By a ratio of 57:43 respondents indicated an intent to vote for Obama. If this ratio isat all representative of OEN members, those planning on voting for 3
Partycandidates, or withholding their votes, is unexpectedly high.But, is it really that high? We have only to look at the disaffected “professional”delegates to the Democratic National Convention, the Clinton supporters, some ofwhom remain intractable in their decision either to vote for McCain, or not vote.They, of all people, should have the necessary data in hand to make an informedchoice.Before attempting to explain this apparent difference between reported andexpected behavior, the effect of the Op Ed postings is assessed. As noted in the rowpercentages, those who reported as being influenced by articles accounted for 21%of respondents. While the total
is small, the difference between those affectedchoosing to vote for Obama (13%) vs. those making the irrational choice (30%) isadditional confirmation of higher than expected irrational selections.
Evaluating the Op Ed Submission
The probability that an individual will be persuaded to agree to that advocated by anOp Ed position if clearly a function of two elements; (a) the readiness orsusceptibility of the individual to persuasion, and (b) the effectiveness of thepresentation of the Op Ed communication. The calculation of (a) is beyond thescope of this discussion, leaving our focus directed at the development of a methodfor objectively assessing the viability of any Op Ed article.
Description of the methodology
While many rating systems are employed to evaluate the effectiveness of articles(as a class – no discrimination is made between Op Ed and other categories ofpostings), all have in common two characteristics.
Ratings are entirelysubjective
. When terms such as “Importance,” “Value,” “Perspective,” areemployed, none have sufficiently precise definitions to insure raters use the samecriteria for their ratings