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Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 12/15/2009

AccuWeather hypes weekend snow, why not us?

By Jason Samenow

* Winter chill returning tomorrow: Full Forecast *

AccuWeather graphic highlighting weekend snowstorm potential. Courtesy

"Potential Eastern Snowstorm this Weekend" -- so said a story on the top of AccuWeather's Web site yesterday. The story began:

The southern Appalachians through the Northeast could be dealing with a snowstorm this weekend, as a storm moving out of the Gulf of Mexico meets up with just enough cold air to the north.

Presumably, AccuWeather decided to run this because it identified a pattern conducive to storm development this weekend. But I think the rationale also included drawing eyeballs to its Web site during what will otherwise be a lackluster weather week. Its decision to call attention to this low odds scenario demonstrates a difference in philosophy between AccuWeather and CWG.

I don't dispute that a storm could develop this weekend. There is a chance. I even mentioned the possibility in yesterday morning's forecast: "We'll also have to watch to see if any coastal storminess develops, but that's a low probability at this point." However, it was buried at the bottom of my forecast.

We don't headline low probability, low confidence events here. Instead, we usually wait until there appears to be at least a 25-30% snow threat of at least 1" or more (and usually, that's no sooner than 5 days before a potential event), then we'll begin coverage with a Snow Lover's Crystal Ball. Once the threat of accumulating snow exceeds 60% or so, then you'll see our coverage ramp up with more graphics, impact forecasts, bold headlines, etc.

If we did headline every snow opportunity regardless of likelihood, we would be featuring snow chances on our blog constantly throughout the winter and would lose all credibility. Even doing a Snow Lover's Crystal Ball every time there's a 30% chance of accumulating snow mathematically means our batting average is only going to be around 0.300. The reality is that, in winter, patterns often show promise for snow and models frequently simulate snow, yet we seldom actually get it.

AccuWeather surely appreciates this, but seldom hesitates from hyping low chance events anyways. The result is that many of the storms it touts never materialize. Maybe its research indicates its readers have short memories and that as long as it gets one right every once in a while, it will make up for prior misses. A baseball fan and weather enthusiast once told me AccuWeather is the Dave Kingman of weather -- it either strikeouts or hits a homerun.

Maybe some people would compare CWG to Wade Boggs or Tony Gwynn. That's fine by me.

By Jason Samenow  | December 15, 2009; 11:00 AM ET
Categories:  Capital Weather Gang, Winter Storms  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Forecast: Windy and mild today, then chill arrives
Next: PM Update: Mild air departing behind cold front


Jason Samenow wrote, "Its decision to call attention to this low odds scenario demonstrates a difference in philosophy between AccuWeather and CWG."

Really? You consciously choose to not call attention to a "low odds scenario"?

So what are the odds the man is demonstrably and catastrophically affecting climate?

I think the odds of that are extremely low. And yet you call attention to it almost weekly. Without, I might add, ever advocating any policy that would substantially reduce CO2 emissions.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 15, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

@Mr. Q.:

We're making a distinction between mentioning the possibility of low odds scenario and headlining (or even hyping) a low odds scenario.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

People who have an interest in a particular weather pattern will surf around the web until they get their desired forecast. Being a fairly active athelete, and associating with the same, I see this all the time when planning for various outdoor activities. Some people want to see the snow/rain in the forecast, others don't. It's human nature to try and find a favorable prediction.

Posted by: mattdnb1 | December 15, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Wow, Jesse Owens couldn't have made that jump.

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

AccuWeather knows hype sells, no doubt. I think a lot of weather aficionados (not the casual observer) like to live vicariously through the model guidance etc. It does seem a lot of their audience has short-term memory though, because one would think that after multiple false alarms people would wonder about the "accu" part of the name.

I would say that the overall pattern depicted on many models is historically a very good one for large east coast snowstorms. While it might be a low probability event "x" many days out in the grand scheme, if the guidance is right there will likely be a storm forming in or near the Gulf of Mexico and travelling somewhere near the east coast this weekend.

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse


If you don't think you are hyping climate change, then wow, we have a insurmountable difference of opinion.

Do you bury your climate change coverage "at the bottom of my forecast"? That was how you defined not hyping the possibility of snow.

Or do you give climate change its own headline almost every week?

I guess you think that giving something its own headline and column once a week isn't hyping it. We disagree.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 15, 2009 11:29 AM | Report abuse

This is exactly why you folks are my go-to source for forecasts beyond about three days, and for analysis closer in. I commend your high standards.

Posted by: psilosome | December 15, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

Would you people please stop feeding the trolls?

Posted by: wiredog | December 15, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

I like that CWG hyped its site with a story about not hyping its site. Used the graphic and all. Slick.

Posted by: Groff | December 15, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

@Brian, CWG

OK then if it's so obvious to you, what is the point of this column? Of course accuweather is trying to attract readers to their site. And of course, CWG is above that. WPT is not, however (see last week's opinion page).

Posted by: mattdnb1 | December 15, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

mattdnb1, I believe you've mistaken the target of my post. I was referencing the comparison of Andrews weekly articles with "hyping".

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

@Mr Q.

This is a weather post. And your allegations about Andrew's climate change posts are off-topic here. Next time you think Andrew is hyping a climate change issue, feel free to bring it up there and you, he, and others can discuss. Thanks.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

The NWS spaghetti plots also seem to be downplaying a major snowstorm threat for us on Sunday. In fact the pattern seems to resemble what bedeviled us so frequently last winter: main jet too far to the south, and too fast, whisking the system out to sea.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | December 15, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

So, just to clarify--are you saying 6-10 inches of snow in the District by sunrise Sunday morning or do you see the storm moving out of the area closer to midnight? Bread, milk and eggs for everyone!!

Posted by: Etch | December 15, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse


This was post was not intended to hype our site. It was to differentiate our approach from another outlet's. We've received comments and emails in the last couple weeks about why we aren't discussing this storm or that storm simulated 6 or more days in the future by models. This was an attempt to explain what we're doing and why. If it came off as self-aggrandizing, apologies.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 12:08 PM | Report abuse

The purpose of weather forecasts is to provide information relevant to weather dependent decisions. It's beyond me to see how anyone could use the "potential" for a snowstorm this weekend to plan ahead in any concrete manner: plan travel, shopping, alert snow removal crews,etc., ?? What's the objective probability of "potential": 1%, 10%...?

The purpose of Accuweather cannot be anything but knowingly misleading unwary readers/subscribers by means not much different from the cover of rag publications depicting the inevitable doom and gloom resulting from, for example, an iminent collision with a rouge asteroid. But, what else is new?? I know that almost all AccuWeather lead forecasters recognize this, but are forced into this nonsense by management.

Posted by: SteveT-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Beacuse, Steve-T, all those Accuweather readers are buying up the eggs, milk, and TP that won't be there for me when I go shopping on Friday, once you predict the storm will in fact occur. Come on! I need to plan ahead to be sure I can make a 24-egg omelette this weekend.


Posted by: ah___ | December 15, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

@Brian, CWG

Gotcha. I thought your Jessie Owens reference was a snark at me being an athlete, and stating the obvious. My bad. Carry on...

Posted by: mattdnb1 | December 15, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

ah___ | : If you want to be sure you can make your omelet this weekend, you'd better stock up now on eggs and milk. They won't be there anyway on Friday, since all the believers of Accuweather hype will have depleted supplies even if the snow "potential" (as likely) threat has disappeared by 24 hours in advance.

Posted by: SteveT-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

God this is pathetic. A bunch of weathermen sniping on the internet. You should have gone full-in and called AW the Fox News of weather forecasting. Probably would have attracted more readers.

Posted by: LouLewis | December 15, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

It's not about the pattern, it's about the number of models predicting the storm.

Henry's blog at says this morning that there are 2 models predicting a major snow storm in the major cities, 2 predicting a major snow storm on the coast, and 3 saying it's going out to sea. I don't think that drawing a graphic that explains that is out of line.

Today we have created graphics showing both "storm scenarios":

By the way, your login system and Facebook Connect is not working. I received the following error messages while trying to post this:

Your User ID, weathermatrix1, will be displayed with your comment. Comment Submission Error Your comment submission failed for the following reasons: Registration is required.

MyPost ID not set for the given user credentials. Please choose a new MyPost ID. (circles back to same page)

Posted by: weathermatrix99 | December 15, 2009 12:58 PM | Report abuse

I think you guys do an outstanding job. I'd prefer you being more conservative and waiting til you got a better idea on an event than guessing at what the various models each show.

I also 2nd the comment...don't feed the trolls (i.e. Mr. Q!) it just serves to fuel his vitriol that much more.

Posted by: BritBobinHerndon | December 15, 2009 1:09 PM | Report abuse

weathermatrix99, to me it is more about the pattern right now than what a specific model is showing. We're definitely far enough out that most every run needs to be taken with a fair amount of skepticism. But, there are constants like blocking high pressure in Greenland and phasing (to varying degrees) of the jets that continue to make this a possibly interesting system. Guidance suggests the pattern won't break down right away so there could be other opportunities if this one does not come together right for this area.

Posted by: Ian-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

What I love about this blog is that we get reasons for a particular forecast, and explanations of what happened when some (not many!) are incorrect. So I think it's right on target to share information on the disparity between the CWG and other forecasters.

Posted by: LCFC | December 15, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

I find CWG to be one of the more reliable forecasters for this area. Having moved to NoVA recently from the Northeast, I can say that they are much better than local meteorologists on TV.

Posted by: NoVAredsox | December 15, 2009 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Trader Joe's parking lot is a zoo!!

Posted by: chunche | December 15, 2009 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Hype, my eye. This has all the makings of a catastrophic snow event that could last until Christmas. Plan now! My models show at least 3" of snow as far south as Charlotte, with about 9"-12" in the DC area. Forget about driving anywhere north after this weekend.

Posted by: ShovelPlease | December 15, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

GFS appears to have the system moving out to sea, then turning northward somewhere out near Bermuda.

We could see a few snow showers any time Saturday through Monday.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | December 15, 2009 2:04 PM | Report abuse

@wiredog and BritBobinHerndon

Have either of you considered the possibility that not everyone thinks exactly like you? I know that seems like a truly radical concept, but have you given it any consideration at all?

To carry it one radical step further, have either of you considered the possibility that someone who doesn't think exactly like you (shudder the thought) might actually voice their opinion? I know, I know, it is a *radical* concept.

Don't people who don't think like you instinctively know that they should keep their mouth shut, lest you call them a troll?

Oh the humanity!

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 15, 2009 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Stop. Seriously. the idea that AccuWx is a hype machine and you guys are playing it straight is ridiculous. Weather is all about hype. That's why we care. If we wanted certainty, we'd be at a math blog.

Also, instead of stopping at the home page, you might want to check out some of their bloggers (you've guys have heard of blogs, right?). Henry gives all sides of the weekend forecast, hype and no hype.

Posted by: DHinDC | December 15, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse


I thought name calling (i.e. "troll") was prohibited here.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 15, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

To be honest, I'm not even sure what this "troll" even is. I must be a noob.

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

All but one or two out of perhaps a hundred members of yesterday's and today's combined GFS and Canadian ensembles have the "storm heads out to sea" scenario. If one takes this literally, that's an objectively based 1-2% chance of a snow event here.

Of course, I'm rooting for the 1-2% solution, but not with very high hopes. Most importantly, big snowstorms happen in Washington only when I'm out of town, and sorry folks, I'll be here this weekend. But, it's not too late to buy me off with a ticket to, let's say, St. Thomas

Posted by: SteveT-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Sadly,, there's probably a better chance of moving DC out to sea so it can catch the snow storm.

Posted by: Etch | December 15, 2009 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Etch - that was funny!

I'd prefer CWG's analysis because of its local interest as well as its more conservative stance on prediciting the next 'big one.'

Posted by: authorofpoetry | December 15, 2009 3:28 PM | Report abuse

I completely agree that Accuweather does way too much hype, but I thought this was one of their more reasonable efforts. They just showed a map with the two probabalities (in general terms of course, since most people aren't weather weenies like us). This was a lot different than what they have done in the past - predicting 10-12 inches for the major cities 6 days ahead of the storm (I think they did that three or four times last year, and we never got a single storm that big).

Posted by: SouthsideFFX | December 15, 2009 3:59 PM | Report abuse


Ha! That was the best (and funniest) remark I have seen here in a long time. Jesse Owens... Jump... Great stuff.
And, oh yeah, keep up the great forecasting. This is the best site for anyone who wants to know more than just the vanilla forecast.

Posted by: pjdunn1 | December 15, 2009 4:00 PM | Report abuse


"regularly posts specious arguments, flames or personal attacks to a newsgroup, discussion list, or in email for no other purpose than to annoy someone or disrupt a discussion. Trolls are recognizable by the fact that they have no real interest in learning about the topic at hand -"

The person I'm referring to (who picked up on it nicely, even though I didn't name him) posts comments with the exact same subject to every posting you make on any topic. Which pretty much matches the common definition of "troll". If he only posted his mindless comments on AWG posts then he'd be somewhat less trollish, but his posting to every discussion outs him.

Posted by: wiredog | December 15, 2009 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Well, this turned out interesting.

Between Mr Q popping up to discuss Climate change in a accuweather/snow discussion, Weather Matrix showed up to provide some feedback from within the accuweather walls to discuss their latest information and their approach to hyping (or not) the situation, and many locals came to lament the super markets run that will inevitably happen when snow does get hyped.

Knowing the way DC weather works, I think we have just guaranteed that Sunday will hold 24 inches for us all with this conversation...

Posted by: JJones-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Difference in philosophy? What do you call pimping the s-word 58 times in the past week (just counting above the fold) to pump up the eyeball inventory?

The Beat Goes On; Some Change in Tune

Posted by: CapitalClimate | December 15, 2009 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Well? Is name calling permitted here or is it not? Or is it that some may name call and others may not?

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 15, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Two points:

FIRST, when I want a fairly accurate, general forecast, I go first to NWS's, then compare that to Capital Weather Gang's more targeted, local coverage. You CWG folks are second to none when it comes to publishing a no-nonsense, NON-HYPE forecast.'s Henry Margusity should be ashamed to call himself a meterologist.

SECOND, I hate to say it in a non-related post, but it deserves to be said -- Mr. Q is RIGHT on the mark when it comes to his comments on Andrew Freedman's posts. I was skeptical about global warming and its effect on climate *before* the ClimateGate fiasco, and am even less convinced now. Were CWG to publish alternate views more often on this subject, it would be fine but as it is, the only alternate views I usually come in the form of Mr. Q's comments/rebuttals following Freedman's posts.

Posted by: VAStateOfMind | December 15, 2009 4:52 PM | Report abuse

And not surprisingly,'s Henry Margusity in his 3:30 p.m. posting is suddenly "not on the snow train" for this weekend. I'm sure some of the 60-odd commenters who reacted to his earlier rants today and yesterday are finally calling him out for the snake oil salesman that he is...

Posted by: VAStateOfMind | December 15, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

JJones wrote, "Between Mr Q popping up to discuss Climate change in a ..."

No, that isn't what happened.

I was discussing the following assertion by Jason Samenow found in the above forecast -
"We don't headline low probability, low confidence events here."
and pointing out that comment wasn't entirely accurate. It couldn't possibly be taken to apply to the blog as a whole. You could make a case that it applied to the WX forecasts, but even that would be specious.

You may not hype snow forecasts, but you aren't without your own hype at this blog. And that was the whole point of my original criticism.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 15, 2009 5:01 PM | Report abuse

I suppose, to be fair, Henry and JB and the crew over there are really only saying what most of us weather-geeks are already thinking in our own minds when we see a potential storm brewing. However, to consistently produce leading stories this far in advance of a low-probability storm is a bit much.

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Well? Is name calling permitted here or is it not?

Or is it that some may name call and others may not?

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 15, 2009 5:04 PM | Report abuse

The comments section for this post is amusing. So, just showing my support for CWG. I've found that if anything, you guys under-hype events; probably due to the climate around DC being incredibly unpredictable (weather and otherwise...).

Please keep up the good work.

Posted by: nlcaldwell | December 15, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Mr Q, name calling is not permitted as much as trolling is not permitted. VaStateOfMind, Mr Q, or whoever may have issues with portions of our forecasts, features, or even climate coverage, we welcome your opinions. However, we don't welcome them in inappropriate forums. This post did not discuss climate, Mr Freedman, or any other topic even tangentially related. There is already enough noise mixed in as we try to discuss each story and forecast, and answering questions related to other writers, posts, or the depth of Antarctica ice does not help. There are entire sites and web forums devoted to climate change, climate skepticism, and Antarctic ice if you need to discuss it right now. I've seen plenty before that Andrew is more than welcome to engage in the comments below his own articles. That's the proper venue, not this post.

If either of you are offering to write a scientific rebuttal to any post, i'm sure we would entertain running them assuming they met our publishing goals and accuracy requirements.

Posted by: JJones-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 5:13 PM | Report abuse

i personally think that the players are on the field for a snowstorm. the polar vortex in south east canada is forecasted to retrograde. this would allow the storm to ride up the coast from the gulf and if the trough tilts negative as it has been trending to do in recent model runs then we might have a storm to deal with.

Posted by: snowlover3 | December 15, 2009 5:36 PM | Report abuse

JJones-CapitalWeatherGang wrote, "Mr Q, name calling is not permitted as much as trolling is not permitted."

You know what's really weird? I've been posting at this site for well over a year, and I can't remember you ever calling someone (who agrees with you) out, without prompting, when they engage in name calling. Isn't that weird? What are the odds of that? You only seem to enforce, without prompting, the no name calling rule when it is someone that you disagree with.

There is a word for that type of behavior and the people who engage in it. Hmmm.... It'll come to me.

What do you mean by "trolling is not permitted"? I haven't seen anyone trolling. Have you?

JJones-CapitalWeatherGang wrote, "This post did not discuss climate, Mr Freedman, or any other topic even tangentially related."

No, this post was about AW hyping a snow a forecast. And my criticism was directly related to that.

You guys may not hype snow forecasts, but you aren't without sin in the hype department. And you guys may want to take a long hard look in the mirror before you go dogging on someone else for hype.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 15, 2009 6:06 PM | Report abuse

A major winter storm is all but guaranteed: I am flying home to DC for the holidays from Colorado on Saturday. ;)

All kidding aside, I personally *do* like the look of things and think that it probably will snow this weekend in DC metro.

Posted by: Josh-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Mr Q your very first post to this is completely off-subject and only serves to call attention to yourself - said it before - go to another forum for your back and forth about climate change, I don't give a rats behind about your yammering either way myself. I come here to hear interesting comments and analysis.....and OPINION about weather-related subjects and found this OPINION to be very interesting and worthy of lively debate. I'm sure Andrew would love to engage in some more back and forth on climate change - maybe you two can do it off-line.

Posted by: bendersx6 | December 15, 2009 6:27 PM | Report abuse

It amuses me to see how strenously Mr. Q is fighting the troll label he's worked so hard to earn. For none is so blind as he who would not see.

CWG is awesome, whether it's discussing our chances for snow or AWG. Keep fighting the good fight, guys.

Posted by: EFroh | December 15, 2009 7:18 PM | Report abuse


Your weather analysis is spot on, and you are to be commended on your restraint when it comes to forecasting snow events.

Also. Your comments section is very entertaining.

To say the least.

Posted by: mcaicedo | December 15, 2009 7:32 PM | Report abuse

Wiredog, EFroh,everyone else, enough of this "troll" nonsense. A) I've been educated that it's geek-speak, lets keep it to one language, I'm confused enough. B) Mr. Q has a point, it could be taken as derogetory name-calling and is against our commenting rules. C) Unless your last name is Tolkien, Who still uses the word "troll"?

Posted by: Brian-CapitalWeatherGang | December 15, 2009 7:33 PM | Report abuse

The discussion of this post needs to go in the Hall of Fame as the best display Internet stereotypes ever. Never before in my life have I seen every Internet cliché come together completely inadvertently. Trolling, the word "noob," skepticism, questions of accuracy, and sarcasm. All we need is someone saying that the weather map looks Photoshopped and this would go down as the most epic discussion in the history of weather blogs.

Anyway...I think that everyone (not just meteorologists) is subject to hype (purposeful or otherwise) no matter what the topic is. Think about it, we all hype stuff up on occasion (or at least exaggerate the truth). Accuweather, specifically HM, tends to jump on the "OMG SNOW!" wagon pretty quickly...whereas the CWG tends to wait and watch before saying anything officially (comments aside). I went to MeteoMadness earlier after I read this and literally laughed out loud when I saw him saying "Well...I'm off the snow train." I have never seen him say that before -- perhaps he read this post? Usually even if the weather model is in disagreement with him, he holds out a shred of truth (and yes, I'll admit it, I enjoy the hype sometimes).

Posted by: weatherdudeVA | December 15, 2009 7:39 PM | Report abuse

Sorry for the double post, but I wanted to apologize for using the "T" word in my previous post. I started typing my comment before Brian posted his, so I didn't see the moratorium on using it. Carry on.

Posted by: weatherdudeVA | December 15, 2009 7:41 PM | Report abuse

Enjoying the lively commentary today! That said, we most likely will get tons of snow. My reasoning? Not meteorological knowledge, that's for sure but this will be the one weekend in years I do NOT want it to snow. I have nieces in Leesburg (I am in Alexandria) who are counting on me to drive out there both Saturday and Sunday to make Christmas cookies and to take them to buy their parents and grand parents presents. These are very important Aunt jobs. Luckily, I have the excellent and capable folks here at CWG to give me an accurate forecast so that I may plan accordingly. Thanks CWG for all you do! Keep up the good work!

Posted by: Snowlover2 | December 15, 2009 7:51 PM | Report abuse

This is the third weekend in a row (not to mention the midweek storms as well) that we are looking forward to low pressure-systems in the area and either rain or snow. Enough is enough.

Posted by: MMCarhelp | December 15, 2009 9:42 PM | Report abuse

@ 'mr. q'

You stated, "No, this post was about AW hyping a snow a forecast. And my criticism was directly related to that. You guys may not hype snow forecasts..."

Since that was the point of the article, it appears you agree with JS and CWG that they don't hype snowstorms. WOW. Glad to see you on the same side as CWG for once!

Per the "Trolling" discussion: I have to admit, I am surprised you are so sensitive... or maybe, your complaining about being accused of trolling is just a way to distract others from the fact you actually agree with the article's main point.

@WeatherdudeVA: That map is sooooo photoshopped!! :-)

Posted by: dprats21 | December 16, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Why so much talk about the graphic? While the AccuWeather graphic is included in this post as a visual, the point being made here -- quite clearly in the first line of the above article -- is that the story was headlined at the top of AccuWeather's website (not that the graphic was unreasonable). -Dan, CWG

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | December 16, 2009 11:43 AM | Report abuse

Personally, as a skier, I don't consider AccuWeather's potential snow storm predicition hype. It makes me start to plan on whether or not to head to the hills. So I find the early warning valuable. It perks up my attention and if the forecast is a bust it is a bust - I don't make a final decsion untill on Friday anyways.

But in this case their "hype" may actually verify. So what will you have to say then? I'm not taking sides, I'm just saying that there is value to some of us in a 120 hour forecast and some times it is accuarte and sometimes it is not. Same with a 24 hour, although higher probablity it is not, still not guaranteed.

I just sense some serious hate against AccuWeather. Do you guys have anyone from Penn State on staff?

Posted by: johnnyd2 | December 16, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

dprats21 wrote, "Glad to see you on the same side as CWG for once!"

You are right. They don't hype snow forecasts. They hype climate change.

What do you think of the accuracy of these two sentences by Jason -
"Its decision to call attention to this low odds scenario demonstrates a difference in philosophy between AccuWeather and CWG."
"We don't headline low probability, low confidence events here."

Do they really reflect the philosophy of CWG? Or, do they as I contend, reflect the philosophy of CWG ONLY IN REGARDS TO SNOW FORECASTS?

In my humble opinion, CWG disparaging AW for "hyping" anything at all is the equivalent of a drug addict calling someone else an alcoholic. If I were AW, I would laugh and say, "Yea, you busted us." This particular incident is even sweeter given the high probability that AW's forecast is correct.

dprats21 also quipped, "Per the "Trolling" discussion: I have to admit, I am surprised you are so sensitive... or maybe, your complaining about being accused of trolling is just a way to distract others from the fact you actually agree with the article's main point."

Have you never heard of occam's razor?

I am always fascinated and baffled by people who seem to gravitate towards attempting to assign motivation to someone else. Why do they do that? And in this simple case, instead of trying to go all whack job conspiracy theorist and come up with the most nefarious motivation you can think of, why not simply ask me? I would of happily told you.

I was calling out CWG on their double standard. I thought it particularly ironic their no name calling double standard was on display in an article that showed their hype double standard! What are the odds of that?

I would have been sorely tempted to call out their no name calling double standard even if I had been an innocent bystander and not the one the double standard was being employed against.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 17, 2009 9:10 AM | Report abuse

dprats21 opined, "... or maybe, your complaining about being accused of trolling is just a way to distract others from the fact you actually agree with the article's main point."

There is a simple test for your hypothesis. Try to get me to talk about the article's main point.

See if I take you up on it.

Please. Pretty please.

That will test your theory.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 17, 2009 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Jason Samenow wrote, "We don't headline low probability, low confidence events here."

Ask yourself which science is further along -
1. The science of forecasting weather.
2. The science of forecasting climate.

That was a rhetorical question because the answer is obvious. We humans have a much better understanding and knowledge of forecasting the weather than we do climate.

But defying all logic and common sense, CWG accuses AccuWeather of "hyping" their mid-range forecast (5-7 days in advance), while CapitalWeatherGang will hype their 100 YEAR CLIMATE FORECAST as if it is solid science.

I can't be the only one to recognize the hypocrisy and total lunacy of that position, can I?

I swear to God I live in a world gone totally mad.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | December 18, 2009 11:43 AM | Report abuse

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