Criminal climate scientist on hook for legal fees – Are you happy with that?

Stanford filings ordered to pay legal fees after dropping $10 million defamation case against another scientist

From the withdrawal warning

A Stanford professor who sued a critic and a scientific journal for $10 million – later dropped the case – has been ordered to pay legal fees to the defendants based on a set of rules. regime”designed to provide for the early elimination of innocence lawsuits filed against people exercising First Amendment rights. “

Mark JacobsonStanford renewable energy researcher, sued in September 2017 in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia for libel about a 2017 newspaper in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) commented a Article in 2015 he wrote in the same magazine. He sued PNAS and the first author of the paper, Christopher Clackan executive at a renewable energy analysis company.

At that time, Kenneth Whitean attorney at Brown White & Osborn in Southern California, who frequently blogs at Popehat on legal issues related to free speech, talk about clothes:

It’s not poorly drafted, but it’s clearly infuriating and aims to silence dissent about a peer-reviewed scientist’s paper.

In February 2018, after a listen there PNAS arguments for the case to be dismissedJacobson leave the suittold us that he”was expecting them to solve. ” The defendants then filed, based on anti-SLAPP statute – for the “Strategic Litigation Against Community Engagement” – in Washington, DC, asking Jacobson to pay their legal fees.

In April this year, like recognized by ForbesDistrict of Columbia Superior Court Judge Elizabeth Carroll Wingo, who presided over the case, ruled that Jacobson would have to pay those fees. In that ruling, Wingo wrote that the Court

found that the three “serious flaws” claimed to be statements that reflect scientific disagreements have been appropriately explored and challenged in scientific publications; they simply did not attack Dr. Jacobson’s honesty or accuse him of misconduct.

Jacobson appealed that decision, but Wingo maintain it in an order June 25.

Jacobson could be paid more than $600,000, the total of which the plaintiffs have told the court are their legal costs – $535,900 for PNASand $75,000 for Clack.

Paul Thaler of Cohen Seglias, representing Jacobson, noted in comments to Retraction Watch that the judge has yet to make a ruling on how much Jacobson must pay:

The Court must now determine the amount of attorneys’ fees to charge, ranging from $0 to the amount demanded by Clack and NAS attorneys (see legal fee requirements and responses for arguments in both directions). ). Once that is done, Professor Jacobson will decide whether to appeal questions about whether the publication of false facts with a provable “yes/no” answer (such as falsely claiming that a table has the largest value when in fact it has the average value). are really questions of fact or of scientific disagreement and whether legal fees are permissible in the case of voluntary dismissal without prejudice.

Despite dropping the lawsuit and the judge’s ruling, Jacobson went on to emphasize in comments to Retraction Watch that there were false statements in Clack et al’s article:

This case has always been about three false statements, including two of the “faults” or “errors”, claimed by Dr. Clack and published by NAS damaging my and my co-authors’ reputations. my fake. What has been put forward is that attorney Clack has now admitted in a Court document that Dr. Clack does not currently claim to be “errors in the source code” of our model, despite Tien’s rampant claims. Clack throughout the paper we presented “modeling errors.” Dr. Clack also acknowledged in writing that our paper included Canadian hydro, but neither he nor the NAS corrected This acknowledged error in Clack’s paper Third, all evidence indicates that Table 1 of our paper contains mean values, not maximum values, suggesting that the claim Dr. Clack’s statement regarding the modeling error on this issue is in fact also false, so it is clearer than ever that the three untruths published by the Clack authors are indeed facts. It’s misleading and not a question of scientific disagreement. I regret not being able to correct these errors on our first request instead of going through the process. this stretch to restore the reputation of myself and my co-authors.

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