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View Diary: Risk communication: Crowd-sourcing the 21st century (54 comments)

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  •  Crowd-Sourcing is Only as Good as the Quality (4+ / 0-)

    of the data.

    Your Flu-Wiki was excellent as an aid to tracking the pandemic from its earliest stages, individuals being instantly aware of feeling ill, probably days before they get a formal diagnosis.  Their interaction with the Wiki provided instant data.  Of course, false positives in the data result, but huge sample size helps dampen that "noise."

    In the case of the Japanese nuclear disaster, the data is only as good as the detectors are in terms of placement, specificity of detection parameters, and accuracy in reporting that data.  If all or most of the detectors are in the hands of entities bent on suppressing or massaging the data, then the crowd-sourcing can become a statistically misleading crowd-control.

    That international monitoring can be brought to bear in this nuclear accident is important to enhancing the quality of the data, but it is qualified by the same restraints I mentioned, and probably others as well.

    6 million Frenchmen may be present, but a statistically significant number of them can still be wrong.

    I'd like to know if anyone has studied the accuracy of crowd-sourcing methodologies across a broad spectrum of applications.  Crowd-sourcing appears at first glance to be an excellent method of generating statistically significant data and serving as a thermometer of truth.  I suppose marketers are its biggest utilizers.  I wonder who else and to what purpose other interested parties are using crowd-sourcing.

    Your Flu-Wiki is one of the best examples of how important and valuable this data gathering tool can be.  

    Readers & Book Lovers Pull up a chair! You're never too old to be a Meta Groupie

    by Limelite on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 08:29:43 AM PDT

    •  but as I noted it raises questions (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Limelite

      even if the signal to noise ratio is high.

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Sun Mar 27, 2011 at 09:13:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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