• U.S.

Surveys: Phantom Figures

1 minute read

It sometimes seems that Americans live by surveys. From the degree of relief a customer should find in one pill as against another to the exact percentage of people who prefer one political candidate to his rival, a fusillade of figures is daily aimed at the U.S. Last week Raymond C. Hagel, president and chairman of the Crowell-Collier Publishing Co., told the Washington Society of Investment Analysts just how sound some of those figures can be. In a survey conducted last year, hundreds of New Yorkers were shown a list of magazines and asked to name those they read regularly. Result: 9% said that they currently read Collier’s. Furthermore, 7% insisted that if they could read only one magazine on the list, they would choose Collier’s. The only trouble with that finding, of course, was that Collier’s ceased publishing in January 1957. So much for surveys.

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