Experts compare objectivity of ERR, Delfi voter compasses (1)

ERR's election radar (ERR)
2/12/2015 2:24 PM
Category: Politics

One weekly newspaper's comparison of results of two of the interactive party alignment tests found that Delfi's was slanted toward the Reform Party.

Although ERR has in recent days been criticized as being under the thumb of the ruling party, the public broadcasting organization's Voter Compass fared better in the experiment conducted by 15 people from different walks of life, picked by weekly Eesti Ekspress, which is owned by the same media group as Delfi.

ERR's Voter Compass states, "Find the party closest to your views" and includes 30 statements, where voters are asked whether they disagree completely, disagree somewhat, are neutral, agree somewhat or agree completely. Delfi's Election Engine goes straight into their 41 questions, with the same multiple choice options.

Ekspress cited that the Reform Party appeared several positions higher in the Delfi results for at least five of the subjects.

The two engines have different questions and algorithms and so different results may be a case of apples and oranges, the weekly notes. But Ekspress popped the question of whether the party affiliation of a contact person for the Delfi site might have influenced the results. This was strongly denied by Delfi.

The ERR News test

First, we plugged in neutral answers to every question. On the questions that gauged which issues were more important, we indicated no preference. This generated the following top 5 results:

ERR Compass

Green Party 71%
Reform Party 70%
Free Party 66%
Social Democrats 66%
Center Party 65% (tied with IRL)

Delfi Engine

Reform Party 74%
Green Party 72%
United Left Party 69%
Free Party 67%
Social Democrats 66%

Staff members also took the test with their own personal views.

Staff member #1 (self-identifies as "right, as in correct")

ERR: Reform 80%, Free Party 73%, IRL 72%
Delfi: Reform 75%, IRL 75%, Ojuland 72%

Staff member #2 ("a combination of nationalist and socialist, but not in that way"

ERR: Reform 69%, Free Party 69%, Social Democrats 65%
Delfi: Reform 75%, Green Party 71%, Social Democrats 71%

Staff member #3 ("liberal, no surprise in the results")

ERR: Soc. Dem. 77%, Green 77%, Center 71%. Free 68%. Reform 64%
Delfi: Soc. Dem. 72%, Green 66%, Reform 64%, Center 62%, Free 64%

K. Rikken

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