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04.11.11
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To Bring or Not to Bring Sexy Back?

I’ve come across several articles lately that reference statistics being a sexy subject. Some of you might remember Kevin’s (@EvolveKev) tweet from last week - “Statistics is the sexiest subject around. And information design. http://ow.ly/1spL7K". The article I came across today referenced the same quote - “Statistics is now the sexiest subject around.”

So this got me thinking… What does being sexy in terms of an industry, company, or niche really even mean? Can everything be sexy in its own unique way? What makes one thing sexy and another not?

Some may think that statistics is hardly even the next best thing to burnt toast. We actually know someone in the Marketing/Advertising industry who has stated before that advertising is the sexy side of business. Even good ole Gary Busey from the Celebrity Apprentice said in last night’s episode that Australian Gold tanning lotion makes him feel sexual. He even used this term while trying to sell products to customers (that was painful to watch)!

So why are so many people utilizing the word sexy or sexual when describing their occupation? I understand that sex sells, but does simply picking a word and using it to describe something actually have the same impact? For argument sake, what if we all started using Jersey Shore language and deem everything to be “sick” (which means, cool)? Let's try it out for size: “Statistics is a sick subject!” “Advertising is the sick side of business.” And last but not least, “This lotion makes you feel sick.”

So my point is that just because you say something is sexy (or sick) doesn’t mean it actually is. And don’t get me wrong, I’m a research gal, so I support statistics all the way to sexy and back. In fact, a lot of people haven’t had much of an appreciation for research or statistics in a long time, so I’m glad there are people out there supporting this industry.

In closing, like most trends or fads, once something becomes commonplace it eventually loses its value/uniqueness. Once everybody adapts to using the word sexy as a descriptive term, pretty soon someone somewhere will have to come up with a different descriptive word because it simply won't be sexy to use the term sexy anymore... 

Thanks for reading!

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