Public Opinion Polling Stupidity

Stupidity is not a HandicapI know I’ve mentioned in the past that I, from time to time, engage in some public opinion polling.  It lets me make my opinions known to companies and I score a couple of Amazon gift certificates now and then.  It’s really win-win.  Unfortunately, recently, I got a “warning” from one of the polling places, warning me that if I didn’t straighten up and fly right, they might delete my account?  Why?  Let’s see…

First off, I’m moving too quickly.  Sorry, I’m a speed-reader, I can get through your content faster than most, there’s nothing I can or will do about that.  I’m not going to just sit around and pretend that I’m a slow reader, just because you think I ought to be.  Get over it.  They often have “choose X to make sure you’re paying attention” options in the surveys, I’ve never missed one of them, stop bitching because know how to read.

Secondly though, they said something about my responses not being “well thought out”.  No, the problem is that your questions are not well thought out.  For instance, on car-related surveys, they will almost always have a section where you can vote whether your car makes you feel more sexy or more successful on a sliding scale.  There is no option for “neither”.  I don’t get emotionally invested in my cars, they are for transportation, not a status symbol.  Therefore, for all of these emotional responses, I always pick right in the middle of the two.  Neither of the options apply at all.  I think they’re assuming that anyone taking these surveys is a shallow loser whose only concern is getting wolf whistles at the stop light so they pick the most absurdly overpriced and underperforming vehicle they can so it might make them look good.  They have no interest in someone like me, who really only cares about the performance, efficiency and comfort of the vehicle I’m driving.  They want morons.

This could be very easily fixed by simply asking specific questions to rule out particular respondents.  Ask at the very beginning, “do you have a brain” and if anyone says yes, they don’t qualify.  If they only want to hear from the stupid and shallow, just say so.  Save me time.

That is, of course, another issue that has been a constant frustration.  They spend a lot of time “pre-qualifying” you for surveys, often by entirely ignoring the pre-qualifying questions.  I mean seriously, I’ve seen them ask how much alcohol you drink in a given month.  I answer none.  I don’t drink at all.  Then they try to stuff you into a survey on all the alcohol you drink!  It’s really just absurd.  They aren’t paying the slightest bit of attention to them anyhow, they aren’t using them to build up a database about you.  They’ll ask if you have children and then, not 2 minutes later, ask the exact same question again.  Sorry, it hasn’t changed in the past 120 seconds!

In all honesty, if they want good ideas, they ought to stop using the “click here” model and make people actually type in responses.  Give me a way to actually give you a clear and concise response.  Of course, that’s not easily quantifiable and made into nice graphs to show to the board of directors.  It requires thought.  That’s not something that American business does well with today.

I wish these people would actually care about the responses they get, other than catering to the lowest conceivable denominator.  Unfortunately, that’s their business model, they want as many morons through the gate who they can charge companies for essentially worthless opinions over and over again.  Apparently, companies complain that they aren’t getting the typical low-quality responses they’re used to, how dare anyone with half a clue actually complete one of their surveys!  Bring back the brain-damaged!  Well… no.  I’m going to just go on as I’ve always done and if they don’t like it, they can tell me to leave. It won’t hurt my feelings, I really won’t care, it will just make me shake my head at the pathetic nature of the American consumer even more than I do today.

9 thoughts on “Public Opinion Polling Stupidity”

  1. I'm not sure I understand why this is a problem.
    If you don't like the questions, why are you involved with them…?
    As the "Idiot-ocracy" rolls out some 500 years sooner than predicted, or depicted, dealing daily, with the inept, the inefficient, the idiotic, and the miseducated gets more and more trying, as patience, not my strong suit, runs thin…

    From cashiers to order takers, from change makers to DMV clerks, 'most all are in one of the above categories…

    1. The original post was incoherent, ununderstanadale…. I don't have the secret Atheist decoder ring to make heads or tails of what this idiot was complaining about, so I 'bitched' about the fools, I run into on a daily basis..
      You sbjIQ64, no doubt fit snugly into one of the idiot categories I listed, so I wouldn't expect you to see the problem for yourself, or admit it…
      Besides, what I write is way above your pay grade…..

      1. No, you're incoherent. If these polls are being used to drive development of the next generation of automobiles, they are important questions to evaluate and examine, especially since it is clear that they're only concerned with asking stupid questions of stupid people. If you join a forum specifically to give your opinions about the quality of a product and how to improve it, but you're only allowed to provide emotional feedback, that's a problem. If you don't understand that, you're part of the problem.

        1. The incoherent thing is that you think you're opinion means anything to the mis-educated, inept, and inefficient….
          You like spitting into the wind…

          1. Well then, by all means go find something else to do. You never know what something means until you try. Apparently, you'd rather just sit in a corner. That's your choice. That's not my choice.

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