This is Misleading, This is Not Really Misleading

October 4, 2018

Topic

The Process  / 

There’s an internet joke — Godwin’s Law — that says if an internet discussion goes long enough, the probability that someone mentions Hitler approaches a probability of 1.

The visualization equivalent, which I hereby declare as Yau’s Law, is the following: If a discussion about a chart goes long enough, the probability that someone claims the chart is misleading approaches 1. It doesn’t matter how well-designed, how thorough, or how thoughtful the work is.

The truth is that all charts are misleading. In some sense.

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