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Light On Light Through

You'll hear a little of this and lot of that on Light On Light Through - my reviews of great television series and movies, my interviews with authors and creative media people and their interviews of me, my media theory and political commentary, thoughts about my favorite cars and food and space travel, discussions of my music, and a few of my readings from my science fiction stories. In the first years, starting in 2006, I put up a new episode at least once a month.  More recently, it became more or less often than once a month, usually less often.  But in the Summer of 2020, I began getting more in the mood to podcast, and on 17 October 2023, I began publishing a new episode of the podcast every Tuesday at 12:01 pm -- a minute after Noon (New York time).  - Paul Levinson 

24 October 2021: Interview about Light On Light Through podcast

26 December 2023: Chuck Todd interviews Paul Levinson about Alternate Realities on The Chuck Toddcast  

Another Network Undercuts the Results of its Own Post-Debate Presidential Poll - This Time, MSNBC about Barack Obama

Nov 2, 2007

The networks continue to denigrate the results of their own post-debate polls-

Last night, Chris Matthews mentioned on MSNBC's Hardball that Barack Obama won the poll that MSNBC conducted after the Democratic Presidential debate on Tuesday-

To which Chuck Todd, MSNBC's "official" pollster replied - that poll was done with cell phones, via which Obama's supporters could keep pounding the call keys...

To which Matthews responded - like in the 1936 Literary Digest poll...

To which I would respond:

No, Chris, not like that 1936 poll at all, which was supposed to be a poll of a randomly selected part of the voting population, but was skewed or biased because it was conducted from lists of automobile owners and people who had telephones in their homes, and only very rich people had those luxuries in those days, so the Literary Digest poll wrongly showed the Democrat FDR losing...

Which has nothing in common with MSNBC's post-election poll - except that it, too, was conducted by phone. But it was never designed as a randomly conducted poll.

What Chris should have said to Chuck Todd was:  wrong, callers can't cast votes more than once on the same phone...  Or, if by some bizarre chance they could, then simply install a program on your vote-reception software which would make it impossible for anyone to cast a vote more than once on the same cell phone.

Very easy, really - and certainly preferable to encouraging viewers to vote in your poll, and the undercutting the results.

Well, at least Ron Paul now has company - now Obama's supporters, like Ron Paul's, are discounted because they participate in a poll that a network conducts, and then expresses no confidence in because they don't like the results.

My 50-minute lecture about network after-debate polls and the media's misreporting of Ron Paul, delivered to my class at Fordham University