t's a truism that 80 percent of business-relevant information originates in unstructured form, primarily text. The figure is very widely cited by analysts, vendors, and users alike, all seeking to make the case for text analytics. There are variations; Anant Jhingran of IBM Research, among others, cites an 85% figure. Whether 80 or 85 percent, the claim has clearly taken on a life of its own. It has been repeated many thousands of times. But for all of us who cite these figures: Where did they come from? More to the point, are they true, and are they useful? Let's explore these questions.