SHUTTERSTOCK Missouri State University assistant sociology professor Dr. Alice Walker found herself deluged with too much data (by which we mean so many dick pictures) in late June when news of a scientific study she’s conducting was reported widely. The study was intended to compare penis size to self-esteem, sexual activity, condom usage, willingness to see a doctor, socializing, and mental health. She launched the study on June 18th, soliciting 3,600 men aged 22 and older to fill out a survey, along with a measurement of their erect penis and a photo to verify they measured correctly. Men were also asked if they thought their size was below average, average, or above average; Dr. Walker noted to the Springfield News-Leader that many men who believed they were below average were actually average. (In a meta-analysis that combined the results of several penis size studies, the average erect penis size was estimated to be 5.2 inches in length and 4.6 inches in girth.)

By June 26th, Dr. Walker had only received a few hundred pictures and completed surveys, but after the story was picked up by numerous news outletslast week, her inbox was slammed by too many respondents. She decided to discontinue the project, citing in a press release that “the public reaction to the project threatens the reliability of the survey responses. The reliability of the study as a whole has been compromised.”

The press release also clarifies, “All submissions were stored in a secure research database. None of the photographic submissions or survey responses have been or will be viewed. They have already been destroyed.”

It’s a shame some potential pranksters giving fake responses have derailed the project, considering Dr. Walker’s seemingly noble intent. “I’ve spoken to men who have been suicidal because of their anxiety and unhappiness with their size or perceived size. Men that haven’t been to the doctor in more than a decade or are not using a condom because they’re convinced they can’t get one that fits them,” she told the New York Post. “We need to be talking about men’s body dysmorphia, and the way our society worships size and the way that worship impacts men.”