Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Princeton Research and the Pew

Got a call tonight from Princeton Research, one of those telephone research survey calls. They wanted to speak to the youngest male in the house 18 and older but Mr. Jane refuses to participate in such things so they asked for the youngest female in the house 18 and older, and that would be me.

The first question was did I think the country was headed in the right direction. I would not answer that one because it was too vague and I figured it would be twisted in whatever direction the pollsters wanted.

The body of the survey dealt with my Internet use, how long have I been an Internet user (about 15 years), do I use email, instant messaging, how often, did I use either yesterday. Did I use the Internet at home, at work, how often, how long, did I use it yesterday. Did I do research. Did I check online news services, radio stations websites, tv stations websites, did I watch the news on tv, did I listen to it on the radio. Did I read online newspapers or national or local newspapers online. And so on. Did I know about voice over the Internet (VOIP). Yadda yadda yadda. What got me was they never asked if I read a newspaper in print. Since I don't listen to news on the radio or watch televised news, by the results of this survey I'm an uninformed fool. I get my news from the Inky, CNN online, BBC online, and my local suburban paper. If I can get it free I take the Wall Street Journal.

Do I read blogs. Do I have a blog. Do I create websites at work, at home for myself or organizations.

Then we get to demographics. They want an age. I balk. She insists that this is really necessary and an age range won't do. So I lie and tell her I am doing so. She wants race but takes no for an answer. She wants to know if there are children under a certain age in the house. I say yes. She wants age or number (can't remember). I refuse. She wants income but she takes no for an answer.

Then she says this is for the Pew Internet and American Life project (or whatever that is called -- I didn't look it up.) Interesting.


ACM said...

am intrigued that you didn't want to give them certain info -- I always figure my demographic is underrepresented, and/or that I'll add a strange outlying blip, so I don't worry about most demographic info that is out there anyway, and I love to have my opinions registered (can you actually name me any ways in which the country *is* headed in the right direction? vagueness, ho! :)

AboveAvgJane said...

I just don't like to give a lot of personal data over the phone -- my deep-seated paranoia assumes it is all being aggregated somewhere and used against me in some nefarious marketing plot. For this survey I made myself 2 years older than I actually am -- figuring the "older woman brigade" can use all the help it can get.