Fun With Charts: Making the Rich Look Collectively Poor

Same data, two different ways of presenting it, two different stories.

Update: To be clear, I don’t think either of these charts are an effective way to convey this information, although I do think the WSJ’s original version is particularly contorted, so as to make it seems as though the wealthy don’t earn that much collectively. Here’s another take on the same data, same basic chart format, from Gregg Hilferding. None of these charts are wrong or dishonest — they accurately show the data they claim to. What’s interesting here, to me, is thinking about how these different versions can make the same data look very different.

Thursday, 12 May 2011