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LibDems being creative!

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Monday 10 August 2009 12.53pm
Although I suppose they'd call it artistic license or making it easier for people to grasp 'difficult' mathematics.
In the summer 2009 edition of FOCUS, there is a block graph of the 2009 election results headed 'It was so close!'
The graph on the left is as displayed in FOCUS but if my maths are correct it should appear roughly as graph on the right based on the votes. Am I nitpicking?
Monday 10 August 2009 3.18pm
You're absolutely right, but then I don't mind if the false one depressed a few tories!
Monday 10 August 2009 7.39pm
Maybe the y axis is non linear, (logarithmic perhaps) and the origin is not shown. I'm a pie chart man myself.
Pie or Bar?
Monday 10 August 2009 11.37pm
I Like bars and I like pies
Tuesday 11 August 2009 9.15am
The Lib Dems are always creative when it comes to elections. Simon Hughes lied to us to win his seat but we are all politically correct now so no one dares mention it.
Tuesday 11 August 2009 11.41am
Lies, damned lies, and statistics ... and highly misleading bar charts. You're absolutely not nit-picking, phoney

The Lib Dem bar should be a little over 80% the length of the Labour bar: it looks closer to 95%!

The Conservative bar should be more than 50% the length of the Labour bar: it looks to be about 40%.

The Conservative bar should also be around two-thirds the length of the Lib-Dem bar, not less than half as it is here.

I guess they might claim artistic license, but I think that's a dangerous game in the current 'political honesty' furore. It also makes the Lib Dems look like they're running scared ...
Tuesday 11 August 2009 12.04pm
In fairness they have put the numbers in, which allows the reader to make their own judgment about how close it was or not, aside from the graphical representation. Which people have done, clearly.
Tuesday 11 August 2009 4.27pm
McQueen wrote:
It also makes the Lib Dems look like they're running scared ...

I dont think it does particularly.

Far be it from me to defend misleading Lib Dem barcharts (as they generally annoy me greatly) but the message they are trying to give here (through the use of a misleading barchart or otherwise) is that in the next general election only Labour or themselves have a chance in this constituency (ie Bermondsey and Old Southwark). So phoney is correct that the chart is misleading but at least the general message behind it is broadly correct (ie only Simon Hughes or Val Shawcross can realistically win). What really gets me going is when the Lib Dems try to spin the same line in different types of elections (you know, the pr type of elections they are always calling for) when all votes for all parties can count but they still try to peddal the same message as here.

You could argue that if the Lib Dems are forced to use dodgy barcharts it is at least partly because the Westminster electoral system is unfairly stacked against them generally.

(Disclosure - I have sometimes written leaflets, though never with a dodgy barchart, for a different political party.)
Wednesday 12 August 2009 1.53pm
Isn't it just that the section of the chart shown is not the zero point (i.e. the bit of chart on the leaflet is a magnification of the last 20% or so)?

(Not that it matters to me. I generally ignore all and any of these whizzy stats)

...if you press it, they will come.
Wednesday 12 August 2009 3.21pm
Ivanhoe wrote:
Isn't it just that the section of the chart shown is not the zero point

That's probably one of the ways of achieving the effect. Graham above suggests another way (using a non-linear y axis such as a logarithmic scale). It could have been one or the other or both or another method entirely.
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