Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics

The ESA has released their annual “Essential Facts” brochure (PDF file) with their statistics about who is doing what in regards to videogames. Yet again this year there is not one word of race. It would be nice if someone somewhere with the resources would do a study to see what the racial breakdown of videogame players is. It would also be nice if the ESA would release their raw data. I can understand why they don’t because this is designed for the general public, but it would certainly be nice to have more specifics on the data. I mean these numbers are already suspect in my mind because they come from the industry and so are spun in the best possible way. However, without even knowing how the data was gathered, what questions were asked, or how the questions were phrased, the data is next to worthless for anything by a soundbite — which again, is what it is designed for. It is just kind of sad that the most complete statistical data on the gaming industry is unacessable to the people who are really the most interested in it.

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