Normal Topic polygraph - as useless now as in 1923 (Read 1981 times)
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polygraph - as useless now as in 1923
Mar 29th, 2001 at 5:05am
Mark & QuoteQuote Print Post  
In Frye v. The United States, the U.S. Court
of Appeals rules against admitting polygraph evidence in court. Expert

Court of Appeals of District of Columbia
293 F. 1013; 1923 U.S. App. LEXIS 1712;
54 App. D.C. 46; 34 A.L.R. 145

Just when a scientific principle or
discovery crosses the line between the
experimental and demonstrable stages
is difficult to define.
Somewhere in this twilight zone the
evidential force of the principle
must be recognized, and while courts
will go a long way in admitting expert
testimony deduced from a well-
recognized scientific principle or
discovery,the thing from which the
deduction is made must be sufficiently
established to have gained general
acceptance in the particular field
in which it belongs.
We think the systolic blood pressure
deception test has not yet gained such
standing and scientific recognition
among physiological and psychological
authorities as would justify the courts
in admitting expert testimony deduced
from the discovery, development, and
experiments thus far made.  
--- The judgment is affirmed.

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Paste Member Name in Quick Reply Box G Scalabr
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Re: polygraph - as useless now as in 1923
Reply #1 - Mar 29th, 2001 at 4:38pm
Mark & QuoteQuote Print Post  
Anon, I am truly amazed at the fact the polygraph is still with us after all these years.  The hypothesis that there are physiological responses exclusively indicative of deception receives just about as much respect from the scientific community as it did in the 1920s:  nearly none.

Despite all the so-called improvements to the procedure such as the computerized polygraph, the whole house of cards still rests on the rickety table of the flawed assumption mentioned above.  Without a valid theory behind it, the computerized polygraph amounts to nothing more than "garbage in, garbage out."

I recently read an interesting article on-line which discussed how nearly all purportedly scientific techniques are both validated and accepted by the scientific community within a couple of generations, or fall by the wayside.  The author was incredulous at the fact that the polygraph is still with us despite the loathing of the scientific community for nearly 90 years.

Unfortunately, I have misplaced the link for this article.  If anyone is aware of where it is located, feel free to post the link on this thread.
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polygraph - as useless now as in 1923

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