Graphs are extremely powerful tools for displaying large quantities of complex data in statistics. Let's talk about graphs. What do you understand by the word graph? Data
that is represented in the form of the picture is known as a graph. It is
necessary that a graph must be accurate so that it conveys the
information appropriately. But, there are graphs which sometimes mislead the readers. Precisely graphs
that do not have the correct data and information are known as
Misleading graphs.
More specifically, the graph which have misrepresented the data contained in it or constitutes the misuse of statistical methods, is termed as a Misleading graph or a distorted graph. A misleading graph may result in an incorrect result and faulty interpretation from
it. The main reason behind the graphs to be misleading may be its being very complex or constructed poorly.
At times, the misleading graphs are constructed intentionally in order to hinder the accurate analysis of data. But it is generally created accidentally due to mistakes in creating graphs or reading the number from given data set. It may also be created due to less knowledge about software used in graphing. Let us understand how to identify misleading graphs and their examples.
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Usually, a graph with an unbiased title and regular intervals can be a more accurate graph. While looking at graphs pay attention and check whether the graph is starting with 0 and check whether the graph represents accurately the data to be represented.
Also note that graphs can mislead when the margin error is in percentage points. There can be variation in data with huge error in margins.
There are a few rules to identify Misleading graphs. They are
Uneven scale. The scale does not start from Zero.
No Heading and explanation for the graph
For example, let's have a look at the below graph.
In the above graph, the gap between 0 and 9000 is equal to the gap between 9000 and 9500. Hence this is a misleading graph.
A graph is misleading graph when it provides only part of the information, or displays comparisons that are not based on all of the information. Such type of graph often create confusions in the mind of user.
Graphs are of different types.
We discuss in detail about each of it.
Pictographs: They use small pictures to compare information and are mostly used in media.
Determine whether it is misleading graph or not.
Month | Sales rate of cups |
Jan | 250 |
Feb | 200 |
Mar | 150 |
Apr | 100 |
May | 250 |
The data table illustrates months and the sales rate of cups illustrated through the line graph. The months are demonstrated in x-axis and the sales rate of cups is demonstrated in y-axis.
Steps:
Determine whether it is misleading graph or not.
Month | Weight |
Jan | 32 |
Feb | 35 |
Mar | 33 |
Apr | 34 |
May | 31 |
Jun | 32 |
The data table illustrates the months and the weight and it's exhibited through the line graph. The months are illustrated in x-axis and the weight is illustrated in y-axis.
Steps:
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