Tags: define | global warming | twitter | social media

Define Global Warming, Twitter: Social Media's Take on Climate Change

By    |   Friday, 31 October 2014 08:14 PM

The social media world defines global warming a little differently than most scientists do, and as to whether people are causing the increase in the earth’s temperature — that’s a controversial concept online.

The Earth’s temperature is warming, but what gets controversial about climate change is how much people are contributing to that problem. According to NASA, the planet’s temperature has increased by 1.8 degrees Farenheit (0.8 degrees Celsius) since 1880, with the bulk of that increase coming since 1975.

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“The global temperature record represents an average over the entire surface of the planet,” NASA said. “The temperatures we experience locally and in short periods can fluctuate significantly due to predictable cyclical events (night and day, summer and winter) and hard-to-predict wind and precipitation patterns. But the global temperature mainly depends on how much energy the planet receives from the sun and how much it radiates back into space — quantities that change very little. The amount of energy radiated by the Earth depends significantly on the chemical composition of the atmosphere, particularly the amount of heat-trapping greenhouse gases.”

But delving into those scientific concepts — and keeping in mind that scientists around the world disagree on how much global warming is caused by greenhouse gases and humans — isn’t really what the Internet is about. For instance, every time there’s a cold snap, people make jokes about how global warming isn’t real. (If you’re interested in how that really works, The Independent explored the idea that the planet’s warming temps will increase severe winters in Eurasia.)

Much of the social media commentary on global warming and climate change consists of quoting sources as they make the news. When Weather Channel co-founder John Coleman said global warming is not caused by humans, the Internet was flooded with tweets and retweets of his views.

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But along with the strong contingent that believes either global warming and climate change are hoaxes or at least nothing we can change, is another group that believes not enough is being done to stop global warming.

Ultimately, many social media posts on global warming are links to stories in the media about the issue — oftentimes stories that support the individual’s personal belief about whether global warming is a concern or not.

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The social media world defines global warming a little differently than most scientists do, and as to whether people are causing the increase in the earth's temperature - that's a controversial concept online.
define, global warming, twitter, social media
Friday, 31 October 2014 08:14 PM
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