02-04-2019 01:15 PM
Interesting point Ranjana. I never thought of the koko issue as a cultural one. But I see your point - assuming koko is capable of communicating in sign language in advanced ways, can she transmit culture to other apes....?
In statistics you have to have a null hypothesis:
H0: the Gorilla is speaking
H0: The gorilla is mimicking without understanding
And then gather data to either support the null or disprove it. This is a great example of getting data that lands somewhere in the middle, and whether it convinces you to change your mind is a measure of how much proof it would take for you to switch (your personal alpha level). I love it.