Skip to main content

Doing my own research

I don't want to write any baseless statements that I learned from some random article or post. If I'm about to write something I've just encountered or learned about I definitely want to dig deeper into the subject to make sure I'm not spreading any false information.

This van sometimes lead to a situation where I just have to abandon the subject due to the massive research it would require to make sure I know enough about the topic so that I could confidently write about it.

Today was one of those days. When I saw the headlines about COVID surpassing the death toll of the Spanish flu in the states I wanted to compare these two pandemics a bit deeper. I also wanted to reflect the findings on how the technological and medical advancement have affected the outcomes along the more social aspects the former has enabled.

It appeared to be a deep rabbit hole where even the reliable sources don't have exact information (both from the century ago as well as today). My humble napkin math would have had relied on such ranges as 17-100 million deaths from population of 950 million - 1,8 billion (estimated death toll of the spanish flu from 1918-19 world population). There os a huge difference between the extremes. With such uncertainty it would be easy to present misleading information even without intending to do so. In my example I could've used the mortality rate from less than 1 percent all the way to the more than 10%. The only fact I can say for sure is both of these pandemics have killed a lot of people.