Have you ever felt like your friends were more popular than you? Perhaps you’re a little insecure about how many sexual partners you’ve had, or the number of connections you have on LinkedIn. The friendship paradox, a term coined by sociologist Scott L. Feld in 1991, would suggest these fears are not without foundation. It’s down to sampling bias: You are more likely to be friends with someone who has more friends than you, simply because there is a greater This story is from Kinfolk Issue Forty-Seven Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 48 All the Besties How to make work friendships work. Arts & Culture Issue 42 The Language of Home How weird words forge new friendships. Arts & Culture Issue 36 Word: Frenemy Worst friends ever. Arts & Culture Issue 34 How to Rekindle a Friendship On inching closer when you’ve grown apart. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Close Knit Meet the weavers keeping traditional Egyptian tapestrymaking alive. Arts & Culture Issue 50 The Old Gays Inside a Californian TikTok “content house” of a very different stripe.