Professor Stephan Lewandowsky of the University of Western Australia has written a somewhat controversial paper. He claims to have surveyed a number of blogs yet seems strangely reluctant to name those blogs or state how many respondents came from each blog.
Then there is this :
Lewandowsky revealed that two of the five skeptic blogs approached even replied to the email they were sent.
One stated “Thanks. I will take a look” and another asked “Can you tell me a bit more about the study and the research design?”
“Can you tell me a bit more” suggests that the blogger did not receive the plain language statement that is required to be sent with any survey. The other issue that I can immediately identify is this from Jo Nova:
It has turned out Lewandowsky did contact at least 2 skeptic bloggers (he claims 5, but won’t name them). He did it through another name, Charles Hanich, an assistant who was not named on the paper …
Almost certainly a plain language statement would require the names of the authors to be stated, unless Lewandowsky had applied for permission to use deception as part of the research strategy. He may well have done so and the ethics application would then reflect the reasons for having done so.
So people looking into this whole business need to look for the plain language statement that must have been sent to the so-called sceptic bloggers and also why Lewandowsky was not identified as being an author of the paper in that statement. It is somewhat surprising that the peer reviewers made no request to se the ethics application and approval.