One of my favorite places to get Covid stats from is the Our World In Data data explorer. They aggregate all the stats into a number of great visualizations that you can share with friends.
In this data are nuggets of information that get lost when you are surrounded by North American media. For example, did you in North America know that France and Germany are centers of a new European Covid wave in April 2022?
In this cascade of data are some interesting signs of how our world really uses and abuses information. The NY Times reported on some of the weird Covid data emerging from China (Shanghai’s Low Covid Death Toll Revives Questions About China’s Numbers). The Our World In Data charts show just how unusual this information is.
Covid Case Counts – China
Covid Daily Deaths – China
While I believe that the methods used to control Covid in China are aggressive, they cannot be this successful. Full stop. The case counts are far lower than anywhere else in the world and the confirmed deaths are, well, remarkably low.
Unbelievably low, upon sober thought.
The battle that democratic India is waging to control the release of statistical models of their actual mortality rate change during Covid (India Is Stalling the W.H.O.’s Efforts to Make Global Covid Death Toll Public) shines a brighter light on a country with tighter controls that is able to bury the actual mortality rate more effectively.
Throughout the Pandemic, there have been two battles: one to control the disease; the other to control the facts about the disease. In North America, the disinformation campaign has been incredibly strong; in China, it pales besides the no information campaign
Taking this data, anyone can shape a narrative that reflects their world view. But what narrative can you shape about no data?