Andrew Gelman (Columbia--Statistics) has a nice post (here) that underscores a common point: A general pull towards identifying "typical" responses can deflect researchers from a potentially more interesting story about variation. His second--but often related--point is that it is awfully difficult to overemphasize the need to simply "look" at the data.
As Gelman observes: "The resolution, I think, is that we have to avoid the tendency to think deterministically. There’s variation! As shown in the above histogram, some people reported thinking to be “not at all enjoyable,” some reported it to be “somewhat enjoyable,” and there were a lot of people in the middle. Given this, it’s not so helpful to make statements about what people “typically” enjoy (as in the abstract of the paper)."