Tyra Banks and probability

Hmm. Am I going to need a whiteboard for this?

I’ve noticed that on America’s Next Top Model, Tyra Banks has an odd habit of saying, when she has the two photographs of the losing/winning models, that "You have a 50-50 chance of getting through".

Really, Tyra? Isn’t this supposed to be a contest of skill, in which the best model gets through? Isn’t it actually the case that you know who’s getting through or at least know which model is better, and therefore the chance is actually 100% of one model getting through and 0% of the other getting through, since there’s no chance element in the decision.

Or are you suggesting the judges just toss a coin to see who wins?

Yes, I know this is probably not the point.


  • Rob Buckley

    I’m Rob Buckley, a journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of although you might have heard me on the podcast Lockdown Land or Radio 5 Live’s Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I’ve edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for TV producers magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it “web site for urban hedonists” The Tribe. Since going freelance, I've contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network, TV Scoop and The Custard TV.

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