Unpuzzling the News Paradigm

Unpuzzling the News Paradigm eliminates media blinders, for example, which direct where we look and what we actually see. There is one truism about paradigms – paradigms tend to change. Journalism has changed in using data analytics to justify the content and headline.

To better understand the issue one must understand whose involved behind the numbers, graphs presented.

On the one hand, the data used in the news is generated by “number crunchers”, data analysts, who concentrate on the math, the statistical equations and results. They do not need to consider why the calculations exist or how they came to be. On the other hand, we have journalists who master writing and storytelling, but not the math. They must trust the generated numbers, graphs and stats they find or provided to justify their story and conclusions.

Unpuzzling.net aims to bridge these seemingly opposing pieces of information.

Some researchers at MIT have concluded the bridge between the statistician to the journalist or another decision maker is a person specializing in data translation, calling them  “Data Translators” [ Brady, Chris, and Simon Chadwick, “Why Your Company Needs Data Translators”, Magazine: Winter 2017 IssueFrontiersOpinion & Analysis]

We aim to be the News and Media “Data Translators” for you, the questioning public, targeting all persons of all education levels and ages.

For example, many who follow sports are well versed in the “stats of sports”.  Avid baseball fans keep track of each baseball player stats which can include batting averageruns scored, and runs allowed.

The word “stats” is short for Statistics which many say is not math instead it belongs to quantitative epistemology, “the philosophy of how we know what we know“.  Statistics does not produce concrete numbers that will be followed exactly and repeatedly.

Continuing with a sports stats .example we can say that the aim of these sports stats is to help  fans decide which team will most likely, but not for sure, win a game  They also know this data is not concrete and each player and team will not hit the reported stat numbers exactly each and every time.   That’s how “Upsets” occur in a game.  The winning team countered the stats favoring the other team to win the game.   

These same sports performance stats are used in quantifying survey data, unemployment, and economic direction,…, all the way through the reasoning by some for trading specific stock or currency exchanges, e.g. forex.   Thus, these paradigms function like blinders which direct what we actually see.

Senior Editor,

Diana