New anti-terrorism act: Irresponsible polling and media coverage

CorporateNewsPolling firm Angus-Reid released a story on February 19 which claims overwhelming support among Canadians for the government’s new anti-terror legislation.

It goes so far as to say “Canadians are firmly supportive of Bill C-51” and that “ [n]early half of Canadians say [the] draft law ‘strikes right balance,’” while “fully one-third say it doesn’t go far enough.” It says that “less than one in five (19 per cent) worried that it (the legislation) goes too far, compromising freedom and privacy.”

After the statements made about the poll results, Angus-Reid admits that of those polled “most” said they had “heard at least something” about the new anti-terrorism legislation. And who did it poll? People who answer questions in return for a chance to win cash prizes!

The online poll, which had responses from 1,509 Canadians, was conducted only among members of the “Angus Reid Forum,” an online club in which people self-select and enter to win by responding to polls sent out over e-mail.

Angus-Reid has clearly outdone itself this time. But why any newspaper which claims to be credible would even report on such results is equally telling.

The Globe and Mail among others published this fictional account of where Canadians stand on the anti-terrorism bill. It was not even April Fool’s Day or a “newsless Sunday” to provide an excuse for why the newspaper would pick up this fiction and promote it. Not content to let the fiction lie where it fell, the Globe added, “There’s rarely been a bill before Parliament that was more popular. The Conservatives’ new anti-terror legislation is filling a public demand for tough new measures…”

Renewal Update thinks an apology is in order.

(The Globe and Mail, February 19, 2015)

Source Democratic Renewal

Related reading

What to think about Canadians being told what they think?,” February 26, 2015

 

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3 Comments

Filed under Canada, Media, Journalism & Disinformation

3 responses to “New anti-terrorism act: Irresponsible polling and media coverage

  1. I knew there was something amiss in this poll. I was expecting to read that there were ‘leading’ or deliberately equivocal questions. This is even worse than I had imagined. Someone needs to lose their job for reporting this contrived political fiction as factual news

  2. Pingback: What to think about Canadians being told what they think? | Tony Seed's Weblog

  3. Pingback: Groping For Relevance: How the Bloc Quebecois Sold its Soul for a Few Votes - Forget The Box

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