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Lies, D@mned Lies, and Statistics February 5, 2007

Posted by David Card in Media.

Today, MyYahoo clips me twin stories on last night’s Super Bowl ratings. The CNN/Money subhead reads: “According to preliminary results, more people watched Peyton Manning and the Colts win Super Bowl XLI than last year’s big game.” The AP lede states: “The Indianapolis Colts were a winner in the ratings, too, with preliminary measurements showing the Super Bowl was watched by roughly the same number of viewers as last year’s contest.” They’re both using the same Nielsen Media data.

As a seasoned numbers professional, my preliminary interpretation is: it looks like this year’s audience was about the same size as last year’s.

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