A 2013 survey revealed that ABC journalists are almost 5 times more likely to be Greens voters than the average voter and twice more likely to vote Greens than the average journalist.
In the last installment I dealt with their overall dodgy analysis – getting themselves confused between what Chris and I did and what they thought we should have done.
One of the criticisms that the ABC Fact Check came up with was:
But experts told Fact Check that the ABC sub-sample was too small and the rate of undecided and non-response too high to be able to draw accurate conclusions from the survey on ABC journalist voting intention, let alone voting intention of all ABC employees.
That is a very strange statement to make. The original description of the study – found at The Conversation – has this note (emphasis added):
Note: This research has been accepted for publication in the June edition of the Australian Journalism Review. The margin of error for the entire study sample is 4%. Sub-samples of journalists’ responses to some questions – such as voting intentions – are likely to have a higher margin error, however, appropriate statistical methods were used in testing for differences between sub-samples to take account of the smaller sample sizes. The survey response rate was 89.5%.
The author of the study,
If we disregard the 42.8% of journalists who are undecided, refused to answer or would vote for a party or candidate other than the major three, this is a statistically significant result.
It means that even though only a smaller number of journalists answered the voting intentions, which does increase the margin of error, it is still reasonable to conclude that there is a marked difference between the voting intentions of journalists at the three major media organisations.
So why did the ABC Fact Check not report those statements in its fact check? It’s not like they didn’t know it to be there – The Conversation piece is listed in the sources.