Reading Assignment on Data Cleaning


New York Times database editor Sarah Cohen says that “Numbers are just opinions.” In what ways did people in any of these stories use the way they collected, stored or presented data to bolster their opinion or protect themselves from criticism?

Another admonition in the world of data journalism is to beware of big story bias — that in the rush to land what might be a big story journalists can become in danger of ignoring data that doesn’t support the big story they’re trying to land. What are some things you’ll need to do to avoid big story bias?

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