What do you do when you spot a factual inaccuracy in a hub?
(a) Turn a blind eye
(b) Send a private message to the author
(c) Make a polite observation in the comments section
I would leave a comment and/or flag the hub. Flagging would come into play if the hub were misleading. Private messaging does not seem the right method, in my opinion, since other readers deserve not to be misinformed.
In one of my Hubs a Hubber let me know that I was missing a fact or two. They politely put it in my comment section, and I in turn left them a message of thanks. I want all of my Hubs to be factual so I do appreciate it.
If I knew for a fact that the fact the hubber stated was inaccurate or misleading I would mention it in my comment. In 19 months on HP I've only had to do this a few times and the hubber appreciated it.
If I see a serious factual error, I will point it out to the author, giving my opinion and if possible a source to check regarding the accuracy of the program. Some people have hit me with being inaccurate, but the fact was that they were disagreeing with my opinion. That is not an inaccuracy, that is a difference of opinion. Everyone does not understand that yet.
If a real error is point out to me, I check it and if it is an error, I will correct it and make changes in my copy if the change in the fact causes a change in my opinion.
I inform the writer to correct it. I did this on another site I write for and the other writer was my rival (so to speak) because our articles were in a contest, but I could not stand the inaccuracy and I informed her. What got to me was that the article was about Hippocrates and the other writer was a nurse.
H Imogen French!
When I write a hub I always cite a reference source for any factual assertion I make, or any information I don't believe is common knowledge (books and articles, and a few online sources). I do this so that readers can feel free to do more reading on the topics and see if I've misrepresentated the sources in anyway.
When it comes to statistics, of course, that is very tricky. Different, perfectly reputable sources give different statistics on various areas of data. Statistics are "fuzzy" by their nature. People should not make arguments that are ruthlessly dependent upon statistics for this reason.
Of course, if the author says something like: "... Cairo, the capital of Spain," then one should say something in good conscience.
Take it easy.
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