Fair Warning: Maybe populism is not a good thing?

Hello! Hopefully you did not miss this iconic moment this week:

Surely we all aspire to be the sassy girl in the yellow top, or is that just me? (Full video)

Last week, Fair Warning looked at Northern Ireland, network diagrams and sheep (again).

Did you know? You can get Fair Warning straight to your inbox every Sunday morning by subscribing here.

On the home front

The Budget was so utterly boring that the only remarkable thing to come out of it is that everyone is angry about the self-employed. Suddenly, breaking manifesto commitments is a big deal now. The Resolution Foundation, which is a great and well-respected think-tank, says the Chancellor is right to tackle tax advantages for self-employed workers. Why? It reduces the incentive for people to be self-employed, and makes the system fairer.

Liberal Democrat membership has doubled to 85,000 and is still growing, according to their Director of Communications. They also received a £1 million donation recently, and are doing very well in local council elections. For context — this is the party that was facing electoral oblivion just two years ago.

Data journalist Duarte Romero-Varela took The Telegraph to task over a misleading map about immigration in his Medium piece ‘Why this map about immigration made me so angry’.

Over the pond

The big news this week is the American Health Care Act (AHCA) also known as Trumpcare. NPR has done a neat piece about where members of Congress stand on the bill.

The LA Times has created a graphic about how it would affect people in different states, side by side. Personally I found this confusing and I’d recommend the much more intuitive Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) map which shows a similar thing and is interactive, so you can play around with the variables yourself.

Turns out the KFF have done a lot of research into this, and also found that 54% of people who are enrolled in the Marketplace ACA scheme (which is now under threat) are in Republican districts. You know, the people who voted for Trump.

Quartz looked at how President Trump is faring on his campaign promises, 50 days in. He’s done quite well on his Executive Order promises, but there’s not much to say for his legislative promises.

Bloomberg did a great piece on how data can make immigrants look like criminals (clue: if you’re looking for it, you’ll find it).

Lastly… Yes, Washington Post, this is indeed the best explanation of gerrymandering that you’ll ever see (HT David Steven who tweeted this to me)


VoxEurop looked at the power gender gap in Europe. Unsurprisingly, Finland and Denmark are doing a far better job than anyone else.

If you’re worried about the upcoming Dutch elections and the Freedom Party, Bloomberg has several charts you need to see.

The BBC has attempted to explain the French elections in five charts, or more accurately — what French people are concerned about right now (the economy, employment, immigration, and terrorism).

BuzzFeed UK looked into British press coverage of Marine Le Pen and found that we just can’t stop writing about her, with the focus being on how the European Union is going to fall as a result of her election. She isn’t even favourite to win in the run-off and while she could win, it’s not inevitable.

This is a neat, fairly short scrolling interactive (I’ve missed those) by Reuters, explaining North Korea’s progress on nuclear weapons, including how they work, how far they can go, and where they’re made.

Bad chart of the week

You lucky people, there are two options this week.

1) What the hell is this:

(Thanks to Sean J. Taylor for that)

2) You may have heard of PizzaPieGate…or maybe you missed it. YouGov published a graphic about pizza toppings which kinda looked like a pie chart and people got A.N.G.R.Y. They even had to apologise and explain that it wasn’t a pie chart.

Do I hate it? Nah. I thought it was an interesting (if somewhat anti-intuitive) way of showing it; my biggest problem with it is that the most popular toppings should all have been on the pizza because it’s a bit misleading to then read that actually onions are the second highest voted topping.

Miscellany and fun stuff

These are some cool data visualization gifs collected by Lena Groeger for her NICAR talk. She also wrote this tutorial on GitHub which explains how you can make your own. Nice!

Scientific research is still a man’s world, according to the Economist. Women are more likely to carry out research work in health sciences, as opposed to engineering or computer science and maths.
The Atlantic made an interactive timeline where you can explore your life in history. Find out what Hollywood thought teens looked like when you were in your teens, which world events shaped your generation the most, and which event can divide your life into two halves.

Apparently millennials buy more of their clothes on Amazon than any other site. Really?
Amber Thomas looked into gender equality and dialogue in 2016’s highest-grossing films. Turns out Rogue One is overwhelmingly male, and the female characters only have 17% of the dialogue. But it’s ok, because sexism is not a thing anymore! Here’s how she did it.

Chris McCrudden put together a nice Twitter moment with all his research into who would buy a book by Katie Hopkins. The answer, he believes, is that the potential audience will be very difficult to market to. “If a publisher asked me my professional opinion, I’d tell them to stay away.”

No shameless self-promotion this week, but rest assured I am working on sorting out sheep maps once and for all, and this segment will be back next week with a piece on…. data protection and the ethical and legal limits of using customer data.

That’s all from me! Thanks for reading. If you like this newsletter, forward it to people, encourage your friends to sign up, or buy me a coffee to show your appreciation. If you think we could work together — let’s chat! Find me on Twitter @SophieWarnes.

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