Archive for the ‘John McCain’ Category

Google Zeitgeist: Is Reverse Polling As Good At Predicting The Next President of the United States As Traditional Pollsters?

October 23, 2008

If you haven’t visited Google’s Zeitgeist recently, it now invites visitors to “take a look inside the world of search” via one of Google’s four search tools: Google Trends, Trends for Websites, Insights for Search and Hot Trends.

According to Google, “Zeitgeist” means “the spirit of the times”.

Google’s search tools reveal “the spirit of the times” through the aggregation of millions of search queries Google receives every day.

Isn’t the data Google culls from millions of search queries and their resulting Zeitgeist’s “spirit of the times” in effect – Reverse Polling?

Granted; searches for presidential candidates aren’t necessarily purchase proxies like those inherent in transactional related searches – or are they?

Through our votes aren’t we buying one candidate instead of another and then paying for both the newly elected and their predecessors’ policies via local, state and federal tax code?

Maybe one day we can shop for and elect officials online, but until then – we will have to settle for searching a candidates’ “product” features and benefits via all the various media available online including news, blogs and candidate websites.

Thus and barring concerns about the US Economy, few other topics symbolize the spirit of the times more here in the US than the upcoming United States Presidential election.

In keeping with the spirit of the times, below are two Google graphs illustrating how often each presidential candidate’s name has been searched compared to the other candidate with the difference calculated in ratios.

Barack Obama Searches

Barack Obama Searches

According to this Google graph, John McCain receives .62 searches for every Barack Obama search.

John McCain Searches

John McCain Searches

The same search data explained another way shows Barack Obama receives 1.62 searches for every search John McCain receives in Google.

Yesterday, the Wall Street Journal published their most recent presidential poll which has a graph that somewhat resembles Google search data for both candidates.

Wall Street Journal Poll

Wall Street Journal Poll

Further Google tool research for both candidates websites even more closely mirrors the recent Wall Street Journal presidential poll results.

Google search data indicates has received 1 search for every .32 searches.

And again – the search data appears to closely mirror the Wall Street Journal presidential poll findings. Searches Searches

The same search data presented for McCain searches shows receives one search for every 3.2 searches. Searches Searches

Have not Voters’ presidential candidate preferences already manifested in Google search data?

If so, what search factors potentially skew the predictive qualities of Google data?

In my next “Google Presidential Poll” post, I will take a crack at answering the above questions while also delving more deeply into where and how voters’ presidential candidate preferences have already materialized in Google search data as well as provide additional reasons why I think Google data has reached parity with traditional pollster data – at least on the national level.


Personalized Google Political News

January 17, 2008

Google News has added a new gadget to track several forms of 2008 Presidential political media activity.

The gadget grabs political videos, news, maps and blogs of candidates from both parties.

You can pick one or all of the past and present Presidential candidates you want to follow.

The candidates with feeds available are:


Joe Biden
Hillary Clinton
Christopher Dodd
John Edwards
Mike Gravel
Dennis Kucinich
Barack Obama
Bill Richardson

Rudolph Giuliani
Mike Huckabee
Duncan Hunter
John McCain
Ron Paul
Mitt Romney
Tom Tancredo
Fred Thompson

I set this new Google political news gadget up under its own tab titled “2008 Presidential Race” in iGoogle to reduce its information footprint and reduce the overload that can occur when I try to digest the Google News home page.Google Political News

Elections 2008 from Google