Virtual Kollage: The disadvantages of Public Opinion

Posted by / Tuesday, 5 April 2016 / No comments

The disadvantages of Public Opinion


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DISADVANTAGES OF PUBLIC OPINION POLLS
Can be dangerous in an election year
The election years, especially, opinion polls are conducted by pollsters and findings published for consumption. The danger here is that if the final results fails to agree with the results of the polls, it may lead to confusion and a probable accusations of electoral fraud. 

Results not always accurate
Public opinion polls are not exact. That is why after pollsters have conducted their polls, they leave a margin of error. This is a standard practice all over the world, so the existence of a margin of error is an ample proof that the results of the polls is no an exactitude.

Some respondent do not provide truthful answers
When people have motion cameras pointed at them, they become jittery and just say anything that comes into their mind. The responses of such people cannot therefore not be entirely accurate.


Disincentive to voting
In Ghana, for example, Mr. Ben Ephson, a renown pollster in Ghana has, through his election polls has over the years, predicted very close to accurate the elections. The danger is that where such polls results are released, voter apathy can set in for voters whose parties are predicted to lose the coming election.

Empty Campaign Coffers
Where opinion poll results show that a party for instance, shall lose an election, it is very difficult to convince contributors to political campaign war chest. This can affect the fortunes of the party during the elections.


Bandwagon effect
A bandwagon effect refers to the concept where people think in a certain direction because most people are thinking in that direction. In election years especially, some people look at how majority of are voting and decide to vote in that direction too. 

SAMPLE QUESTIONS
1. a. What is opinion poll? [2 marks]
    b. Highlight five disadvantages of opinion polls. [10 marks]
2. Examine six disadvantages of opinion polls [12 marks]
3. Discuss three advantages and three disadvantages of opinion polls. [12 marks]

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