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Pointless TV Survey Offers Only More Polarization in Current Political Climate

11.13.10

Much has been said already about the recently released Experian Simmons survey that shows which TV shows are most popular according to the political affiliation of their audiences.

If you know me, you know I don’t put much stock in surveys or polls.  Blogs and articles aplenty have done their own parsing of the data to come to their own conclusions about the average psyches of Democrats versus Republicans.  I’m not going to continue it here — look at the chart and form your own opinions on what it all says.

To read into this, I think, is a colossal waste of time.  Almost more of a waste than actually bothering to survey people with these questions to begin with.

In fact, I find it extremely unhelpful in taming the absurd polarization in our current political climate.  Instead of focusing on our differences – yet again! – why not illuminate that middle section of the Venn diagram where Republicans and Democrats agree?

I know, I know: a tall order these days, but it’s not.  It just seems that way when all we do is point out where we appear to be vastly different species. And it will only continue if we indulge in actually giving topical, shallow, pointless crap like this honest discussion as if it means anything worthwhile.

Then again, it’s a survey about people’s television-watching habits — not exactly a medium which promotes deep thinking. Sigh.  I guess I’ll go back to watching Countdown with Mad Dexter Taking on 90210’s Private Brothers’ 30 Good Damages to Community Law – Episode 13: Friday Night Parks Breaking… Bad.

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2 comments

  1. As if it wasn’t bad enough that this kind of trivia is even produced, it also contains an error. The shows are ranked numerically for popularity among each party, right? In descending order?. Notice how the opposing party’s score for “The Good Wife”, a supposedly Democratic show, is 119 – which should put it on the Republican list directly below “The Mentalist”. It seems that even this overlap has been omitted, as though the publishers of this survey didn’t want any reality whatsoever to interfere with the perfect polarization they had “uncovered”.


    • Good catch on that one. To show an overlap in this case wouldn’t help their cause — it would make for a much less interesting find.

      Plus – what does it matter? Is “The Good Wife” a decidedly more Democratic show than “The Amazing Race”? Are either of them all that great that either party should be proud that their constituency watches them regularly? If TV weren’t so vapid anyway, maybe this would be marginally educational of a survey — but it’s not. Nor does it seem that it’s even all that accurate.



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