Saturday, December 6, 2014

And the winner is ...

What's the best journalism program in the country? Does anyone care?

I wrote in November about this [ pageant] and, especially, how to skew the results of a self-selected online process (clear your cookies, vote early, vote often). The survey is closed. If you didn't vote you missed your chance (that's the message above if you try to participate now). Click my link above to read the earlier post for details and where the results will be breathlessly reported on Dec. 15, or check back here. I'll report RTDNA's findings.

This is technically a SLOP, a self-selected opinion poll, something no legitimate news organization should ever report without prefacing it with "non-scientific" and "complete bullshit" but "entertaining so we're telling you anyway" because "we failed research methods class" and "anyway we don't have an actual budget to do real polls." If you'll say or write all of the above before reporting the results, you're fine. But given all that ... should you report it at all? Lemme put it in coding terms below:


Do I fault RTDNA for doing this poll? Not really. Okay, a little. Alright, maybe a lot. Again, see my earlier post about how such beauty pageants are little more than, well, beauty pageants. I'm not sure you can identify the "best" journalism program or even if a "best" one exists. I sure as hell don't know how you quantify "best" in these terms. By the faculty? The students? The alumni? The facilities? The curriculum? The school colors? SAT scores? GPA? Academic publishing? Professional publishing? All of the above? None of the above? There are lot of dimensions, but I'm not certain that a self-selected opinion poll manages to catch any of them.

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