Importance[ edit ] Statistics may be a principled means of debate with opportunities for agreement,   but this is true only if the parties agree to a set of rules. Misuses of statistics violate the rules. Or to put it another way:
With the rise of advanced technology and globalized operations, statistical analyses grant businesses an insight into solving the extreme uncertainties of the market. Studies foster informed decision-making, sound judgments and actions carried out on the weight of evidence, not assumptions.
As businesses are often forced to follow a difficult-to-interpret market road map, statistical methods can help with the planning that is necessary to navigate a landscape filled with potholes, pitfalls and hostile competition. Statistical studies can also assist in the marketing of goods or services, and in understanding each target markets unique value drivers.
If all this true, what is the problem with statistics? Actually, there is no problem per se — but there can be. Get our free checklist on ensuring data collection and analysis integrity! What Is A Misleading Statistic? Misleading statistics are simply the misusage — purposeful or not — of a numerical data.
As an exercise in due diligence, we will review some of the most common forms of misuse of statistics, and various alarming and sadly, common misleading statistics examples from public life.
Statistical reliability is crucial in order to ensure the precision and validity of the analysis. To make sure the reliability is high, there are various techniques to perform — first of them being the control tests, that should have similar results when reproducing an experiment in similar conditions.
However, the telling of half-truths through study is not only limited to mathematical amateurs.
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A investigative survey by Dr. There are different ways how statistics can be misleading that we will detail later. The most common one is of course correlation versus causation, that always leaves out another or two or three factor that are the actual causation of the problem.
Did we forget to mention the amount of sugar put in the tea, or the fact that baldness and old age are related — just like cardiovascular disease risks and old age? You can be the judge. The misuse of statistics is a much broader problem that now permeates through multiple industries and fields of study.
Here are a few potential mishaps that commonly lead to misuse: Faulty polling The manner in which questions are phrased can have a huge impact on the way an audience answers them. Specific wording patterns have a persuasive effect and induce respondents to answer in a predictable manner.
These two questions are likely to provoke far different responses, even though they deal with the same topic of government assistance.
Another unfair method of polling is to ask a question, but precede it with a conditional statement or a statement of fact. Staying with our example, that would look like this: They provide great insight, often more so than the answers.
Flawed correlations The problem with correlations is this: That means there will likely be six possible explanations: Each is likely a result of a third factor, that being: It would be preposterous to say that they cause each other… and that is exactly why it is our example.
It is easy to see a correlation. But, what about causation? What if the measured variables were different? Clearly there is a correlation between the two, but is there causation? Many would falsely assume, yes, solely based on the strength of the correlation.
It is a data mining technique where extremely large volumes of data are analyzed for the purposes of discovering relationships between data points.
Data dredging is a self-serving technique often employed for the unethical purpose of circumventing traditional data mining techniques, in order to seek additional data conclusions that do not exist. This is not to say that there is no proper use of data mining, as it can in-fact lead to surprise outliers and interesting analyses.
However, more often than not, data dredging is used to assume the existence of data relationships without further study. Often times, data fishing results in studies that are highly publicized due to their important or outlandish findings. These false correlations often leave the general public very confused, and searching for answers regarding the significance of causation and correlation.
Likewise, another common practice with data is the omission, meaning that after looking at a large data set of answers, you only pick the ones that are supporting your views and findings and leave out those that contradict it.
As mentioned in the beginning of this article, it has been shown that a third of the scientists admitted that they had questionable research practices, including withholding analytical details and modifying results…! Misleading data visualization Insightful graphs and charts include very basic, but essential, grouping of elements.
Intermediate data points should also be identified and context given if it would add value to the information presented.23 quotes have been tagged as misuse-of-power: Bangambiki Habyarimana: ‘The universe runs on the principle that one who can exert the most evil on other.
This phenomenon of bullying and misuse of power is happening all over the world. It is a global issue. there are several others that the experts name but for the purposes herein we need only understand that this new time is upon us.
Misuse of power in the political system Political Corruption is an abuse to authority by government officials who are involved in ill-using the powers authorized to them for their private gains. There are several methods of corruption in political systems. Agreed re new issue. While we're at it: Something like Move-ItemToTrash to send filesystem items to the trash instead of deleting them instantly might be handy . When Police Misuse Their Power to Control News Coverage, They Shouldn’t Be Allowed To Use Probable Cause As a Shield Against Claims of First Amendment Violations Examples abound of journalists and news photographers being arrested while doing their jobs, The case at issue before the Supreme Court, Nieves v. Bartlett.
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Misuse of power in the political system Political Corruption is an abuse to authority by government officials who are involved in ill-using the powers authorized to them for their private gains. There are several methods of corruption in political systems.
Wilson Compton, NIDA Deputy Director testifies on the issue of misuse of power on several examples fentanyl use and misuse. Police brutality is the misuse of power by police force to intentionally harm individuals. The excessive force imposed by police officers has grown dramatically over the past decade, causing social misinterpretations of the role that police officers play in the community.