I'm looking for a single word or short phrase that can describe any numbers or statistics that have very little practical value, and are useful only to the extent of "hey look, a number!"

Here's an example from this quite amusing page:

People at 4:53AM on Monday stayed longer on the site than at 11:36AM

(The images on that page also capture the feeling that I'm trying to find a word for.)

Some other examples:

You have sat down in this chair 1638 times

You have pressed the "x" key 973 times

The most common RGB value in this image is (14, 201, 58)

The percentage of users of english.SE who have viewed this question is 0.0013%

What's a word or phrase for a number or statistic that is only useful for trivia or amusement?

  • 2
    Since we're making up words, how about 'arithmorrhea' (like 'logorrhea') or 'numbrage' (like 'umbrage')? – Mitch Dec 25 '14 at 15:03
  • You can consider garbage through computer jargon. (inaccurate or useless data [MW]) – ermanen Dec 25 '14 at 17:47
  • Redundancy comes to mind also. (The use of words or data that could be omitted without loss of meaning or function; repetition or superfluity of information. [OD]) – ermanen Dec 25 '14 at 17:51
  • Kids these days call them 'achievements', I'd call it noise. +1 for numbrage. – Mazura Dec 26 '14 at 4:05
  • 1
    What's wrong with trivia? – Jim Dec 26 '14 at 5:04

How about simply "irrelevant"?


There's factoid, defined at merriam-webster.com as:

2: a briefly stated and usually trivial fact


Most of the numbers you cited are what one could call "arbitrary". That is, they were made up (or might as well have been. Pulled out of a hat, as it were.) Many of them could also be described as "meaningless". Or you might say they are simply "placeholders" (in lieu of realistic data.) If you know they are inaccurate, you could call them "bogus".

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.