Include information in poll stories

Re: “Take another look at polls,” editorial, Feb. 8.

The editorial was welcome, but just did not go far enough. If anything, reports using or mentioning polls should include, in addition to the name of the polling organization:

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1. Identification of who is paying for the poll;

2. The questions that were asked;

3. Where the poll was conducted;

4. What questions were asked.

Those basic questions would shed some light on the Mainstream polling mess. To be 21 percentage points out in their estimation of the outcome of the Nanaimo byelection just adds to the cynicism citizens are feeling toward these flawed results. To be out a few percentage points is understandable, but not this amount.

If reporters are going to accept the polling results, they should do their jobs and share basic information about the organization publishing it.

Lorne Finlayson


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