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Significant Digits For Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news.


$2.65 billion in losses

The music industry loses out on some $2.65 billion a year thanks to businesses playing music for their customers misusing personal streaming services such as Spotify, according to a Nielsen Music study. When music is played for customers in a coffee shop or restaurant, for example, it’s meant to be licensed separately from those services, and those licenses cost money, and many businesses apparently aren’t paying. It’s unclear, however, what sort of license is meant to govern my blasting “GOD.” with the windows rolled down on a lovely crisp fall evening. [Rolling Stone]


1,483 years added

According to an NPR and Medill School of Journalism investigation, women are disciplined more harshly than men in prison. For example, women in California prisons between January 2016 and February 2018 had 1,483 years added to their sentences thanks to so-called good-credit revocations, a higher rate than for men. And in Massachusetts, women were restricted to where they could go in a prison twice as often as men. Overall, men compose about 93 percent of the American state and federal prison population. [NPR]


49 percent chance

Our 2018-19 NBA predictions are here! The Golden State Warriors sit atop them, with a better-than-99 percent chance of making the playoffs and a whopping 49 percent chance of winning the title. The new-look, LeBronified Los Angeles Lakers have an 84 percent chance at the playoffs and a 1 percent chance at the title. [FiveThirtyEight]


$1 million donation

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren released a DNA test suggesting that she has a “distant Native American ancestor.” In July, President Trump said he’d donate $1 million to Warren if she took a DNA test “and it shows you’re an Indian.” Yesterday, Trump denied ever making the offer. (He did, though. You can watch him do it.) [The Washington Post]


12 to 13 million civilians

The United Nations is warning that, if Saudi-led airstrikes do not stop, Yemen could face its worst famine in a century. Within three months, 12 to 13 million civilians could face starvation, according to a UN humanitarian coordinator. Yemen has been in the midst of a civil war for three years, with Iran-backed rebels fighting a Saudi-led coalition. [The Guardian]


75 percent vs. 19 percent

Partisanship, am I right? The midterms are three weeks away. And according to Pew — and just, like, daily observation — “Republican and Democratic voters differ widely in views of the seriousness of numerous problems facing the United States.” For example, 71 percent of Democrats think that they way minorities are treated by the criminal justice system is a “very big” problem; 10 percent of Republicans think so. Eighty-one percent of Democrats think gun violence is a very big problem; 25 percent of Republicans do. Seventy-five percent of Republicans think illegal immigration is a big problem; 19 percent of Democrats do. [Pew Research Center]


Love digits? Find even more in FiveThirtyEight’s new book of math and logic puzzles, “The Riddler.” It’s in stores now! I hope you dig it.

If you see a significant digit in the wild, please send it to @ollie.

Oliver Roeder is a senior writer for FiveThirtyEight.

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