Diverse and different forecasts from multiple sources might have considerable value but may also have the potential to create confusion. The following factors may be considered:
Multiple forecast efforts are of considerable value in the drive to improve future forecasts as well as to understand uncertainty in present forecasts.
Emphasizing a distinction between “official” operational products and experimental research products may limit confusion.
A source of compiled information (e.g., a Web page for a particular type of forecast), including diverse products labeled as operational or research, has the potential to achieve two goals: (1) the provision of a measure of uncertainty and (2) an understanding of the varying and multiple sources of information.
Conflicting forecasts and information in life threatening situations may result in decision errors, including potentially dangerous inaction by users and decision makers. It is important always to include and highlight “official” forecasts in such cases.