A Philosopher's Blog

Ineligible for Survey

Posted in Miscellaneous, Politics by Michael LaBossiere on August 27, 2011
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While I am not inclined to waste my time on “entertaining” surveys, I am willing to spend a few minutes doing those that actually offer something worth my time. For example, Grooveshark offers points in return for surveys that can be used to get the premium or mobile services. I have also done the Home Depot survey each time I’ve shopped there (a few minutes is worth  a shot at a $5,000 card, I suppose).

While I have been able to do a few of the surveys, I have found that I am often ineligible for them. Usually I am informed of this after I am asked my age, gender and race. Apparently I am not in a prime demographic-or perhaps companies and politicians know all they need to know about middle-aged white looking guys. After all, we apparently dominated the world for quite some time.

While it is wise not to read too much into survey questions and how they sort the eligible from the ineligible (or desirable from the undesirable), these surveys do provide some basis for speculation regarding what the hot demographics might be.

I have noticed that nearly every survey asks if I am Hispanic, usually in the first or second question. Since Hispanics are a rapidly growing segment of the population, politicians and pitchmen (and women) now want to know as much as they can about Hispanics so they can sell them stuff ranging from soap to politicians. Naturally, they want to know about other folks, but Hispanics seem to be the hot demographic now.

I have also noticed that age often seems to be a deciding factor. In general, there seems to be more interest in the youth in these surveys. This might be, of course, because there is still an assumption that the internet is for the young. Or it might be that the marketing folks think they know enough about the older folks already and they wonder what the youth think.

If these surveys are any indication, I suspect that in upcoming elections there will be a concerted effort by many politicians to appeal to young Hispanic voters. It will be interesting to see how things will be changed relative to past elections. I also suspect that some politicians will take a sort of reverse approach and appeal to the fear some people have regarding the youth and Hispanics (and especially young Hispanics).

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2 Responses

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  1. FRE said, on August 27, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    The purpose of some surveys is not to get information, but to propagandize the public. It’s generally easy to tell because the ones designed as propaganda have emotionally loaded questions, such as, “Do you approve of Nancy Pellosi’s radical policies?” Others are designed to induce people to donate money. Only a few “surveys” seem legitimate.

  2. Oh God, My Wife Is German said, on October 5, 2011 at 4:04 pm

    I just discovered Grooveshark and it is completely rocking my American world.

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