If a picture is worth a thousand words, then times have never been better for people who want to tell long lies to audiences with short attention spans. Last year, Eric Portelance wrote a great piece for Medium where he dissected a fantastic falsehood told through a Bloomberg graph of U.S. men's income.

Maybe I'm just getting cranky with age, but I've just gotten so cynical about graphics posted in mainstream places—from news articles to Twitter. Whenever I see a graph or chart depicting any kind of trend in any kind of data, I assume it's been designed to mislead me. A very recent example: The Economist mixed a nice cocktail of confirmation bias, anchoring bias, and data truncation into a graph of shooting deaths versus automobile deaths.

Line graphs, bar charts, and all their two-dimensional friends can be wonderfully effective story tellers. But sadly, it's not always apparent whether the genre is fiction or non-. Most people today don't have the time to check before clicking share.