Summary of 3 Ways to Spot a Bad Statistic

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Mounting accusations of fake news have created an atmosphere of skepticism toward institutions and the media. People’s faith in statistics, especially government data, has taken a hit. This is a “total disaster,” per data journalist Mona Chalabi. She explains why it’s crucial to accept statistics, but only after testing their validity. getAbstract appreciates her timely and useful advice on how to distinguish the good numbers from the bad.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why people are growing more skeptical of statistics,
  • How this phenomenon impedes productive debate and
  • How to identify a bad statistic.

About the Speaker

Mona Chalabi advocates for publicizing data to encourage debate. She is the data editor of the Guardian US.



Today, some 40% of Americans, and about 70% of Trump supporters, distrust government economic statistics. When people are wary of official statistics, the common ground on which to begin a debate...

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