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Significant Digits For Wednesday, May 27, 2015

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7 percent

That’s the USDA estimate of the percent of veterans who used food stamps in 2012. Last year, $84 million in SNAP benefits was spent at on-base commissaries. [Marketplace via @ExcellentReads]

14 officials

Last night Swiss law enforcement arrested several FIFA officials who will soon face extradition to the U.S. on corruption charges. 14 officials have been indicted by the U.S. When it comes to corruption FIFA makes Silvio Berlusconi look like the Pope. [The New York Times]

24.6 percent

An analysis of a sample of verified twitter accounts found that journalists made up about a quarter of accounts with the blue checkmarks, the largest subset of the verified group. I’m not telling what you’ll find at @WaltHickey. [Medium]


Cost of something called the “Everyday Pantsuit Tee” at Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s campaign shop. [People Magazine]

72,000 ladybugs

Seven brilliant innovators had their creativity stifled and vision squashed after they allegedly released 72,000 ladybugs in Chopticon High School in the dead of night as part of a senior prank. Now they face criminal charges. Six of them are students, and one of them is an alumnus of the high school, presumably taking on the mentoring and intellectually nurturing role we see so rarely in this country’s schools. I look forward to the inevitable GoFundMe to support their legal defense, which may not even be necessary as no jury in America could possibly consider these young people criminals when they have such good ideas. One of the seniors — who, in fairness, will presumably never have to buy a drink in the town of Morganza, Maryland again — will not be allowed to walk at graduation. [Associated Press]

More than 100,000 taxpayers

A group of hackers described by authorities as a sophisticated organized crime syndicate stole upwards of 100,000 U.S. taxpayers’ information through the IRS’s “Get Transcript” function. Thieves getting fraudulent refunds is a huge issue. The IRS estimates it paid out $5.8 billion in faked refunds in 2013. [Associated Press]


The academic fraud that began with a retracted study about the persuasiveness of gay marriage canvassers may also have extended to the study’s funders. There is mounting evidence that the UCLA graduate student behind the cooked books may have also lied about funding for his research from several foundations that had not in fact sponsored his research. The biggest so far is a claimed $160,000 from the Jay and Rose Phillips Family Foundation of Minnesota that reportedly did not actually happen. [New York Magazine]

$656 million

The real money in the beekeeping business isn’t in the honey game — the U.S. bee market made $283 million from that in 2012 — it’s all about the pollination, where about 85 percent of the market is fertilizing almond groves. Beekeepers hauled in $656 million in 2012 renting out their hives to farms, orchards and groves. [Mother Jones]

2 billion

That’s how many videos are watched daily on Snapchat by 13 to 34 year olds, according to Snapchat, which has an interest in saying 2 billion videos are watched daily on Snapchat by 13 to 34 year olds. It also says 60 percent of smartphone users in that age group are active users of the service. [Bloomberg]

$6.9 billion

That’s how much money the international electronic music business made last year. It’s 12 percent higher than 2013 despite stagnation in sales of records and festival attendance. [Thump]

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If you see a significant digit in the wild, tweet it to me at @WaltHickey.

Walt Hickey was FiveThirtyEight’s chief culture writer.