Howie Lempel writes:
Showing a white person a photo of Obama w/ artificially dark skin instead of artificially lightened skin before asking whether they support the Tea Party raises their probability of saying “yes” from 12% to 22%. 255 person Amazon Turk and Craigs List sample, p=.03.
Nothing too unusual about this one. But it’s particularly grating when hyper educated liberal elites use shoddy research to decide that their political opponents only disagree with them because they’re racist.
Hey, they could have a whole series of this sort of experiment:
– Altering the orange hue of Donald Trump’s skin and seeing if it affects how much people trust the guy . . .
– Making Hillary Clinton fatter and seeing if that somehow makes her more likable . . .
– Putting glasses on Rick Perry to see if that affects perceptions of his intelligence . . .
– Altering the shape of Elizabeth Warren’s face to make her look even more like a Native American . . .
The possibilities are endless. And, given the low low cost of Mechanical Turk and Craig’s List, surprisingly affordable. The pages of
Psychological Science PPNAS Frontiers in Psychology are wide open to you. As the man says, Never say no!
P.S. Just to be clear: I’m not saying that the above-linked conclusions are wrong or that such studies are inherently ridiculous. I just think you have to be careful about how seriously you take claims from reported p-values.