This weekend, conservative media outlets launched an attack on climate scientists with a manufactured scandal. The fake news originated from an accusation made by former NOAA scientist John Bates about a 2015 paper by some of his NOAA colleagues. The technical term to describe the accusation is ‘a giant nothingburger’ (in this case, a NOAA-thing burger) as Bates clarified in an interview with E&E News:
The issue here is not an issue of tampering with data, but rather really of timing of a release of a paper that had not properly disclosed everything it was.
Bates later told Science Insider that he was concerned that climate science deniers would misuse his complaints, but proceeded anyway because he felt it was important to start a conversation about data integrity:
I knew people would misuse this. But you can’t control other people.