People ARE getting dumber (14 I.Q. points dumber)

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Here is the study I meant to link to (its peer reviewed up the ass) -> http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160289613000470

Don't bother reading it, I didn't. I assumed that this study was a supporting the above, this is crap->University of Hartford published a study on population growth and IQ. ]]http://uhaweb.hartford.edu/BRBAKER/

Results show the the average person in the western world today is dumber by a significant margin than he was 100 years ago. So to all the naysayers who think that people are just as dumb today as they were back then, it looks like the evidence isn't with you. I think someone even said that people were getting smarter? Maybe if you live in sri lanka.

The fact is Americans and the cushy european nations have gotten lazy, and laziness breeds stupidity. Its a bitter pill to swallow, and maybe ignorance is in this case bliss, however I just can't help myself. I'd like to see someone rebut in an intelligent way.

Ummm, what exactly does this have to do with gaming? Shouldn't this be in off-topic?

Anyway, this isn't a study published by some fancy university, this is a poorly written paper somebody did for their introductory sociology class. So I don't think I would call this primo scientific research. And let's not forget that the only thing IQ tests have been shown to accurately measure is how good somebody is at taking an IQ test, so even if IQ levels have dropped a bunch (which I have not seen any evidence of one way or another), that doesn't really mean anything.

I just want to point out that one of the "sources" cited at the bottom of that page are this page, which spends a moment talking about something called the "Flynn effect."

The Flynn effect is an undisputed yet enigmatic aspect of IQ testing. Shortly after the first IQ tests were standardised, it was observed that the scores of those taking them tended to rise from year to year, as much as 15 points (one standard deviation) per generation. To maintain a mean score of 100 for the population on which IQ tests were standardised, test makers were forced to make their tests increasingly difficult over the years. In other words, to get the same IQ score as your father, you must perform equally well on a substantially tougher test than he took.

If, for whatever reason, everybody were getting smarter, this would be wonderful news indeed. But a glance at the numbers shows that something very curious must be going on here. If IQ were, in fact, rising at a rate of 15 points per generation then, if the mean IQ of today is 100, that of our grandparents' generation would have been about 70-generally considered the threshold of mental retardation. Clearly, anybody who's spent time with their grandparents and other folks of that generation knows that's utter nonsense.

I haven't read the whole thing, but I read this in particular because the first thing I wondered was how standardized were these tests in the first place. And while I don't know all the ins and outs of this "Flynn Effect," to me this says there is a LOT of uncertainty when it comes to pinning down human intelligence to an objective number. If they're having to tamper with their tests like this to account for strange fluctuations in results, that to me says the results weren't completely reliable to begin with.

Another two sources I found were The Daily Beast, the site run by Glenn Beck and his ilk of hyper-conservative loons, and another source which I shit you not is called:

"American Intelligence Compromised by Blood Transfusions
Librul news today"

Seriously, I copy and pasted that directly from the sources area, look for yourself. Needless to say these are not reliable sources for any sort of project that revolves around human intelligence. Also, given the way the sources aren't cited in any official academic format (hell, they aren't even in alphabetical order), I think it's safe to say this is NOT an official research project sponsored by the university. It looks like a student project hosted on the Hartford web site, something which is commonly done in universities these days as a way of turning in and presenting projects. I have no idea what this is, but if it's really any sort of academic venture it is a joke at best and I doubt they got good marks for it.

ohnoitsabear:
Ummm, what exactly does this have to do with gaming? Shouldn't this be in off-topic?

Anyway, this isn't a study published by some fancy university, this is a poorly written paper somebody did for their introductory sociology class. So I don't think I would call this primo scientific research. And let's not forget that the only thing IQ tests have been shown to accurately measure is how good somebody is at taking an IQ test, so even if IQ levels have dropped a bunch (which I have not seen any evidence of one way or another), that doesn't really mean anything.

Here is another guy affiliated with "Vrije Universiteit in Brussels, Jan te Nijenhuis of the University of Amsterdam and Raegan Murphy of the University College Cork in Ireland. that came to this conclusion" : http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/sideshow/researchers-western-iqs-dropped-14-points-over-last-180634194.html
No evidence? Look at what passes as entertainment. Shows, movies, games, all are moving toward the worthless bang bang twenty minute long action sequence/setpiece. I've haven't done any hard research, but come on, if you enjoy any of these mediums, you must've noticed the glut of crap that has been elevated into the mainstream. People used to lineup for hours to go see Doctor Zhivago or Gone with the Wind, now, neither of these movies are particularly mind blowing, but they were at least cerebral to an extent, and I'm talking about the mainstream here. Gaming had a period where it embraced the cerebral, partially because of technical limitations but the lion's share of the credit goes to the passionate, inspired minds of the early period who saw all the potential. At a point, population expansion lowers IQ. It just makes sense. As you broaden the base, you need more chattel to support the pyramid, it's not an opinion, empirically speaking you'd have to be blind not to see this trend in society. Not everyone can be a rocket scientist or a derivatives analyst or a ceo.

gavinmcinns:

No evidence? Look at what passes as entertainment. Shows, movies, games, all are moving toward the worthless bang bang twenty minute long action sequence/setpiece. I've haven't done any hard research, but come on, if you enjoy any of these mediums, you must've noticed the glut of crap that has been elevated into the mainstream. People used to lineup for hours to go see Doctor Zhivago or Gone with the Wind

First of all, crappy art and entertainment have existed in every era. Second, I guarantee you that people have been saying things like this since the beginning of goddamn human civilization. "People nowadays can't appreciate real music/art/entertainment! They're too busy listening to that newfangled devil jazz/rock/rap! Why can't they appreciate the classics?"

Sounds like nothing new to me

Lilani:
I just want to point out that one of the "sources" cited at the bottom of that page are this page, which spends a moment talking about something called the "Flynn effect."

The Flynn effect is an undisputed yet enigmatic aspect of IQ testing. Shortly after the first IQ tests were standardised, it was observed that the scores of those taking them tended to rise from year to year, as much as 15 points (one standard deviation) per generation. To maintain a mean score of 100 for the population on which IQ tests were standardised, test makers were forced to make their tests increasingly difficult over the years. In other words, to get the same IQ score as your father, you must perform equally well on a substantially tougher test than he took.

If, for whatever reason, everybody were getting smarter, this would be wonderful news indeed. But a glance at the numbers shows that something very curious must be going on here. If IQ were, in fact, rising at a rate of 15 points per generation then, if the mean IQ of today is 100, that of our grandparents' generation would have been about 70-generally considered the threshold of mental retardation. Clearly, anybody who's spent time with their grandparents and other folks of that generation knows that's utter nonsense.

I haven't read the whole thing, but I read this in particular because the first thing I wondered was how standardized were these tests in the first place. And while I don't know all the ins and outs of this "Flynn Effect," to me this says there is a LOT of uncertainty when it comes to pinning down human intelligence to an objective number. If they're having to tamper with their tests like this to account for strange fluctuations in results, that to me says the results weren't completely reliable to begin with.

Another two sources I found were The Daily Beast, the site run by Glenn Beck and his ilk of hyper-conservative loons, and another source which I shit you not is called:

"American Intelligence Compromised by Blood Transfusions
Librul news today"

Seriously, I copy and pasted that directly from the sources area, look for yourself. Needless to say these are not reliable sources for any sort of project that revolves around human intelligence. Also, given the way the sources aren't cited in any official academic format (hell, they aren't even in alphabetical order), I think it's safe to say this is NOT an official research project sponsored by the university. It looks like a student project hosted on the Hartford web site, something which is commonly done in universities these days as a way of turning in and presenting projects. I have no idea what this is, but if it's really any sort of academic venture it is a joke at best and I doubt they got good marks for it.

Here you go http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160289613000470

Woodley is affiliated with 4 respected european universities.
This is not an isolated study. This is a serious research project. And while the flynn effect is an interesting insight into how the IQ tests are created and administered, it has no bearing on this study since they are testing reaction times. "Rather than comprehensive IQ test scores declining over time, researchers focused on declining reaction times-a metric that correlates with general intelligence" http://www.forbes.com/sites/daviddisalvo/2013/05/26/think-fast-are-we-really-getting-dumber/.

shapaza:

gavinmcinns:

No evidence? Look at what passes as entertainment. Shows, movies, games, all are moving toward the worthless bang bang twenty minute long action sequence/setpiece. I've haven't done any hard research, but come on, if you enjoy any of these mediums, you must've noticed the glut of crap that has been elevated into the mainstream. People used to lineup for hours to go see Doctor Zhivago or Gone with the Wind

First of all, crappy art and entertainment have existed in every era. Second, I guarantee you that people have been saying things like this since the beginning of goddamn human civilization. "People nowadays can't appreciate real music/art/entertainment! They're too busy listening to that newfangled devil jazz/rock/rap! Why can't they appreciate the classics?"

Sounds like nothing new to me

Those WERE the dumb people saying that, the smart ones were inspired by jazz, rock, and rap. You make it sound like the mainstream is one person saying a thing. It's a collective sea of consciousness, zeitgeist sort of thing. Collectively, the zeitgeist has fallen so far, as has the mainstream's acceptable standard.

Has this been a peer reviewed study? Because I found a spelling mistake:

Since people with lower I. Qs tend to search for others like them does it not make since that they would also look for people of similar economic standing?

Would it be considered ironic that the writer of an article about lowering IQ levels Misspells the word 'sense'?

There's also this line:

Evidence found by doctors states that another possible explanation for the decline in average I.Q. is via blood transfusions They found that the blood not only carried a small amount of the person but it also carried the information that allowed them to think. They did a transfusion between two people, one was intellectually very advanced and the other was one person who was considerably lower on the I.Q. ladder. The recipients of the blood became confused over time and their ability to maintain their previous level of I.Q. was indeed noted to be in jeopardy. The result of this experiment was that in blood donation centers all across the countries, the recipient was asked to put their I.Q. into the forms they were required to fill out.

I would very much like to see this evidence. I mean, that's just mad.

EDIT:

not to mention this chart is absolute balls:

image

I mean, take half a second and actually study that chart, it's so full of crap you could stick it in a slurry tank and use it as fertilizer.

Every single country depicted on that graph the "average IQ" for every single country listed is higher in 2010 than it was in 1950, which to me would directly disprove the entire point of this whole article. Yet the overall Average IQ counter (in dark blue) plummets uniformly for no freaking observable reason unless they are actually hiding the important data that showing a falling of IQ, because it sure as hell isn't related to the main countries listed on that graph, which as I stated earlier, are all rising uniformly directly opposing the whole argument that IQ in these countries is falling!
The actual 'projected data' line only starts at 2050, so unless the guy that wrote this beamed down the Hadron Collider I find the data that he apparently was able to collect for the years 2014-2050 highly suspicious for hopefully obvious reasons.

and I have to say I like the bit where China, which is rising at a steady rate all the way up to 2013, just randomly dicks itself up in 2030 and starts falling because why the hell not.

Seriously, who came up with that chart, what were they smoking at the time, and can I slap them in the face with a wet kipper?

This... this is just...

Lilani:
I just want to point out that one of the "sources" cited at the bottom of that page are this page, which spends a moment talking about something called the "Flynn effect."

The Flynn effect is an undisputed yet enigmatic aspect of IQ testing. Shortly after the first IQ tests were standardised, it was observed that the scores of those taking them tended to rise from year to year, as much as 15 points (one standard deviation) per generation. To maintain a mean score of 100 for the population on which IQ tests were standardised, test makers were forced to make their tests increasingly difficult over the years. In other words, to get the same IQ score as your father, you must perform equally well on a substantially tougher test than he took.

If, for whatever reason, everybody were getting smarter, this would be wonderful news indeed. But a glance at the numbers shows that something very curious must be going on here. If IQ were, in fact, rising at a rate of 15 points per generation then, if the mean IQ of today is 100, that of our grandparents' generation would have been about 70-generally considered the threshold of mental retardation. Clearly, anybody who's spent time with their grandparents and other folks of that generation knows that's utter nonsense.

I haven't read the whole thing, but I read this in particular because the first thing I wondered was how standardized were these tests in the first place. And while I don't know all the ins and outs of this "Flynn Effect," to me this says there is a LOT of uncertainty when it comes to pinning down human intelligence to an objective number. If they're having to tamper with their tests like this to account for strange fluctuations in results, that to me says the results weren't completely reliable to begin with.

Another two sources I found were The Daily Beast, the site run by Glenn Beck and his ilk of hyper-conservative loons, and another source which I shit you not is called:

"American Intelligence Compromised by Blood Transfusions
Librul news today"

Seriously, I copy and pasted that directly from the sources area, look for yourself. Needless to say these are not reliable sources for any sort of project that revolves around human intelligence. Also, given the way the sources aren't cited in any official academic format (hell, they aren't even in alphabetical order), I think it's safe to say this is NOT an official research project sponsored by the university. It looks like a student project hosted on the Hartford web site, something which is commonly done in universities these days as a way of turning in and presenting projects. I have no idea what this is, but if it's really any sort of academic venture it is a joke at best and I doubt they got good marks for it.

You've restored my faith in humanity for today. I really loath it when people are like "lol people are dumber today, just look at the tv shows people like" and "didn't you see idocracy?" crowd. I'm generally a pretty freaking negative person but I'm an optimist when it comes to humanity as a whole.

Funny how I just discussed with my father how I think it is a stupid way of measuring intelligence.
As far as I know, is it not just a way of measuring memory and recognising patterns etc. you know, logic stuff?

Hero in a half shell:
snip

Wrong study, please take a look at the correct one that analyzes reaction times

gavinmcinns:

Hero in a half shell:
snip

Wrong study, please take a look at the correct one that analyzes reaction times

Ahhh, that looks a lot more professional and actually seems to have been written by a sane person. Very well, I was just sitting at my computer having a hernia reading the last one.

Carry on people, don't mind me.

There are many problems with the study you showed and your own conclusions.

1. The study relies on the fact that there is a correlation between reaction time and intelligence. First off, correlation does NOT equal causation. In addition, while reaction time is used to measure intelligence, it is far from the only thing used to measure intelligence, and isn't even the most important thing measured.

2. Intelligence is vaguely defined at best, and is very difficult to measure. The ways we measure intelligence are highly influenced by our environment, with some measurements saying genes only influence 20-40% of our intelligence. In fact, one study has shown that children born into poverty and abuse who are then later adopted into middle class households see a rise of 20 IQ points on average.

3. As ohnoitsabear pointed out, intelligence is rather meaningless. An intelligent person can lack social skills, common sense, patience, or motivation, all things necessary to succeed. On the flip side, there are people with low intelligences who have done fantastic things, because they have those traits I listed above.

Also before anyone asks, I have looked through the study itself. I would like to see some peer review on the topic though, as I am no psychologist, just a dumbass who can use Wikipedia.

Hero in a half shell:

gavinmcinns:

Hero in a half shell:
snip

Wrong study, please take a look at the correct one that analyzes reaction times

Ahhh, that looks a lot more professional and actually seems to have been written by a sane person. Very well, I was just sitting at my computer having a hernia reading the last one.

Carry on people, don't mind me.

Yea sorry about that, I made myself look like a tit and pulled the wrong thing without even reading it. I'm not a scientist, I like to think of myself as an empiric, and through observation I've been saddled with this unshakeable feeling that the culture is becoming less rich, more diluted with worthless crap with no soul, less introspective.. an analogy I like to think of.. and this speaks to the study's conclusion that population growth is a factor in lower reaction times (hence general intelligence).. think of a recipe that uses a lot of vegetables. You ca make an excellent stir fry with about half a pound of vegetables, but what happens when you double everything in the recipe? It becomes watery, crap. Why? Because the vegetables have water in them, and it screws up the ratio. This is akin to, if you double the population, more of those kids are going to come from low income, low intelligence families, ad stupider shit becomes popular because it's easy to understand. Not to mention that it's cool to not try hard and be dumb in high school, so people destined for greatness get dragged down into the pit of this mentality.

thatonedude11:
There are many problems with the study you showed and your own conclusions.

1. The study relies on the fact that there is a correlation between reaction time and intelligence. First off, correlation does NOT equal causation. In addition, while reaction time is used to measure intelligence, it is far from the only thing used to measure intelligence, and isn't even the most important thing measured.

2. Intelligence is vaguely defined at best, and is very difficult to measure. The ways we measure intelligence are highly influenced by our environment, with some measurements saying genes only influence 20-40% of our intelligence. In fact, one study has shown that children born into poverty and abuse who are then later adopted into middle class households see a rise of 20 IQ points on average.

3. As ohnoitsabear pointed out, intelligence is rather meaningless. An intelligent person can lack social skills, common sense, patience, or motivation, all things necessary to succeed. On the flip side, there are people with low intelligences who have done fantastic things, because they have those traits I listed above.

Also before anyone asks, I have looked through the study itself. I would like to see some peer review on the topic though, as I am no psychologist, just a dumbass who can use Wikipedia.

So are you saying general intelligence is a subjective trait that isn't possible to measure or fully define?

And I think it's overstated this: "Correlation doesn't imply causation". That is inaccurate, there are many many many many instances where correlation does imply causation, particularly when the correlation coefficient approaches 1.

So, why do people have to enjoy smarter entertainment? Why should people worship the art house? Why is only thought provoking stuff worthy of discussion?

Look up symphony of science the quantum world. It has millions of views.

Captcha: Poland Spring: Describe this brand with any word(s).

Hmmm, I think "Flammable" will do.

Racecarlock:
So, why do people have to enjoy smarter entertainment? Why should people worship the art house? Why is only thought provoking stuff worthy of discussion?

Look up symphony of science the quantum world. It has millions of views.

Captcha: Poland Spring: Describe this brand with any word(s).

Hmmm, I think "Flammable" will do.

Smarter doesn't have to mean arthouse, in fact arthouse often shelters vacuous nothings that cant create anything worthwhile. Smarter to me means more detail. That's it. More detail enhances everything, if call of duty could go in depth into the machinations of the military industrial complex, political battles between presidents and generals behind the scenes, then itd be a cerebral experience worth doing.

GTA for example, goes into immense depth and detail, and therefore is worthy.

gavinmcinns:
So are you saying general intelligence is a subjective trait that isn't possible to measure or fully define?

That is exactly what I am saying.

And I think it's overstated this: "Correlation doesn't imply causation". That is inaccurate, there are many many many many instances where correlation does imply causation, particularly when the correlation coefficient approaches 1.

Eh, you're kinda right. Correlation usually means that a relation should be explored or researched further. There are many situations where other factors effect both variables that are being looked at.

With regards to reaction time vs. intelligence, according to wikipedia, the correlation is at most .49, which isn't the strongest correlation out there. In addition, reaction time can be reduced or influenced, as Olympic sprinters and people chewing gum tend to have lower reaction times then the mean.

gavinmcinns:
I've haven't done any hard research, but come on

Perception Bias HOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.

Seriously, think for two damn seconds. Do you think Gone With the Wind is the one movie that happened that year?

NOW I SHALL QUOTE THE STUDY.

thestudy:
high-IQ people are more productive

....ahahahahaaaaaaaaaaa

hahahaaaaaaaaaaaa

hahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.

Wow.

How can you take seriously anyone who uses an idea so monumentally stupid as that as one of the pillars of their argument?

Good grief. On the one hand, we have the Flynn effect. IQ test scores have improved generation by generation since they started measuring IQ. On the other hand, we now know that reaction times have decreased.

Maybe this is just me knowing nothing about psychology, but can't help thinking that IQ test scores are more reliable than reaction speed. You don't need intelligence to react quickly. Flies have much better reaction speed than humans, but they have trouble finding their way through the open half of a half open window.

Lilani:
Snippity snip

A great big thankyou for being really sensible (and I'm sorry if that sounds really patronizing).

gavinmcinns:
At a point, population expansion lowers IQ. It just makes sense. As you broaden the base, you need more chattel to support the pyramid, it's not an opinion, empirically speaking you'd have to be blind not to see this trend in society. Not everyone can be a rocket scientist or a derivatives analyst or a ceo.

Whilst the volume would increase, you've given no reason why the proportions would change, so in theory average IQ scores should have remained vaguely constant.

Also, reaction times have jack shit to do with problem solving ability. Fuck, flies have better reaction times than us. It makes sense that Victorians- whom a greater proportion of which would have done more manual labour- would have had faster reaction times. As a generation we live very sedentary lives, spend a lot of time working in offices, spend a lot of our free time watching tv. This doesn't necessarily make us stupid, but I can certainly see why an office worker doesn't need the same reactions as say, a factory worker.

gavinmcinns:
The fact is Americans and the cushy european nations have gotten lazy, and laziness breeds stupidity. Its a bitter pill to swallow, and maybe ignorance is in this case bliss, however I just can't help myself. I'd like to see someone rebut in an intelligent way.

I haven't had a chance too look at the new link you responded with just yet (though at this point I will say it looks MUCH more legit, at least on a surface-level), but I would like to point another thing out I neglected to mention in my first post. You might want to tone down the derisiveness here, because while there is a discussion to be had here, your wording here suggests flame-bait. There are ways to discuss general trends in intelligence without resorting to stereotypes and cheap insults, and your desire to use such things right from the very get-go suggests a lot of projection and insecurities on your end.

And another thing:

gavinmcinns:
Wrong study, please take a look at the correct one that analyzes reaction times

If you're meaning what I think you mean by "reaction times," then I don't see how that has anything at all to do with intelligence. Generally speaking, "intelligence" is more or less regarded as something that is pretty standard, at least the way I understand it. At least in the way we'd like to measure it, what we call "intelligence" should be something that is relatively unchanging in a person. You can't really train it up or down like you can train your muscles, it's pretty set. There are a few things you can do to sharpen a few things, but a person who scores a 96 on an IQ test shouldn't just be able to "work" themselves up to a 120 like a runner can just "work" themself from running a 5k to running a full marathon.

Reaction time, however, you can train up and down. Athletes train hard to sharpen their reaction times and responses so that they can adapt as quickly as possible in situations. As they become more familiar with certain situations--like say, hitting a baseball flying their way at 96 mph, then naturally they're going to become better and better at tracking it and reacting to certain patterns and conditions. These days, people are living much more sedentary lives than they used to, and given public safety regulations there are a lot fewer hazards we face on a daily basis, both in the workplace and in public in general. Given that, I think it makes perfect sense reaction times would be slower. It's not that people are dumber, it's that you lose what you don't use, just like if you don't exercise. Things are safer and more certain, so people aren't having to react quickly to dangerous situations as much, so people react slower.

Lilani:
a person who scores a 96 on an IQ test shouldn't just be able to "work" themselves up to a 120 like a runner can just "work" themself from running a 5k to running a full marathon.

Why not? There a many sorts of questions that pop up again and again in IQ tests. You just keep practising until you can do them all. You won't get any smarter, but you'll get that 170+ IQ score eventually.

Stephen Hawking:
"I don't know what my IQ is. People who gloat about their IQ's are losers"

Well said, Steven.

IQ is a reasonable measure of "are you suffering from mental retardation." Just because someone has IQ>130 does not mean they'll rise to the top of whatever their chosen profession.

I put the ultrahigh IQ scorers in the same category as people who memorize however many digits of pi or can do crazy arithmetic in their heads. Gives you a note on paper that might bump your college admissions, but not much else.

I.Q. as a measure of true intellect or ability is about as useful as feathers on a fish. The whole field is a minefield of sociological, psychological and environmental factors that quite simply cannot be broken down into a 45 minute standardized test.

Frankly I cannot believe anyone would think that it holds any relevance at all in this day and age. I used to care mine was. I no longer do. They are worthless as a measure of anything other than some spacial awareness and pattern analysis. Very few real world tasks require that shit.

gavinmcinns:
No evidence? Look at what passes as entertainment. Shows, movies, games, all are moving toward the worthless bang bang twenty minute long action sequence/setpiece. I've haven't done any hard research, but come on, if you enjoy any of these mediums, you must've noticed the glut of crap that has been elevated into the mainstream.

I realise that the conversation has moved on but this really stuck out to me. Because you're wrong, so fucking wrong here. firstly Games, now apart from maybe a brief period in the late 90's early 2000's (and that's a big maybe) the games industry has never been dominated by intelligent games. Chris Crawford probably the most famous and talented of the first generation of game devs famously stormed out of the whole industry in 1992 because intelligent games didn't sell, he could make art but nobody would buy it. And since then there really isn't any good time to point at and claim it was a high point of super smart games, I only mention the late 90's because you could point out the popularity of jRPGs and the like but they weren't smart just long and they pushed graphics and visuals at the same time.

Films you have more of a case, yes modern Hollywood is a lot stupider than 70's Hollywood. But that's one period brought about by conditions in Hollywood. Modern stuff isn't stupider than the slick MTV blockbusters of the 80's or the epics of the 50's/60's or the utterly insipid romcoms that preceded them. Hollywood has almost always been dominated by crap. There is however still plenty of ultrasmart arthouse movies being made by lots of people in lots of places. So the idea that movies now are dumber than ever just doesn't hold water.

And finally because here you are the wrongest of all TV shows. Do I even need to explain this? You're saying that over the past decade, a decade that's given us The Wire, Breaking Bad, Generation Kill, Sherlock, Game of Thrones, Made Men and probably plenty more I've never heard of, and you you're implying that this is the culmination of intellectual decline? Compared to what the arthouse masterpieces of Gilligan's Island or Leave it to Beaver? Do you really think that Girls is a mental step down from I Love Lucy? There have been smart TV shows in the past but really, now is the first time when idiocy hasn't overwhelmed the broadcasting schedule.

I'd love to know where they found IQ test results from 100 years ago.

Yeah, the new study you posted is pay-per-view. And I'm sure as hell not paying 31.50 to analyze the study more indepth.

Otherwise, IQ is more a measure of general aptitude and learning skills and is not the end-all of intelligence studies. Also, I laugh at all of you arguing about entertainment. The perceived intellectual value of the media is completely irrelevant since it's clouded by rose-tinted glasses and perception bias.

personally i think alot of this has to do with the lowering of peoples attention span due to information overload these days. despite peoples claims to the contray and society pushing multitasking as the ideal your typical human brain works best with one thing at a time and you end up with a lower result when you attempt to multitask

gavinmcinns:

Racecarlock:
So, why do people have to enjoy smarter entertainment? Why should people worship the art house? Why is only thought provoking stuff worthy of discussion?

Look up symphony of science the quantum world. It has millions of views.

Captcha: Poland Spring: Describe this brand with any word(s).

Hmmm, I think "Flammable" will do.

Smarter doesn't have to mean arthouse, in fact arthouse often shelters vacuous nothings that cant create anything worthwhile. Smarter to me means more detail. That's it. More detail enhances everything, if call of duty could go in depth into the machinations of the military industrial complex, political battles between presidents and generals behind the scenes, then itd be a cerebral experience worth doing.

GTA for example, goes into immense depth and detail, and therefore is worthy.

First off, any good psychologist and scientist will tell you that a correlation only ever means a correlation and that there are so many things that can go wrong with correlation that you can never, ever imply causation. Correlation can be great for finding a relationship between two variables, but that's the thing, it only says that two variables are related somehow. Correlations suffer from two well-known problems: the Directionality problem and the Third Variable problem.

The Directionality problem states that you don't know which variable is the causal one. Generally, this one isn't the problem. It's the Third Variable that's the problem, which states that a relationship can be not causal at all.

As an example of the third variable, did you know that there is a very high correlation between an amphibian population and the amount of beer being drunk? Yes, it's true. It's a very high correlation, indeed. However, you wouldn't say that an amphibian population causes more beer to be drank or that drinking more beer causes an amphibian population. Perhaps, the problem is due to a third variable, something else entirely.

Due to these two problems, you can never, ever say that correlation implies causation and no good scientist or psychologist should. Research is very, very serious business! You can use correlation to help you along towards establishing an experiment (whether quasi or not), a developmental study, a retrospective or prospective study, and clinical trials, but you can never, ever, ever use correlation as a causality.

Secondly, having read this study, I can just feel my Research Methods teacher practically writhing in agony. She'd be lambasting this article for the amount of implication and correlating it does to imply causation. Not to mention how much fluff it has.

Edit: Let alone with reaction time as the main variable they're testing. Hah!

Sup OP. I'd like to you define what 14 points of IQ mean. In hard facts, mind you. Not some subjective score that many people are throwing because herp derp IQ is better.

Therein lies the problem. Even before I read it, I already guessed it to be a load of bull because not only does it fail to tell me what 14 points of IQ mean, but you cannot possibly take an accurate estimate on the whole of the human race's IQ dropping over a time period.

Now, I'll come back after I get the chance to read the whole thing, because I'm getting a feeling that I'm going to get a kick out of this and to disprove this fact.

Relying on studies data from 100+ years ago is shaky at best for a topic that requires much more precise measurements. The study directly links reaction times to IQ and creates a direct link between a decrease in reaction times and a proportional decrease in IQ. As others have said, this only works if the you wrap all or most of IQ into reaction times alone, subsequent studies have all shown increases in IQ in most places across time as the IQ test has become more wide spread and standardized to account for cultural biases (the Flynn effect). This also doesn't hold as reaction times can be increased immensely with training or decrease with disuse, reaction times also tend to drop precipitously in older people, this does not correlate to a similar drop in IQ.

What most people don't realize is that IQ is not always intrinsically linked to the biological capacity for intelligence, as someone said above me, just a change in environment can create a 20 point swing up or down and on an IQ scale 20 points can swing you from the lower end of below average right into the average range, or even the upper end of average into the exceptional range. IQ is a tool that is useful for a foundation, trying to treat it as an absolute indicator of intelligence is useless as the test is too imprecise to gauge a persons natural biological limits for learning and adapting to changing situations.

Historically education and study have also changed immensely since those times, The older studies this one uses come from a time where the only people they were collecting data on were other rich, educated, white, western men. So the Victorian era studies have a limited sample size that only tests a narrow range of people, the data is then extrapolated out with other studies that include women and other nationalities and ethnic groups. It's the same with education in general, the vast majority of educated people in the West over 100 years ago were wealthy white male landowners, we now live in a society where it is almost mandatory to at least receive a high school diploma or GED, this has a much much larger effect on our data pools studies that once only accounted for the top 1% are now including data from a wide range of people that were never studied in the past.

Another point, please stop treating the term, "peer review" as equivalent to, "the scientific community agrees with the conclusions of this study", it's intellectually dishonest. Peer review generally means that it has been reviewed by other people in the same field of study to find flaws in the methodology of the study or examine it for blatant falsehoods. Plenty of peer reviewed articles make it to publication every year that are summarily dismissed by the scientific community. Even the peer review panel itself doesn't have to agree with the conclusions of a study in order to approve it for publication. The study itself is a foundation, it is too broad and it's conclusions too vague to be anything other than a potential base for future research, studies do this all the time, they draw a simple correlation like showing decreasing reaction times in history or showing a link to high CO2 levels with the last ice age, and then lead their conclusion into a grand potential territory meant to spur further research into that area by saying things like ,"and this means IQ has been dropping" or ,"and this means we could be entering a new ice age". As with the ice age example future studies showed that, no, there wasn't another ice age incoming, and future studies in this area will probably fall into something like, "we need further research on how to specify reaction times with IQ measurement", or "Victorian and early 20th century study samples are too narrow, this justifies a standardized long term study with a diverse sample size".

As for your assertions on the quality of media, others have already told you that nobody remembers the crap, but let me tell you a story of my own. I have recently been cleaning out the room of my recently deceased great grandmother and found a box full of old books from the early 1900's. Pretty much none of these books were written by any author I'd ever heard of, they were all short story collections or short novellas, that I later found out were referred to as penny dreadfuls. And they were just that, dreadful, these were the early 1900's equivalent to the brainless dreck we see on T.V. today, stories full of 2 dimensional characters, plot holes, mindless action, and pointless sex (also lots and lots of blatant racism). Why are none of those stories or authors read much today? For the same reason nobody really remembers the sitcoms of the 90's beyond the gems that stood the test of time, (Stuff like seinfeld, and the Simpsons). Here's another one for you, Casablanca is often seen by movie critics as one of the icons of cinema, but it was part of a bulk deal by the movie studio that made something like 30+ other movies that same year, yet we remember none of those other 30 movies the same way we do Casablanca. That's because the vast majority of them tanked, movie studios back then released tons of movies on shoestring budgets with interchangeable plotlines designed to try and hit as many cliches as they could, remember this is before the widespread advent of TV, so Americans were flooded with new movies every week, only a tiny tiny fraction of which anybody remembers today.

Another point is that even the people we thought of as iconic masters of their era often went unappreciated, and even died broke and unknown until their music or art was picked up after their death by a later generation. There will likely be artists alive today who are barely known, who will be looked back on in 100 years as iconic or emblematic of this day and age, remember hindsight is always 20/20, it's far easier to look back and see what worked then, than it is to guess at what works now.

You have to take I.Q. scores with a grain of salt. They've never been all that reliable. There's a lot of fallacy involved. I would pay more attention to how a country is doing in comparison to other modern countries. It's a far more accurate scale of intelligence, and it's one that is more practical.

IQ really isnt an accurate measurement of intelligence

There are many intelligent people that suck at math -_-

Hero in a half shell:

image

I mean, take half a second and actually study that chart, it's so full of crap you could stick it in a slurry tank and use it as fertilizer.

Every single country depicted on that graph the "average IQ" for every single country listed is higher in 2010 than it was in 1950, which to me would directly disprove the entire point of this whole article. Yet the overall Average IQ counter (in dark blue) plummets uniformly for no freaking observable reason unless they are actually hiding the important data that showing a falling of IQ, because it sure as hell isn't related to the main countries listed on that graph, which as I stated earlier, are all rising uniformly directly opposing the whole argument that IQ in these countries is falling!
The actual 'projected data' line only starts at 2050, so unless the guy that wrote this beamed down the Hadron Collider I find the data that he apparently was able to collect for the years 2014-2050 highly suspicious for hopefully obvious reasons.

and I have to say I like the bit where China, which is rising at a steady rate all the way up to 2013, just randomly dicks itself up in 2030 and starts falling because why the hell not.

Seriously, who came up with that chart, what were they smoking at the time, and can I slap them in the face with a wet kipper?

That graph is pretty confusing because the y-axis represents two values, IQ and population size. On the study it was pulled from, there may have been some accompanying text to explain it better. The only way to find out for sure would be to read the study itself. That would be time consuming and lots of work so I won't be doing that. However, if I had to guess, I would point out that all the country lines match historical and projected population figures. If you eyeball 2013 and compare it to the population y-axis on the right, it would put China are roughly 1.3 billion, India at 1.2 billion, the US at 300 million, which matches their actual population figures. China has been at a sub-replacement fertility rate for quite some time now and their population will likely level off and contract at some point in the future, hence the peak in 2030. So all the countries lines map to the population axis and the numbers in parentheses in the table beneath the graph represent the average IQ for each country. The only line that maps to the IQ y-axis on the left is the blue world average IQ line.

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