Pausing for thought

I helped Ed and Tamsin to write a commentary on the communication of the “pause” in global surface warming, and it is online today at Nature Climate Change.

We take a good look at the way the pause has been communicated and discussed by scientists and the media, offer some personal perspectives on engaging online, and issue a call-to-arms to encourage others to use the pause to discuss some interesting bits of climate science.

We do a bit of analysis too. A personal surprise (though it really shouldn’t be) was the extent to which a particular news outlet could drive global search. Can you guess where the big spike comes from?

Global internet search trends. Quantity of Google searches34 for the terms ‘global warming stopped’ (blue) and ‘global warming pause’ (red) over the period from January 2007 to December 2013, expressed as ‘relative interest’ with the highest monthly total given an index of 100. Note that the Google data was accessed on 23 January 2014 and is subject to change.

Global internet search trends. Quantity of Google searches for the terms ‘global warming stopped’ (blue) and ‘global warming pause’ (red) over the period from January 2007 to December 2013, expressed as ‘relative interest’ with the highest monthly total given an index of 100. Note that the Google data was accessed on 23 January 2014 and is subject to change.

We also managed to get our twitter handles included in the author affiliations – a first for Nature Publishing Group as far as we’re aware.

There is to be a joint (with Nature Geoscience) “focus” issue on the pause on Monday 3rd March, with other commentary and science. I’ll update this post (or perhaps write another) as the discussion develops online.

UPDATE 26/02/2014

Tamsin has written a much more useful post than this here, and a useful collection of all of the Nature Climate Change opinion articles is here.

UPDATE 27/02/2014

The article is discussed by RTCC, ATTP, Carbon Brief & BH, oh and Bristol and PhysOrg.

UPDATE 03/03/2014

The joint Nature Climate Change/Nature Geoscience focus issue is here, and there is a handy cut-out-and-keep guide to the different kinds of Nature content here. On 20th March, there will be a google hangout on the whole thing here (Ed is involved).

2 comments

  1. The big spike came from the frenzied over-reaction of the climate science community and their hangers-on to one article by David Rose!

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