Satellite Radio Latest Target Of Biased Surveys

from the fun-with-numbers dept

Standing right next to astroturfing in the corporate PR shenanigans lineup is the good old biased survey. A brother of the biased report, it follows a similar MO: identify an issue that could make (or cost) you some money, craft a survey, then word the results to make it look like people support your position. Satellite radio is the latest target, with a new survey saying that 86 percent of people aren't likely to buy satellite radio because of Howard Stern's move to it from terrestrial radio. Orbitcast points out who conducted the survey: a company that makes its money from broadcast radio stations. Little surprise, then, that it's going to want to downplay the threat of satellite radio. Of course, look at the flip side of their stats: 82 percent of people said they're not likely to purchase equipment and pay a monthly fee to listen to satellite radio. That means that 18 percent, or about 50 million Americans are, apparently -- a number that would suit XM and Sirius just fine. See how fun and easy it is to manipulate surveys and statistics?


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    haggie, Jan 26th, 2006 @ 5:45pm

    No Subject Given

    Maybe they aren't biased. Maybe they are just "glass half empty" people?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    lar3ry, Jan 26th, 2006 @ 6:04pm

    Re: No Subject Given

    Half empty? Nope! Glass is 18% full, dammit!

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    mikeeeee, Jan 26th, 2006 @ 6:07pm

    satellite radio

    i've had my XM for 4 years now and i don't need the commercials or schtick, nevermind losing stations when traveling......

    mikeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

     

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  4.  
    identicon
    WeeBit, Jan 26th, 2006 @ 6:36pm

    Biased Surveys

    I don't pay much attention to surveys that are put together by the companys that have a lot to gain by outcomes that favor them. Microsoft has done these surveys in the past also. If anything they are a waste of time and money to try to prove a point that always is biased regardless. The outcome always comes out in their favor. I don't think the public is this dumb. Are they? Anyone with a bit of common sense can see that the survey is not unbiased.

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    Von Aras, Jan 26th, 2006 @ 7:06pm

    50-million?

    There are 35+ million seniors in the US who probably won't be switching to satellite radio. There is also 60 million+ children under age 14 who won't be purchasing satellite radio anytime soon.

    Neither group was figured in as "consumers" for the purpose of this survey.

    If a quarter of your 18% base actually follow through and write the check for the satellite radio (a generous proposal) then that gives you about ...

    ... 9 million total subscribers.

    Not exactly "50-million".

     

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  6.  
    identicon
    He Sucks, Jan 26th, 2006 @ 7:40pm

    No Subject Given

    Howard Stern sucks. I never watch his tv show or would listen to him when he was on free radio. I would'nt listen to him now, if Serius paid me!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    Roachmill, Jan 26th, 2006 @ 7:58pm

    Re: No Subject Given

    Yeah, I'd lie on a survey if I thought it would hurt Stern

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    fuzzmanmatt, Jan 26th, 2006 @ 9:09pm

    Loveit

    I love me some Sirius. I'm going on my first cross-country trip tomorrow with it, and I have a feeling that I'll finally get the chance to enjoy it like it was meant to be enjoyed!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Spartacus, Jan 27th, 2006 @ 1:22am

    Re: 50-million?

    Very very very very good point Von Aras.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    John, Jan 27th, 2006 @ 1:34am

    Re: 50-million?

    Not exactly "50-million".

    Uh, hello? Wasn't that Carlo's point? That you can make anything sound good or bad depending on how you present the stats. He wasn't saying 50 million people. He was proving that it's all silly no matter how you look at it... and yet you jump all over him...

     

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  11.  
    identicon
    Tyson, Jan 27th, 2006 @ 7:08am

    Re: 50-million?

    I still remember the first thing my stats teacher taught me in college. "Statistics say only what you want them to say." I had never really thought about it before then, but after that day, I have never trusted any statistics that I have read.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    Max, Jan 27th, 2006 @ 7:57am

    I love me some Statistics

    100% of the people who eat bread in any form die! A full 50% of all children who eat bread in any form are of below-average intelligence! Put that in a survey! :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2006 @ 8:20am

    O&A ALL THE WAY

    screw stern. Opie & Anthony on XM all the way! XM202

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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