Between Scientists & Citizens

Posts Tagged ‘visual rhetoric

Ink blot test for climate controversy

with one comment

All right–here’s another test.  Look at the image at the other end of the this link, and take note of what you see.

That diagram was “leaked” in an article on a progressive blog; apparently it’s some part of an study of the publicity surrounding the CRU emails. Beyond dividing the world of climate controversy evenly into two territories, however, it’s not at all clear (even after more explanation) what exactly it’s supposed to represent.  What do these sizes, locations, connections mean?

Because the diagram is so ambiguous, it can act like a kind of Rorschach test.  The observer can project her own views onto it, seeing them as confirmed or not.  So I’m going to examine the reactions to this climate controversy ink blot among the people commenting on it at the leading climate skeptic blog Watt’s Up With That (WUWT).  Here’s one comment:

What an enormous load of …
No mention of Greenpeace or WWF on the supporter’s network.
But, what’s even more absurd, listing the small skeptical network in such a way that it seems to be equivalent to the likes of the BBC, Nature, the World Bank, et al. And the IPCC seems to be set apart as neutral?!! The IPCC, with links to every government pushing the AGW agenda?
Give me a break already! The skeptical network is a miniscule David next to the supporter’s huge Goliath network.

Over the next few posts, I want to understand this view–the David/Goliath fallacy–by placing it within the broader range of views expressed by the WUWT community.

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Written by jeangoodwin

March 28, 2010 at 11:46 am