Journal of Mass Communication & Journalism

ISSN: 2165-7912

Open Access

Online vs. Telephone Surveys in Political Campaign Research


Powell L

The growing emergence of cell phones and caller ID have reduced response rates among telephone polling, causing some concern among those who conduct public opinion polls in politics. That issue has led some to consider online surveys as either an alternative or at least a supplemental technique for gauging political opinions. This study sought to test this concept by conducting two identical surveys – on with live telephone interviews and one with an online survey. The results indicated that the data from the two surveys were not identical. Hillary Clinton scored higher on image ratings with the online survey, and the data for the voter optimism were also different. One possible explanation is that the online surveys are less susceptible to errors caused by a socially desired response pattern. That offers the potential for more accuracy from online surveys.


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