Thursday, September 24, 2015

An Open Letter to Paul Colford, Guiding Light at the AP's Ministry of Guidance, on ''climate denialists"

UPDATE: AP reporter: ''I won’t follow new rule banning terms ''climate denialist'' or climate denier'' '' [Rebellion in the corps!]
Dear Paul,

I sent this note to Kristen Hare at Poynter Org and to other journos and editors around the world, AP people, too: This FAUX AGW denialist brouhaha news story has gotten a lot of ink worldwide but nobody has asked what the heck the AP term "guidance" actually means!

This climate GUIDANCE thing from the AP was not an iron RULE set down in concrete by the AP, nor even a REGULATION that AP reporters must follow or lose their jobs.

No it's just a "guidance."

In other words, a considered and much-debated and much-discussed in the editorial offices of the AP "suggestion" for what the AP considers to be better and more accurate and more fair reporting on these contentious issues.

But no media outlet anywhere has emphasized that this is  mere GUIDANCE/suggestion and not a hard and fast rule. The GUARDIAN Graham Redfearn got it wrong from his LEFTWING POV and Anthony Watts at WWUT on the RIGHTWING got it wrong too.

So the leftwing is crying foul at what they see as an AP RULE that has been set down by AP editors and the rightwing is rejoicing at what they see as an AP RULE that they are happy to finally see in print.

BUT it is not a rule.

It is a mere suggestion, and reporters at AP and other outlets are FREE to follow however they wish to write the news. Yes or no?

I am asking you, dear Paul Colford, to clarify and offer some guidance on exactly what the AP term "guidance" actually means in plain English.

Your response?

UPDATE! AP journo: ''I won’t follow new rule banning terms ''climate denialist'' or ''climate denier'' [Rebellion!]

UPDATE: VICTORY! AP has corrected its error, and created a new guidance recognizing that it is perfectly fine to call ''climate denialists'' and ''climate deniers'' by what they really are, which is climate denialists and climate deniers.

There appears to be open dissension at the Associated Press (AP) over the media entity’s new ''mis-guided'' "guidance", announced last week, not to refer to rightwing climate ostriches (RCO) with their heads in the sand over AGW as climate denialists or climate deniers, no matter what the very excellen climate science reporter Seth Borenstein said in his guidance.

Here is AP’s new policy:
Forget the earlier "guidance."
In response, a New York-based AP reporter , who writes about climate issues for the media company, just told a fellow journo by email, on the record:
The AP style guidance will have no effect on how I write about about climte deniers and climate denialists.
This response means one of two things.  Either there is open revolt at the AP over the new policy, or AP management decided to throw irate climate activists a bone by claiming that while the AGW policy will remain, it won’t really be implemented (which is BS).  Either way, the policy is still on the books, and this controversy will continue to grow. But if this is truly sign of dissension in the ranks at AP, that’s good news, not just for climate activists, but for journalism overall.

ONION ALERT! AP journo: ''I won’t follow new rule banning terms ''climate denialist'' or ''climate denier'' -  

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