Susan Etlinger's big data keynote explores how consumers often mistake the information provided by data-based research as the only answer to a problem, issue or obstacle. Etlinger advocates that as statistics grow in depth and range consumers should make a conscious effort to move beyond the information presented and think more critically about data.
While big data can help us in some aspects, Etlinger points out that facts and information are often misused in a wide variety of contexts. Drawing on personal experiences, Etlinger points out that while we can process information at a lightning speed this opens up more room for making misinformed decisions. Instead we need to sharpen our critical thinking and approach data with deeper questions. "Data doesn't create meaning," Etlinger says, "we do."