anecdata


anecdata
(an.ik.DAY.tuh; an.ik.DAT.uh)
n.
Anecdotal evidence used as data in an attempt to prove a hypothesis or make a forecast. Also: anec-data.
Example Citations:
So deep was Rose's conviction that she made a pilgrimage to the University of Washington to tell her story to Elizabeth Loftus, professor of psychology and world-renowned expert on the workings of memory.
Rose knew of Loftus; she had seen her on television and heard her speak at a mental-disorders conference. What Loftus had said about so-called "repressed" memories made her angry. So Rose called Loftus, set up this visit to her office, and, for this story, asked that her real name not be used.
Loftus jotted notes while Rose talked: 5 to 10 no memory; age 10 remember most everything; F abused her while v sick, tonsils, 4-5 years old. The term Loftus uses for information like this is "anecdata."
— Kit Boss, "Into the past imperfect," The Seattle Times, September 25, 1994
But some social scientists who make a study of criminal behavior reject what Richard J. Gelles, director of the Family Violence Research program at the University of Rhode Island calls the "anecdata" of women's advocates. "The trouble is the real scientific data doesn't bear out the anecdotes," said Gelles.
— William Hamilton, "Crimes of Passion Spark Intense Debate," The Washington Post, August 14, 1994
Earliest Citation:
PAUL SOLMAN: You actually come to this place to find evidence for your forecast?
DAVID WYSS: Yeah, I actually do. I come to the Burlington Mall, especially like at Christmastime, just to see how many people are shopping. Is there a recovery in consumer spending, or are the stores empty?
MR. SOLMAN: This store is empty.
DAVID WYSS: This store is empty, no question.
MR. SOLMAN: A handful of stores, just one mall, not what you'd call a statistically significant sample. In fact, the most recent government report was that retail sales rose in January, which just goes to show why the journalist's approach to reality, what you might call "anecdata," may be the flimsiest form of forecasting.
— "Guessing Game," The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour, March 6, 1992
Related Words: Category:

New words. 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • anecdata — noun a) Anecdotal evidence. A handful of stores, just one mall, not what youd call a statistically significant sample. In fact, the most recent government report was that retail sales rose in January, which just goes to show why the journalists… …   Wiktionary

  • Proteus phenomenon — n. The tendency for early findings in a new area of research to alternate between opposite conclusions. Example Citations: Proteus is a sea god in Greek Mythology. He could change his shape at will. The Proteus phenomenon refers to early extreme… …   New words

  • Science (General) — Science General altmetrics anecdata black hole collaboratory cosmeceutical decimal dust directed sound dozenalist …   New words

  • agnotology — n. The study of culturally induced ignorance or doubt, particularly the publication of inaccurate or misleading scientific data. agnotological adj. Example Citations: The leaders of corporations and other institutions, it turns out, are not… …   New words

  • biostitute — (by.AWS.tuh.toot) n. A biologist who supports a company or activity that is harmful to the environment. biostitution n. Example Citations: I think the organization that Myron works for is an organization that is funded by the coal industry, by… …   New words

  • data hygiene — (day.tuh HY.jeen) n. Principles and practices that serve to maintain accuracy in computer data. Example Citation: Data hygiene the art of keeping a direct mail database clean and up to date could prove to be the most irritating new buzzword of… …   New words

  • data spill — n. The accidental transmission or display of private online data to a third party. Example Citation: Unintentional disclosures of personal information, called data spills, can occur when visitors click on a link to an external site. Browsers… …   New words

  • fact-free science — n. A scientific endeavour such as a computer simulation of a biological process that does not take into account real world constraints such as chemical or biological data. Example Citation: Biochemist Michael Behe calls evolution fact free… …   New words

  • manufactroversy — n. A contrived or non existent controversy, manufactured by political ideologues or interest groups who use deception and specious arguments to make their case. Example Citations: During a question and answer session after a talk I recently gave …   New words