If I recall correctly the most popular name got a 100 and a name with half as many bearers got a 50, a quarter of the most popular name was a 25, and so on. What that does is overweigh the results of just the few most popular names (whether that be good or bad) and underweighs the result of the less common names (which in this case gives the author a false or at least skewed conclusion). The mathematically correct way to conduct this experiment is instead of the aforementioned scale use the actual percentages to compute the results (if that is a bit unwidely taking the reciprocal of the precentages will yield the same results, this time with a higher value corresponding to a more unusual name).
Also, those who are doing such studies need to separate the concept of black or other unfavorably-ethnic names from those that are merely unusual (with the former there have been valid studies about resume response with such names, etc.).
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Follow up on previous blog post about unusual names for boys
Back in August 2009 I posted this blog with my comments on some stories (countering what they say) I found which say that unusual names affect boys in a negative way. I was looking again at the story at the first link in that blog and found that it's mathematically skewed. Here's a quote from a post I made on that at Nameberry (also quoted at the bottom is a line about confusing black or unfavorably-ethnic names with those that are merely uncommon):