Numbers in the news
September 7, 2011 4:10 AM   Subscribe

What's that quote? Something about each statistic in a news article reducing readership by x%. I can't for the life of me remember the exact words and who said it.
posted by tavegyl to Media & Arts (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
It might be "Someone told me that each equation I included in the book would halve the sales", which is in Stephen Hawking's A Brief History of Time?
posted by Lemurrhea at 4:31 AM on September 7, 2011 [2 favorites]

I'm pretty sure that quote is also in Innumeracy by John Allen Paulos. (But I don't know if Paulos came up with it.) Both that book and Hawking came out in 1988.
posted by madcaptenor at 7:39 AM on September 7, 2011

Possibly the second one in this quote about "numbers in the newsroom"?

There might also be something in the book The New Precision Journalism, or in its references.
posted by dhartung at 8:41 AM on September 7, 2011

2nding the Stephen Hawking source, with "someone" being "his editor"
posted by radiosilents at 9:31 AM on September 7, 2011

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