Tags: Gay Marriage | gay marriage study | falsified | author | data

Gay Marriage Study Retracted Amid Allegations Data Falsified

By    |   Friday, 22 May 2015 12:02 PM

A widely circulated study that suggested people become more receptive to same-sex marriage after talking with someone who is gay has been retracted by one of its authors, the Daily Signal reports.

The research, published in the journal, "Science," in December, has been retracted by Columbia University Professor Daniel Green after he learned that his co-author, University of California Los Angeles Ph.D. student Michael LaCour, "confessed to falsely describing at least some of the details of the data collection," the Daily Signal said.

The study was titled, "When contact changes minds: An experiment on transmission of support for gay equality."

According to their abstract of the research, the authors sought to answer whether "a single conversation could change minds on divisive social issues, such as same-sex marriage."

"A randomized placebo-controlled trial assessed whether gay messengers were effective at encouraging voters to support same-sex marriage and whether attitude change persisted and spread to others in voters’ social networks. The results, measured by an unrelated panel survey, show that both gay and straight canvassers produced large effects initially, but only gay canvassers’ effects persisted in 3-week, 6-week, and 9-month follow-ups," LaCour and Green noted.

"We also find strong evidence of within-household transmission of opinion change, but only in the wake of conversations with gay canvassers," they wrote. "Contact with gay canvassers further caused substantial change in the ratings of gay men and lesbians more generally. These large, persistent, and contagious effects were confirmed by a follow-up experiment. Contact with minorities coupled with discussion of issues pertinent to them is capable of producing a cascade of opinion change."

Concerns over the validity of the research emerged in the journal, "Retraction Watch," the Daily Signal noted. Other researchers, who hoped to replicate the findings, reported "a number of irregularities in the replication dataset," adding that it "was not collected as described."

Researcher Green wrote "Science," asking that his study be retracted amid the data concerns, according to "Retraction Watch."

"I am deeply embarrassed by this turn of events and apologize to the editors, reviewers, and readers of Science," he wrote.

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A widely circulated study that suggested people become more receptive to same-sex marriage after talking with someone who is gay has been retracted by one of its authors, the Daily Signal reports.
gay marriage study, falsified, author, data
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2015-02-22
Friday, 22 May 2015 12:02 PM
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