A literature study of non-mail polling methodology

Thank you for tuning in to this audio only podcast presentation. This is week 117 of The Lindahl Letter publication. A new edition arrives every Friday. This week the topic under consideration for The Lindahl Letter is, “A literature study of non-mail polling methodology.”

This week I ended up trying to find some solid academic articles to read. This time around I found a few that have publicly available downloads to share. Digging around literature related to non-mail polling methods opens the door to a lot of different directions. You will get a sense from the journals listed below that a lot of literature exists and research is benign conducted about public opinion. My interests are more in the automated methods that would help collect sentiment to complete polling without active respondents. Data abounds and some of it holds the key to understanding how sentiment is being expressed. Being able to catalog and share that sentiment is an interesting thing to automate. 

Voss, S., Gelman, A., & King, G. (1995). The polls—A review: Preelection survey methodology: Details from eight polling organizations, 1988 and 1992. Public Opinion Quarterly59(1), 98-132. http://www.stat.columbia.edu/~gelman/research/published/voss.pdf

Prosser, C., & Mellon, J. (2018). The twilight of the polls? A review of trends in polling accuracy and the causes of polling misses. Government and Opposition53(4), 757-790. https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/Delivery.cfm/SSRN_ID3184232_code2420517.pdf?abstractid=3184232&mirid=1 

Martin, E. A., Traugott, M. W., & Kennedy, C. (2005). A review and proposal for a new measure of poll accuracy. Public Opinion Quarterly69(3), 342-369. http://www.asasrms.org/Proceedings/y2003/Files/JSM2003-000913.pdf

Price, V., & Neijens, P. (1998). Deliberative polls: Toward improved measures of “informed” public opinion?. International Journal of Public Opinion Research10(2), 145-176. https://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/document?repid=rep1&type=pdf&doi=3922d1362956bb55df25dbaa8aae8d4706067002 

Let’s see what ChatGPT model 3.5 would generate related to this one.

While mail polling remains a valuable tool for collecting data, advances in technology have led to the development of a variety of non-mail polling methods. In this literature study, we will explore the latest research on non-mail polling methodology.

Firstly, online polling has become increasingly popular, particularly for collecting data quickly and cost-effectively. A study by the Pew Research Center found that online polling can be just as accurate as traditional phone or mail polling, but response rates may be lower, particularly among certain populations such as older adults or those with lower levels of education.

Secondly, phone polling remains a popular method for collecting data, particularly for political polling. However, the rise of mobile phones has presented new challenges for phone polling. A study by the European Social Survey found that mobile phone users are more likely to be younger and have higher levels of education, leading to a potential bias in the results. Additionally, increasing rates of spam and robo-calls may lead to declining response rates.

Thirdly, social media has presented new opportunities for pollsters, particularly for collecting data on younger populations. However, concerns have been raised about the representativeness of social media polls, as they may attract self-selected respondents and may not be representative of the broader population.

Fourthly, researchers have explored the use of text message polling, particularly for collecting data quickly and with high response rates. A study by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) found that text message polling had higher response rates than email or online polling, particularly among younger populations.

Finally, researchers have also explored the use of location-based polling, which involves collecting data from individuals based on their geographic location. This method can be particularly useful for collecting data on local issues, but concerns have been raised about the potential for privacy violations.

In conclusion, non-mail polling methods have become increasingly popular in recent years, particularly for collecting data quickly and cost-effectively. While online, phone, social media, text message, and location-based polling all have their advantages and disadvantages, researchers have found that no single method is universally superior. The choice of polling method should depend on the research question, the population being surveyed, and the resources available.

Links and thoughts:

Top Tweets of the week:

What’s next for The Lindahl Letter? 

  • Week 118: A paper on political debt as a concept vs. technical debt
  • Week 119: All that bad data abounds 
  • Week 120: That one with an obligatory AI trend’s post
  • Week 121: Considering an independent study applied AI syllabus
  • Week 122: Will AI be a platform or a service?

If you enjoyed this content, then please take a moment and share it with a friend. If you are new to The Lindahl Letter, then please consider subscribing. New editions arrive every Friday. Thank you and enjoy the year ahead.

Leave a Reply