Author Archives: Timothy Ryan

About Timothy Ryan

Political Science

How a 1982 SCOTUS Case Let Trump Circumvent Congress and Fund his Wall

I’m teaching Introduction to Government in the United States this semester. I love following the news while teaching this course. Invariably, events unfold in the news that are difficult to reconcile with the basic principles I’m teaching my students. Sorting out what’s going on often deepens my understanding of government, and points to interesting unanswered questions. In this case, I found out that Donald Trump’s surprisingly broad capacities as concern emergency powers and border wall funding trace their origins to a 1983 Supreme Court case that seems ripe for reassessment. Continue reading

Data contamination on MTurk

Update 1: I meant to have a place for people to leave comments on all of this, but messed up and can’t change it. You can make longer-than-tweet comments here if you like.

Update 2: I mistook TurkPrime to be an official Amazon-run blog. But I was corrected on this. In fact, it’s a third-party. (I was confused because the post says things like “In the coming days, we will launch a Free feature that allows researchers to block suspicious geolocations.”) Editing below to reflect this.

As some people have been talking about on Twitter and elsewhere (Kurt Gray; Max Hui Bai; Jennifer Wolak; me), some evidence is coming to light that survey data collected on MTurk is being compromised by problematic responses. Whether these are bots, inattentive responders, or something else is open for discussion. TurkPrme, a third party, recently discussed the problem, though for reasons I discuss below, I think they understate the extent of the issue. There is no official response from Amazon that I am aware of. Continue reading