Saturday, November 19, 2011

Is the Wisconsin Public Radio Audience Ideologically Balanced?

The stereotype of public radio is that the audience skews left, and a fair amount of reputable polling supports that view.

Which is why it surprised us, when we just checked the web page of the Joy Cardin show to find two polls on the union issues that have roiled Wisconsin for months. One asked respondents whether they would sign a petition to recall Scott Walker. The other asked whether the Ohio voters “got it right” when they rejected a package of union reforms similar to those of Scott Walker in Wisconsin.


Interestingly, both polls show quite a balanced outcome.

Of course, polls where people self-select into the sample aren’t scientific. But when they have a bias, the bias is usually to over represent the people who feel most intense.

Maybe the WPR audience is not so much “union left” as the “yuppie left,” and not knee jerk in it’s support of a labor agenda. Or maybe there is some conservative campaign to pile onto this poll (although we haven’t heard of such).

Let’s just say this is a data point that conflicts with the stereotype.

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4 Comments:

Blogger jimspice said...

This isn't "self selected" in favor of NPR listeners. There are several conservative web sites crashing the poll. But it's good to see in which types of research you place credence.

12:09 AM  
Blogger John Foust said...

I'm disappointed that the Kennedy conspiracy callers overwhelmed the McAdams hour this morning on WPR.

I was eager to hear him talk about his modern-day conspiracy theories such as how Sesame Street indoctrinates children, that Marquette supports terrorists, that there is a homosexual agenda that is fascist, that Christians are bullied more than gay students, or that Obama wants to create "death panels" to rush Grandma to an earlier demise.

9:16 AM  
Blogger John McAdams said...

Foust,

None of this is the result of any conspiracy, it's all out in the open.

And you approve of it.

4:41 PM  
Blogger Dad29 said...

I confess, John.

I listen to WPR/NPR on Sunday mornings--very early, and later AM.

That way I get the "Wait, Wait...", and usually at least half of "Prairie Home"

Got my cookie! Yesterday, the St Olaf choir sang Christenson's "Beautiful Savior" arrangement.

8:13 PM  

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