Climategate emails revealed that scientists admitted they used a "trick" to deceptively manipulate data
Climate scientists sometimes call a shortcut or a clever method a “trick”
In November 2009, emails were stolen from a server at the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia in the United Kingdom. Climate change skeptics twisted contents of the emails to suggest they showed that climate scientists had manipulated data to exaggerate the threat of global warming. A 2009 Guardian article reported:
In one email, dated November 1999, one scientist wrote: "I've just completed Mike's Nature [the science journal] trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie, from 1981 onwards) and from 1961 for Keith's to hide the decline."
The Guardian quoted Bob Ward, director of policy and communications at the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics, as saying of the email: "Scientists say 'trick' not just to mean deception. They mean it as a clever way of doing something -- a short cut can be a trick." The blog RealClimate also explained that "[s]cientists often use the term 'trick' to refer to ... 'a good way to deal with a problem', rather than something that is 'secret', and so there is nothing problematic in this at all."
The Union of Concerned Scientists notes that “six official investigations have cleared scientists of accusations of wrongdoing” relating to the stolen emails.