With the New Year PPP is excited to announce some exciting methodological changes. Starting this week all of our public polls will have 20% of their interviews conducted over the internet, through Qualtrics. This will help us to reach the increasing share of voters who don’t have landline telephones. Our testing has found that the respondents we reach in the online component are much more age representative of the population than our telephone interviews, which should reduce the amount of weighting we have to do.
With a newly available upgrade in our statistical software we’re also adjusting our weighting procedures with the New Year so that we’ll weight for gender, race, and age simultaneously. The ‘random deletion’ procedure we’ve used since our founding in 2001 has served us well, but you can always do things in a more efficient manner and we hope this change will help make for more robust crosstabs as well.
One inevitable consequence of the need to do online interviews is that it will increase the cost of conducting our surveys. For our private polls clients will have the option of paying extra for the online surveys or not. They will be included in all of our public polls at the national and state level, but we’re going to be cutting down to 1 public poll a week until we get closer to the election. We’re of course always available for hire if you want to see a poll somewhere that we haven’t done one publicly in a while.
One thing we won’t be changing is our unique practice of letting our website visitors pick the places where we poll. Our first poll vote for 2014 is on the right side of the page. Your choices are Florida, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Utah and Virginia. Voting will be open through tomorrow morning and then we’ll take question suggestions for the winner and go in the field Friday with results next week. Thanks as always for your support and readership!