Volume 93, Issue 77

Wednesday, February 16, 2000


Cesspool of information

The only constant in life

Cesspool of information

Re: "The quick and the dead" Feb. 8

To the Editor:
Newspapers are supposed to be forums for objective expression – presenting the facts to the people and assuming that the readership has sufficient intelligence to interpret the raw facts for themselves. Not only does it seem The Gazette thinks its readers are stupid, it seems that it doesn't mind selling political ideals.

Is this snappy little graphical presentation supposed to substitute for people taking an active interest in politics? Should we vote based on what we've read in The Gazette, which, based on this presentation alone, has once again proven it is the absolute cesspool of information at our university?

Here's a few clues to the people who work at The Gazette:

1. Next time our university conducts an election, make sure you are reporting facts instead of opinions to your readers. The fact that these opinions are not coming from disinterested sources (i.e. they are coming from Gazette reporters themselves and not your readers) makes the practice even more deplorable.

2. Don't do statistics. Contrary to popular belief, you cannot just go to a large crowd of people and ask them questions and expect to get a representative opinion. Convenience sampling produces bias. If you want to do it right, at least get someone who would know how to conduct a sample properly. I guess you expect people to trust the nifty little bar graphs at face value – too bad only a few, if any, students are that stupid.

We may never know who really won the election. Your practices have without a doubt turned many people off from voting and swayed the opinions of the rest with rotten journalism.

Curtis Jones
Sociology I

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