Nate Silver nota come i numeri di chi dice di conoscere qualcuno che ha contratto il virus dell'influenza messicana siano decisamente troppo alti se comparati con quelli ufficiali del contagio e cerca di spiegare perché. Una delle argomentazioni che porta è decisamente affascinante.
When something truly extraordinary happens, second and perhaps even third-order social networks come into play. If someone in your network of 290 people won the lottery, you would probably hear about it almost immediately. But not only that -- if anyone in your network of 290 (è il numero medio di persone che un cittadino USA conoscem, ndr) people knew someone who won the lottery, it would be an interesting enough topic of conversation that you would probably hear about this too (and you might still tell a pollster that you "knew" someone who had won the lottery). This might even hold if any of your 290 contacts knew someone who knew someone who had won the lottery.