JMS on Usenet


Subject: Re: And So It Begins...
Date: 29 May 2003 04:54:34 GMT
From: (Jms at B5)

>>So bottom's a dubious statistic, from a tiny sub-set, which does
>>have any provable associated bias in past situations, and is thus for the
>>part fairly meaningless...
>'fraid JMS is right on this one, folks (at least IMO). But the same is
>true for most reported polling, (also IMO). Unless someone can explain
>differently *why* tiny samples of a couple thousand are supposed to
>represent the Whole Country. 

You're talking apples and oranges.

First, a correctly done scientific survey has controls in the way that the
questions are asked, so that the do not skew the data one  way or the other;
they are often numerically weighted (on a scale of one to four, how do you feel
about a, b or c?), and there is a statistical range of error depending on the
size of the sample universe.

The more people, the smaller the possibility of error; the fewer the people,
the larger the possibility of error.

Asking your buddies down the hall, in an uncontrolled survey, with lots of
variables, isn't a valid survey by any stretch of the imagination.

b.a. clinical psychology
b.a. sociology


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