As you'll probably have gathered, I was away from home last week in a place with very sporadic internet access, so I have a backlog of about four blogposts I want to write at the back of my mind. But before I get down to those, I thought I'd pull over for one of my very occasional pitstops to try to give a proper shot in the arm to Scot Goes Pop's ongoing fundraising efforts, and in particular the fundraising for further opinion polls. First of all, a huge thanks to the people who have sent donations recently - a good few hundred pounds has been raised in recent weeks. For reasons we all understand, the days of raising several thousand pounds overnight are probably over for the time being, but nevertheless hopefully we can kick on a bit now and get the seventh Scot Goes Pop poll done in a reasonable timescale. (And, with your indulgence, after this post I'll continue to promote the fundraising at the bottom of each blogpost until enough is raised.)
There are a number of reasons why it's a good idea not to allow all opinion polls conducted at the present time to be ones commissioned by unionist media clients. We're in a crucial phase where there's a battle to "claim" public opinion on the issue of whether a referendum should take place, or whether the outcome of a plebiscite election should be respected. The unionists have a huge advantage if they and their fellow travellers effectively get to choose the question wordings in all opinion polls, because the wording and format genuinely make a substantial difference to the reported results.
We're also in uncharted territory at the moment because pollsters are still finding their way in measuring how people might vote in a general election that pro-independence parties have declared to be a de facto referendum. Any precedents set now in terms of question wordings could prove important later on.
And of course there's the perennial problem of how unionist-flavoured polls can set the agenda for a referendum or election campaign, framing the debate as being all about "fears" over independence. There are plenty enough reasons to be terrified of remaining in Liz Truss's Brexit Britain indefinitely, and we really should be polling about them.
If you'd like to donate, here are the various options...
Paypal: If you have an account, by far the simplest and quickest way of donating is by sending a direct payment via Paypal. My Paypal email address is: email@example.com
(If you wish, you can add a short note saying something along the lines of "for the fundraiser", but don't worry if you don't do that - it'll be very obvious what the payment is for.)
If you don't have a Paypal account, the GoFundMe fundraiser I set up last year is still open for donations HERE.
And if you prefer a bank transfer, please message me on my contact email address, which is different from my Paypal address and can be found in the sidebar of the blog (desktop version only) or on my Twitter profile.