Corrigenda Anyone?

(2 July 04)

Steven McIntyre and Ross McKitrick have posted an update about the process of resolving issues raised by their assertions of errors in the Mann et al 1998 paper of Hockey Stick fame:

UPDATE: July 1 2004: The Corrigendum in Nature today (July 1, 2004) by Professors Mann, Bradley and Hughes is a clear admission that the disclosure of data and methods behind MBH98 was materially inaccurate. The text acknowledges extensive errors in the description of the data set. Even more important is the new online Supplementary Information (SI) site, which concedes for the first time that key steps in the computations behind MBH98 were left out of (and indeed conflict with) the description of methods in the original paper.

These items were published on the instruction of the Editorial Board of Nature in response to a Materials Complaint that we filed in November 2003. That our complaint was upheld and the Corrigendum was ordered represents a vindication of our view that, prior to our analysis, there had been no independent attempt to verify or replicate this influential but deeply flawed study, something which was forestalled, at least in part, by inadequate and inaccurate disclosure of data and methods.

This is only the first step in resolving the dispute we initiated last fall. The Corrigendum and the SI contain the gratuitous claim that the errors, omissions and misrepresentations in MBH98 do not affect their results. If this were true, then a simple constructive proof could have been provided, showing before and after calculations. This is conspicuously missing from the Corrigendum and the new SI. We have done the calculations and can assert categorically that the claim is false. We have made a journal submission to this effect and will explain the matter fully when that paper is published.

Further, detailed comments on the Corrigendum and new SI will be released shortly.

Those who missed it may find John Daly's related article, "Broken Hockey Stick of interest".

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