Fraudulent and Misleading Data

Peoples’ lives do not typically depend on communication research results in the same ways they depend on medical research. Thus, some communication researchers naively believe their research to be so innocuous that they can relax standards for carefully and truthfully reporting their data. Such a perception snubs the present and future impact of communication research on cultures, societies, organizations, and relationships; discounts the ethical responsibility of researchers; and ignores the relationship between the integrity of the field of communication and the integrity of its individual researchers.

Researchers who fraudulently or misleadingly report data engage in behavior that at best is unprofessional and at worst is unethical and illegal. In this entry, fraudulent data is defined as made up and/or falsely reported data. Misleading data are data ...

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