Albegas wrote: ↑
2 years ago
TheAnswer wrote: ↑
2 years ago
And I quote, directly from the first chunk of the article:
I don’t have a ton of micro-level data for eight-year-old metagames at my disposal, so I’ll be going largely on memory and my impression of the metagames of yore that led up to a ban. Which brings me to my second point…
His rationale wasn't backed by numbers at all, and he admitted it.
And that unto itself is problematic. It's one thing to not have the time to find the exact numbers to substantiate a claim, which is already sketchy from a journalistic standpoint but at least you can find the evidence if someone asks for it. It's another thing to imply a claim that's simply incorrect with the logic of "well it's just my opinion so it doesn't matter if what I say is incorrect". Pros being asked (and I assume paid) to write articles should be held to a higher standard than that.
Course I already added to the view count to write up an opinion on a different site so I'm not exactly solving the issue
TheAnswer wrote: ↑
2 years ago
Yeah this is exactly what I was saying about certain pros being less trustworthy in terms of content. If that content is intended to make money, you probably should have a guarded view. I mean, I understand each of his points, and I kind of agree with the general order he had, but he absolutely has the data to back up his claims. He just didn't think it would be worth it to add hard evidence to his article. And if people will still read it, then I guess good for him, min-maxing his effort-to-article ratio.
I have to agree with these assessments. I have read more than a few BDM (DeMars, not David-Marshall) articles where he makes wild claims without the evidence to back them. In some of those articles, as with this one, he tries to dodge the burden of evidence by stating "It's just an opinion" and acknowledging he doesn't have all the data. As I've said before, this is the same strategy we sometimes see in lazy op-ed pieces where an author wants to talk off the cuff about a hefty issue but doesn't have the time/knowledge/interest to build a case with proper research. That might be fine with narrower, humbler claims, but it's definitely not fine with significant ones. Ranking and assessing not just a few but EIGHT Modern bans over the entire course of Modern's 8-year history demands data just as much as an op-ed on climate change or firearms would.
I'm not even saying he needs to write journal-level articles on these issues. I'd just want to see a) a little more data that is relatively easy to come by (CFP put together a GP breakdown on the last page presumably in less than 10 minutes), and/or b) a little less certainty in his conclusions. On (a), he could have posted some metagame or tournament standings from any of the literal hundreds of articles on that topic from different eras. I know because I've written some of those since 2014. On (b), he could have just dialed back the confidence. For example, quotes like this are unacceptable without data:
On the one hand, metrically speaking, Twin Exarch did everything to exemplify being a “broken, format-warping, dominant, best deck.” It was played at a huge rate by players and outperformed the majority of the field.
He's making multiple explicit, statistics-driven claims here ("huge rate by players", "outperformed the majority of the field," "best deck," etc. and then tries to retreat behind a disclaimer of memory and impressions. He even says he's "metrically speaking" and doesn't cite a single metric! BDM should either have found the data to support his certainty, or just toned down quotes like this. Here's my attempt at walking it back:
In my experience, and acknowledging the limitations of my own memory and impression, Twin Exarch felt as much like a “broken, format-warping, dominant, best deck” as many of the others. It was consistently one of the most-played decks at events and enjoyed consistent Top 8s for much of its history.
This is just one way of many BDM or his editors could have reined in the tone and returned the article to its op-ed roots. But, as CFP has said on this page and I have cautioned before, articles and authors have significant financial/reputation incentive to overstate claims and drive traffic to their content. Unfortunately, articles like BDM's thrive in that environment.
I encourage people who are dissatisfied with this style of writing to post to the comment section of that article. I will do the same.