Sunday, September 13, 2015

Panoramic Panelbase poll produces steady picture on independence

Panelbase have become the fourth pollster to conduct an independence poll to mark the run-up to the anniversary of the referendum - will ICM and Survation join the party over the coming days?  Today's poll removes any lingering doubt as to the explanation for TNS and Ipsos-Mori both showing a clear majority in favour of independence - it appears that was caused by different methodology, rather than by a change in public opinion over the summer.

Should Scotland be an independent country? (Panelbase)

Yes 47% (n/c)
No 53% (n/c)

I'm slightly troubled by John Curtice's reaction to this poll and yesterday's YouGov poll.  He quite fairly makes the point that they undermine the idea of a very recent swing to Yes, but you'd think an equally important point to make is that we're now left with no idea whether Yes or No are ahead right now, or indeed whether Yes or No have been ahead for much of the last year.  The only conclusion that is consistent with all of the polls we've seen is that the state of play has been relatively steady following a Yes surge (of uncertain scale) in the immediate aftermath of the referendum, but beyond that we have a clear split between Ipsos-Mori and TNS on the one hand, who are showing a Yes lead, and YouGov, Panelbase, Survation and ICM on the other hand, who are (mostly but not always) showing a slender No lead.

Instead, the subtext of what Curtice goes on to say seems to be that more credence should be given to the No lead shown by Panelbase and YouGov, because both firms weight by recalled referendum vote - something that TNS and Ipsos-Mori don't do.  This overlooks (or at least downplays the significance of) three vitally important points -

1) The failure to weight by recalled referendum vote is not the only factor that distinguishes TNS and Ipsos-Mori from the other firms, or even the most important one.  They are also the only pollsters that use a 'real world' data collection method, meaning they actually go out and find a fresh sample of respondents for every poll - in contrast to the other firms who are reliant on volunteer online polling panels.  That difference in itself could easily explain the divergence we are seeing - it could be that there is now a real world majority for independence that the online firms are simply unable to pick up.

2) TNS do weight by past vote recall, but they use the 2015 general election as their reference point, rather than the referendum.  It's not at all clear that switching to referendum weighting would be any better at correcting for the presence of slightly too many 'eager Nats' in the sample.

3) The Yes lead in the Ipsos-Mori poll was so big that it stretches credibility to suggest that weighting by recalled referendum vote would have magically produced an outright No lead in line with the online firms.  Not impossible, admittedly, but unlikely.

*  *  *

I was planning to update this blog's independence Poll of Polls last night for the first time since the referendum, because we now have more than enough recent polls to make it a meaningful exercise.  But I suddenly realised that there's a discrepancy in the reported figures from the YouGov poll.  The What Scotland Thinks website says that with Don't Knows included, the numbers are Yes 43%, No 49% - which, even taking account of rounding issues, is completely irreconcilable with the headline figures of Yes 48%, No 52% with Don't Knows excluded.  Hopefully the mystery will be solved when the datasets emerge.

60 comments:

  1. Surely the "real world" method reflects the real attitude of the public. Volunteers for other methods are, I would suggest, set in their political ways.

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  2. Where are the tables for YouGov and Panelbase? I am particularly interested in the Panelbase Trident questions because I think they may be misleading. My reading of the Times article suggests:

    1 Against Tridents Renewal
    2 Replace with Cheaper
    3 Replace with more expensive
    4 Renew

    I don't think 2-3 mention the weapons would be nuclear but the poll is being reported as Scots back nuclear deterrent

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  3. Does anyone know if panelbase is still using its now out of data panel for Scottish polling?

    They closed the panel early on in the iref, which seemed to exclude me. Since then, I'm regularly asked to take part in polls, but never about politics.

    You can close a panel temporarily, but doing so for a long period will result in panel stagnation, even degradation (e.g. folk no longer answering) meaning your sample can stop become unrepresentative.

    Panelbase over predicted Labour (by 4%) and UKIP (by 2%) shares while under-predicting SNP (by 4%) for the GE; could be a symptom of panel fatigue.

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    1. 'start becoming unrepresentative' d-uh.

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    2. I was once asked by UKGOV my opinion of women's lingerie - amazingly true. Oh and once asked what brand of baked beans I bought. Never once did they ask me my opinions in relation to Indy or to Trident or Brit military adventurism abroad or even what Party I intended to vote for. Needless to say that after they asked me my opinion on mushy peas I didn't bother with them after that or any opinion pollster I foolishly registered with. I can only assume that I didn't fit into any of their desired political demographic with any of them.

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    3. Iain, most of their business is commercial. Political polling is not their bread and butter - just an advert for them.

      Although in the General Election they screwed up big time - not a good advert.

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    4. These are often control questions.

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    5. These are often control questions.

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    6. These are often control questions.

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  4. Online is "real world". It's just that online polls guarantee a degree of anonymity and privacy that 'real world' pollsters don't.

    I think you're on a hiding to nothing here guys. There is no yes majority, never was, never will be. And do you think, if there was, the powers that be - including the SNP - would be daft enough to harness it and act upon it, with North Sea oil tanking and Scotland's deficit soaring? They didn't even want full fiscal autonomy.

    Lots of sound and fury from Sturgeon though. The monster strains at its chains and she must appease it, somehow - but not with actual independence (don't be silly!).

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    1. You are in here an unhealthy amount of time.

      A truly sad, lonely and pathetic little person you are.

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    2. Come on guys, Aldo might have a point about the oil. I mean, look at Denmark - it doesn't even have oil fields. I hear that they're so poverty-stricken in Denmark that there are protests on the streets of Copenhagen to restore the Kalmar Union and join Sweden again, as they would be "bedre sammen'" as they say in Danish. Everyone knows that Scotland would be in that same position as an independent country, just begging to be readmitted to the UK, like Ireland (which, like Denmark, doesn't even have oil).

      Or maybe all the talk of oil revenues is just unionist smokescreen bullshit.

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    3. Lick my unionist boots, anon - it is all you are fit for.

      Jamie, does Denmark have Soviet levels of state spending? Does it have an overweight, sick and ageing population? Does it have rural and island communities that require loss making services to sustain them? What is the size of the Danish deficit?

      Answers on a postcard? :0)

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    4. I did your research for you Jamie (if you want motivation to educate yourself, argue with some folk).

      The Danish deficit doesn't exist. They run a surplus of 3% of GDP (without oil, as you correctly point out). Scotland runs a deficit (public spending shortfall) of 8% of its GDP (and that's INCLUDING the oil industry!).

      Independence, at a time when oil is tanking and looking to be in terminal decline as a profitable and exploitable resource for us, would mean austerity. Huge tax rises and spending cuts.

      Why is tartan austerity preferable to comparitively mild tory austerity?

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    5. Away and Troll on your unionist site.

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  5. A percentage point here, a point there. The nuances of these polls.

    What matters is that the Independence vote is holding up. This despite a full year of the propaganda machine grinding away at us.We are arm wrestling now and neither side has a decisive lead.

    The Labour Party may implode. The Conservatives look likely to be in power for at least 9 years. The promised more powers lie rings hollower by the day. And all the while, the older No voters drop off the demographic scale to be replaced by youngsters who are 80/20 Yes.

    Just bide your time. We are going to win this thing.

    Tick tock, as I see here now and then. Tick tock indeed.

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    Replies
    1. We've been waiting since 1934, that's an awful lot of tick tocking.

      Tick tock, indeed - but counting down to.....what? I don't know. You don't know either.

      The mystery of life!

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  6. What I find odd about panelbase, is that the unweighted panel seems over-represented by pro-union party voters (be this 2011 or now 2015), yet still the Yes vote requires down weighting or disproportionately small up-weighting.

    This implies that some people who voted No are saying they voted Yes and causing Yes to be down-weighted as a result.

    Anyway, I'd be cautious about the benefits of iref weighting, particularly given its a year ago now. Even just false recall could skew things never mind porkies due to voter regret; something that caused all sorts of problems with 2010 past vote weighting in Scotland where people voted for unionist parties tactically to stop the Tories and regretted it.

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    Replies
    1. Or maybe they did vote yes, but somebody intercepted their vote in the post and changed it to no.

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    2. @Andrew

      LOL, no, I suspect not. However, we did have huge problems with 2010 weighting. People kept telling pollsters they voted SNP; according to recall, Scots gave the SNP the same share or greater than they gave Labour! Even Prof C said 2010 weighting was wrong because of this odd phenomenon.

      To many people voted tactically and regretted it basically, so when asked what they did, they responded with how they wished they had instead of what they voted.

      Not outwith the realms of possibility for the iref. I mean if you voted No in a panic, you might regret it now. In contrast, if you voted Yes on a whim when really you thought it unwise, no need to lie as it never came off.

      Could possibly explain the differences between iref weighted and non-iref weighted polls somewhat.

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  7. It's pretty obvious from these various polls that the country's split down the middle on the Yes/No question,with No depending on a lot of elderly people to keep them in the race.

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    1. "Elderly" apparently being 55 and over.

      And the problem with elderly people is that some die off but - lo and behold - at the same time you get a fresh wave of retirees to replace them.

      There is a theory among yessers that they have to wait until the WW2 generation die out before they get rid of the sense of British solidarity. But people aged 55 and up are majority NO. People aged 65 and up are overwhelmingly NO. If you are 65 you were born 5 years after the end of the war and came of age during the age of free love and flower power. You wouldn't think these people would uphold the union with the determination they do. But, they do - because they are experienced, wise and with a lot to lose / potentially pass on to their offspring.

      Nothing to do with WW2 or old fashioned loyalty to Queen and country.

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    2. Yes Anon, you can see here the breakover even in more No friendly Yougov polls:

      https://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/is8g4yzdet/DCThomsonResults_May15_website.pdf

      (not the most recent as tables not out yet but same Y/N numbers)

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    3. British identity peaks in those born in 1944; rises to that point, then falls continuously to those coming of voting age today. They're greater than 70% 'Scottish only' (2011 census).

      This pattern is reflected in the 52% Yes in 1979, then 74% Yes in 1997, with this lot backing devo max now.

      At the same time, support for full indy has risen from at best 10% in the 1970's to ~50% now.

      We have a lot to thank Thatcherism and Blairism for in terms of indy support of course.

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    4. Aye.The unionists have a very frail hold on Scotland.And here's a question for you all.How many and how staunch are the unionists in the House of Commons? Not many and not very staunch is my guess.

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    5. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 13, 2015 at 10:04 PM

      Anon how you Nat sis must hate your majority fellow Scots that wish to remain in the Union. It really is the English you hate because Scotland is a Nation in a Union. I reckon you are an obnoxious little raw mince eater.

      Delete
  8. Aldo Malta has a population the size of Edinburgh, landmass smaller than Skye and no natural resources. Yet they are independent and happy.

    If you can rack your brain. Can you explain why Scotland would fail?

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  9. Master Baceon Tyme

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  10. Aldo just fuck right off. Why are you so goddam needy that you spend your time hanging around here winding people up! Even when you appear to be contributing to the debate you're just a smug arrogant wee tory shit and I'm sick of you monopolising the blog. No shame just a typical fucking tory sense of entitlement. Now piss off you saddo and leave us alone.

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  11. GWC, Don't you have a cave to sweep out or something ? A few mammoth bones to shatter for the marrow perhaps? Why don't you take your neanderthal mind somewhere else and leave debating to people whose IQ is a lot larger than your own.

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  12. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 13, 2015 at 10:59 PM

    You should not insult the Neanderthal as they cleary had more common sense than you Nat sis. Your average Nat si has a large foreheid and ginger hair.

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    Replies
    1. Another Troll....Yawn

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    2. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 13, 2015 at 11:23 PM

      Anon. I hear the Reichmark is being discussed as our new currency. Wee Nicola and Angela to sign a pact on Scotttih surrender to German domination and a sneaky invasion of England.

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    3. Glasgow Working Class

      Yes, very funny. You need to adapt your unionist persona to a less obvious wind up before people take it seriously and start getting wound up by it. My advice is lose the ridiculous sense of ego and ignorance which your character displays. I also advise you get a life outside of being a fat bedroom warrior, but failing that one please rebrand your character to something more believable

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    4. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 13, 2015 at 11:56 PM

      My advise to the Nat sis is they should not have online rent a mobs that turn up on orders like outside the BBC Glesga HQ. My mrs a YES changed to a NO. I have always said to her be aware of flag wavers and she clocked this vile mob
      and changed her mind. You really do hate the English just be honest and admit to it.

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    5. Referring to YES supporters as "Nat sis" shows a distinct lack of critical thought. I would think Godwin's law applies here. Never read past that idiotic phrase.
      You contribute nothing to what is said here although you do make a good job of making yourself a laughing stock.

      Delete
  13. Is this guy out on day release. Or are his psychiatrists using this forum as an experimental cognitive research therapy.

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  14. Is this guy out on day release. Or are his psychiatrists using this forum as an experimental cognitive research therapy.

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 13, 2015 at 11:44 PM

      Nat sis at their best with their venom. Keep it up that is why you LOST. I must admit I did enjoy you crying you're eyes oot. Probably the best moment in my life since Jim Baxter scored that goal at Wembley.

      Delete
  15. O h F u c k o f f y o u f a t k u n t

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  16. That last post was directed st GWC. Just in case his doctor is taking notes.

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    Replies
    1. He's a wind up merchant. He is deliberately obnoxious, and I would be surprised if he believed any of it.

      Delete
  17. That last post was directed st GWC. Just in case his doctor is taking notes.

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 14, 2015 at 12:04 AM

      Due to cutbacks in the NHS Scotland doctors do not take notes

      Delete
  18. Jim Baxter played for Scotland for the avoidance of any doubt. Yes doctor unionists are that f#cked up

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  19. Jim Baxter played for Scotland for the avoidance of any doubt. Yes doctor unionists are that f#cked up

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 14, 2015 at 12:12 AM

      And was a Brit and proud.

      Delete
  20. Anon. You are right he is antagonistic. That's what stupid people do to create a diversion from their lack of wit.

    I am sure he types the abuse with a big grin on his face. That's when he isn't being fed through a straw by the nurses.

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    1. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 14, 2015 at 12:08 AM

      The nurses breast feed me.

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  21. That's right doctors use Ipads now. They even allow patients to use them apparently.

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  22. That's right doctors use Ipads now. They even allow patients to use them apparently.

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  23. Ok GWC is definitely Carmichael the games up.

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  24. Ok GWC is definitely Carmichael the games up.

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    Replies
    1. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 14, 2015 at 12:18 AM

      Your twin Nat si does not hiv tae post.

      Delete
  25. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 14, 2015 at 12:49 AM

    Your twin Nat si does not hiv tae post

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  26. Glasgow Working ClassSeptember 14, 2015 at 1:04 AM

    Glesga Twin Working Class says the Nat sis should join the Corbinites and lose together.
    One thing the Corbinites and Scotish Nat sis have in common is their hands will fall asleep with boredom when wanking while their women fake orgasm.

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  27. WHEN ARE PEOPLE GOING TO STOP RESPONDING OR EVEN ACKNOWLEDGING THESE TROLLS!!!! THEY ARE ALREADY BORED AND YOU ARE ENTERTAINING THEM...STOP IT NOW PLEASE!!!

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  28. Yep don't feed the trolls after midnight. They are like Gremlins. Feed one and the others come along. Ignore them for a few days and they will go away

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