Robert S's Profile
Great post, Kunal! There are so many reasons that the media and the pollsters got it wrong. It seems that the initial data, the input, was wrong and it created false output. The forecasting models were based on digital data analysis, aggregating data from the Internet, from online social media networks. It turned out that the sources did not depict the whole picture and the initial data was not representative. It is possible to find voters who use Internet very passively or not use it at all, especially among socially disadvantaged groups. The ‘Shy Trumper’ hypothesis might have played a role, too.
There were also arguments that journalists lost contact with ‘ordinary’ people and became members of ‘coastal elites’ seeing the world outside of New York, Washington or Boston, only through the Acela train windows. That way journalists found themselves in a perfect filter bubble – but it is a different story.
To me the most important symbol of how wrong we got it is the New York Times’ graph of ‘Chance of Winning Presidency’. The lines for both candidates had never crossed before but they crossed for the first time on the election night:
Dmitry, thank you for the comment! You are right that telecoms are becoming content providers. The users’ data they have will allow them to target users more precisely. And it is still about cable. People cut the TV cord but on the flipside they still need the Internet cord to watch video on demand. When it comes to Netflix, content production has always been expensive and they will have to figure out where to find additional money to produce high quality content for different audiences in different countries. It is going to be pricey and it is a challenge.
Micah, you are right that it would be interesting to hear more about social media and search engines. Maybe this a sign that print culture inside the Times is still strong and there is a lot to do to make this cultural shift toward digital. It seems from the strategy that the management is aware of that. When it comes to platforms it is more complicated issue and now it is hard to find a good answer how to cope with those ‘freenemies’.
Brad, thank you for your comments. I think that the paywall model is not for everybody. Readers are willing to pay only for distinguished and unique content. But this kind of content creation is expensive.
Daniel, thank you for comments. It would be great to have a chat!