Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Lasts Longer...

This is the sort of gem you come to KPC to see folks.  Data in the service of social science.  And that's why Mr. Overwater invented the internet.  (Data, I mean, not what follows here.  Mr. Overwater has standards, and I do not mean to besmirch him in any way...)

Overall, and as a general matter...the internet is for porn (NSFW, and juvenile, but still).

And since it is, that raises a question you didn't even know you didn't know the answer to (at least, I didn't know):  What is the average time spent ...um...enjoying a porn site?  An "interval of viewing," if you will?

Well, now you know.

Go, China! 

Monday, December 15, 2014

Decorate My Beard

Loren Lomasky decorates his beard this way.  If you've ever seen him after lunch, I mean.

But this is particularly appalling:



(PHOTO CREDIT)

Some Awesome/Creepy/Unintentionally Funny Pol Ads

I have a student (I'll call her "Brigitte," because that's her name) who is working on the relative influence of TV vs Youtube as an effective medium for political campaigns.  An interesting topic, though a hard thing to measure accurately.

But the great thing (for the present) is all the truly strange and/or wonderful ads she has come across.
Here's a sampling:

Chuck Grassley's twitter

Beware the Insider-asuarus

Hosed

Hotdog

Big Bad John

Economics for Five Year Olds

But then I can't resist adding my own effort, from 2008.

Jump in the Ocean  (notice the campaign sign.  That kind of production value is what really makes a video.  Okay, not.  Thanks to Barbara H for all that driving, and filming.)

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Costly Signals...

This young lady just figured a taxi would get her there.

And this guy figured...I'm not sure what he figured, but it worked.

Love:  It's all about costly signals. 

Voice


The Sound of Power: Conveying and Detecting Hierarchical Rank Through Voice 

Sei Jin Ko, Melody Sadler & Adam Galinsky
Psychological Science, forthcoming

Abstract: The current research examined the relationship between hierarchy and vocal acoustic cues. Using Brunswik’s lens model as a framework, we explored how hierarchical rank influences the acoustic properties of a speaker’s voice and how these hierarchy-based acoustic cues affect perceivers’ inferences of a speaker’s rank. By using objective measurements of speakers’ acoustic cues and controlling for baseline cue levels, we were able to precisely capture the relationship between acoustic cues and hierarchical rank, as well as the covariation among the cues. In Experiment 1, analyses controlling for speakers’ baseline cue levels found that the voices of individuals in the high-rank condition were higher in pitch and loudness variability but lower in pitch variability, compared with the voices of individuals in the low-rank condition. In Experiment 2, perceivers used higher pitch, greater loudness, and greater loudness variability to make accurate inferences of speakers’ hierarchical rank. These experiments demonstrate that acoustic cues are systematically used to reflect and detect hierarchy.

(Nod to Kevin Lewis)

Friday, December 12, 2014

Trust, But Terrify

Published this over at Freeman.

Have been getting a lot of pushback, questions like, "Can you be specific about what aspects of being poor and black are against the law?"  (And then, presumably, person mentally drops the mic and walks off stage....)

My question is, "Did you even read the article?"

I never claimed that the LAWS oppress the poor.  The POLICE do.  But it's not really the fault of the police, at least not primarily.

We all have a lot of normal, nonviolent daily activity. And a LOT of it is illegal, because we have criminalized everything.

The police, in their defense (and I mean that, sincerely), can't possibly arrest everyone who commits a crime. So they focus, quite sensibly, on people who (1) for reasons of simple prejudice we "all know" commit more crimes and (2) are less likely to be able to defend themselves or make trouble for the police.

Now, it's also likely that there is more actual criminal behavior in poor neighborhoods.

But even if there weren't, overcriminalization forces the police to ration their attention. The difference in "arrest and hassle" rates across race is greater than the difference in criminal proclivity due to poverty.

Race matters because of overcriminalization. It's not just a proxy for poverty.

(A somewhat different, but related, view from Sheldon Richman...)

Monday, December 08, 2014

Implausible setup

So, a drunk guy in a zebra costume walks into the wrong duplex...

No, really.

Nod to Angry Alex....

UPDATE:  Could have been worse.  Could have been a real deer, I suppose.