Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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February 13, 2008
By: Kevin Drum

POLLSTER UPDATE....A couple of days ago, after I published SurveyUSA's pollster report card, several commenters complained that SUSA had ranked pollsters by mean error, not median. This meant that one large error could make an otherwise good pollster look artificially bad.

Well, apparently the folks at SUSA read your comments, because SurveyUSA editor Jay Leve emails to tell me that they've updated their report card through last night's contests and now rank them by both mean and median error. I've compressed the results to show only the eight pollsters (out of 39 total) who have done ten or more polls, and the results are on the right. Full results, including ranking by mean scores, are here.

If you're interested in learning more about this, Mark Blumenthal evaluates SUSA's ranking methodology here. Beyond that, if you're interested in following SUSA's commentary on a regular basis, their blog is here.

Kevin Drum 1:01 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (8)

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Comments

The chart says they ranked 8 polling organizations 1 through 25. I'm not sure I understand the rankings, unless there were 17 pollsters they left out of the chart.

Posted by: anandine on February 13, 2008 at 1:25 PM | PERMALINK

Excellent. Survey USA must be using a methodology that is light-years beyond anyone else's. I'm definitely going to watch them closely.

Posted by: Dilbert on February 13, 2008 at 1:26 PM | PERMALINK

anandine: As I said in the post, I compressed the chart to include only pollsters who have done ten or more polls. I've added a couple of words to the original post to make this clearer. You can see the full chart by clicking the link.

Posted by: Kevin Drum on February 13, 2008 at 1:35 PM | PERMALINK

Never mind. I see that's exactly what it did.

Posted by: anandine on February 13, 2008 at 1:52 PM | PERMALINK

Never mind. I see that's exactly what it did.

Posted by: anandine on February 13, 2008 at 1:58 PM | PERMALINK

Zogby and Rasmussen STILL suck.

Just not so bad.

Small "s" suck instead of big "S" suck.

Posted by: Fugitive on February 13, 2008 at 3:43 PM | PERMALINK

This is akin to ranking tea leaf readers based on how often they are wrong. Forgive me for saying this - but who gives a rat's ass?

Posted by: The Conservative Deflator on February 13, 2008 at 8:59 PM | PERMALINK

I would like to see how the poll-of-polls fares in comparison.

Posted by: James on February 14, 2008 at 12:05 AM | PERMALINK
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