The opinions of experts
Apr 16, 2014
Bishop Hill in Climate: Sceptics, Journals

Stephan Lewandowsky has launched the next round of the Recursive Fury saga, quoting an excerpt from the report of the expert panel that Frontiers commissioned to look into the ethical and legal issues surrounding the paper. The report says that there are divided opinions in the field as to whether analysing blog comments for a scientific paper would require informed consent, but seems to end up saying that the Fury authors' use of such comments was probably kosher.

I think I probably agree with this. I can't really see any objection to studying public blog comments. But I'm not sure that this doesn't miss the key objection to the Fury paper, namely that the authors published what amounted to diagnoses of the (alleged) psychological pathologies of identifiable individuals without their consent. I can see no way in which this could ever be acceptable practice for a reputable journal.


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