This month, I’m taking a look at the Bandwagon Fallacy. This fallacy happens when someone makes a choice because “everyone else is doing it”. When you were a child, you may have tried to convince your mother that you should be allowed to do something because all of your friends were allowed to do it. This is the Bandwagon Fallacy at work!
The Bandwagon Fallacy is prevalent in many areas of society. One area where this is very obvious is with diets. In the 1990’s, low-fat, high-carb diets were popular. Then in the 2000s, people switched over to the Atkins Diet, which was a high-fat, low-carb diet. Other recent diet trends include the Whole 30 Diet, the Keto Diet, and the Paleo Diet, all of which have different demands.
Just because a diet is very popular and you know people who feel great and lose weight on it does not mean that it is right for YOU. Everyone is different, and it’s important to run a small test on a diet and see how you feel before jumping on the bandwagon with everyone else.
The Bandwagon Fallacy is also frequently seen in the testing world! Think about how many articles you’ve read recently about AI. It seems that everyone is using it to think of new test cases, write test automation, create self-healing tests, and so on. But as with a diet, just because some teams or testers are finding success with it doesn’t mean it’s right for YOUR project. And dropping your current automation solution just because something new comes along results in wasted time.
It’s fun to try out new tools and techniques. And it is helpful to learn new skills to stay in-demand by employers. But be sure when you are adopting a tool that you are adopting it because it meets your team’s needs, not just because it’s what everyone else is doing.