5 Reasons That Infographic Is Making You Lie To Yourself

In this day and age, we consume more statistics, numbers and raw data than ever before. We share it all the time via social media, presentations and the almighty infographic. However, are we becoming too trustworthy about taking the data we consume at face value? Do we really know where all these stats are coming from?

Stats can lie. Infographics can be very, very misleading. Percentages don’t always add up. The data could be plain wrong. Yet, most times we assume and read it at face value without questioning where the data came from. In this day and age, it’s more important than ever to be your own detective and uncover the good data from the bad. Here’s a five things to watch out for.

1. Check the source.
Who made this infographic? Who posted this study? Does the source have a bias or affiliated with a group that may have a bias? (Hint: Political organizations, brands and organizations are almost always going to have a bias or a motive for publishing that an infographic).

2. Who sponsored it?
Who sponsored the study? Are there any obvious biases?

3. What does the infographic really tell you?
Is it just mindless jibberjabber meant to sound and look impressive? Or, is there real meat behind the numbers? Does the statistic or infographic use any analogies? If so, are they comparing apples to apples or apples to textbooks?

4. Do the numbers and percentages add up?
Do the percentages add up to 100? Do all the numbers add up to the total? This seems like a no brainer, but faulty math and logic occur all the time.

5. How big is the sample size?
The golden rule. The bigger the sample size, the more accurate the data is. For instance, if a study only polled 150 people, the margin of error is quite high. If they polled 15,000 people, the margin of error should be much lower.

 

About Jessica Malnik

I build online communities. I create content. I make digital magic. Mizzou alum. Closet Gator fan. @SocialSanta2012 & @onmyblockfilms champion. Hopelessly addicted to Instagram and college sports.
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