Can't you just lie about your data?

Well, if you were the type who would falsify your data to weasel out of paying what you pledged on your Beeminder goal, then you probably would've rolled your eyes and walked away a long time ago, certainly before making it to the depths of our help pages. So you could, but you're not going to. Right?

In general, we think it's a bad idea to harp on the idea of cheating, but we've written a few blog posts about weasels who lie about their data in the past that might help if you think you're going down that road: Combatting Cheating, Weasel Heart-To-Heart, and Fake Data is the Devil.

It may also help to call it what it is, instead of framing it in a gentle light. It isn't "dummy data" or giving yourself a mulligan: fake data is lying, cheating, dishonest, etc. Sorry, but it is! And in the end, as teachers always told us, the person you hurt most by lying and cheating is usually yourself.

If I think I'm going to be tempted to cheat, do you have any recommendations?


  1. Use automatic data sources via our integrations (most of these will use the data source as the ground truth, so you can't edit it in Beeminder: we'd just overwrite it back to what it says in the data source)
  2. Our No-Excuses Mode prevents you editing autodata even where it would normally be possible
  3. Our partners at Boss as a Service can send Beeminder data that they've verified about your various tasks, if you sign up with them
  4. Cultivate a scientific, quantified-self mindset and never falsify data
  5. Show off your graph to family and friends so that falsifying your data is effectively lying to them (nobody lies to their mom, right? right??)
  6. Remember that if you ever lied to Beeminder you'd be setting a precedent that could ruin its power forever
  7. If something is going wrong that makes you tempted to add fake data, consider adding a break -- or even contacting Beeminder support if you think they might be able to help! It's a lot better for support to add a break than for you to add fake data because you've broken your foot.

Some combination of those can help to keep you on the straight and narrow!

Keywords: cheating, fake data, lying to Beeminder

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