f: deception

How to spot a misleading graph (Vol.2)

A toothpaste brand claims their product will destroy more plaque than any product ever made. A politician tells you their plan will create the most jobs. We’re so used to hearing these kinds of exaggerations in advertising and politics that we might not even bat an eye.

But what about when the claim is accompanied by a graph? After all, a graph isn’t an opinion. It represents cold, hard numbers, and who can argue with those? Yet, as it turns out, there are plenty of ways graphs can mislead and outright manipulate. Here are some more things to look out for.

Our last post on reading graphs discussed how bar graphs can be manipulated to mislead you, but the scale can also be distorted along the x-axis, usually in line graphs showing something changing over time. This chart showing the rise in American unemployment from 2008 to 2010 manipulates the x-axis in two ways.

First of all, the scale is inconsistent, compressing the 15-month span after March 2009 to look shorter than the preceding six months. Using more consistent data points gives a different picture with job losses tapering off by the end of 2009. And if you wonder why they were increasing in the first place, the timeline starts immediately after the U.S.’s biggest financial collapse since the Great Depression.

These techniques are known as cherry picking. A time range can be carefully chosen to exclude the impact of a major event right outside it. And picking specific data points can hide important changes in between. Even when there’s nothing wrong with the graph itself, leaving out relevant data can give a misleading impression.

This chart of how many people watch the Super Bowl each year makes it look like the event’s popularity is exploding. But it’s not accounting for population growth. The ratings have actually held steady because while the number of football fans has increased, their share of overall viewership has not.

Finally, a graph can’t tell you much if you don’t know the full significance of what’s being presented. Both of the following graphs use the same ocean temperature data from the National Centers for Environmental Information. So why do they seem to give opposite impressions? The first graph plots the average annual ocean temperature from 1880 to 2016, making the change look insignificant. But in fact, a rise of even half a degree Celsius can cause massive ecological disruption. This is why the second graph, which show the average temperature variation each year, is far more significant.

When they’re used well, graphs can help us intuitively grasp complex data. But as visual software has enabled more usage of graphs throughout all media, it’s also made them easier to use in a careless or dishonest way. So the next time you see a graph, don’t be swayed by the lines and curves. Look at the labels, the numbers, the scale, and the context, and ask what story the picture is trying to tell. 

Check out Volume 1!

From the TED-Ed Lesson How to spot a misleading graph - Lea Gaslowitz

Animation by Mark Phillips

I don’t think Anti has been pretending to be Jack “all this time”.

At least, not since Halloween.

This was said in a past Livestream last May, about who Anti was referring to in the PAX Intro:

“ It was Anti responding to Jack. That Jack had come back after the Halloween thing and that he was the one replacing Anti again, because the whole idea was that Anti was taking over the channel and he liked popped up and killed Jack. Then Jack came back so it’s like “oh Anti was replaced with Jack again”. Everyone took it as a Darkiplier jab- which it wasn’t. “  

(Now this can be debunked if Anti was pretending to be Sean during that livestream. But I don’t that’s the case).

Also, what @marielgum had pointed out in this ask  is what Anti said:

“Who do you think you’ve been watching all this time? My puppets.”

I don’t think Anti is referring to us (the audience) again with ‘puppets’. Nor do I think he was physically pretending to be the other SepticEgos (…maybe).

He’s claiming to be the puppet master here (the one with ‘no strings’); I think he was talking about how Jack, Schneeple, and the others are all just his puppets to control, manipulate, corrupt, or influence at his own will.

This is just a theory. But the real questions I think we should be asking are:

when exactly did Jack “come back” after Halloween?

Did Jack ever ‘disappear’ (again?) between Halloween/ Detention, Detention/ PAX Intro, PAX Intro/ Epidemic, or Epidemic until now?

Why can’t we tell the difference between Anti and Jack?

anonymous asked:

How can I make the reader see/suspect that a character is lying (or not telling the whole truth) without just telling them that the character has told a lie?

Oh, deception! How fun. I love deception.

That sounded weird.


1. Have things that don’t add up. Think about what your deceptive character was doing and then imagine how it might disrupt things. Maybe they said they were one place when they were actually at another. For example, if they said they were at the grocery store, but they come home with no groceries, that’s pretty suspicious. That one is a bit obvious, but there are ways to make even that sly little detail so subtle that the reader doesn’t quite notice what’s up right away.

2. Acknowledge their feelings. Think about the secret they are keeping. How does it make them feeling? If they are traitorous, are they a little jumpy, nervous about being found out? If it’s a pleasant surprise, are they bursting at the seams, excited? If it’s something tragic, is it tearing them up inside, making it hard to fake a smile? Does that show sometimes? Is there someone they normally trust that they haven’t been as open with recently? 

3. Plant clues in not just how they act, but what they say. Maybe they once briefly said something that was vaguely sad/suspicious, but it was quickly breezed over, intentionally or not. Maybe something they say is not quite what it seems- maybe they are poking around, trying in a heavily veiled way to figure out what the protagonist might know or suspect. Maybe when they are recounting a certain story, they’re a little vague on the details. 

Also, try to keep in mind exactly how obvious you want to make this. If you want the reader to know something the other characters don’t, i.e, that this character is being deceptive, then you can afford to openly flaunt the signs. You don’t necessary need to say “*footnote: he is lying. Liar Liar plants for hire”, but you can do little more “point-out-discrepancies”, for example, having the protagonist or others think about or openly state that they suspect something is screwy, even if they can’t place what. However, if you want the reader to be surprised, I suggest breezing over the signs quickly- move on their attention to something else, and then later, when the surprise is revealed, they can look back and see that wow, they signs were all there, but I didn’t even think about them.

Another thing to keep in mind is perspective. When stories are written in first person, the narrator has to say what they observe, which tends to make things a little more obvious for some reason. You can still be subtle by having the character either a) a little oblivious, noticing very little, or b) hypersensitive, seeing so many things, it’s hard to sort out and particular one as significant.

And be wary about how much you’re saying. You don’t need to force signs onto every other page. Let them appear naturally at moments where it’s relevant. Keep track of where the deceptive character is and what they’re doing even if it’s not going to be stated in the story- by mapping that out, you can figure out where their actions might overlap where the other characters might notice it.

Have fun being deceptive! It’s an art!*

**disclaimer: I don’t mean you people. I mean your characters. Please lead honest and good lives. Don’t play games with people!


it makes me sad, and sick to my stomach to see people selling multiple packages of bulk  “coyote fangs” or “bobcat toes” and claiming they are somehow Cruelty Free

really? you regularly find 100 dead coyotes with fully intact teeth and 100 or so dead bobcats with no signs of roadkill damage? really?

its really unfortunate when people are dishonest

I struggle to keep things in stock because my supply is actually found bones (i dont buy from breeders/fur farmers/trappers or any other source that involves killing animals purposely to use the parts).

I work so hard to be honest about how the bones i use were found and to Actually BE as Cruelty free as i can…

perhaps i shouldn’t even bother.. does anyone even actually care?

[ edit : Eff that, sorry about the momentary pity party.. i know there are lots of amazing people who do care. I thank you from the bottom of my heart. sometimes i just get discouraged <3 ]


Why Are You Lying?

 We only lie to those we’re scared of. Whether you’re scared of losing someone, how they’ll react or the consequences of your actions - we lie in these situations because we fear the outcome. Lying is a fear-based reaction and I’m all about raising my frequency by facing my fears.

Honesty is the best policy - but not always the easiest one. When you know your actions will bring certain consequences - it’s up to you to face them instead of shying away from them. You can’t outrun the universal law of cause and effect - there will always be a reaction to every action.

I used to lie - a lot - I lied about who I was, what I was interested in and what I knew. These lies were told because I was seeking validation from building a false identity - instead of being honest about who I was. These lies built in number until I forgot the truth entirely.

When we create a false reality based on lies - we are building resistance in the emotional body. This resistance can manifest in poor mental & physical health, as well as anxiety and stress. Save yourself the hassle and be honest with yourself.

Being honest with yourself takes a great deal of self-awareness and is difficult to do. One day I took a look at myself in the mirror and said “No more”. No more being scared of the consequences of being myself, no more of this fear-based attitude towards life - no more lying. 

Since deciding to be honest with myself and everyone I choose to keep in my life - I’ve never felt more free. I can be 100% authentic to who I am and what I want without being scared of how others will perceive me. Honesty has liberated me from much of the anxiety I once felt - see what it can do for you.

Lying is a fear-based reaction, think about this the next time you feel the need to lie.

Peace & positive vibes.