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Nathan Allen, the moderator for the forum /r/science, said that climate-change deniers were constantly arguing with 'cherry-picked data and conspiratorial thinking.'
Reddit's science feed has banned climate-change skeptics from making comments in the online forum.
Nathan Allen, the moderator for the forum /r/science, said that climate-change deniers were constantly arguing with "cherry-picked data and conspiratorial thinking."
Allen said that global-warming skeptics acted unruly in the forum, which offers its 4 million subscribers a place to debate recent, peer-reviewed scienctific publications.
"After some time interacting with the regular denier posters, it became clear that they could not or would not improve their demeanor," Allen said in a blog post for Grist.
Allen's post — entitled "Reddit’s science forum banned climate deniers. Why don’t all newspapers do the same?" — argued that the forum was for educated, scientific debate, not the baseless arguments that he accused climate-change deniers of using.
"They had no idea that the smart-sounding talking points from their preferred climate blog were, even to a casual climate science observer, plainly wrong," wrote Allen.
"They were completely enamored by the emotionally charged and rhetoric-based arguments of pundits on talk radio and Fox News."
Allen says these users have distracted from the real debate about climate change.
Critics of the move — including Fox News — cried censorship, citing Reddit's stated commitment to open debate.
An op-ed in the UK's Telegraph newspaper by Brendan O'Neill, the editor of libertarian online magazine Spiked, said that the move went beyond simple comment moderation.
"It’s talking about removing specific political opinions; it’s talking about targeting the expression of a particular idea – that the case for climate change is overblown – and squashing it," wrote O'Neill.
"This is political censorship, designed to silence the expression of dissent about climate-change alarmism on one of the internet’s most popular user-generated forums."
Reddit has said that it is Allen's perogative as editor what he chooses to remove or how he moderates.
Someone tell those geniuses over at Reddit climate change is Al Gore's hoax. weatherman can't even figure out what will happen in 24 hours
— Tea Party Nation (@teapartynation) December 18, 2013