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RNZ – Mediawatch: ‘Bugger the pollsters’ – and the broadcasters? – and bugger Newshub?


This item on Mediawatch from Colin Peacock repays reading carefully. It looks at the two recent political polls One News-Colmar Brunton and Newshub-Reid Research.

Now the segment looks at the differing results and how media and politicians reacted

Two contrary political opinion polls this week raised big questions about the quality and the purpose of them. Politicians disputing the broadcasters’ conclusions were dismissed as “in denial.” But are the media the ones who need to confront the contradictions in their reporting?


Intriguingly though is the commentary in the latter part of the website article.

This extract gives some of the flavour:

National’s deputy Paula Bennett hit back at Newshub’s poll on AM on Monday.

“You’re having fun writing a narrative about National I notice – with a lot of fiction in it.”

Newshub’s Tova O’Brien was not happy and said Ms Bennett was “in denial”.

“This isn’t my narrative – or Newshub’s narrative. Voters simply do not like Simon Bridges and it’s starting to hurt National,” she wrote on Newshub’s website.

But there is a narrative in Newshub’s coverage of its political polls that’s pretty plain.

Newshub has reported Mr Bridges as a “dead man walking” after all its polls this year – and that Judith Collins is poised to take over.

The Newshub poll in February was hyped as “devastating” and “a game changer” for National. It was a similar story in April.

But the game remains the same – and Mr Bridges remains National’s leader.  

On TV this week Ms O’Brien said vultures were circling Mr Bridges. Online, she wrote he was the rotting head of a fish ripe for lopping off.

Even when reporting the comments of those who say he’s not about to lose his leaders’ job, Newshub makes it sound like he is already dead.

Now to me this reads like a repudiation, though more likely a thinly veiled attack on Tova O’Brien and Newshub’s reporting.


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