I just read an interesting article by Wildlife Biologist Robert Alison on the the inherent wisdom of group decisions.
You can read it here.
Alison wrote about Cordocet's Jury Theorem which was first outlined in 1785 by oddly enough some Dude known as the Marquis de Cordocet. It's fundamental presumption is..wait for it...
that the many, are more likely to make a collective correct choice, than the one or the few.
"Group decison making is common in animals"...
Hello! Especially during those spur-of -the-moment incidents of sheer panic and utter terror!
Geddit? I just happen to believe that most people are bewildered by politics and the media and so they vote based on what they have heard, rather than what they Gnow.
"According to Krishna Ladha of Washington University, a majority of any group of people, when selecting between two alternatives, is more likely to make the "better" choice than any one member of the group. Recent studies show that the larger the group, the more likely an optimal result will occur."
If by optimal they mean that some other poor bastard will get eaten instead of you then Yes, they are right.
"Many animal groups routinely make consensus decisions jointly," confirmed Jinhu Lu of the Institute of Systematic Science. Research by Ashley Ward at the University of Sydney shows that quorum decisions shape collective movement patterns in fish.
Yeah? They're called baitballs and predators purposely make them bunch up because it's easier to eat them. All of the prey try to hide in the middle where you'd think they're playing the better odds but that is exactly where the predators charge!
The pathetic reality is that poor little bait fish (like us) are doomed if they are caught out in the open... so we actually are better off in a baitball.
"The outstanding complication regarding very large groups is that their consensus decisions tend to oscillate, resulting in an inconsistent analysis of the same facts in separate, even consecutive, sessions.
Conversely, human group decision-making is comparatively new, having occurred only in the past 300,000 years, which makes them more prone to incorrectness due to relative infancy. One main problem is the tendency among humans to rush decisions. "
Another flaw in the human group decision-making process is that majority choices can be wrong when subgroups form alliances with conflicting agendas. Coalitions tend to make the Condorcet jury theorem inoperable; the result is the "Condorcet paradox."
"Mathematicians agree that although group-made decisions are more often correct, compared with individual decisions, and that adding more voters to the process increases the probability that a majority decision is correct, the effect is most dramatic if decisions involve only two choices, such as in jury trials.
Decisions made by groups are no better than individual choices when there are more than two options at issue."
Is there such a thing as Common Sense?
Doesn't it feel as though we live in one giant baitball?