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03 June 2020, 13:29
Nikolai Sukhotsky

Online polls in Telegram are pseudo-sociology

Nikolai Sukhotsky
Nikolai Sukhotsky
Analyst with the Belarusian Institute of Strategic Research (BISR)

Online polls held by some media and Telegram channels are an imitation, pseudo-sociology, Nikolai Sukhotsky, an analyst with the Belarusian Institute of Strategic Research (BISR), said during a discussion dedicated to public opinion polls and sociologists' responsibility to society as part of the Expert Community joint project of BelTA and the Belarusian Institute of Strategic Research on 3 June.

He noted that organizers of online polls usually point to a big number of pollees. “People look at the numbers and get impressed, as if it is a representative sample. However, there is nothing representative about it. Without a doubt it is more about pseudo-sociology, imitation,” Nikolai Sukhotsky said.

The BISR expert mentioned another manipulative technique used by organizers of online polls. They often give a detailed description of the survey methods alleging that it was held in virtually all Belarusian cities, however they do not specify who held it. They say that it is sensitive information. “Naive users are buying it because they believe that they got close to sensitive information,” Nikolai Sukhotsky said.

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