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Finally, Math Categorizes the Most Annoying TSA Checkpoints

December 7, 2012 at 2:20 PM | by | ()

Yes, the new Travel + Leisure survey of "Most Annoying Airport Security Checkpoints" is sort of kind of egregiously shameless link bait. Publishing top 10 lists on the Internet (or in this case top-14 lists) is basically cheating, up there with posting pictures of boobs and cats.

The only thing that's less subtle is putting in something that doesn't quite fit, so that people will argue about the list. Theoretically that's impossible to do on surveys, but that doesn't mean we can't still complain about the rankings. Can you believe they put Dulles TSA checkpoints as more annoying than the ones in Logan? Whoever thinks that's right has either never been to the airports or is an idiot or is a troll.

Also: well played, T+L.

In addition to ranking IAD as more annoying than BOS, the list also has Philadelphia only as high as #4. Not to put too fine a point on what can turn into a contentious debate, but no and no and no and no. LAX, LGA, and EWR - all ranked ahead of PHL as having more annoying checkpoints - are pretty bad as airports. But there's no way that the TSA is worse at all three of them than it is at Philadelphia. Maybe you could credibly have one of those airports higher in the list by virtue of a statistical fluke. But any more than that, and you've gone from being controversial to being simply incorrect.

In other TSA news this month, it turns out that one of the companies that supplies full-body scanners to the government may have been manipulating test results designed to ensure that the scan results remain private. Rapiscan has been served by TSA with requests for more information, though the vendor is denying any wrongdoing. However the story turns out, it won't do much to dampen suspicions that TSA got swept up in a lobby-driven rush to deploy the machines before all the appropriate boxes had been checked.

[Photo: pbyrne / Flickr]

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