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Go figure

Go figure

Press releases pour statistics to journalists hungry for numbers. Does anyone bother adding them up?

August 25, 2008 12:40 by

“GCC expected to channel $100 billion to increase power generation within next 10 years,” reads the title of a press release we just received. The rest of it, however, mainly elaborates how the company, a manufacturer of power protection and connectivity equipment, plans to expand on account of the above information.

Journalists (and especially editors) love statistics, as it makes their work seem more credible. Local companies and PR flacks seem to be catching on to this. The title of a press release for a real estate developer: “UAE mortgage market to reach Dh 64 billion over the next three years.” The item easily found a place in many news reports, with few reporters bothering to question the accuracy of the statistic.

Most of the times, the figures are the results of “a recent market study”. Who exactly conducts these studies? Are they even true? What do you think?

PS- A reader of the Dubai Media Observer blog did a bit of calculation on a recent report on the gaming console market. “So they sold a console for every person in the country, at an average price of Dh3.50?” he asks.

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