DemLabs blog

How to fool people with bogus surveys

"Nine out of ten Americans prefer broccoli to hamburgers"

Whoa! Where did these results come from?

It all depends of who conducted the survey? Who and how many people were surveyed? How were questions phrased?

Mr. Burns explains how you too can master the dark art of conducting bogus surveys to get whatever results you want.

That's how you get the survey results you want: Nine out of ten Americans prefer broccoli to hamburgers. (It turns out the tenth survey taker did not understand English and was confused. Otherwise the results would be 100% of people prefer broccoli).

How to design a BOGUS SURVEY

How to fool people with bogus surveys

Test your skills

"Biden’s resistance to cease-fire could alienate youth voters in 2024" - Washington Post

"conversations with more than a dozen students here (U. Mich.) underscore that Biden’s handling of the war threatens to diminish enthusiasm for him among young voters ahead of the 2024 election. . . . [A] number of liberal students here expressed openness to third-party candidates and frustration with a likely Trump-Biden rematch."

"I was expecting the Post to cite to a reputable poll—but was prepared for a janky internet survey where respondents earn free gift cards for answering online questions. But the source of the Post’s story was inferior to a gift-card scam survey.

Uh, okay. So, the Post spoke with “more than a dozen students” (13?) about Biden and found that “a number”—3? 5?—were “open” to third-party candidates. That level of imprecision as the predicate for a headline story is worse than reckless—it is intentionally misleading. In the Post’s own telling, “some” of the students were not open to third-party candidates. What was the breakdown? The Post chose to omit that detail." - Robert Hubbell in Today's Edition Newsletter

TakeAway: Don't fall for bogus survey results.

Image credit: Mr Burns from The Simpsons

DISCLAIMER: ALTHOUGH THE DATA FOUND IN THIS BLOG AND INFOGRAPHIC HAS BEEN PRODUCED AND PROCESSED FROM SOURCES BELIEVED TO BE RELIABLE, NO WARRANTY EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED CAN BE MADE REGARDING THE ACCURACY, COMPLETENESS, LEGALITY OR RELIABILITY OF ANY SUCH INFORMATION. THIS DISCLAIMER APPLIES TO ANY USES OF THE INFORMATION WHETHER ISOLATED OR AGGREGATE USES THEREOF.

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DemLabs applies innovative technology and storytelling tools in service of democratic values. It lowers the barrier of funding for worthy candidates and non-profits by applying existing free/affordable solutions.