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2022 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #48

Posted on 3 December 2022 by John Hartz

A chronological listing of news articles posted on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, Nov 27, 2022  thru Sat, Dec 3, 2022.

Story of the Week

#ClimateScam: denialism claims flooding Twitter have scientists worried

Many researchers are fleeing the platform, unnerved by the surge in climate misinformation since Musk’s chaotic takeover

Twitter has proved a cherished forum for climate scientists to share research, as well as for activists seeking to rally action to halt oil pipelines or decry politicians’ failure to cut pollution. But many are now fleeing Twitter due to a surge in climate misinformation, spam and even threats that have upended their relationship with the platform.

Scientists and advocates have told the Guardian they have become unnerved by a recent resurgence of debunked climate change denialist talking points and memes on Twitter, with the term #ClimateScam now regularly the first result that appears when “climate” is searched on the site.

Under the often chaotic leadership of Elon Musk, Twitter has fired content management teams, dismantled the platform’s sustainability arm and lifted bans on several prominent users with millions of followers, such as Donald Trump and the rightwing commentator Jordan Peterson, who has espoused falsities about the climate crisis. The changes have been too much to bear for some climate experts.

Click here to access the entire article as originally posted on The Guardian.

#ClimateScam: denialism claims flooding Twitter have scientists worried by Oliver Milman, Technology, The Guardian, Dec 2, 2022

Links posted on Facebook

Sun, Nov 27, 2022

Mon, Nov 28, 2022

Tue, Nov 29, 2022

Wed, Nov 30, 2022

Thu, Dec 1, 2022

Fri, Dec 2, 2022

Sat, Dec 3, 2022

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Comments 1 to 2:

  1. Developing improvements for humanity is almost certain to be harmed by Twitter allowing and excusing, and as a result promoting with relative impunity, harmful misunderstandings and harmfully misleading comments (note: Some misunderstanding and misleading can be neutral or even be helpful. It is less important to correct or limit the influence of neutral or helpful misunderstanding).

    It is important to differentiate between Knowledge and Beliefs. Belief can be anything. Knowledge is limited to reasoned or evidence-based understanding. Beliefs can be entrenched dogma. Knowledge is constantly improving. Belief and Knowledge have a history of conflict.

    There is now ample evidence, and robust reasoning related to the evidence, that ‘people being freer to believe, comment, and act however they wish without effective governing of harm done’ will lead to a failure of humanity developing sustainable improvements. The climate science case is one of the most significant examples. Thirty years after the development of a robust evidence-based and well-reasoned understanding that fossil fuel use is unsustainable and very harmful there continue to be people trying to resist that learning becoming the ‘significantly more’ common sense. (Note that climate science is not the only case of harmful results due to people being freer to believe and do as they please in competition for personal benefits and status).

    Constantly improving consensus understanding of what is harmful and how to effectively limit harm done is essential to the development of sustainable improvements for humanity (refer to the SkS Explainer regarding Scientific Consensus but extend it to other reasoned or evidence-based understanding). Constantly improving the ‘common sense about harm and the need to limit harm done’ is especially important for correcting harmful unsustainable human development and developing sustainable improvements.

    Free speech is important. But, like most things, Free Speech can be helpful or harmful. To limit its harmfulness, Free Speech needs to be governed by the pursuit of increased awareness and improved understanding of what is harmful. Helpful learning and education about harm to effectively limit harm done is critical. The most important application of critical thinking is learning to limit harm done (that involves learning that may reduce developed perceptions of status or opportunities for benefit).

    It would be great if everyone diligently learned and self-governed their Free Speech to be as harmless as possible and strive to be helpful. But that is unlikely to ever be the reality for humanity. Some people will probably always try to benefit from harmful Free Speech (or other Freedoms). There will probably always be a need for prompt effective correction of harmful misunderstanding or misleading claims. And, in the worst cases, it will be necessary to ‘cancel’ the ‘sharing of very harmful misunderstanding’ and effectively block the influence of the most harmful repeat offenders (the ones who resist learning to be less harmful and more helpful).

    Repeatedly harmful people, people resisting helpful harm reducing correction, are traditionally penalized or kept from harmfully influencing things. That tradition needs to govern the ‘sharing of beliefs’.

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  2. TahitiSunset @2  :  You are absolutely correct.  Censorship is a deadly weapon leading inevitably to the collapse of Western Civilization and all we hold dear.

    Everyone has the right to free speech : even in favor of child pornography & child sexual abuse, and including discussing construction of terrorist bombs (and how best to shoot-up electrical transformer stations) or how to make/release poison gas or to spread anthrax or how to assassinate public officials (in the Capitol or elsewhere) . . . and so on.   Censorship is absolutely wrong and can never ever be justified.

    I also admire your stand on the strawman argument regarding mass exterminations (except where ordered by the Anonymous Q , for the purpose of countering the Great Replacement).   We are in furious agreement about that !

    TahitiSunset , it seems you have been comatosely unaware of social developments during the past 30+ years.   And unaware of human nature ~ and the madness of crowds.

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