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« Suspicious mind | Main | McKitrick and Vogelsang »

A change in the message

Hilary Ostrov has a fascinating post in which she examines the way UEA's message developed in the weeks after Climategate and thinks she perceives the point at which the Outside Organisation became involved.

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Reader Comments (11)

Can't read the article linked to - a very pale grey typeface on a white background is impossible to read with any degree of visual impairment. And I see this same approach time and time again in Blogs, and frankly, I am fucking pissed off with it. I assume that the blogosphere really doesn't not want 60 year olds with poor eyesight joining in the fun.


Aug 16, 2011 at 11:52 AM | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Poynton

Jeremy: Two options, both of which I find myself forced to use at times:

1. Copy and paste into your word processor (MSWord for example, and choose your own font size;
2. Pump up the browser (Ctl + for Firefox - increase percentage for Internet Explorer down in the right hand corner).

I share your frustration; and when I hit some clown who has a black or dark-coloured background and white writing I figure they do not even deserve reading. This may be the internet; but some time-tested black on white is communication -- leave art for the canvas.

Aug 16, 2011 at 12:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterRoger Carr

Hilary's post quotes the Guardian: "He [Pachauri] said an independent inquiry into the [Climategate] emails would achieve little." Well, he nailed that one at least, although perhaps not as he intended.

Aug 16, 2011 at 12:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterHaroldW

HaroldW: well spotted. Pachauri as prophet indeed.

Aug 16, 2011 at 12:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Drake

I wonder if Graham Stringer MP is aware of the links between CRU and the NI phone hackers and the Fuzz?

Aug 16, 2011 at 1:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterMartin Brumby

Roger - yes, all sorts of ways of getting around this, and I do use them - but shouldn't have to. Lots of bloggers respond well and say "whoops, I'll sort it out", other suggest it's my problem. I worked for some years with the National Library for the Blind, so am well aware of how this approach impacts people. Serious impairment is handled with screen readers (and here presentation is important, in that the order in which the page is "read out" is crucial), but many, such as I, are simply victims of the ravages of age. I don't see why I should have to shove my nose up against the screen to read anything on the web.

Now, the Bish - he's got it just tickety-boo, and this blog is very easy on even old eyes. It's not that hard. Just takes a bout 10 seconds of thought on the blog owner; maybe 10 seconds is too long these days, to expect anyone to pay attention?

Aug 16, 2011 at 1:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Poynton


I see black text on a white background through varifocal specs and via Google Chrome & Firefox browsers. You may want to check your screen angle/resolution/contrast.

Aug 16, 2011 at 2:24 PM | Unregistered Commentersimpleseekeraftertruth


A sometimes useful workaround is to press Ctrl A (select all) which highlights the text near the cursor. I think Windows can be made to render things better/larger via the Control Panel, too, although I expect there's a trade-off elsewhere.

Aug 16, 2011 at 2:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterJames P

I have contacted Hilary about the bog format.

I can read the blog easily -- it's definitely an interesting post.

and... Ah yes the advice from Pachauri:

Hotel guests should have their electricity monitored; hefty aviation taxes should be introduced to deter people from flying; and iced water in restaurants should be curtailed, the world’s leading climate scientist has told the Observer.

Warms my heart...

Aug 16, 2011 at 4:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterWillR

Jeremy wrote:

I assume that the blogosphere really doesn't not want 60 year olds with poor eyesight joining in the fun.

My apologies, Jeremy. But (even though, of course, you'd never know it to look at me!) I'm probably older than you are - and I find the blog easy enough to read with my spectacles-assisted eyes. Although my Dad (who's definitely older than both of us!) has complained at times, but I've shown him how to work around it (including using the suggestions others have made above and the Windows Accessibility options)

Unfortunately, each of the Wordpress templates that I've tried has its drawbacks; but I'll take another look and see if I can find one that uses a larger font-size ... and failing that, I'll splurge and pay 'em so that I can customize the underlying stylesheet!

Aug 16, 2011 at 6:06 PM | Unregistered Commenterhro001

First of all, Andrew ... (Belated) many thanks for highlighting this.

During this "intermission" between Parts 1 and 2, those who have been following this virtual journey back through time (at my place or at CA, where other interesting stuff has come to light) might be interested in taking a look at:

Of Climategate, constabularies and Copenhagen: a brief update, a poll and a wiki page

Aug 18, 2011 at 10:38 PM | Unregistered Commenterhro001

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