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Discussion Starter #1
It seems lately that there's been a rash of articles, screeds, and assorted polemics on the internet decrying the MBTI while simultaneously lauding the "Big 5" personality traits. Apparently it's trendy among the keyboard paparazzi to label Myers-Briggs theory as junk science in comparison to the hard science of the Big 5.

I heard of the Big 5 a number of years ago and did some reading on the subject at the time. My issue with it is that it seems like a lifeless, hollow theory. Testing yield results like, "You are 78% agreeable." Ok. What, precisely, does that mean for my life? And how was my score determined to be 78%? Are you sure it's not 78.2%? It seems to be a theory that would appeal to those in love with numbers and quantitative metrics. I almost get the sense that some critics see the narrative style of MBTI kind of tarot-y, too reminiscent maybe of a palm reading or a phone call with Miss Cleo. To each, his own, I suppose.

Anyhow, just curious if anyone has noticed this trend.
 

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I find Big 5 extremely limited as a tool for understanding myself or others. I don't conceive of myself in the terms in which Big 5 speaks and I also tend not to interpret my own experience from the perspective of an outside observer. I understand the arguments from the scientistic crowd who say the outside observer perspective makes the theory 'empirical' and therefore 'scientific' and therefore superior but for my purposes its an inferior tool.


Jung talks in Psychological Types about the reasons why he consciously avoided framing his theory from the perspective of the outside observer:

'But we have to consider whether ... we are speaking from the standpoint of the individual's subjective psychology or from that of the observer, who perceives and judges from without. This observer could easily arrive at a contrary judgment, especially if he intuitively apprehended merely the outward behaviour of the person observed and judged accordingly.'

...

'If observation is restricted to outward behaviour, without any concern for the internal economy of the individual's consciousness, one may get an even stronger impression of the irrational and fortuitous nature of certain unconscious manifestations than of the reasonableness of his conscious intentions and motivations.'

...

'I therefore base my judgment on what the individual feels to be his conscious psychology. But I am willing to grant that one could equally well conceive and present such a psychology from precisely the opposite angle.'

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'This aggravates the difficulty of a lucid presentation of psychological matters and immeasurably increases the possibility of misunderstandings.'

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'For in that case the observed object would have no voice in the matter at all ... The judgment is then left entirely to the subjective observer—a sure guarantee that it will be based on his own individual psychology, which would be forcibly imposed on the observed. ... The individual is completely at the mercy of the judging observer, which can never be the case when the conscious psychology of the observed is accepted as a basis. He after all is the only competent judge, since he alone knows his conscious motives.'
 

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It's recent prevalence is really due to psychological research.

Big 5 and it's tests are statistically found to be sound (as far as I know) which is a big part of their success, process is key when it comes to assessment based personality research. Significant numerical findings are something you can scientifically publish, which is a researcher's main objective. This is easy to get with the Big 5/Five-Factor Model. There is a huge benefit in how easily translatable it is through it's process of matching simple words to personality patterns. Thus, it is quantifiably easy to use when measuring certain trends in personality, but especially in matching these patterns with other things, such as mental disorders, for example. It is also handy in an applied setting, helping to guide a professional in their approach, providing (somewhat) objective data on a client. I'm sure it is in the works of being applied to job settings, if it isn't already being used for that.

Sadly, MBTI doesn't have many of these luxuries, as it's questionnaires rely on ambiguous questions. It is very hard to measure whether a question is actually testing what you are trying to test with MBTI, and obviously it doesn't have as high reliability, since it is quite easy to mistype through the test. Therefore, the process of trying to find or confirm your type is long and arduous when having to sift online and in books for all the information. It's still complicated with a practitioner because it is hard to have reliability in terms of method, plus it's also expensive.

Even if you find your type, who knows if it's accurate, because how can we measure that? How can one firmly judge that it's correct for themselves? Can one objectively judge that for someone else? Are our types really consistent throughout time? All of these have yet to be answered in a real research setting. The type descriptions are also nuanced and complex, so it isn't as easy to apply to other things, besides jobs and education. It's difficult to translate into other languages, which means there are gaps in data for certain parts of the world. Who knows if it's thoroughly culturally fluid. Lastly, it has a stigma of not being very useful in a research setting, being likened to the zodiac and pop psychology...which means that it likely rarely receives much funding.

As much as I love MBTI, I do think it requires a LOT of changes in order for it to be taken seriously. There is very little research on the cognitive functions, so it sadly has remained floating in theory. Unlike the Big 5, I do think MBTI has a lot to offer people on an individual level, raising self-awareness and prompting introspection...that is most definitely it's strength.
But statistically, it needs a lot of help :sad:

I agree with you, I get annoyed with how much it's mentioned in MBTI articles and I don't personally find it to be very fruitful, but it does have it's uses.
 

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Big 5 seems to be relative good at predicting future outcomes, and I do find some of the concepts helpful or supplementary to MBTI. I would say that MBTI is more useful as far as trying to understand people rather than just describe certain habits, or traits.
 
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It seems lately that there's been a rash of articles, screeds, and assorted polemics on the internet decrying the MBTI while simultaneously lauding the "Big 5" personality traits. Apparently it's trendy among the keyboard paparazzi to label Myers-Briggs theory as junk science in comparison to the hard science of the Big 5.

I heard of the Big 5 a number of years ago and did some reading on the subject at the time. My issue with it is that it seems like a lifeless, hollow theory. Testing yield results like, "You are 78% agreeable." Ok. What, precisely, does that mean for my life? And how was my score determined to be 78%? Are you sure it's not 78.2%? It seems to be a theory that would appeal to those in love with numbers and quantitative metrics. I almost get the sense that some critics see the narrative style of MBTI kind of tarot-y, too reminiscent maybe of a palm reading or a phone call with Miss Cleo. To each, his own, I suppose.

Anyhow, just curious if anyone has noticed this trend.
It's a problem of complexity of task.

The problem with MBTI is that it simply isn't reliable. Even when re-taking soon after taking, 50% of people get different type. So, it gives at least 50% of mistypes.
It needs to put one accurately into 1 in 16 categories, which it can't do reliably, while "Big 5" just has to return variables it tracks.

MBTI has not only problem with percentages but first and foremost it has problem with interpretation of variables it tracks and assigning a type basing on them.

Even with typing basing on observation, you get into traps of assigning people functions basing on behaviors which could have been affected by many things ranging from culture, upbringing, experiences to mental disorders.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
It's recent prevalence is really due to psychological research.

Big 5 and it's tests are statistically found to be sound (as far as I know) which is a big part of their success, process is key when it comes to assessment based personality research. Significant numerical findings are something you can scientifically publish, which is a researcher's main objective. This is easy to get with the Big 5/Five-Factor Model. There is a huge benefit in how easily translatable it is through it's process of matching simple words to personality patterns. Thus, it is quantifiably easy to use when measuring certain trends in personality, but especially in matching these patterns with other things, such as mental disorders, for example. It is also handy in an applied setting, helping to guide a professional in their approach, providing (somewhat) objective data on a client. I'm sure it is in the works of being applied to job settings, if it isn't already being used for that.

Sadly, MBTI doesn't have many of these luxuries, as it's questionnaires rely on ambiguous questions. It is very hard to measure whether a question is actually testing what you are trying to test with MBTI, and obviously it doesn't have as high reliability, since it is quite easy to mistype through the test. Therefore, the process of trying to find or confirm your type is long and arduous when having to sift online and in books for all the information. It's still complicated with a practitioner because it is hard to have reliability in terms of method, plus it's also expensive.

Even if you find your type, who knows if it's accurate, because how can we measure that? How can one firmly judge that it's correct for themselves? Can one objectively judge that for someone else? Are our types really consistent throughout time? All of these have yet to be answered in a real research setting. The type descriptions are also nuanced and complex, so it isn't as easy to apply to other things, besides jobs and education. It's difficult to translate into other languages, which means there are gaps in data for certain parts of the world. Who knows if it's thoroughly culturally fluid. Lastly, it has a stigma of not being very useful in a research setting, being likened to the zodiac and pop psychology...which means that it likely rarely receives much funding.

As much as I love MBTI, I do think it requires a LOT of changes in order for it to be taken seriously. There is very little research on the cognitive functions, so it sadly has remained floating in theory. Unlike the Big 5, I do think MBTI has a lot to offer people on an individual level, raising self-awareness and prompting introspection...that is most definitely it's strength.
But statistically, it needs a lot of help :sad:

I agree with you, I get annoyed with how much it's mentioned in MBTI articles and I don't personally find it to be very fruitful, but it does have it's uses.
I just feel that the desire to quantify personality is an attempt to quantify the unquantifiable. I believe this is so because humans are inherently irrational, which is why economists have always failed with their "rational consumer" model of human behavior. The whole Big 5 enterprise feels very NT to me, which is probably a principal reason why I distrust it as much as I do.

More directly, nothing I've read concerning the Big 5 has resonated in the least with me. It's simply not useful, it's scientific verifiability notwithstanding. This is the great contrast with MBTI, which I have found immensely valuable in understanding and coping with others. This is one of those instances in which I think the obvious utility of a theory trumps the skepticism of researchers. I work in science and spent years in environmental research, and those experiences only reinforced to me how feeble scientific inquiry is in characterizing the full complexity of natural reality. In any case, there is nothing in the Big 5 that I find useful in my life. Perhaps it's helpful to organizational psychologists because it attaches numbers to personality traits, but those metrics don't help me improve my understanding of either myself or others.

And finally, I think there's a strong contrarian bent among the keyboard paparazzi, a desire to see the hidden truth no one else does, to be the informed outsider scoffing at the stupidity of the masses. It's a very hipster, enneatype 4 desire, this need to see oneself as a tastemaker immune from popular opinion. Yet I've never met anyone who was interested at all in the Big 5, let alone versed enough to discuss it intelligently. MBTI may be pop psychology, but it is popular only because it resonates. Big 5 is like that cool underground TV show that every critic lauds yet no one has ever seen. Very enneatype 4.

Anyhow, I don't mean to prattle, but I just want someone to enlighten me on how Big 5 is useful in my life, how it is demonstrably better than MBTI.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The problem with MBTI is that it simply isn't reliable. Even when re-taking soon after taking, 50% of people get different type. So, it gives at least 50% of mistypes.
This is a common criticism of MBTI, but not a substantive one. It's a problem with the sorter--not with the theory itself. Relying on self-reporting is always fraught with potential for untruthfulness or unintended bias. The MBTI sorter actually requires a level of self-awareness that few people possess.

Even with typing basing on observation, you get into traps of assigning people functions basing on behaviors which could have been affected by many things ranging from culture, upbringing, experiences to mental disorders.
This is actually a problem with Big 5 as well, that it does not address disorder. In any case, I don't think one can separate personality from environment. No one exists in a vacuum, and attempting to strip away these shaping influences results in nonsensical outcomes. But I do see how this would give researchers fits. So many things can mask personality that it can be impossible to see into the fog.
 

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@Elvish Lives, thanks for starting this thread. I didn't know if anyone felt the same. I'm not a Big Five personality test fan. One of the amazing thing about MBTI, and Jung's theory that it stems from, is that it gets at the deeper cognitive processes behind behavior. It's peering behind someone's external appearance to how they actually think. I think it's beautiful.

Perhaps as we learn more in the field of neuroscience, the more we can back MBTI... If you've never read Dario Nardi's The Neuroscience of Personality, I highly encourage you to. He is researching to try and see if he can find brain pattern similarities between those who have the same MBTI type. Pretty cool stuff. He doesn't have a large enough sample size just yet, but of the tests he has done, his research is cool to look at. And see if you resonate with. :) That's just on the empirical side of things, though.

I love MBTI on the theoretical level. It's a great theory, and I have found myself in it, as have others around me. I think it does hold truth in it that is just extremely hard to quantifiably verify - but I don't think that makes it any less good of a theory.

The thing that I don't like about the Big Five personality test is that it just looks at surface level behavioral/temperament stuff. Stuff that is already very easy to measure. That makes it very accurate and scientific, but it is lacking in the same depth I think you can find in MBTI and Jungian theory.
 

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I just feel that the desire to quantify personality is an attempt to quantify the unquantifiable. I believe this is so because humans are inherently irrational, which is why economists have always failed with their "rational consumer" model of human behavior. The whole Big 5 enterprise feels very NT to me, which is probably a principal reason why I distrust it as much as I do.

More directly, nothing I've read concerning the Big 5 has resonated in the least with me. It's simply not useful, it's scientific verifiability notwithstanding. This is the great contrast with MBTI, which I have found immensely valuable in understanding and coping with others. This is one of those instances in which I think the obvious utility of a theory trumps the skepticism of researchers. I work in science and spent years in environmental research, and those experiences only reinforced to me how feeble scientific inquiry is in characterizing the full complexity of natural reality. In any case, there is nothing in the Big 5 that I find useful in my life. Perhaps it's helpful to organizational psychologists because it attaches numbers to personality traits, but those metrics don't help me improve my understanding of either myself or others.
I don't disagree with many of your points here, I've actually gone on rants before on FB that touches on much of this, since people who know me well send me links about Big 5 all the time, lol. Maybe I didn't word my point very well, but my point was that:

Big 5 = good for data + research, bad on an individual level
MBTI = atrocious for data + research, excellent on an individual level


So your disappointment makes a lot of sense because the primary purpose of Big 5 isn't to bring one personal or social understanding, hence why these articles about it can be misleading, in my opinion. Articles that berate MBTI and talk-up Big 5 never actually discuss the functions and do very little to thoroughly explain Big 5, so I'd say on the whole, people that are writing about these things are doing so from a lazy, biased, and naive standpoint...that viral Vox video/article being a prime example of that. This is the one I'm referring to if you haven't seen it.

The last time I read the comments, it was flooded with NTs defending MBTI :wink::


I personally do believe personality can be quantifiable, and I do think it's a really important thing to at least try and study because it has the potential to bring a lot of understanding within the field of psychology, especially in applied settings. What if the studies using these data sets can eventually contribute to bringing someone with Aspergers out of their shell, or is one factor that causes a marriage between two people to thrive? Personality research holds a lot of potential.

Personally, I think using MBTI as a way to understand people can be a dangerous game because of the lapses it has research wise... That isn't to say that I don't use MBTI for this purpose as well, but part of my disappointment with it being horrible in a quantifiable sense is that it can be easy to draw assumptions about a person's behavior without actually knowing it's true origin...something that can have a lot of consequences. I don't think this danger is as strong with Big 5 because the person is assigning themselves traits that don't require a lot of deep thinking or reflection. If you've studied cognitive psychology, then you'd know there is something valuable about that when it comes to accuracy. It's focus is more-so on a shallow summary of a person rather than a deep exploration of their thinking process.

MBTI holds a lot of quantifiable power and potential too... it just hasn't been given the attention it deserves in the world of research.

I am hoping to somehow and someday change that though :proud:

And finally, I think there's a strong contrarian bent among the keyboard paparazzi, a desire to see the hidden truth no one else does, to be the informed outsider scoffing at the stupidity of the masses. It's a very hipster, enneatype 4 desire, this need to see oneself as a tastemaker immune from popular opinion. Yet I've never met anyone who was interested at all in the Big 5, let alone versed enough to discuss it intelligently. MBTI may be pop psychology, but it is popular only because it resonates. Big 5 is like that cool underground TV show that every critic lauds yet no one has ever seen. Very enneatype 4.
As a type 4, I don't see the connection. If anything, I see the type 4s being the one's saying that MBTI has value, while the rest of the world scoffs at it's lack of practicality.

Anyhow, I don't mean to prattle, but I just want someone to enlighten me on how Big 5 is useful in my life, how it is demonstrably better than MBTI.
It isn't useful in your life, but it is useful from a statistical POV. If you despise research, then that point will be lost to you. Both personality assessments have their benefits and downfalls.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
[MENTION=69120]The thing that I don't like about the Big Five personality test is that it just looks at surface level behavioral/temperament stuff. Stuff that is already very easy to measure. That makes it very accurate and scientific, but it is lacking in the same depth I think you can find in MBTI and Jungian theory.
Yes! I already know I'm agreeable. Didn't know I was 78% agreeable, but then again, don't think I cared, either. I feel at a deeper level that traits come in packages. Genetic research is revealing new gene-linked traits every year. Attempting to separate traits into discrete units seems a fool's errand to me, one that misses the essential nature of humanity. But more than that, MBTI just makes sense. It resonates with me because I see the theory mirrored in my daily life. Reading my temperament profile for the first time was an eerie thing, like someone had written me long before I'd ever been born.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Big 5 = good for data + research, bad on an individual level
MBTI = atrocious for data + research, excellent on an individual level
.
Point taken. My issue is that the rash of internet articles touting Big 5 lauds it as a complete substitute for MBTI, a claim I reject. I know from my cousin (a professional org psychologist) just how much people in his field scorn MBTI. But then, I think most of what he finds so compelling to be bunk (testing...testing), so it's a matter of perspective.

...so I'd say on the whole, people that are writing about these things are doing so from a lazy, biased, and naive standpoint...that viral Vox video/article being a prime example of that. This is the one I'm referring to if you haven't seen it.
Yep! That's the kind of material I've been seeing.


As a type 4, I don't see the connection. If anything, I see the type 4s being the one's saying that MBTI has value, while the rest of the world scoffs at it's lack of practicality..
My reasoning is that enneatype 4 (which I am as well) rejects the popular, the mundane, the commonplace, and searches for the unique, the unknown as something to which to tout as the real best thing. It's why hipsters live in a perpetual state of rejection of mainstream culture while searching for that which is unknown and discovered first by them.



It isn't useful in your life, but it is useful from a statistical POV. If you despise research, then that point will be lost to you. Both personality assessments have their benefits and downfalls.
I don't despise research at all, I'm just not a Kool-Aid-swallowing member of the cult of numbers. I came up in my field doing almost nothing but research, and I feel like I see its limitations as much as its benefits. I am an ecologist by training, and trying to study systems that are influenced by so many variables tends to reduce scientific inquiry to a game of Pictionary: the model produced never really looks anything like what it was meant to depict.

But I very much appreciate your posts. Good discussion.
 
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This is a common criticism of MBTI, but not a substantive one. It's a problem with the sorter--not with the theory itself. Relying on self-reporting is always fraught with potential for untruthfulness or unintended bias. The MBTI sorter actually requires a level of self-awareness that few people possess.
The problem is that lack of reliable diagnostics drastically limits the usefulness of the theory. You can't type people so you can't use the theory to predict anything. You can't even verify the theory because you don't have well typed people to observe.

Also, the problem with the sorter also apply to people typing other people.

I think that general typing accuracy is way below 50%. I don't think I actually got ENFP assigned by a web typology test, ever. Socionists typed me as ILI for whatever reason.


When it comes to typing methods I find Pod'Lair's Mojo Reading most believable because it demonstrates strong predictive power (for example almost all politicians are Judgers and half of them are ENTJs) and doesn't depend on minute differences of beliefs and behavior that could be easily attributed to other factors than type.
Also, it focuses on energy - one of the reasons why Judgers completely dominate politics is that performing duties of politician would be too exhausting to a Perceiver. When people type politicians they usually look at differences in views instead of looking at job description.

They also had lots of misreads (I'd say about 30%), even though and they claimed to have, like 95% accuracy of read from two photos and two 10 minutes videos.

They had some serious problems with methodology, like reading during google hangouts when not enough time would be devoted to a sample and uncertain samples would get assigned a read despite that some of them need much more observation which only recently got corrected. That and obsession with finding INFJs and ENFPs everywhere. Hahaha. I was one of the few "ENFPs" on their forums that "survived" the purge when that finally got corrected XD .

But now samples are divided in 4 categories of difficulty - A, B, C and D.

In Pod'Lair theory humans are species of specialists, so different kinds of specialists will cluster in different fields basing on what their cognitive configuration gives them advantage in.


This is actually a problem with Big 5 as well, that it does not address disorder. In any case, I don't think one can separate personality from environment. No one exists in a vacuum, and attempting to strip away these shaping influences results in nonsensical outcomes. But I do see how this would give researchers fits. So many things can mask personality that it can be impossible to see into the fog.
Yeah. Except that at least it gives some info instead of complete misdirection like MBTI does.


I don't disagree with many of your points here, I've actually gone on rants before on FB that touches on much of this, since people who know me well send me links about Big 5 all the time, lol. Maybe I didn't word my point very well, but my point was that:

Big 5 = good for data + research, bad on an individual level
MBTI = atrocious for data + research, excellent on an individual level
Lack of reliable diagnostics makes MBTI atrocious on an individual level.
 
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Is that why you have yet to provide a concrete example of Johnny’s dominant Ni in that other thread?
Here:
depp_photo_illo_nb_splash.jpg

The thing is that I don't need to provide a vague indirect example of Johny's dominant Ni in his words because he doesn't have to be open about his inner thought processes. Especially that one of traits bestowed by Ni is secretiveness.
But if you like vague indirect examples, here's one:
His tendency to choose roles weird loners which comes from experience of being a Ni-dom.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
The problem is that lack of reliable diagnostics drastically limits the usefulness of the theory. You can't type people so you can't use the theory to predict anything. You can't even verify the theory because you don't have well typed people to observe.

Also, the problem with the sorter also apply to people typing other people.
Big 5 has the same issue, as would any other theory. Without a Rasputin-esque ability to see into the souls of others, the limitations of self-reporting will always arise in such matters.

In Pod'Lair theory humans are species of specialists, so different kinds of specialists will cluster in different fields basing on what their cognitive configuration gives them advantage in.
I would argue that most human are generalists, thus why most people are moderately skilled at a variety of things but highly skilled at none. Creating and maintaining an orderly life is an entirely banal and monotonous process that requires basic competency in a variety of skills. Highly outstanding people—the true specialists—are rare, and they tend to be almost useless apart from their given talent. Note the large percentage of accomplished musicians who can’t balance a checkbook, or renowned researchers who have to read Dummies books to figure out how to do the laundry.


Yeah. Except that at least it gives some info instead of complete misdirection like MBTI does.
MBTI is not misdirection at all. On the contrary, many find it to be highly enlightening, a means to better understanding of themselves and the people in their lives. If it were misdirection, would millions find it to be so compelling as to spend free time opining on it here? Now that I think of it, why are you here, given your disbelief?


Lack of reliable diagnostics makes MBTI atrocious on an individual level.
I never had the slightest problem with diagnostics and MBTI. On the other hand, Big 5 is so broad as to be useless. What benefit is there in determining that a person is 78% agreeable? What does that even mean?
 

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Big 5 has the same issue, as would any other theory. Without a Rasputin-esque ability to see into the souls of others, the limitations of self-reporting will always arise in such matters.



I would argue that most human are generalists, thus why most people are moderately skilled at a variety of things but highly skilled at none. Creating and maintaining an orderly life is an entirely banal and monotonous process that requires basic competency in a variety of skills. Highly outstanding people—the true specialists—are rare, and they tend to be almost useless apart from their given talent. Note the large percentage of accomplished musicians who can’t balance a checkbook, or renowned researchers who have to read Dummies books to figure out how to do the laundry.




MBTI is not misdirection at all. On the contrary, many find it to be highly enlightening, a means to better understanding of themselves and the people in their lives. If it were misdirection, would millions find it to be so compelling as to spend free time opining on it here? Now that I think of it, why are you here, given your disbelief?




I never had the slightest problem with diagnostics and MBTI. On the other hand, Big 5 is so broad as to be useless. What benefit is there in determining that a person is 78% agreeable? What does that even mean?
Well as far as I understand it, agreeableness is related to people pleasing activities. You would expect an agreeable person to try to appeal to others by being serviceable or at least polite. As opposed to dissagreable people who might enjoy starting fights, pulling pranks or generally shit disturbing. If I knew a person was typed as dissagreable, I would be reluctant to engage with this person with out a ten foot pole between us. However, the use of a personality test to prove this trait is unnecessary as this behavior will be self evident. Maybe this is why you find big five hollow. Its just a name for some behavioral patterns. It does not give you any insight into why a person behaves the way they do, or how they communicate which is what MBTI tries to do.
Still for its limitations, I like the simple elegant way it sums up a persona. And if all you are looking for is a description of a person it gets to the point a lot faster than MBTI can. The two systems have very different aims so I don't think its fair to compare them.
 
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Big 5 has the same issue, as would any other theory. Without a Rasputin-esque ability to see into the souls of others, the limitations of self-reporting will always arise in such matters.
I'd say that 5 Gears of Mojo Reading is pretty much the closest thing to it. Since even by looking at physiological cues displayed, one can recognize what function or combination of functions one is using at a given point.

I wrote a blog entry some time ago demonstrating it.


I would argue that most human are generalists, thus why most people are moderately skilled at a variety of things but highly skilled at none. Creating and maintaining an orderly life is an entirely banal and monotonous process that requires basic competency in a variety of skills. Highly outstanding people—the true specialists—are rare, and they tend to be almost useless apart from their given talent. Note the large percentage of accomplished musicians who can’t balance a checkbook, or renowned researchers who have to read Dummies books to figure out how to do the laundry.
I mean specialization in sense that there are lots of fields that highly favor specific types and putting types there at random just because people hold some views doesn't make sense. Holding views is much easier than performing concrete feats in life. That's why you have tons of ENTJs with diametrically different views on how society should work like in Politics and very small variations in types (almost all of them ENTJs, ISTJs and ISFJs).

People who can't balance checkbook aren't exactly uncommon. My year in primary school included about 10% of people who have dyspraxia (probably XNXPs), lots of people who sucked at various things at school, etc. so general abilities aren't so universal.

For example, when it comes to directing people, there are things that are useful, like pointing things to people, putting hands in interpersonal space, literally moving people around.
I think before speech gesturing and facial expressions would be the most important way of communication.
Part of specialization is that some people find these maneuvers energizing and others find them draining.
That's how one can recognize Judgers which in Pod'Lair are called Directives because that's what they are good at.

It's because it's a natural state for Directives and altered state for Adaptives. Like, it's really visible, for example compare gesturing of Rosario Dawson (ENFJ) and Kirsten Stewart (INFP), for example.


MBTI is not misdirection at all. On the contrary, many find it to be highly enlightening, a means to better understanding of themselves and the people in their lives. If it were misdirection, would millions find it to be so compelling as to spend free time opining on it here? Now that I think of it, why are you here, given your disbelief?
It is only valuable in sense that it tells people that there are 16 types and 8 functions that cause inherent differences between people and that in itself existence of different types isn't pathology. It's the ability to assign the people into these types that is lacking in MBTI communities and sites and that's where misdirection comes from.

I never had the slightest problem with diagnostics and MBTI. On the other hand, Big 5 is so broad as to be useless. What benefit is there in determining that a person is 78% agreeable? What does that even mean?
What's the benefit of being assigned a different MBTI type than one is? What's the benefit of going around and assigning other people different types than they are?
 

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Why are so many people so enamored with the "Big 5" personality traits?

Here:
View attachment 753761

The thing is that I don't need to provide a vague indirect example of Johny's dominant Ni in his words because he doesn't have to be open about his inner thought processes. Especially that one of traits bestowed by Ni is secretiveness.
But if you like vague indirect examples, here's one:
His tendency to choose roles weird loners which comes from experience of being a Ni-dom.
I prefer concrete examples, not vague indirect ones.

If he were to be Ni dominant, there would still be clues to that by what he shares, how he shares it, and why. While Ni-doms might not always share their insights 24/7, it doesn’t mean they can hide the fact that they’re Ni dominant...even if they tried to do that, the motive for it would still indicate something about their cognitive process.

How is the tendency to pick roles of weird loners a sign of dominant Ni? Couldn’t it be dominant Fi as well?

Also, since you clearly enjoy picking apart MBTI, why aren’t you on some forum assigning Big 5 percentages to Johnny Depp and Kristen Stewart, eh?

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I've found people who I can consider kindred spirits through MBTI that I would have never found otherwise. It's useful in that getting people to take a test and assign themselves a four-letter code that relates to cognition tells me more than scrutinizing whatever mask they choose to wear ever will. Sure it's not always accurate, but I have ways to probe type-relevant information.

Big 5 is useful for determining correlations with dimensions through factor analysis (including correlations to MBTI dichotomies), but I don't see the same opportunities to connect with other people.
 
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I prefer concrete examples, not vague indirect ones.
I already gave you a concrete example XD .

If he were to be Ni dominant, there would still be clues to that by what he shares, how he shares it, and why. While Ni-doms might not always share their insights 24/7, it doesn’t mean they can hide the fact that they’re Ni dominant...even if they tried to do that, the motive for it would still indicate something about their cognitive process.
Most of which could be mistaken for clues of having dominant Fi by someone who wants him to be a Fi dom. Ni insights from Ni users are commonly confused by typologists for a sign of introverted feeling as was visible in the blog entry I linked.

How is the tendency to pick roles of weird loners a sign of dominant Ni? Couldn’t it be dominant Fi as well?
He spends time alone doing weird stuff with his Ni. Duh.

Also, since you clearly enjoy picking apart MBTI, why aren’t you on some forum assigning Big 5 percentages to Johnny Depp and Kristen Stewart, eh?
Because I'm not interested in Big 5? Pod'Lair Mojos clearly correlate with MBTI types, same for Pod Powers and MBTI functions. Which is why I can still discuss with MBTI users despite that they have no reliable way of typing people.
 
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