The Lewandowsky Census

Anthony has posted up an online census of participants in the Lewandowsky survey. I urge any readers who participated in the Lewandowsky survey to identify themselves as Anthony’s thread using their regular internet handle.


  1. Posted Sep 14, 2012 at 5:47 PM | Permalink


    So SMOKEY new about the survey
    AND he took the survey

    So WUWT actually had a link posted
    So here’s another source for responses

    paulw says:

    August 30, 2010 at 2:30 am

    Look at

    It is a survey by an Australian university that tries to show correlations among the science beliefs of people. It asks, for example, your view on climate change and your view on free markets.

    I gave it a go so that my climate change and free market views are properly represented in the results.

    [Reply: I took the survey. Interesting questions. ~dbs, mod.]

    Steve: these contemporary mentions need to be in the census. I think that there was a contemporary mention in an unrelated thread at Bishophill as well.

    • Steven Mosher
      Posted Sep 14, 2012 at 8:41 PM | Permalink

      yes, ford this was discussed a long time ago. And people wondered whether Dr. Lew was counting these as “posts” on a skeptic blog. Please see the initial threads
      at Lucias wrt to this. The issue at first was two fold.

      1. dr. Lew claimed he contacted 5 skeptics
      2. dr. Lew claimed they refused

      We now know both to be false. He did not contact 5 skeptics. His associate contacted
      3 skeptics, and two other people: SteveMc and Roger P. And we know that not all of them refused him. Some asked questions. But we don’t have 5 mails refusing to post the survey.
      None of the 5 contact posted the survey, but failing to post it and writing him to refuse
      are two different animals.

      In the course of that discussion links were found to a few places on skeptical blogs where the survey was linked. So, nothing new here move along

      • Posted Sep 14, 2012 at 11:52 PM | Permalink

        Re: Steven Mosher (Sep 14 20:41), Steven

        The link is to one of the warmist surveys according to chart from the Third Skeptic thread

        profmandia HKMKNF_991e2415
        deltoid HKMKNF_991e2415
        hot-topic HKMKNF_991e2415
        tamino HKMKNF_991e2415
        illconsidered HKMKNG_ee191483
        bbickmore HKMKNG_ee191483
        skepticalscience ???
        trunity ???

        junkscience HKMKNI_9a13984
        climateaudit HKMKNI_9a13984
        pielke jr ??? [SM- HKMKNH_7ea60912]
        climatedepot ???[HKMKNI_9a13984]
        spencer ???HKMKNH_7ea60912

    • Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 6:14 AM | Permalink
      1.paulw says: August 31, 2010 at 9:44 am

      It might help to take the survey by the University of Western Australia, on attitudes towards science. Then, we can debate on the survey results and hopefully help our efforts. The URL to the survey is

      elicited this reply

      Djozar says: August 31, 2010 at 10:24 am
      I took the survey; however didn’t see the results. Noted that while most questions were balanced, some seemed biased.

      No great kerfuffel about the questions (c.f. now) from smokey or djozar at that time.

      Neither posted to the new thread!

      • Adam Gallon
        Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 2:53 PM | Permalink

        I’m getting a 404 error for the kwiksurvey.

  2. Posted Sep 14, 2012 at 6:10 PM | Permalink

    Reblogged this on Climate Ponderings.

  3. Eddy
    Posted Sep 14, 2012 at 6:16 PM | Permalink

    I’ve been thinking that this Lewandowsky stuff is a yawn and probably a case of useless troll-feeding (who cares about some crappy survey? etc etc).

    But then I see it has turned up on my favorite anti-medical quackery blog, “Respectful Insolence”, as a usefful study contributing to understanding of why people reject science:

    So I guess it does have to be challenged, if real people are taking it seriously.

    • Posted Sep 14, 2012 at 6:58 PM | Permalink

      I echo all of that. Thanks both to Steve and to Anthony for the extra firepower they’ve added to the pioneers like Geoff Chambers and Barry Woods who got the ball rolling after the Guardian’s original article early last month. And if we manage the nail the oil-funded-denialist conspiracrap, with the help of Russell Cook’s history, in the process, wouldn’t that be something?

  4. Skiphil
    Posted Sep 14, 2012 at 6:16 PM | Permalink

    re: “So WUWT actually had a link posted”

    yes, and that is why Anthony and Steve are trying to get a handle on where the link appeared, who did or didn’t take the survey etc.

    TFP, Don’t mislead people into thinking it was posted BY the blog WUWT with its own thread where many would see it… yes it may (or may not) have gotten some response, but it was posted OFF-topic as one of the last comments on a thread that had very few comments, and no one on the thread commented about it or mentioned taking it in response to that link posting. That was not the kind of thread that gets much of the traffic on WUWT from what I’ve seen (only 24 comments, and only 11 unique user comments after the link was posted in the quiet thread) . Since “dbs” mentions having already taken the survey that may only suggest he saw it on one of the other blogs. There is not yet ANY evidence that WUWT was “another [actual] source for responses” although it would be good to know from Lewandowsky et al whether they tracked the Kwiksurvey links and where they were clicked on, in what numbers and in relation to what survey responses, etc.

  5. tlitb1
    Posted Sep 14, 2012 at 7:18 PM | Permalink

    • tlitb1
      Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 7:37 AM | Permalink

      Oh dear sorry.. fail there with a poor attempt with a novel image post when I came back er, last night 😉

      Bottom, line I think Lewandowsky et al basically did a survey in a psychologically pre-disposed way – I say this as a posturing amateur in psychology and await any fun in being corrected in a way I can understand. 😉

      I think the fact Lewandowsky can pick out some plots of distribution’s that look like normal probability distributions convinces himself he has something to work with.

      I think there are so many issues with the study with priming – and the psychological condition of the setters- that a critic could just go through those alone as a way to focus – a bit like getting Capone with tax evasion 😉

      (BTW Sincerely no slight to Lewandowsky meant there in a comparison. In fact I was directing that comparson as a metaphor to passionate lew critics as a suggestion of more useful approach of criticism.)

      I was looking at the data and was attempting to post a plot of the distribution of something that did strike me as unusual. The fact both Alien conspiracies look similar when plotted alone but have a striking double peak when plotted together. There may be a reason for this that is straightforward – but it looks like there must be a cause of it that someone could explain?

  6. tlitb1
    Posted Sep 14, 2012 at 7:25 PM | Permalink

    Bottom line is the scary fact that Lew realises the weird bins are smaller and you can find them – ok come – you gits tell me you haven;t mixed and matched like this guy?

  7. Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 3:14 AM | Permalink

    A couple of comments on the state of play currently recorded on the second WUWT thread The Lewandowsky participation census, re-booted:

    1. Richard Allcock makes clear the need for another category: those who began to take the survey in 2010 and gave up.

    • Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 3:15 AM | Permalink

      2. Jerry‘s post on Bishop Hill on 30 Aug 2010 linking to the survey (but not saying he had started or completed it) is currently at that URL, which will work until there are 10 more posts to Unthreaded on BH, when the ?currentPage=648 should be incremented to ?currentPage=649. (Not the greatest technical feature of that excellent blog.) The local anchor #post1219618 should I assume work in perpetuity.

    • DGH
      Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 7:24 AM | Permalink

      The list of folks that “gave up” is growing. I’ve added my name to the list along with several others.

      I recall losing interest as I found the questions difficult to answer. It went something like…

      Does HIV cause AIDS?
      Of course it does…strongly agree….uhh…is this a trick question…uhh…why are they asking this question…uhhh…this is a stupid survey….click

  8. Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 3:42 AM | Permalink

    Richard Drake
    Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 3:14 AM | Permalink | Reply

    A couple of comments on the state of play currently recorded on the second WUWT thread The Lewandowsky participation census, re-booted:

    1. Richard Allcock makes clear the need for another category: those who began to take the survey in 2010 and gave up.

    Isn’t his comment also the first positive confirmation that the survey was circulated internally at UWA?

    If so that raises questions about what happened to those responses.

    • Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 4:40 AM | Permalink

      Yep, having read Richard Allcock’s testimony, I’m looking forward to Steve’s next installments: Lew’s Unreported Results (Part 2) and, even more so, Lew’s Unreported Feedback.

    • Skiphil
      Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 4:54 AM | Permalink

      Allcock’s comment was most interesting, especially the part about critical feedback to Charles Hanich and the lack of interest there (of course at that point they were presumably just trying to wrap things up, but still….).

      From UWA’s website it seems that Allcock is not simply some random admin but a highly accomplished prof in biomedical sciences (specializing in genome research). i.e., Hanich (whether or not he shared the matter with Lewandowsky) received highly critical feedback about the inadequacy of the survey instrument.

      Sure there can be many debates about such matters, but Prof. Allcock does not look like someone who’s critical feedback should have been lightly brushed aside.

  9. tlitb1
    Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 8:01 AM | Permalink

    As a further though (and more cod psychology from me)

    There seems to be an over-elaborate approach to this study that invites self-confusion rather than enlightenment. The Title claims something that can be shown as ridiculous almost with the most trivial inspection. This is not to denigrate the people who actually decided to inspect the basis of the title – as I have said elsewhere I am in the demographic who already knew enough of Australian climate politics to discount it and not look further, and I missed this like everyone and their dog two months ago. 😉

    There is that psychology again – who counts on that? 😉

  10. RoyFOMR
    Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 8:55 AM | Permalink

    Does anyone know if results from incomplete surveys were utilised in the studies findings?

    • RomanM
      Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 9:31 AM | Permalink

      From the Lewandowsky paper:

      Following standard recommendations (Gosling, Vazire, Srivastava, & John, 2004), duplicate responses from any IP number were eliminated (N = 71). An additional 161 responses were eliminated because the respondent’s age was implausible ( 95) or values for the consensus items were outside the 0 – 100 range, or because responses were incomplete. This left 1145 complete records for analysis.

      The incomplete records could possibly offer some further information about the subjects. If the CO2 questions preceded the conspiracy questions, it would be interesting to examine what percentage of the incompletes were supposedly from skeptic subjects as well as what the patterns of incompleteness may have been. Such patterns might suggest specific reasons for the lack of answers.

      Also, the suppression of other variables which were collected is surprising. The only mention of the word “age” in the entire paper is contained in the quote I have given above. It seems pretty obvious that age could have a fairly strong influence on an individual’s views on the various subjects in the survey. Yet, there is no mention of any analysis whatsoever to determine what that effect, if any, might have been.

    • tlitb1
      Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 9:59 AM | Permalink

      From the paper and other discussions I am pretty sure that only fully complete responses were used in the final study.

      • Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 6:26 PM | Permalink

        I don’t think you could progress in the survey, unless you answered each question (so lots bailed)

  11. RoyFOMR
    Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 11:07 AM | Permalink

    Thanks for your answers Roman and tlitb1.
    Given the current, albeit low number, responses on the WUWT thread for responders who overwhelmingly claim not to have finished the survey I find the number of results (60 or less?) disregarded for incompleteness surprisingly small.

  12. Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 11:53 AM | Permalink

    It’s fascinating that Anthony’s latest census, of people who attempted the survey, is still in low double digits.

    The Lewpaper has now had more exposure on sceptic blogs than anything since climategate.

    It’s had multiple, high traffic posts at WUWT, BH,Jo Nova, Andrew Bolt, Lucia, ClimateDepot and here – as well as at least one post on pretty well all other sceptic sites.

    In other words, there can hardly be an active sceptic blog visitor who isn’t au fait with the story………. and yet……..and yet……. Anthony has only found a dozen sceptics who even started the survey.

    So where did those c1,400 initial responses come from????

    • Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 12:43 PM | Permalink

      The question arises: Are there 1400 people who visit Scott Mandia’s blog?

  13. Posted Sep 15, 2012 at 2:47 PM | Permalink

    I checked Supermandia’s blog.

    His last five posts have averaged 2.2 comments each.

    I think the next ice age will be well under way before his 1,400th visitor is seen.

    Time for a bit of direct action now, think of those poor defenceless questionnaires mouldering in the dark recesses of Lew’s filing cabinet…

    ……. “Free the Lew 1400!”

  14. Keith Sketchley
    Posted Sep 16, 2012 at 12:52 PM | Permalink

    Anthony’s effort will produce a huge number of responses from people who are skeptics but quite unlikely to be on any list Lewandowsky and fellow incompetents come up with.

%d bloggers like this: