Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

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Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Kamil » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:30 pm

Oftentimes in this thread when a believer of a supernatural cause or anything we can't explain yet gives an example, it is often met with "yeah but it's only an anecdote". Does this mean people who say this assume the anecdote is fabricated or made up? What if it's not intentionally made up?

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:37 pm

Even if not intentionally, it still might not describe factual truths (or accurate interpretation). It's better to have occurrences recorded reliably than depend on some faulty human memory of things that cannot be corroborated by other confirming evidence.
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:56 pm

Most people that report things are nuts. At least, thats my experience.
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:11 pm

And of those reports, many of the later accounts are nothing but 'purple monkey dishwasher' hearsay tales.
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby OlegTheBatty » Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:51 pm

Kamil wrote:Oftentimes in this thread when a believer of a supernatural cause or anything we can't explain yet gives an example, it is often met with "yeah but it's only an anecdote". Does this mean people who say this assume the anecdote is fabricated or made up? What if it's not intentionally made up?

Even with honesty, perceptions are not perfect, and memories are not perfect. All experiences are subjective; using an anecdote as evidence is an attempt to make the experience objective, which can't be done.

Anecdotes are not useless. Often, they point the way to building hypotheses which can be tested.
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Matthew Ellard » Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:56 pm

Kamil wrote:Oftentimes in this thread when a believer of a supernatural cause or anything we can't explain yet gives an example, it is often met with "yeah but it's only an anecdote". Does this mean people who say this assume the anecdote is fabricated or made up? What if it's not intentionally made up?


Firstly, Matt MSV7, your entire background story for "Kamil" is made up.......so you already know people tell lies. :lol:

Secondly, who cares if people make up stories or are confused themselves, if they are not presenting any scientific evidence, but only presenting subjective anecdotes, that no one can check?

Stop wasting our time

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Shen1986 » Wed Aug 09, 2017 4:43 am

Kamil wrote:Oftentimes in this thread when a believer of a supernatural cause or anything we can't explain yet gives an example, it is often met with "yeah but it's only an anecdote". Does this mean people who say this assume the anecdote is fabricated or made up? What if it's not intentionally made up?


Anecdotes is poor evidence because:

1. Many people lie. You cannot tell if the person is telling the truth.
2. People when telling a story add bits of information to it which the original story did not had. Like the telephone game in class. The bigger the information the bigger new things will be add.
3. People like to make story extraordinary to sell them so again they add new information to make the story more convincing.
4. Memory is not always reliable.
5. Emotions also are not very reliable factor.
6. Most anecdotes we are dealing with the paranormal here happen during stress moments or fright which again is not reliable information like when someone spooks you with a blanket in the dark and you could swear it was a real ghost - a silly example but according to this anecdote you seen a ghost and not a trick and you believe it was a ghost.

This is just a top of my head information but I think this answers your question. Anecdotes however are valuable to some degree. It is used in the wild with animals and their behaviours like a behaviour the animal does not normally exhibit when its caged but even there scientist are using cameras or recorders to be 100 percent sure it happened and do not rely on eye sight. Also the anecdote has to be repeated not just by one researcher in the wild. You need to have several witnesses who study this kind of animal and then its investigated, filmed and recorded. However keep in mind that this kind of anecdote information is done not in stress or fright but by observation and the anecdote information is always the same for example the researchers observed always the same behaviour which is identical for example the monkey in the wild will always use the tool to pick ants in the same or extremely similar fashion however that cannot be said by paranormal anecdotes - most paranormal anecdotes change according to the story, ghosts change form sometimes its light or sometimes its a mist, NDE are not consistent - everyone seen something else like different gods etc.
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Nikki Nyx » Wed Aug 09, 2017 4:45 am

Kamil wrote:Oftentimes in this thread when a believer of a supernatural cause or anything we can't explain yet gives an example, it is often met with "yeah but it's only an anecdote". Does this mean people who say this assume the anecdote is fabricated or made up? What if it's not intentionally made up?

Witness testimony is notoriously unreliable. If the witness is in the presence of people he knows, his testimony will be even more unreliable. Studies have proven both of these to be true.

I recall seeing this experiment done. About ten people were pulled from the studio audience and sat in a row of chairs onstage, ostensibly for part of a talk show. Once they'd gotten comfortable with being onstage, a person ran out from stage left, grabbed one of the women's purses, and exited stage right. (This, of course, was the set-up.) Security came in and questioned the ten people onstage separately, asking them to describe the thief: height, weight, age, gender, race, and clothing. All ten people provided completely different descriptions, even though they'd all seen the exact same person for the exact same amount of time.

So, it's not a question of whether or not one particular person's anecdote can be trusted to be true, but merely the fact that anecdotal narratives in general cannot be trusted to be true. They don't stand up to scientific scrutiny, because you tend to report a mixture of:
• what you actually saw,
• what you expected to see given the situation and any biases you hold (like "I'm in an abandoned prison; that must have been a ghost"),
• whatever details your brain fills in based on your assumptions (like "it's winter, he must have been wearing a coat"),
• whatever details you overheard that you happen to agree with, and
• whatever your memory fills in each time you retell the anecdote (because each retelling is a memory of a memory, not a memory of the actual event).
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Phoenix76 » Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:06 am

An anecdote is a "short amusing account of an incident" (Collins Dictionary). So it is not much else but a story.

In trying to prove a theory, first we look for association. That is, examples of where something happened, then something else happened. Then we have to move on to causation. As the name suggests, we have to prove what caused the something to happen.

So an anecdote is very far removed from proving anything. The old example of a circle of say 12 people. Person number one whispers something to person number two, and then so on around the circle. When we get to person number 12, we have a totally different story.

So until we get firstly association, and then secondly causation, it remains just an anecdote or story.

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:43 am

Kamil wrote:Oftentimes in this thread when a believer of a supernatural cause or anything we can't explain yet gives an example, it is often met with "yeah but it's only an anecdote". Does this mean people who say this assume the anecdote is fabricated or made up? What if it's not intentionally made up?

I see you're not familiar with the standards for evidence.
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Gord » Wed Aug 09, 2017 12:59 pm

Just look it up for yourself: https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/anecdotal

anecdotal
adjective

(of an account) not necessarily true or reliable, because based on personal accounts rather than facts or research.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anecdotal_evidence

Anecdotal evidence is evidence from anecdotes, i.e., evidence collected in a casual or informal manner and relying heavily or entirely on personal testimony. When compared to other types of evidence, anecdotal evidence is generally regarded as limited in value due to a number of potential weaknesses, but may be considered within the scope of scientific method as some anecdotal evidence can be both empirical and verifiable, e.g. in the use of case studies in medicine. Other anecdotal evidence, however, does not qualify as scientific evidence, because its nature prevents it from being investigated by the scientific method.

Where only one or a few anecdotes are presented, there is a larger chance that they may be unreliable due to cherry-picked or otherwise non-representative samples of typical cases. Similarly, psychologists have found that due to cognitive bias people are more likely to remember notable or unusual examples rather than typical examples. Thus, even when accurate, anecdotal evidence is not necessarily representative of a typical experience. Accurate determination of whether an anecdote is "typical" requires statistical evidence. Misuse of anecdotal evidence is an informal fallacy and is sometimes referred to as the "person who" fallacy ("I know a person who..."; "I know of a case where..." etc.) which places undue weight on experiences of close peers which may not be typical. Compare with hasty generalization.

The term is sometimes used in a legal context to describe certain kinds of testimony which are uncorroborated by objective, independent evidence such as notarized documentation, photographs, audio-visual recordings, etc....
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:36 pm

scrmbldggs wrote:Even if not intentionally, it still might not describe factual truths (or accurate interpretation). It's better to have occurrences recorded reliably than depend on some faulty human memory of things that cannot be corroborated by other confirming evidence.


Anything confirmed by memory is bound to be shakey regardless of it being corroborated by a stack of other confirming evidence. Evidence is also based on memory because it is recognised and anything based on recognition cannot be factual in the true sense of the word. But I'm glad you've acknowledge the fallibility of memory, even though it appears you don't fully understand the ramifications of the statement you have just made.

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:54 pm

Confidencia wrote:
scrmbldggs wrote:Even if not intentionally, it still might not describe factual truths (or accurate interpretation). It's better to have occurrences recorded reliably than depend on some faulty human memory of things that cannot be corroborated by other confirming evidence.


Anything confirmed by memory is bound to be shakey regardless of it being corroborated by a stack of other confirming evidence. Evidence is also based on memory because it is recognised and anything based on recognition cannot be factual in the true sense of the word. But I'm glad you've acknowledge the fallibility of memory, even though it appears you don't fully understand the ramifications of the statement you have just made.

Good thing then that with every committed post, you repeatedly provide proof of the inanity of your mission.
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby OlegTheBatty » Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:57 pm

scrmbldggs wrote:
Confidencia wrote:
scrmbldggs wrote:Even if not intentionally, it still might not describe factual truths (or accurate interpretation). It's better to have occurrences recorded reliably than depend on some faulty human memory of things that cannot be corroborated by other confirming evidence.


Anything confirmed by memory is bound to be shakey regardless of it being corroborated by a stack of other confirming evidence. Evidence is also based on memory because it is recognised and anything based on recognition cannot be factual in the true sense of the word. But I'm glad you've acknowledge the fallibility of memory, even though it appears you don't fully understand the ramifications of the statement you have just made.

Good thing then that with every committed post, you repeatedly provide proof of the inanity of your mission.


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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:01 pm

Thanks, I guess. I normally forget about confidentiallyclarifyShaka as soon as I leave the page. :shakefist:
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby OlegTheBatty » Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:10 pm

scrmbldggs wrote:Thanks, I guess. I normally forget about confidentiallyclarifyShaka as soon as I leave the page. :shakefist:


I forgot about them long ago. My memory is indulging in a selective snooze fest.
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:15 pm

OlegTheBatty wrote:
scrmbldggs wrote:Thanks, I guess. I normally forget about confidentiallyclarifyShaka as soon as I leave the page. :shakefist:


I forgot about them long ago. My memory is indulging in a selective snooze fest.

:shock: Mine too! I just don't know who's doing the selecting. Or whyyyyyy... :cry:
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 4:03 pm

scrmbldggs wrote:
Confidencia wrote:
scrmbldggs wrote:Even if not intentionally, it still might not describe factual truths (or accurate interpretation). It's better to have occurrences recorded reliably than depend on some faulty human memory of things that cannot be corroborated by other confirming evidence.


Anything confirmed by memory is bound to be shakey regardless of it being corroborated by a stack of other confirming evidence. Evidence is also based on memory because it is recognised and anything based on recognition cannot be factual in the true sense of the word. But I'm glad you've acknowledge the fallibility of memory, even though it appears you don't fully understand the ramifications of the statement you have just made.

Good thing then that with every committed post, you repeatedly provide proof of the inanity of your mission.


Your state of mind is the proof of your own insanity, were it not the case of mission impossible, I would be inclined to agree whole heartedly.

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 4:08 pm

OlegTheBatty wrote:
scrmbldggs wrote:
Confidencia wrote:
scrmbldggs wrote:Even if not intentionally, it still might not describe factual truths (or accurate interpretation). It's better to have occurrences recorded reliably than depend on some faulty human memory of things that cannot be corroborated by other confirming evidence.


Anything confirmed by memory is bound to be shakey regardless of it being corroborated by a stack of other confirming evidence. Evidence is also based on memory because it is recognised and anything based on recognition cannot be factual in the true sense of the word. But I'm glad you've acknowledge the fallibility of memory, even though it appears you don't fully understand the ramifications of the statement you have just made.

Good thing then that with every committed post, you repeatedly provide proof of the inanity of your mission.


Constant reminders, so you don't forget.


It is only the false that needs to be remember because it is only the false that you can forget. There's no need to remember yourself because you are yourself. It's simple logic!

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Re: Why are fantasies considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Fri Aug 11, 2017 4:18 pm

:hmm: You really must be one of the loneliest people on the interwebz. SAD!
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Re: Why are fantasies considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 4:39 pm

scrmbldggs wrote::hmm: You really must be one of the loneliest people on the interwebz. SAD!


loneliness is a state of mind. In reality there is no mind so who is there to be lonely?

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 4:59 pm

Remember the false scrim, it is momentary. What you call life is a mere drop in the ocean, there is so much more of it which you cannot even begin to imagine.

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Fri Aug 11, 2017 5:51 pm

"The unpredictable grows through an abundance of mice"
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:09 pm

Ha. It could be said that anecdotes are the first step of many journeys, but not the destination or finish line?

.......gee, I'm feeling kinda lonely.
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:12 pm

No worries, Shaka will be back soon to entertain you.
.

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 7:00 pm

scrmbldggs wrote:"The unpredictable grows through an abundance of mice"


...Then all the grain disappears, the mice get fat and the pussies have a banquet.

Speaking of which, where's the textbook massive?
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 7:15 pm

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:Ha. It could be said that anecdotes are the first step of many journeys, but not the destination or finish line?


Whilst you are asleep it makes no difference where you end up. In sleep the finishing line is always where you start. Your destination is the circle of repetition.


.......gee, I'm feeling kinda lonely.



Then let me entertain you!!

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 7:18 pm

scrmbldggs wrote:No worries, Shaka will be back soon to entertain you.


He knows.

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Re: Why are imaginations considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Fri Aug 11, 2017 7:50 pm

Confidencia wrote:
scrmbldggs wrote:No worries, Shaka will be back soon to entertain you.


He knows.

I know. And understand that you would exchange the mind numbing boredom and aggravation of the echo chambers of deluded and condescending know-it-alls for something a little more interesting and uplifting.

What seems insane, however, is that one would flee over and over and over again to a place so diametrically opposed to one's fantasies and leanings, a place that soon begins to tire of the senseless proselytizing and trolling and doesn't hold back on its opinions - are you masochistic, Shaka?
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:08 pm

Speaking of journeys and destinations, it strikes me anecdotes are like personally drawn maps you get from a stranger when asking for directions? A published map is more like the peer reviewed/scientific process. Which one would you trust?
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:15 pm

"You have to drive through this road and then go left to get to that road."

"But I can see I can go straight down there and be on it!"

"Yeah, but there's that little store over there and I like to drive by and check the bargains in their window when I'm in this area."
.

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:25 pm

I was in LA once........near the airport..........and there was a hotel "you could not get to." Mostly the result of one way roads and road construction and lots of fences and freeways. Like Shangri-La in the Mist.......you had to wait for the moment and then proceed fast or lose eternity. Bad when your baggage is in the storage room.
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:36 pm

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:Speaking of journeys and destinations, it strikes me anecdotes are like personally drawn maps you get from a stranger when asking for directions? A published map is more like the peer reviewed/scientific process. Which one would you trust?



Waiting for somebody to draw you a picture bobbo? :lol: sounds about right. Needless to say the sheeple will stay hundled together only going where they are told to go.
I'd take the brave heart route and go over unchartered ground and get rid of the nipple. :lol:

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:43 pm

What is it about our cord that's so enticing to you?
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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:46 pm

Meh, don't answer that... I know your kind and those who you fell for. Because of people close to me I have studied "teachings" and "teachers" to a not small extend. And found them wanting. Sorely wanting. And forever wanting... more.

My friends are sincere in their beliefs. They would not, however, see a need to do as you and the other proselytizing trolls here are doing. They aren't needy and don't have the urge to feel "special". They are contend with what works in their life and speak about their beliefs with those who either already share them, or who show an interest. But they have to be prompted.

You, otoh, keep opening account after failing account here. Don't kid yourself, it's not because it's intellectually challenging for you, it's because you are weak. Besides other obvious things, your foul thoughts and mouth attest to that.
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Re: Why are imaginations considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:00 pm

scrmbldggs wrote:
Confidencia wrote:
scrmbldggs wrote:No worries, Shaka will be back soon to entertain you.


He knows.

I know. And understand that you would exchange the mind numbing boredom and aggravation of the echo chambers of deluded and condescending know-it-alls for something a little more interesting and uplifting.


Great! Does that mean you are going to pluck up some courage and go beyond the flock?

What seems insane, however, is that one would flee over and over and over again to a place so diametrically opposed to one's fantasies and leanings, a place that soon begins to tire of the senseless proselytizing and trolling and doesn't hold back on its opinions - are you masochistic, Shaka?


:lol: Why do you have to get so serious scrim? We are just having a bit of fun. Have you ever heard of the word banter? You've been sucking on your nipple for to long Scrim and it's obviously left a bitter taste in your mouth. :lol: dip it in sugar :lol:

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:02 pm

scrmbldggs wrote:What is it about our cord that's so enticing to you?


He's got a beard and he's funny.

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:09 pm

scrmbldggs wrote:Meh, don't answer that... I know your kind and those who you fell for. Because of people close to me I have studied "teachings" and "teachers" to a not small extend. And found them wanting. Sorely wanting. And forever wanting... more.

My friends are sincere in their beliefs. They would not, however, see a need to do as you and the other proselytizing trolls here are doing. They aren't needy and don't have the urge to feel "special". They are contend with what works in their life and speak about their beliefs with those who either already share them, or who show an interest. But they have to be prompted.

You, otoh, keep opening account after failing account here. Don't kid yourself, it's not because it's intellectually challenging for you, it's because you are weak. Besides other obvious things, your foul thoughts and mouth attest to that.


Ooooch scrim, that really hurt. Why are you being a bitch to me ?

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby scrmbldggs » Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:11 pm

Seems you tripped and scared yourself now, dear.

You are not "serving" and most certainly not selflessly. You are merely acting selfishly insisting that others notice and swallow your deranged garbage. And not only aren't your efforts doing anything to help your cause (quite the contrary, actually), they make you look as silly and foolish as can be.

I have to assume that not even your kind wants you around and that's why you ended up and keep returning here, where the ban hammer doesn't swing easily and/or without real cause. But you sure duck away quickly for a while when it seems certain it's coming down on one of your socks. And why would that become necessary, dear troll?
Last edited by scrmbldggs on Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Lard, save me from your followers.

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Re: Why are anecdotes considered to be poor evidence?

Postby Confidencia » Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:42 pm

scrmbldggs wrote:Seems you tripped and scared yourself now, dear.

You are not "serving" and most certainly not selflessly. You are merely selfishly insisting that others notice and swallow your deranged garbage. And not only aren't your efforts doing anything to help your cause (quite the contrary, actually), they make you look as silly and foolish as can be.

I have to assume that not even your kind wants you around and that's why you ended up and keep returning here, where the ban hammer doesn't swing easily and/or without real cause. But you sure duck away quickly for a while when it seems certain it's coming down on one of your socks. And why would that become necessary, dear troll?



Oh I get it, it's that time of the month isn't it - it's always the case, pun intended :lol:

Listen scrim, I've got a couple of age old maxims for you. People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones or If you can't stand the heat get out of the kitchen.

Honestly you, ellard and poodle I'm beginning to think you are three little girls. You three are the only ones who seem to have period tantrums. Why?


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