publishing the truth can enrage conspiracy theorists to burn your arse...
Frontiers in Psychology last month retracted the paper, Recursive fury: Conspiracist ideation in the blogosphere in response to research on conspiracist ideation “in light of a small number of complaints”, the journal said on its website.
A year-long investigation “did not identify any issues with the academic and ethical aspects of the study,” it said. However, the probe found “the legal context (to be) insufficiently clear”.
The paper, though, is being carried by the website of the University of Western Australia (UWA), where one of its authors, cognitive scientist Stephan Lewandowsky, was based.
“Sadly, it has turned into a routine for outsiders with no scientific standing to approach, bully, or intimidate journals, editors, and academics,” said Professor Lewandowsky, now at the UK’s University of Bristol.
One person commenting on the Frontiers’ website asked for the ‘‘full details of the investigation,’’ saying the paper had been ‘‘derogatory and insulting’’ by naming people as conspiracy theorists who were ‘‘merely pointing out errors in the previous paper’’.
According to Graham Readfearn of DeSmogblog.com, the legal threats were that the paper was defamatory.
The genesis of the rejected paper was a 4000-word paper in Psychological Science in 2012 by Professor Lewandowsky and co-authors that explored the links between an endorsement of free-market economics and a rejection of climate change science.
Support for free markets was also a predictor of rejection of mainstream science in other fields, such the link between smoking and cancer, the authors wrote.
Endorsement of a range of conspiracy theories, such as a belief NASA faked the moon landing in a Hollywood studio or that the FBI had killed US civil rights campaigner Martin Luther King Jr., also predicted a climate change denial stance.
Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/conspiracist-climate-change-study-withdrawn-amid-legal-threats-20140402-35xao.html#ixzz2xrKGHqYH