I like blogging as you probably can tell from all 272 articles that I’ve written in this new blog since May of this year. If you are one of my few subscribers, you probably know that I have strong views, especially on freeing up observational, climatological and forecast data so that we can all use it (why not? we all pay for it). I don’t get that many comments these days, so I don’t engage in a lot of chit-chat, or for that matter get that much criticism, but when I do get something wrong or overstep the mark I invariably try to respond, not by blocking or deleting comments from readers in moderation, but arguing my point, or occasionally just saying sorry – I just got it wrong. That’s what blogging is about in my opinion, it’s there for you to post a story about what you think about a subject.
The Met Office on the other hand have a different perspective on blogging, and in their blog they publish about things that are important to them they don’t allow comments. Well that’ not exactly true, what I should have said is that they don’t allow any of my comments. There are no profanities in any of my comments I submit to them, and I try to keep any direct reference to personalities out of it, but I do question what they say, why they say it and how they say it. Over the last 5 years that has gone on without much problem, I make a comment, it takes them up to a week (to allow the newness of the original story to fade) to moderate and release my comment – end of story, but not anymore.
I don’t think I’m the only person that has been summarily banned, there must be others, and I notice that the last comments made by anyone were made on the 3rd of November, and they were mainly about grammar, so nice and safe. The obvious reason why I’ve been banned is that they don’t like criticism of any kind, on any subject, they see criticism as negative and they want to be upbeat, but if the comment meets the criteria of acceptability (although I’ve no idea of what those criteria are), and as any comments are very rarely answered anyway, what’s the point of deleting them?
Of course it maybe because I comment about things such as these:
- The first month of their three-month seasonal forecast for winter has gone a bit pear-shaped.
- Do you have to be an expert and the manager of the Polar Climate group to interpret a line chart of Arctic sea ice?
- Why no yellow alert for fog when the visibility at Exeter airport and the M5 for most of the day been less than 100 metres?
- Why is Professor Adam Scaife allowed to use the Met Office blog to plug his new book?