October 22, 2006
Ad populum

A few days ago a polling company called the wrong person. When they first called on Wednesday night I put them off with some story of unicorns and damsels in distress and being about to leave the house. I never expected them to actually call back on Thursday, but when they did I figured that sort of persistence deserved at least some reward, so I consented to answer their questions. Imagine my bemusement when I found that I was to be polled on my broadcast & print media reading/listening/viewing habits.

I have nothing against TV, radio stations, or newspapers. I just happen to be completely oblivious to them. Which led to approximately fiften minutes of me saying "No".

Pollster: Which of the following radio stations have you listened to in the last four months: KARP?
Me: No.
M: No.
M:: No.
M:: No.
. . .
Pollster: Please name all of the radio stations you have listened to in the last four months.
Me: They're online only, but at work I listen to Indie Pop Rocks and The Atlantic Sound Factory.
P: . . . Are those internet radio stations on the FM or AM band?

This process was repeated for newspapers and television shows/stations. On its own, this exchange isn't all that humorous. What did tickle me was my inclusion as a "representative" sample of the Bay Area. According to faulty statistics, several thousand people consume absolutely no convential media of any kind and rudely eat crunchy celery while speaking on the phone.


Posted on October 22, 2006 10:06 PM