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“Social distance can cause a 55-year-old climate change sceptic with a job and a mortgage to behave like a spastic donkey with strange malicious behaviour” February 28, 2012

Posted by honestclimate in Discussions.
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4 comments

I saw the below end snippet of a headline article in News.com.au, which was about “the dark world of trolling” (obviously it must be a slow news day)

POWER OF THE WEAKLING

Psychologists have long attributed bad behaviour online to “deindividuation” – the feeling people get when they think they are anonymous.

“Social distance can cause a 55-year-old climate change sceptic with a job and a mortgage to behave like a spastic donkey with strange malicious behaviour,” said researcher James Heathers, of the University of Sydney.

He said the quality of online conversations in general seemed to be worsening by the day, and had now turned into a competition to see who can yell “urrgggh lame” the loudest.

“There’s no turn-taking, or reacting like there is in face-to-face communication,” he said. “The conversational structure is completely broken and there’s no thoughtful consideration of issues.”

Source: News.com.au 28 February 2012

A very strongly worded piece from Dr Heathers, however, trolling actually happens on both sides of the climate change debate.

If social distance can cause a “55-year-old climate change sceptic with a job and a mortgage to behave like a spastic donkey with strange malicious behavior”, then I would like to know the following from Dr Heathers:

What would cause the behavior of a 55 year old climate scientist(Dr Peter Gleick), with a phd, who had a job with the American Geophysical Union Task Force on Scientific Ethics to use a false name, in order to obtain confidential documents from The Heartland Institute. There are also some serious allegations that he was also the one who forged some of the documents in order to try and discredit the institute for being sceptical on man-made climate change.

P.S. – Dr Heathers, how is that “global warming” working out for you in Sydney? I hear Sydney has had one of the coldest summers on record.

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