Bad Questions

John Haman


Categories: Statistics

There are many bad statistics questions on the internet, and about half as many poor answers to those questions. In education, we like to say that there are no bad questions.

Maybe there are no bad questions, but there is just a plethora of lazy questions.

I spend a fair amount of time answering a lot of good questions at work (and at home!) so when I see a lazy question on the internet, I get very annoyed. I think this a something that discriminates between me and a “good” teacher.1 I just don’t have patience for lazy questions in my area of expertise.

But I’m trying to be more tolerable. Probably a lot of people see my questions and think they are lazy/bad.

  1. When I taught math and statistics classes, students didn’t ask lazy questions. This is just a symptom of being able to ask random people anything online