One reason why global warming/climate change may be alarming many folks, including those in the White House, is that some in the media, including copy editors, do not know exactly how to report weather readings, notes Grumpy Editor.
This causes a great exaggeration.
As a most recent example, Grumpy Editor offers exhibit A:
The Washington Post --- a prime news source for those in the nation’s capital, where decisions are made --- on Thursday in a report on “record” temperatures last year, staffer Chris Mooney writes 2015 “was 0.23 degrees Fahrenheit (0.13 degrees Celsius) hotter than 2014.”
Now, wait a minute.
Use of the word, degrees (plural), is highly misleading and wrong, and tossing in “hotter” only throws more heat on the controversial topic.
But the Post’s Mooney isn’t fully to blame.
A Jan. 20 NASA/NOAA news release, bearing four names as originators, also added an "s" onto degree with the line: "Globally-averaged temperatures in 2015 shattered the previous mark set in 2014 by 0.23 degrees Fahrenheit (0.13 Celsius)."
The data, announced by Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute of Space Studies, jointly with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NASA), show a minute gain of less than one quarter of one degree Fahrenheit. That’s all.
Thus, the fractional gain should be reported as 23/100ths of a degree increase.
That’s not exactly “hotter.”
And not a torrid boost in temperature.
But politicians --- and news media --- continue to get excited.
IN CASE YOUR FAVORITE NEWS OUTLETS MISSED THESE…
So guess what password still ranks high on last year’s list? It’s 1234567890, top line on a keyboard, that gets the most action, according to SplashData, a company that makes password-management applications…Boeing Co. says weaker demand in the air cargo market is triggering a cut in the 747-8 aircraft program starting in September when production on the wide-body planes will drop from one aircraft a month to one every two months…Remember when a nuclear-armed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile was damaged in its Colorado silo in May 2014? Probably not. But after 20 months, investigators say three airmen troubleshooting a problem triggered the accident…A double-page ad promoting Rimowa stores in North America takes on a 1920s flavor marking “the beginning of modern air travel and the golden age of Hollywood,” with a photo showing two passengers departing a small propeller aircraft close to the world-famous HOLLYWWOD sign. Trouble is, there never has been an airstrip at the base of that world-famous sign. However, there’s one on the other side of that noted Hollywood hill --- in Burbank...Forty media organizations, continuing to seek government openness and accountability, dispatch a letter to the House of Representatives leadership. The letter expresses support for a new bill with reforms to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
Headline on the front page in Las Vegas on Friday in connection with a former president’s visit to Sin City: