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Old 12th October 2018, 07:59 AM   #161
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
Yeah, it's depressing when I don't get the joy I used to from rape and false accusations of rape.
You know what... fair enough. Retracted.

(I still stand by the example making a valid point though, fictitious though it may be)
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:00 AM   #162
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Originally Posted by Dave Rogers View Post
What I do not agree with is the claim that a false reporting rate of 5% of reports made must automatically be extrapolated to a 5% false reporting rate of all sexual assaults; there is no reasonable basis for inventing false reports that were never actually made.
I don't see anyone claiming that 5% of reported rapes means that 5% of "all" rapes are false reports. We can only apply that 5% to those actually reported, but it isn't valid to reduce that 5% to a much smaller percentage of the estimated total number of actual rapes, an estimate which may or may not include potential false reports.

If, rather than having only 10% reporting, there was in fact 50% reporting, it would seem exceptionally unlikely that the actual number of false reports would remain the same or little more than that seen with 10% reporting. The opposite would seem inevitable, due the the various ways in which a report may be determined as being false.
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:02 AM   #163
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Okay seriously unless we assume there is some ultimate power with the magical ability to determine guilt or innocence (other related concepts like honest and accuracy) with 100% precision all of these numbers have to be a best guest.
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:03 AM   #164
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
Oh, I'm sorry, I forgot this was a place where argument by 'meme' trumps actual discourse. I'll research an appropriate lolcat for that when I get home, or screenshot Taylor Swift's Twitter account.
No need to be so dismissive. Illustrating argument in ways easy to understand and remember has been a thing for thousands of years. No need to be flustered just because.... because what, really? What set you off this time?
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:07 AM   #165
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Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
I don't see anyone claiming that 5% of reported rapes means that 5% of "all" rapes are false reports.
The post I originally replied to seemed to be claiming pretty much that.

Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
We can only apply that 5% to those actually reported, but it isn't valid to reduce that 5% to a much smaller percentage of the estimated total number of actual rapes, an estimate which may or may not include potential false reports.
Nor is it valid, really, to increase it, or keep it the same. In fact, we have no data to work from on the dependence of the rate of false reporting on the rate of true reporting. That's a major problem, of course, if we want to put in place measures that will increase true reporting without encouraging large numbers of false accusations.

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Old 12th October 2018, 08:09 AM   #166
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Do we have a more reliable number for false allegations, then?
Unfortunately, no. The problem is by its nature almost impossible to measure precisely. The 5% rate from that source is most likely a lower bound.

There's a bit of a Schrodinger's cat aspect to this too: if we were able to determine the truthfulness of falseness of a claim reliably, that itself would serve to reduce the number of false claims, since the probability of passing off a false claim can affect the willingness of a person to make a false claim. So if you invented a method of reliably identifying false rape reports, then measured the false report rate precisely, you couldn't extrapolate that rate back to before you had that method.
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:11 AM   #167
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
There's a bit of a Schrodinger's cat aspect to this too: if we were able to determine the truthfulness of falseness of a claim reliably, that itself would serve to reduce the number of false claims, since the probability of passing off a false claim can affect the willingness of a person to make a false claim.
This. Far too much of this discussion is based on us assigning a value to things which are defined as unvalued.

We don't know how many of "Undetermined Value X" is determined to be "Value Y" because that's what undetermined means.
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:11 AM   #168
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
By the same token, by showing that there are a lot of false rape allegations made, wae can ignore the real rapes because it helps straight white males feel entitled.

Both sides exaggerate the numbers for their own end.
I suppose that what this comes down to is that we currently live in societies in which the majority of people who are raped are extremely reluctant to report it, but of the minority that do report 5% are false. Five percentage are still confident enough that their claim is valid, or that nobody will discover a malicious false claim. It would be fantastic if our societies were such that every person who had been raped - or at least the vast majority - felt confident enough to report it, but it follows that if that was possible, it would be also be possible for more people to be either mistaken or malicious.
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:18 AM   #169
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Okay seriously unless we assume there is some ultimate power with the magical ability to determine guilt or innocence (other related concepts like honest and accuracy) with 100% precision all of these numbers have to be a best guest.
The problem with the article cited in the OP is that it's not a best guess, it's quite likely the *worst* guess.
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:21 AM   #170
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Originally Posted by Dave Rogers View Post
Nor is it valid, really, to increase it, or keep it the same.
Actually we do. Statistics is exactly the tool we have to do this.

Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
Unfortunately, no. The problem is by its nature almost impossible to measure precisely. The 5% rate from that source is most likely a lower bound.

There's a bit of a Schrodinger's cat aspect to this too: if we were able to determine the truthfulness of falseness of a claim reliably, that itself would serve to reduce the number of false claims, since the probability of passing off a false claim can affect the willingness of a person to make a false claim. So if you invented a method of reliably identifying false rape reports, then measured the false report rate precisely, you couldn't extrapolate that rate back to before you had that method.
Exactly. And if we reduced the burden of proof to 'listen and believe' because the rate of false reports is low, you can bet some real money that it would go way up.
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:36 AM   #171
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Actually we do. Statistics is exactly the tool we have to do this.
Statistical analysis is useless without data. What data do we have on how the rate of false accusations changes when the rate of reporting changes? You can't extrapolate a trend from a single point.

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Old 12th October 2018, 08:41 AM   #172
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Actually we do. Statistics is exactly the tool we have to do this.
Statistics won't really work here. The problem is that you cannot assume that the population of reported cases is a representative sample of the total population of cases. The fact that they are reported means they went through a selection process, one which is definitely not random. We should expect that the population of cases which are reported is going to be different than the population of cases which are not reported, but precisely because they aren't reported, we don't have any good handle on the characteristics of the unreported case. And since these populations are probably different, the percentage of false cases within them could easily be different as well, possibly very different. But we don't have enough information to determine how they are different. So we cannot use statistics to extrapolate the characteristics of one population to another population that we should expect is different but in unknown ways.
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:55 AM   #173
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
Statistics won't really work here. The problem is that you cannot assume that the population of reported cases is a representative sample of the total population of cases. The fact that they are reported means they went through a selection process, one which is definitely not random. We should expect that the population of cases which are reported is going to be different than the population of cases which are not reported, but precisely because they aren't reported, we don't have any good handle on the characteristics of the unreported case. And since these populations are probably different, the percentage of false cases within them could easily be different as well, possibly very different. But we don't have enough information to determine how they are different. So we cannot use statistics to extrapolate the characteristics of one population to another population that we should expect is different but in unknown ways.
You're right but the point that statistics is how we'd find a reasonable rate stands. Dave can't just say it's zero.

Originally Posted by Dave Rogers View Post
Statistical analysis is useless without data. What data do we have on how the rate of false accusations changes when the rate of reporting changes? You can't extrapolate a trend from a single point.
Ironic.
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:58 AM   #174
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
You're right but the point that statistics is how we'd find a reasonable rate stands. Dave can't just say it's zero.



Ironic.
Not really, since I was never actually arguing for any particular rate of false reporting if the rate of reporting changed. My apologies if that wasn't clear.

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Old 12th October 2018, 09:39 AM   #175
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I think one thing that might help keep the discussion clear is a bit of standardized terminology. Here's how I think of the problem:

On the one hand, we have claimed incidents. Maybe a person never tells anyone other than themselves that the incident happens. That's a claim. Maybe they tell their parents, or their therapist, or their BFF, or a sociological survey, or their university administration. These are all claims. Depending on who receives the claim, it may or may not be tested with some unknown degree of rigor. Those are the claimed incidents, or CLAIMS

On the other hand, we have incidents that are reported to the police. These are the REPORTS, and they are a subset of the CLAIMS.

The REPORTS are tested, with varying degrees of rigor, for a variety of reasons. In one subset of REPORTS that are tested with a particular degree of rigor, we find them false at a rate of about 5% for that one subset of REPORTS.

We don't know what the falsehood rate is for the complete set of REPORTS, because outside of that one subset, we're not testing REPORTS with an adequate degree of rigor.

And we don't know the falsehood rate of CLAIMS in general, because we're not actually testing them very well at all.

And we can't extrapolate from CLAIMS to INCIDENTS, because we have no idea how many false CLAIMS there really are. Because we're not properly testing CLAIMS at all - we're only testing a subset of a subset, in a way that doesn't really admit extrapolation to the complete set.
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Old 12th October 2018, 10:52 AM   #176
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Aren't we in regards to justice only concerned with the reported to authorities rapes? (Not that the rate of rape is irrelevant or we shouldn't be looking at what is happening outside reports but as a society we can only deal with what we can know.)

Therefore if the rate is 5% is that high enough that we need to alter how our justice system usually works (I. E. Concealing identities of those being prosecuted)? To me it doesn't seem high enough yet of course that represents 5 lives out of a hundred that could be totally ruined by a false report. Perhaps we should look at this from the other end, following a false report and potential trial how can we restore someone's reputation?
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Old 12th October 2018, 11:12 AM   #177
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Aren't we in regards to justice only concerned with the reported to authorities rapes?
The concept of "justice" extends beyond the formal legal system. It's not justice for someone's reputation to be unfairly ruined even if no legal sanctions are imposed. Furthermore, there are authorities other than the police. Campus administration can and do evaluate claims of rape and impose serious penalties as a result. But a rape reported to campus authorities and not to police is not considered "reported" by the paper referenced in the OP.

Quote:
Therefore if the rate is 5% is that high enough that we need to alter how our justice system usually works (I. E. Concealing identities of those being prosecuted)?
Seems to me that if you want to shield the identities of the accusers because of the sensitivity of the crime, you should shield the identities of the accused as well, at least absent a conviction, for the same reason.

And again, the 5% rate isn't the relevant rate for that question. It doesn't include claims which are false but haven't been demonstrated to be false. It also doesn't include real claims but where the identity of the perpetrator is mistaken. But someone who is mistakenly identified is just as innocent as someone who is maliciously accused.

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Perhaps we should look at this from the other end, following a false report and potential trial how can we restore someone's reputation?
We can't. Which is why caution beforehand is warranted.
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Old 12th October 2018, 11:13 AM   #178
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Aren't we in regards to justice only concerned with the reported to authorities rapes? (Not that the rate of rape is irrelevant or we shouldn't be looking at what is happening outside reports but as a society we can only deal with what we can know.)

Therefore if the rate is 5% is that high enough that we need to alter how our justice system usually works (I. E. Concealing identities of those being prosecuted)? To me it doesn't seem high enough yet of course that represents 5 lives out of a hundred that could be totally ruined by a false report. Perhaps we should look at this from the other end, following a false report and potential trial how can we restore someone's reputation?
I don't think you can. Not without changing social attitudes.
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Old 12th October 2018, 01:01 PM   #179
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
I don't think you can. Not without changing social attitudes.
I agree, we know social attitudes can change so it may be possible.
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Old 12th October 2018, 03:59 PM   #180
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A difficult number to pin down

Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Do we have a more reliable number for false allegations, then?
There have been several discussions of how difficult this number is to obtain. National Review's Jason Richwine here. Bloomberg's Megan McArdle here. Slate's Cathy Young here. Reason's Robby Soave here. KC Johnson and Stuart Taylor devote the second chapter of their book on Title IX and campus sexual misconduct to this topic. Francis Walker has an insightful two part series on how to mislead using statistics with respect to the percentage of false versus true accusations. Part I here. Part II here.
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Old 12th October 2018, 04:09 PM   #181
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Originally Posted by Thermal View Post
If I am reading the OP article correctly, 5% of rape convictions are overturned. That is not the same as 5% are false. Overturning a conviction must be very difficult from a proof standpoint after conviction. It doesn't tell us how many convictions are also false, but unable to provide proof, and tells us nothing about how many of the unreported rapes are actually false.
Agreed. The article from the OP made use of two numbers in its premises.

It claimed that 5% of rape reports are false.
It claimed that 90% of rapes are not reported.

Both of those claims are contentious. I would not accept either of them without some demonstration of how they were obtained.

However, regardless of how they were obtained, and regardless of whether or not they are accurate, the conclusion of the article is still complete codswallop. The conclusion does not follow from the premises.
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Old 12th October 2018, 04:25 PM   #182
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
By the same token, by showing that there are a lot of false rape allegations made, wae can ignore the real rapes because it helps straight white males feel entitled.

Both sides exaggerate the numbers for their own end.
For sure, we need to stop listening to ******* idiots and **** stirring folks.

I'm sure it will be out of style in 5 or so more years. We are already seeing the tempest of ******** is causing when that outweighs the satisfaction of getting under the other sides skin , it will change.
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Old 12th October 2018, 04:35 PM   #183
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Originally Posted by luchog View Post
What do these all have in common?
Bleeding-heart liberal judges?

Quote:
In all cases, the judges expressed far more sympathy for the perpetrators than the victims, insisting that their lives should not be ruined for simple "mistakes", or that they didn't deserve to be in prison because prison would be too harsh for them.
Check.

In fact if you real the articles you linked to, most of the judges were saying that the reason they didn't give more time to the perp was because they're more interested in rehabilitating the rapists, and feel they wouldn't get the psychological treatment they needed.

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In her decision, Judge Jan Jurden suggested Robert H. Richards IV would benefit more from treatment.
Quote:
According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Ehlke justified Cook's short sentence by saying that it was rare for someone who had no previous convictions to receive a prison sentence, and that a long prison sentence would not cure the personality disorders that plague Cook. The Journal Sentinel reported that psychologist William Merrick had testified in the case to say that Cook had narcissistic traits and a sexual sadism disorder.

"Sexual sadism is an intense and persistent fantasy urge or behavior linked to sexual arousal," Merrick said, according to the Journal Sentinel. He also said that he did not know of any prison programs that treat disorders like that, and Ehlke cited that as one of the reasons why a long prison sentence was not necessary. Outside of prison, Ehlke said, Cook would be able to get the psychological treatment that he needed.
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Old 12th October 2018, 05:01 PM   #184
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Originally Posted by Chris_Halkides View Post
There have been several discussions of how difficult this number is to obtain. National Review's Jason Richwine here. Bloomberg's Megan McArdle here. Slate's Cathy Young here. Reason's Robby Soave here. KC Johnson and Stuart Taylor devote the second chapter of their book on Title IX and campus sexual misconduct to this topic. Francis Walker has an insightful two part series on how to mislead using statistics with respect to the percentage of false versus true accusations. Part I here. Part II here.
Is it just me, or did The Cut fail to cite any of this?
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Old 12th October 2018, 07:36 PM   #185
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A comparison of the real numbers with what people think the numbers are is the wrong way to look at it. I don't believe that people who are concerned about false accusations have that feeling because they have any particular number in mind for how common it is. They're just thinking about how we should handle it if and when that situation does arise, which is the same issue regardless of how often or rarely it does. And there are a couple of big reasons for people to have that on their minds without any concept of how common or rare it is ever entering the picture:

1. The importance of the general principle (for all crimes, not just rape) of innocence being presumed and guilt needing to be proven

2. A tendency to imagine one's self inserted into a story: "I know I wouldn't do that, so it's automatic that any accusation against me would be false"
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Old 12th October 2018, 08:11 PM   #186
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I remember those recent allegations of senior British politicians being a part of murderous homosexual pedophile groups extremely similar to the kind of satanic cult panic from the 80's and 90's.

Even in such cases the police should apparently investigate them because it's imperative to treat all sexual abuse allegations seriously and never question the alleged victims believability.
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Old 13th October 2018, 03:18 PM   #187
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counting false convictions

From the article cited in the OP, "I was only able to find 52 cases in 25 years where a conviction was later overturned after a wrongful conviction based on false rape allegations. In the same period, there were 790 cases where people were found to be wrongfully convicted of murder.” For what it’s worth, 790 divided by 52 is 15.2..."

I would like to know more about these numbers. Some false convictions for murder involve both rape and murder. From this link on DNA exonerations, "We classify exonerations by the 'worst crime' for which the defendant was convicted and later exonerated." And "All told, rape is an element in 78% of known DNA exonerations (329/420). In that context, the shift since 2008 mostly means that DNA exonerations are increasingly about rape-murder rather than rape alone." Within the 790 wrongful convictions for murder were there rapes or not?

Some false convictions for rape or sexual assault were based on faulty identifications of the perpetrator, even though the offense itself happened. I would be hesitant to call such a situation a false rape allegation (I would call the allegation partially true). It is unclear to me whether or not these cases were among the 52.

If memory serves me correctly the same kind of arson evidence that was sufficient to get Todd Willingham convicted was seen as faulty in a parallel case in Texas, leading to an exoneration. For this reason among others, I would urge caution when using statistics on false convictions. In other words, the number of exonerations is likely to depend on many factors, and I am not sure that the 15.2 number means very much.
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