about his actions suggest that in any way he was attempting to take credit for something, let alone something he did not put together himself after being tipped off to the station. I doubt it has anything to do with the Steig et al. paper’s conclusions, although I’m sure this will be explored ad nauseam in the coming days on both sites. I agree that it is curious in its own right. [Steve: you really have to try to think it through in Gavin’s shoes because the behavior is very odd, to say the least. You’re quite right that he didn’t try to take “credit”, quite the opposite. He alluded to a mystery man – someone definitely not me – to whom the “credit” was due. But he was his own mystery man. You have to admit that his behavior is extraordinarily odd and that his proffered explanation – an overweaning concern over the integrity of station data – simply doesn’t wash. You tell me what he was trying to do.

  201. Les Johnson
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:43 AM | Permalink

    Jon: your

    Gavin stated that the Harry/Gill mismatch was found independently (which does not seem to be challenged by anyone in this thread)

    It has been challenged here, and at RC. In my conversation with Gavin yesterday, he admitted that he found confirmed the mismatch after finding out about Steve’s allusion to it.

    By convention, it is neither found nor independent, if he was aware of Steve’s mention of the problem.

    IMO, the best he could say is that he confirmed that there was a problem, after being alerted that CA reported a problem with Harry.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

      Re: Les Johnson (#332),

      We seem to be talking at cross-purposes here. Gavin is not claiming to have noticed independently that Harry had something wrong with it- he acknowledged as much. He is claiming to have discovered the Harry/Gill mismatch independently, which no one seems to be challenging.

      • Urederra
        Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jon (#336),

        He is claiming to have discovered the Harry/Gill mismatch independently, which no one seems to be challenging.

        Nope.

        He was claiming that SOMEONE discovered the Harry/Gill mismatch independently.

        After Steve found that the mistery SOMEONE was Gavin, then he HAD TO ADMIT that he was the one who wrote the e-mail.

  202. Les Johnson
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:44 AM | Permalink

    Lubos: Is it true that black holes have no Harry?

  203. Glacierman
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

    I think this is a very important moment in AGW history. So lets just make this a positive. SM and Gavin have collaberated to identify, confirm and make notice of a serious data problem with Antartic Station data. Nice to see researchers working together to raise the accuracy of station data. Congratulations.

  204. Jon
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:55 AM | Permalink

    I see he is in fact challenging it. My mistake.

    So are you claiming that Gavin did not in fact identify the mismatch on his own, granting that he was alerted to the possibility of something amiss with the station? That is an interesting accusation.

  205. Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 12:06 PM | Permalink

    You tell me what he was trying to do.

    It’s hard to imagine thinking this small, but to me this question explains everything that happened from beginning to end.

    What would happen if SM was credited with a required change to a paper on the cover of Nature?

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 12:18 PM | Permalink

      Re: Jeff Id (#338),

      An issue with data products used in a paper does not require a “change to the paper”. It might merit a comment provided that the issue has a significant impact on the conclusions of the paper, but it is far from certain here that it would, and in any case anyone is free to submit such a comment regardless of who reported the problem to BAS. In short, way off base.

      Re: Stephen McIntyre (#334),

      There is always the simple possibility that he, like many others in the minority, was not watching the football game and was bored. I rather doubt the whole plan was to “deny” you credit as he has stated several times that you made a vague reference to the Harry station which he subsequently explored. But it is all speculation at this point.

      Steve: The definition of plagiarism is: “Plagiarism means the appropriation of another person’s ideas, processes, results or words without giving appropriate credit.” I’m not an academic. Obviously Schmidt did not give me any “credit”. Indeed he gloated about the fact that my “credit”, such as it was, was preempted.

      If he hadn’t left it for others to work out, he might even have got some credit. :)

      I don’t what his “plan” was. But is it your view that Schmidt gave “appropriate credit” to his sources within generally accepted academic standards?

      • Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 12:56 PM | Permalink

        Re: Jon (#340),

        Jon, you’ve made your other point very very clear so I hesitate to answer. I believe that Eric has already issued comments on the magnitude of the corrections which were first deemed non-existent and now minor on the final result, but they are corrections.

    • Scott Brim
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 12:58 PM | Permalink

      Re: Jeff Id (#338),

      What would happen if SM was credited with a required change to a paper on the cover of Nature?

      Is it true, as some people strongly believe, that “perception is reality”?
      .
      The pitfalls inherent in micro-managing a perception can — depending upon the circumstances — be many more than those inherent in micro-managing the corresponding reality.

  206. Les Johnson
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 12:47 PM | Permalink

    Jon: Gavin did indeed knowledge that Steve had first alluded to the problem.

  207. Les Johnson
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 12:57 PM | Permalink

    sigh…acknowledge….

  208. Jon
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 1:00 PM | Permalink

    I think that this is a difference of perspective. If someone says “stay tuned for news about X” and someone else looks at X, sees a problem, reports it to those who handle data, I don’t consider that “plagiarism”, no. I’m not sure why anyone would. You obviously see it from the perspective that he couldn’t have found the splicing without you drawing attention to station Harry. That’s a fair point, but it isn’t one that he is denying either.

    As for the “gloating” that seemed along with other comments to be a dig at the way you draw out things over multiple posts and strive to inventively title things- the kind of rhetorical flourishes so enjoyed by RomanM and steve mosher. It didn’t strike me as gloating in light of the other comments, although I can certainly see how it would from your perspective.

    But plagiarism? I can’t say that I see it.

    • Jeff Alberts
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 3:59 PM | Permalink

      Re: Jon (#346),

      I fail to see why you continue to split hairs. Why aren’t you posting similar questions at RC?

  209. theduke
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 1:11 PM | Permalink

    The facts are these:

    1. Gavin would never have found the error without Steve’s analysis, incomplete as it was.
    2. Gavin took Steve’s insights, hastily completed the analysis and then inferred someone had done it independently of Steve’s findings.
    3. Only after Gavin was exposed as the one who reported the error, did he admit he was dependent on Steve’s findings.
    4. Gavin expropriated Steve’s intellectual property and then tried to use it to embarrass him.

  210. plimple
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 1:12 PM | Permalink

    Obviously Schmidt did not give me any “credit”

    No, that’s not obvious. Certainly, in his first statement you, Steve, were not mentioned or credited, so that is what you are referring to perhaps. However, during discussions over the last 2 days you were mentioned and credited for identifying a problem with Harry. You didn’t state the explicit nature of that problem on Sunday, Gavin didn’t credit you for the exposition of the problem’s specific nature because you didn’t provide one on Sunday evening. He has since credited you for doing this independently of course when it became apparent that you had determined it’s specific nature also.

    Gavin’s first statement, no mention of SM:

    People will generally credit the person who tells them something. BAS were notified by people Sunday night who independently found the Gill/Harry mismatch. SM could have notified them but he didn’t. My ethical position is that it is far better to fix errors that are found than play around thinking about cute names for follow-on blog posts. That might just be me though.

    Gavin’s second relevant statement, SM is mentioned, so you did receive credit for saying there was a problem and for failing to identify it’s precise nature:

    Why? SM made a coy point about Harry, I looked, worked out (independently) that the Gill and Harry had been mashed together incorrectly and let BAS know – others worked it out too. If he’d said what he knew when he knew it instead of playing games, there would have been no need for me to do anything. As it was, he didn’t report what the data error was. I stress, the most important thing when finding errors is to get them fixed, not jump up and down declaring how clever you are to see them.

    That hint, must refer to your coy remarks:

    Independent people (including posters on CA and myself) all found the Gill/Harry thing independently once there was a hint that there was something wrong. I have no interest in the issue other than to see that the error is fixed. I didn’t claim credit because I don’t particularly care who reported it. It was curious that no-one else did.

    You’ve been credited with finding the explicit fault and the hinting of the existence of a problem:

    Wrong on all counts. i) discovering that Gill was mismatched with Harry was found independently by at least three people (SM, myself, and a poster on CA). ii) the source of the confusion was indeed found and not given to me by anyone else, iii) we are all dependent on many things, including that SM had alluded to data problem at Harry – I don’t see anywhere that I denied this. And BAS were notified by ‘people’ (plural) – not just by me.

    Another explanation:

    Huh? Let’s try again. He alluded to an unspecified problem, and I looked into it. I found the source of the problem with no further input from anyone. This isn’t that complicated.

    Gavin explains how a hint about an unspecified problem with Harry doesn’t provide any specific information about the nature of the problem with Harry:

    I disagree. I had no idea what SM thought he had found. I don’t think I can confirm something I didn’t already know.

    Do you really think this is plagiarism? I certainly don’t. In fact, I’m amazed you can casually insinuate that these serious charges might hold up given such disregard for the facts and still expect anyone in the academic community to take you seriously.

    • ToSH
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 1:25 PM | Permalink

      Re: plimple (#348),
      –> Gavin’s first statement, no mention of SM:

      “[...]the Gill/Harry mismatch. SM could have notified them but he didn’t. My ethical position [...]”

      You may want to restate that point.

    • jim edwards
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 2:00 PM | Permalink

      Re: plimple (#348),

      Yes, I lifted the subject of my thesis and a proposed experiment from Joe’s dissertation-in-progress. Look at my list of citations, I don’t see anywhere that I denied this.

      Now that I’ve been caught, er, I mean, now that I realize you are interested in this minor point, I freely admit that I was influenced by Joe’s work. My conclusions were independently derived, however.

      More importantly, Joe’s work doesn’t appear to be novel, anymore. He better pick a new project for his dissertation.

    • joeshill
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 2:09 PM | Permalink

      Re: plimple (#349),

      I don’t see the name of Steve McIntyre anywhere in that post you quoted. Has Gavin even mentioned Mr. McIntyre by name in connection to his appropriation of Steve’s initial finding?

      For someone who is peripherally involved in academia, and as someone who had to burn a relationship with an ex-boss at a university in order to receive due credit on a university held patent, I can tell you that providing proper credit is a BIG thing.

      Anyone who has his names on as many papers as Gavin does surely knows this well. His churlishness is a disgrace.

  211. theduke
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 1:41 PM | Permalink

    ClimateAudit is a participatory blog. RealClimate is an oracular blog. People come here to work side by side to locate and and fix problems in climate science. People go there to get answers from the experts.

    In this case, an expert from over there came over here and expropriated a finding that the owner of the blog had put out there as a problem for his readers to analyze while he took the evening off to watch the Super Bowl.

    I leave it to others to judge whether the expert’s behavior was vindictive or merely prankish. There can be no doubt that it was unprofessional.

    • John F. Pittman
      Posted Feb 6, 2009 at 9:23 AM | Permalink

      Re: theduke (#352), I think an important point of this thread has been missed, that theduke indirectly hit upon with this post.

      If RC and CA were equal, some of the comments would be incorrect grousing and complaining. Unfortunately, it is worse than even has been stated thus far. Steve has a donate button since this is a voluntary effort. His ability to get “credit” directly relates to his ability to fund his efforts. Gavin, however, is a government employee on an advocacy funded site. Stealing “credit” is a “takings” if by a government or one of its representatives. Such are generally not considered minor offenses, since they can lead to actionable suits that are lost, incurring expenses for the government.

      It is doubtful that this case would be worth much, if any at all. However, the ethical violation still occurred. Whether Gavic and RC are acting on their own, or as advocates, and not government employees are important. However, the ethical transgression of attempting to take money from CA, which is volutary and is helped maintained by voluntary donations, whether intentional or not, should be reprehensible on the personal level, and on the professional level by advocates, or by government employees.

  212. Bill W
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 1:43 PM | Permalink

    Jon,

    Basta, porque no te callas…

  213. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 2:27 PM | Permalink

    I strongly advise Steve McIntrye not to react to anonymus trolls like Jon and plimple anymore, who are clearly are trying to distract the conversation with straw men and red herrings. Look at Dr.Schmidt, the more he reacts to the discussion the less credible he gets. The facts tell their own undeniable story and speak for themselves.

  214. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 2:28 PM | Permalink

    Let’s grant Jon some points to move this forward to the interesting part.

    SM could have notified BAS earlier. The moment he found it. But he didn’t. what are the reason’s
    or motives for this.

    A. He thought it could wait for the morning
    B. he wanted to double check his finding
    C. he wanted to generate interest.

    You note that these motives or reasons are not mutually exclusive.
    You’ll note that none of these motives or reasons is unethical. generating interest in a topic is
    the job of a good educator. Mystery loves company. The mystery here was one that Steve fully intended to solve. what was the problem with the data?

    Let’s move on.

    Gavin discovered the splice independently. he was alerted by SM, as he notes, but worked it out himself. let’s grant that and stop the scholastic quibbling over the meaning of independent. The relevant questions remain.

    1. Why did Gavin move so quickly to inform BAS. In the past Gavin in word and deeds has argued that we need not rush out and update flawed data. Especially when Gavin knew this particular error was of no consequence. Now, try to come up with a Reason for this change. Not a bad motive, but a good one. ? Go ahead? the best I’ve heard is that he was bored.

    2. Why did Gavin create his own mystery? pointing to a mystery person he had no intention of revealing? What’s the good rationale for that?

    It’s one thing to hold off a data mystery for a day. It’s quite another thing to create a mystery you have no intention of solving? The former reaches closure. The latter shifts attention away from the science and focuses conversation on who is the mystery man.

    So Gavin is actually guilty of what jon accuses SM of. Posting a mystery to generate interest. With this difference. SM intended to solve his mystery. gavin didnt. gavin is bad writer. SM is brilliant.
    Since I’m the only expert here on writing, we have a consensus. there is no debate.
    Wait jeez is an expert as well. What say you jeez?

    • AJ Abrams
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 2:40 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#357),

      Steven, you aren’t the only expert on writing here. However, I concur with your analysis of the situation. I add this bit about Gavin as well; it was boorish behavior on a grand scale.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 2:46 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#357),

      We can’t answer #1. #2 seems self-evident. From his perspective to make the point that just sending in the data is more important than grandstanding via multiple blog posts with “witty” titles. There was no intention of creating a mystery. “See an error, send it in, and move on” vs. the perceived overselling of their significance.

      That in essence is what remains consistent about his attitude here vs. the other instances brought up referring to data correction as though they are contradictory-

      “Yes, it’s good to fix errors. No, they don’t have earthshaking significance. Let’s move on.”

    • Keith Wells
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 10:02 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#357), Actually, Mosh, you do have another writer (and published no less!) reading the thread. Your line of reasoning is perfectly sound, as far as I can perceive. And as a former microbiology major as well, I must say that Gavin’s “mystery man” approach fails as proper form for reporting a scientific problem. Give credit where it is due, man (or is that Mann?), and that credit does belong in part to Stevie Mac!

  215. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 3:11 PM | Permalink

    #361.

    No intention of creating a mystery? I didn’t say it was intentional. i say he created, unintentionally, a mystery he had no intention of solving. Unintended irony as I said long ago, which makes him a bad writer. As to the issue of giving credit. You haven’t followed the debates I have had with gavin over the issue of credit and his agreement that credit should be given. Now, he cannot maintain that credit should be given and not claim it from the begining. More plausibly, he didnt want to get credit because to state the facts correctly he would have to say: “based on tip from SM, I found the splice problem and reported it.” When Gavin’s superior is on record saying that he will not say the name of the owner of this blog, when gavin himself refers to this man by his initials when he knows damn well how to spell his name, you have to wonder

  216. anonymous
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 4:02 PM | Permalink

    Where is the best place to read up on RegEM ?

  217. Robert in Calgary
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 4:03 PM | Permalink

    I confess!

    There’s great schadenfreude here, with both Gavin and Jon.

  218. plimple
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 5:01 PM | Permalink

    Joeshill,

    Has Gavin even mentioned Mr. McIntyre by name in connection to his appropriation of Steve’s initial finding?

    Yes, in my post above I quoted Gavin saying that he read SM’s post on an unspecified problem with Harry.

    SM = Steve McIntyre! Same way that in Gavin’s posts (and many other people’s posts here and elsewhere) CA = Climate Audit.

    Yes, credit is an important issue, but, as I pointed out, Gavin has given credit to SM and/or CA.

    Jim, can you explain the relevance of your contrived analogy? Gavin provided CA/SM with the relevant credit as I’ve already shown.

    • Richard M
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 5:11 PM | Permalink

      Re: plimple (#375), Good grief. Your attempts to obfuscate a very simple issue are getting boring. The fact is had Gavin done this exact same thing 50 years ago he would currently be looking for another job.

      In addition, everyone at RC has now been tainted by Gavin’s screw-up. If they don’t come forward right now and take a stand they become guilty as well. They need to take a position on professional conduct otherwise their names on RC’s main page are clear support of Gavin’s conduct.

      Gavin needs to apologize imediately and without caveat or he risks taking down several others with him..

    • joeshill
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 9:56 PM | Permalink

      Re: plimple (#375),

      Referring to Mr. McIntyre by initials is not “by name”. You entirely missed (and made) my point.

      The fact that Gavin Schmidt won’t even print his name in acknowledgment is telling.

  219. Alan S. Blue
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 5:11 PM | Permalink

    Wait, you can grant credit after you get caught? Excellent.

  220. rwnj
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 5:28 PM | Permalink

    Jon,
    Gavin lied.
    He lied explicitly and he lied by omission. He created a false sequence of events in the minds of his readers for the purpose of insulting SM and denying him credit for his accomplishment.
    You continue to debate what the meaning of “is” is.
    Why do you try to blur the distinction between honesty and dishonesty?

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:03 PM | Permalink

      Re: rwnj (#376),

      Obfuscated, certainly. I don’t think this is really the place to carp about a blog poster setting up a pseudo-fictitious narrative however. Do you?

  221. VG
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 5:35 PM | Permalink

    #13 for hu request in case no one else has. If so snip

    # Steve Reynolds Says:
    2 February 2009 at 5:15 PM

    gavin: “It would have been nice had SM actually notified the holders of the data that there was a problem (he didn’t, preferring to play games instead). If he hadn’t left it for others to work out, he might even have got some credit ;)”

    Isn’t it rather petty (as well as possibly unethical) to refuse credit because you don’t like the source or their methods of communication?

    [Response: People will generally credit the person who tells them something. BAS were notified by people Sunday night who independently found the Gill/Harry mismatch. SM could have notified them but he didn't. My ethical position is that it is far better to fix errors that are found than play around thinking about cute names for follow-on blog posts. That might just be me though. - gavin]
    # dhogaza Says:
    2 February 2009 at 5:59 PM

    Isn’t it rather petty (as well as possibly unethical) to refuse credit because you don’t like the source or their methods of communication?

    First, there has to be an attempt to communicate…

    Or are you suggesting that scientists have to monitor every whackjob blog out there in hopes that one author has found an error in the scientist’s work?
    # steven mosher Says:
    2 February 2009 at 6:10 PM

    RE 148: gavin,

    Steig asked SM not to communicate with him anymore. The only way to take this beyond personalities is for scientists to publish their data and publish their code so that others can reproduce the results and point out errors if any exist. Part of the appeal of CA is the “detective story.” That goes away when data and source code are freely published. As before when SM has found errors the best course of action is to thank him and move on with the science. It’s not that hard. “Thank you SM for finding this error.”

    [Response: This data error has nothing to with Steig or any of his co-authors. SM should have contacted BAS. I'm sure BAS are grateful that someone told them about the data mess up - it just didn't happen to be SM. If he wasn't so set on trying to embarrass people or stir up fake ‘accusations against Hansen' then he'd probably find people would be more willing to deal with him. But it is the same pattern every time. Some trivial thing is blown out of all proportion and the greek chorus start piling on, because of course, they knew it was wrong anyway. SM could have easily seen that the typo in the Table was just a typo (the actual lat/lon used are here) - but he chose not to bother for some reason, thus sprouting all sorts of ill-informed nonsense. By continually overblowing trivialities, he lacks credibility on anything more serious. Science is not a game of gotcha, it's a serious endeavour to make sense out of a complex and confusing world. It's difficult enough at the best of times, and very few people have the patience to deal with people who aren't constructive. Life is just too short. - gavin]

  222. Tolz
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 6:59 PM | Permalink

    I wonder if any actual quality control changes at BAS, or at RC with regard reviewing data prior to disseminating will occur as a result of all this? Or will the policy of not correcting the data if it “cools” the result be continued?

  223. Bill Illis
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 7:02 PM | Permalink

    3 more stations have had some data pulled by BAS now – all related to data being incorrectly assigned to a particular site but actually recorded on another site. There could be some kind of systematic error in the data collection processes/programs which could affect all of the base data I imagine.

    http://www.antarctica.ac.uk/met/READER/aws_corrections.html

    There really is no one doing data quality analysis on these sites (and most of the others around the world it seems – other than Steve and Anthony.)

  224. Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 7:10 PM | Permalink

    The response over at Unreal Climate in general seems to be that “we are the expert scientists, how dare these amateurs meddle in our affairs? Pay no attention to the man at that (unamed) blog.” Whew

  225. J.Hansford.
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 7:31 PM | Permalink

    Steve….. Has a Heat Island Effect value been calculated and assigned to all weather data stations in the Polar regions? Say similar to what Anthony Watts has done for the USHCN network?

    If not, then any paper is not complete in it’s findings…. If an Urban heat island effect is valid elsewhere, then it is also valid in the Antarctic…. That would be my opinion.

    So in Steig’s paper, it may be, that his measured Anomaly is simply the Heat Island Effect of his own presence? So to speak…. ; )

    In otherwords he’s simply detected the heat island effect and misinterpreted it as a global influence.

    • Guy
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 8:51 PM | Permalink

      Re: J.Hansford. (#389), an interesting question in the light of this comment and the pictures shown on WUWT (Snow job in Antarctica) would be whether there is any relationship between the warming trend for manned stations and the distance from the nearest building to the measuring devices.

  226. Hu McCulloch
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 9:13 PM | Permalink

    Re #9,
    The BAS AWS page at http://www.antarctica.ac.uk/met/READER/data.html has in fact changed twice since Steve’s original screen shot, once to report that Racer Rock was also messed up, and now back to its original form with no indication of any errors, even though it now links the corrected data. (I doubt that it’s actually correct yet, but at least it’s corrected for the known problems.)

    Meanwhile, as Bill Illis reports (#387), there is now an AWS Corrections page, at http://www.antarctica.ac.uk/met/READER/aws_corrections.html, reporting not just 2 but now 4 records with known errors: Harry, Racer Rock, Penguin Point, and Clean Air.

    However, there is no link to it on the READER/data.html page, so I don’t know how anyone would know how to find it. How did you find it, Bill?

    Eric Steig reports on his U. Wash. webpage that he has corrected his calculations, whatever they were, for the errors in Harry and Racer Rock, and that his new definitive results are essentially the same as those published. While it’s commendable of him to have reported (albeit without credit to SM or CA) that there are some data problems, it would have been prudent of him to have waited at least a few weeks for further data errors to be detected and corrected before announcing a definitive correction. Perhaps he could have even taken a look at the data himself to see if there were more than just 2 problem stations.

    Harry and Racer Point were first reported as suspicous on CA, but I haven’t seen any mention of Penguin Point or Clean Air here. Apparently BAS caught those themselves, or maybe Gavin alerted them. ;~)

    But wait! — Nic L now reports over on CA’s Dirty Harry 4 thread that Elaine is also garbled, and that BAS may be correcting it soon as well. That would make 5 corrupt AWS records that have been detected since Sunday, out of 63 in all.

  227. anon
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 9:21 PM | Permalink

    Gavin’s behavior is not rare in academia. Many times someone gives a hint for a quick and interesting specific calculation or measurement in a talk then gets scooped. People with stronger personalities and more political power are less likely to be scooped and more likely to added as a co-author or at least referenced. It is poor conduct, but not shocking conduct and would not, I believe, be considered plagiarism (assuming he only got the hint from Steve of a problem with Harry and nothing more). Usually one might see gloating (if an enemy was scooped) but only to friends. Gavin is really giving you an education about how academia works (not pretty, but people are people). Some similar event happens to almost everyone at sometime. Then they either learn to a) not get overly upset or b) be careful in what they say (or blog). Pointing out the poor behavior (e.g., “The paper of Prof. X wrote is because he heard from me that this was the right approach”) is another response.

    The more important point is that this shows that after decades of research and many many millions of dollars, the mentality of client scientists is basically that of an academic. They keep the mentality even though they want to rework the energy economy of the globe on the basis of their analysis and computation.
    I will not speculate here on motives. However, climate change has far too much societal impact for this attitude to be allowed to impede finding correct results. The fault lies not only with Gavin and colleagues, but also, perhaps more egregiously with the scientific leadership and organizations (NAS/NRC/AGU/AMO/APS etc) that do not take the obvious steps of finding top people in physics, statistics and applied math to be working on this problem (without constantly running around writing proposals). Instead the NAS comes out with the North report that is sufficiently vague that Mann et al claim vindication, and the professional organizations fall over themselves to issue dire statements. They are, evidently, happy to leave climate science to climate scientists.

    • theduke
      Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:23 PM | Permalink

      Re: anon (#392),

      Well said, anon. But there is one point you didn’t mention that has been made before on these threads: Gavin is an employee of the US government and not strictly an academic. His salary is paid by the taxpayers. While strictures against government employees participating in political activities have relaxed over the years, it is still considered unacceptable for them to engage in partisan policy disputes, which is what the debate over AGW has become.

      I found Gavin’s behavior in this incident to be arrogant, deceitful, and unprofessional. His behavior as a scientist was ethically indefensible.

      It is often said that we need to hold those who serve in government to a higher standard. In this case, Gavin failed to meet even minimum standards.

  228. Ryan O
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 9:37 PM | Permalink

    .
    Not to put a damper on everything, but Racer Rock, Penguin Point, and Clean Air will not have an impact on Steig’s results because they were not used for any reconstructions. The only sites that could potentially affect his results are Byrd, Harry, Siple, and Mt. Siple. So while additional AWS sites may be fubar, unless the fubar’d ones are Byrd, Harry, Siple, or Mt. Siple, it doesn’t change his paper.
    .
    It’s good that errors are getting uncovered and corrected, but it’s probably not good/healthy to assume that any old AWS error has the capacity to destroy the paper.

  229. Brooks Hurd
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 9:55 PM | Permalink

    After going through this thread, I have come to the conclusion that one of the following is true:
    1. Jon is more than one person (possibly a TEAM), or
    2. Unlike the vast majority of CA readers, he does not have a day job.

  230. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 10:09 PM | Permalink

    I would have no problem with Gavin taking credit for alerting BAS. But the way he portrayed it being done “independent” was simply to attempt to minimize “SM” and the other folks at places like CA that had started to run with Harry’s issues. God forbid he or anyone else admit to the readers of RC that “SM” is anything but an incompetent oil company shill.

  231. Hu McCulloch
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:05 PM | Permalink

    Ryan O writes, #393,

    Not to put a damper on everything, but Racer Rock, Penguin Point, and Clean Air will not have an impact on Steig’s results because they were not used for any reconstructions. The only sites that could potentially affect his results are Byrd, Harry, Siple, and Mt. Siple. So while additional AWS sites may be fubar, unless the fubar’d ones are Byrd, Harry, Siple, or Mt. Siple, it doesn’t change his paper.

    Just three problems here:

    1. The version of Harry used in the Nature article is indeed FUBAR — see CA for the past week, passim.

    2. We were initially assured by Steig and/or Gavin that the AWS stations were not used at all in the primary Nature reconstruction. Yet Steig now admits on his U. Wash. page that correcting Harry and Racer Rock does make a difference to the primary reconstruction, but that since the two huge errors largely offset one another, the net effect is small. So which is it — were the AWS stations just dragged in to snowblind the Nature reviewers, or were they really used somehow? And if they were used, why isn’t it important that they all be correct? What’s the significance of the 63 AWS reconstructions carefully archived on Steig’s site, if they’re irrelevant to the conclusions of the paper?

    3. Observers can’t know what the Steig team really did until they post their actual code. Just pointing to routines on Tapio Schneider’s Caltech site, as at present, does not tell us how Steig et al employed those routines to obtain their results. Is this supposed to be Climate Science, or Climate Faith?

  232. Hu McCulloch
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:19 PM | Permalink

    RE #393,
    Steve just opened a new thread on this topic, so I’ll repost my comment over there. Please direct any response there.

  233. bender
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:26 PM | Permalink

    Y’all are using the wrong definition of “independence”. Gavin’s discovery is “independent” of Steve’s – just as dozens of independent recons have independently confirmed the existence of the hockey stick. Does that help?

  234. theduke
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:54 PM | Permalink

    Welcome back, Kotter..er, Bender.

  235. Jon
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 11:55 PM | Permalink

    snip – please stop this pointless bickering.

  236. icman
    Posted Feb 6, 2009 at 12:10 AM | Permalink

    Welcome back Bender. I have been thinking the same thing. (independently)

  237. steven mosher
    Posted Feb 6, 2009 at 3:36 AM | Permalink

    re 389. you’re the second one to miss the sarcasm. I award you no points as well.

  238. Richard Sharpe
    Posted Feb 6, 2009 at 10:19 AM | Permalink

    I am left wondering if Jon is Gavin’s pseudonym on this blog.

    Steve: Jon says not and I have no reason to think so. Also if Gavin were to show up here, I’m quite sure that he’s show up as Gavin Schmidt, PhD.

  239. theduke
    Posted Feb 6, 2009 at 11:42 AM | Permalink

    John F. Pittman, #402: very well stated. Although on a tight budget, I occasionally donate voluntarily to Steve’s efforts. I am required by law to contribute to the fund from which Gavin’s salary is drawn.

  240. Mike Lorrey
    Posted Feb 7, 2009 at 5:38 AM | Permalink

    snip – forbidden language

  241. per
    Posted Feb 20, 2009 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    climate audit mentioned in despatches at the BBC:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/02/need_for_a_cooler_climate.html#commentsanchor

  242. Posted Sep 11, 2009 at 5:09 PM | Permalink

    Ha, will Gavin has been busy then.

  243. Phil
    Posted Feb 4, 2009 at 2:05 PM | Permalink

    Re: Lonnie King (#130), Unless I missed something, there is no evidence that either Hansen or Gore have or have had any direct involvement in this particular kettle of fish.

  244. ToSH
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 2:49 PM | Permalink

    Re: Jon (#359),

    That actually bolsters his point, doesn’t it?

    There is no a in this sentence.

    There, I just “bolstered” my point.

  245. Urederra
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 3:47 PM | Permalink

    Re: Jon (#359),
    So, you expect Steve to uphold high moral standards but you circumvent span karma by writting racist remarks in Spanish?
    What is your problem?

  246. Jon
    Posted Feb 5, 2009 at 10:52 PM | Permalink

    Re: Urederra (#366),

    Although that wasn’t a racial slur, I’d be happy if that back forth were snipped altogether. If only for the sensibilities of the rest of us who speak Spanish. Snip away.

    Re: Jeff Alberts (#367),

    As I’ve stated before- I don’t post at RC.

    Re: Jeff Alberts (#383),

    I don’t make assumptions about your motivations for being here. I’d appreciate the same courtesy in response.

    Re: Brooks Hurd (#394),

    If only either of those were true!

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