Everybody Lies
Foreword by Steven Pinker, author of The Better Angels of our Nature

Blending the informed analysis of The Signal and the Noise with the instructive iconoclasm of Think Like a Freak, a fascinating, illuminating, and witty look at what the vast amounts of information now instantly available to us reveals about ourselves and our world—provided we ask the right questions.

By the end of an average day in the early twenty-first century, human beings searching the internet will amass eight trillion gigabytes of data. This staggering amount of information—unprecedented in history—can tell us a great deal about who we are—the fears, desires, and behaviors that drive us, and the conscious and unconscious decisions we make. From the profound to the mundane, we can gain astonishing knowledge about the human psyche that less than twenty years ago, seemed unfathomable.

Everybody Lies offers fascinating, surprising, and sometimes laugh-out-loud insights into everything from economics to ethics to sports to race to sex, gender and more, all drawn from the world of big data. What percentage of white voters didn’t vote for Barack Obama because he’s black? Does where you go to school affect how successful you are in life? Do parents secretly favor boy children over girls? Do violent films affect the crime rate? Can you beat the stock market? How regularly do we lie about our sex lives and who’s more self-conscious about sex, men or women?

Investigating these questions and a host of others, Seth Stephens-Davidowitz offers revelations that can help us understand ourselves and our lives better. Drawing on studies and experiments on how we really live and think, he demonstrates in fascinating and often funny ways the extent to which all the world is indeed a lab. With conclusions ranging from strange-but-true to thought-provoking to disturbing, he explores the power of this digital truth serum and its deeper potential—revealing biases deeply embedded within us, information we can use to change our culture, and the questions we’re afraid to ask that might be essential to our health—both emotional and physical. All of us are touched by big data everyday, and its influence is multiplying. Everybody Lies challenges us to think differently about how we see it and the world.

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Everybody Lies Reviews

  • Peter Colclasure
    Jul 3, 2017

    Peter Colclasure

    3.5 stars. This is a book about Big Data, and the things we glean from Google searches and Facebooks posts in the aggregate. The result is a lot of interesting factoids that straddle the border between trivia and something more substantial. For instance:- The conventional wisdom that a...

  • W. Whalin
    Jul 1, 2017

    W. Whalin

    A Fascinating Audiobook and Worthwhile ListeningSeth Stephens-Davidowitz is a data scientist or someone who studies data for insights into society. As he explains, “This audiobook is largely about how data on the web can help us understand people.” For example, how was triple...

  • Amos
    Jun 28, 2017


    No practicing analyst or social scientist will find anything of value in this book. It verges on being dangerously deceptive, filled with logical fallacies and half baked reasoning for it's conclusions. The book claims to be finding truth in an uncertain world, but actually is just add...

  • Zak
    Jun 25, 2017


    Good primer on the potential of Big Data. Some really interesting information too. It started off well, I was really hooked the first few chapters but later it got a bit dry, maybe because the subject matters being discussed weren't particularly exciting. I'd say 3.5/5.0 ...

  • E
    Jun 22, 2017


    Too much about the same thing. Would have made a good magazine article. ...

  • Sanjay Menon
    Jun 13, 2017

    Sanjay Menon

    This book has some very interesting analysis and results using large datasets. Some of his conclusions, I think, are dubious, but having access to all the Google search data lends itself to some fascinating results. ...

  • Steve
    Jun 12, 2017


    A fascinating look at the information that can be determined using Big Data, particularly Google search Data, about what people search for as opposed to what they say they are thinking and feeling. Be prepared for a lot of discussion of sexual practices, racism, questionable parenting ...

  • Clinton Freeman
    Jun 12, 2017

    Clinton Freeman

    I literally couldn't get past the first few chapters without feeling nauseous.This guy knows nothing about science or social science. He's just fascinated by spurious correlations based on prejudices and old wive's tales.I don't think I'm going to finish this.There are much better ways...

  • Ricky
    Jun 11, 2017


    The premise is that the most accurate way to study human behavior is through internet search queries, and the book is full of very interesting factoids pulled from Google trends data and the like. The author definitely chose sensational and controversial research for this book, focusin...

  • Caroline
    Jun 10, 2017


    I wish I could give this book more than five stars. Anyone who has a sneaking feeling that Americans aren't who they SAY they are will find confirmation here. It's also easy to read, no academic language here.I was already riveted by the introduction. His premise is that we all lie to ...