For those of you not aware, a while back I posted mathematical evidence that Ipsos-Reid’s polling numbers are dramatically off from every other major polling firm in the country insofar as the level of support they attribute to the federal Conservative Party.
Jim Harris, the former leader (not ‘president’ as John Wright claimed him to be) of the Green Party of Canada, read my blog and enjoyed the post enough to reproduce it (with my permission, of course) with some additions of his own over on his blog.
Ipsos-Reid’s senior vice president John Wright (he seems to like it when we use his full title) didn’t particularly like what Jim and I wrote, and thus has, how shall I say, become a regular reader of Paulitics for the past few days. Since then, however, it seems as though some additional bloggers have stumbled across Wright’s comment on this blog and have written posts on their own sites discussing what they think of Wright’s tactics.
I am not going to comment one way or another on whether I endorse Saskboy’s analysis or not. However, in the interests of ensuring that my readers have every opportunity to critically consider and contemplate for themselves all facts as well as what they think on their own about his analysis, I have decided to link to it.
Specifically though, I wanted to draw my readers’ attention to two comments on Saskboy’s post which very much interested me. The first was one by Wright himself wherein he wrote:
“each one of those who posted the comments have now, on their own advice, taken them down or altered them, because in the end they knew you cannot make unfounded or defamatory claims about a person or company.”
This, of course, is demonstrably untrue. As I informed Wright when I made the changes on my blog, the changes I made, to use legal language, were made “gratuitously” and thus were accompanied by no admission of guilt nor were the changes an admission that the original text was defamatory or unfounded. Moreover, Jim Harris explicitly spelled out, in an e-mail to Wright, that his changes to his blog post were also not an admission of guilt or an admission that the original posting was defamatory.
So, I found it interesting that Wright received explicit wording stating that changes were not made because they were defamatory, yet he still wrote that above comment on Saskboy’s blog. Thus, I invite my readers to critically consider and contemplate for themselves whether Wright’s comment is founded in reality.
The second comment on Saskboy’s blog that I found interesting was made by an acquaintance of mine (but was not made at my behest or request). While I have no opinion or comment one way or another on whether I endorse or share Kim’s analysis or not, I did want to present this comment to my readers for them to be free to draw conclusions on their own.
“You know, I showed Wright’s original comment to a lawyer friend of mine and she asked if he’d gotten drunk one night and went trolling on the internet. Just saying.
And Wright, I would like to draw your attention to the fact that Paul at Paulitics changed his post “gratuitously” for your benefit. Just in case you’re not near your legal counsel at the moment, I’d like to refresh your memory that the legal definition of “gratuitous” is something that is done unnecessarily, without admission of guilt – so essentially, giving the baby his bottle.
The blogosphere knows you’re full of it, Jim. Instead of attacking a bunch of bloggers, I suggest that you make some inquiries into your survey-taking at the lower levels, where the mistakes are evidently being made. As a former employee, this seems entirely plausible to me. It could be the callers, or those people writing the questions themselves.
Numbers aren’t a personal attack on you – the methodology of some people in your company has been found to be lacking. Unless Ipsos-Reid has a mysterious database of Conservative supporters that nobody else has access to (you and I would both agree that this is ludicrous), Ipsos-Reid and other polling firms are contacting the same public. Why they would not get the same result is something you may want to look into, instead of making empty threats to bloggers who, despite what you may think, aren’t out to “get” you.
My point is, relax and carefully consider the facts before you comment on the blogs of others. Paul didn’t change his post because he believed what you were saying – he spoke to three or four lawyers and they said that changing the language would be the easiest way to appease you, even though he did nothing wrong. I actually know for a fact that one of his lawyers begged him to take it to the media, because nothing would be better than a story about a grown man, executive to a major polling firm, bullying a college student who crunched numbers and found his company’s polling to be inadequate, just because he can. It’s fear-mongering, John. Paul gratuitously changed his post, when he could have met your case and won, or taken you to the media and made a serious dent in your personal reputation.
And instead of attacking the evidence, be the better person and admit that there might, just might, be a problem, and look into it.”
Once again, I’m not saying I endorse Kim’s comment or not, and I certainly didn’t ask her to make it, but as a public service announcement, I felt it best to allow my readers to draw their own conclusions from it and to draw their attention to the lively (and still ongoing) debate over at Saskboy’s site.