osewalrus (osewalrus) wrote,
osewalrus
osewalrus

Policy, Anecdotes and the Problem of the Black Swan.

I run into the "you can't make policy by anecdotes" or "anecdotes aren't data" argument so many times I wrote a blog post explaining why individual incidents (e.g., the Comcast/Netflix thing) are important in policy and what the "no anecdotes" rule really means.
Short version: what we have is a failure to appreciate the Problem of the Black Swan -- which has nothing to do with either Nicholas Talibi or Natalie Portman.
Long version:
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