Thursday, November 04, 2004

Another Election, Another Exit Poll Debacle

The weirdest thing about Election Day 2004 was the seven or so hours, from roughly 1:30pm to roughly 9pm when Big Media's story-line was based upon fiction. Kerry never led Bush nationally by 4 points. He was never ever close in any Southern state save Florida (and he lost that by 5). Colorado wasn't close. Virginia wasn't close. Kerry never led Bush by double-digits in Pennsylvania. Everything that was hinted at, winked along, or implied by the deluded talking heads was, in fact, fiction.

The lost productivity at places like The New York Times and The Washington Post, where literally hundreds of reporters and editors spent the equivalent of an 8-hour work day writing and preparing fiction, will likely cause those outlets to look very long and very hard at buying any more NEP product in the foreseeable future.

Indeed, all of the consumers of this content have to be asking themselves: "why in the world do we pay for this?" I expect that at least two of the networks and at least one of the major papers will demand that the job be outsourced to Gallup or some equally well-regarded organization. Three election day mis-reads is three too many.