Joel Best, «More Damned Lies and Statistics : How Numbers Confuse Public Issues»

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Joel Best, «More Damned Lies and Statistics : How Numbers Confuse Public Issues»

Joel Best, «More Damned Lies and Statistics : How Numbers Confuse Public Issues»
University of California Press | ISBN 0520238303 | 2004 Year | linked png-files | 11,21 Mb | 217 Pages


In this sequel to Best's Damned Lies and Statistics (2001), the premise is simple: there are vast quantities of statistics being bandied about in all walks of life, and we frequently rely on them to form our own opinions about things. Often, however, neither we nor the experts understand how those numbers work. "People need to agree about what to count before they can start counting," the author tells us, explaining why different people often disagree about the same statistics. Some journalists say child-abduction cases are up; others say they're down; but no one has bothered to agree on what they mean by child or abduction. Another problem: news media perpetuate inaccuracies by citing each other's statistics without checking for accuracy. This is why, for example, we keep hearing that 150 people die every year after being hit by falling coconuts. (In fact, there is no such statistic because no one tracks coconut deaths.) The book is packed with helpful tips for understanding statistics, and it even manages to make a usually dull topic entertaining.