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ROBBINS warns against online polls in mainstream media.
  Feb 19, 2007

Glen P. Robbins President and CEO of ROBBINS ASK and ROBBINS Sce Research (1998) along with Jim Van Rassel, ROBBINS sponsor and Tri-city businessman are warning the public against "potentially manipulative and deceitful On-line polls and other 'in house' media polls." Van Rassel cites a current On-Line poll in the local Tri-City News where he monitored the activities of an On-Line question asking whether or not readers wanted the provincial and federal government to provide $400 million dollars for the Evergreen Line, a controversial line which is "demanding federal funding but has never applied for it."
Adds Van Rassel "I was monitoring the small number of apparent respondents to this On-Line question and made a "NO" selection myself from my computer at my office which apparently did not alter the results. I did the same thing from my home computer and asked a number of others who I was speaking with to do the same from their computer. They selected "NO" without any apparent result. There was no change. I asked Glen Robbins to make a selection and he selected "Yes". Unlike our "NO" selections his "Yes" selection was recorded.
Van Rassel concludes "in and of itself this may seem like a petty complaint, but added together with other very suspicious efforts surrounding rapid transit shenanigans in the Tri-city region, this potentially manipulative style of On-Line public opinion can be dangerously misleading."
Glen Robbins asserts that "he and his company ROBBINS Sce Research (1998) got into the business in the first place because we were a little suspicious of some of the mainstream so-called scientific polls. These On-Line polls really need to have a full and true disclaimer of the relative merit, which is virtually non-existant. The publishers will tell you they aren't meant to be serious, but behind the scenes they hope that these 'entertainment' polls can be used to manipulate public opinion.
Concludes Robbins: "these On-Linen polls are very inaccurate, very unscientific, but to some citizens they will be misconstrued as an indicator of public opinion which shamefully is likely the desired outcome of the On-Line survey in the first place."
"On-Line polls actually take true public opinion backward instead of forward. They should not be permitted without disclaimer."
Glen P. Robbins (604) 942-3757 Jim Van Rassel (604) 328-5398

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