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Sun Feb 17, 2019, 10:36 AM


Debunking the "Candidate A is outperforming Candidate B because of name recognition" theory

Regarding a recent poll showing Joe Biden leading Donald Trump by a margin larger than everyone else, several members have voiced their opinion that this is only because other Democratic candidates have low name recognition.

There are holes in that theory. Let's examine the Emerson poll in question. The following questions cannot be explained by the name- recognition theory:

Why is every low-recognition Democrat beating the universally-recognized Donald Trump?
Why did Sanders poll better in Presidential matchups in 2015-2016 than he is now that he has higher name recognition?
Why do some candidates perform worse than a "generic" (zero recognition) candidate in other polls?
Why are Beto and Sherrod Brown outperforming Sanders?
Why did Sanders outperform the universally-recognized Hillary Clinton against Trump in 2016?
Why did Obama perform just as well and sometimes even better than Hillary Clinton in presidential matchups when Obama had a relatively low name recognition in 2098?

Proponents of the name-recognition theory might argue that a candidate with no name recognition would suffer because there would be a lot of undecided responses. But Emersonforced everyone to make a choice. Undecided was not a choice. For instance, Sherrod Brown leads Donald Trump 52 to 48%. That equals 100%.

Iím going to propose an alternative new ďmedia coverage theory.Ē
My theory is that some candidates would benefit from high recognition while others would not.
For instance. How do we know that Kamala Harris will improve against Donald Trump once Republicans and Russians start attacking her relentlessly on social media and mainstream right wing media?

What if the Russians decide to issue high praise of a Democratic candidate X?
In this case, Candidate X would benefit from high name recognition provided for free by Russian trolls. It worked for the Russians with Bernie Sanders in 2016.

Note that Iím only referring to presidential election match ups and not primary matchups.

Please evaluate my media coverage theory and the name-recognition theory. Thank you.

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Reply Debunking the "Candidate A is outperforming Candidate B because of name recognition" theory (Original post)
Yosemito Feb 2019 OP
Sherman A1 Feb 2019 #1
Andy823 Feb 2019 #3
Sherman A1 Feb 2019 #4
Igel Feb 2019 #2

Response to Yosemito (Original post)

Sun Feb 17, 2019, 11:07 AM

1. This is my take on the Candidate A is outperforming Candidate B on name recognition or anything else

The narrative is designed to keep everyone worked up, agitated and distracted, worried that "their" candidate is up or down according to the polling and latest whatever. It is rarely if ever a discussion of the issues. It is offers a wide variety of what-ifs, conjecture and high pitched noise.

It goes like this......

This week She is up until there is a hiccup of some small issue blown way out of proportion in the Breathless 24/7 Cable Noise Infotainment. Next Week He's up and doing well in some obscure poll with 12 people and a cat responding, but Oh Noes, by week end a new face has entered the run and all the oxygen is taken out of the room. Followed by the discovery that as a child the fresh face pushed another kid in the hall way in grammar school so that will take several news cycles between the pharmaceutical ads to discuss. Week 4 She will make a strong speech and return to the top of the polling, but will it be enough to overcome the whispered stories of her 3rd cousin 14 times removed being addicted to Snickers Bars? In the meantime He will get tongue tied during an interview having not had enough sleep and there will be questions of his age and can he really serve? The Fresh Face will suddenly soar to the top on word of a fundraiser far exceeding its goals of $12.47.

Rinse and repeat but be sure to allow time for more ads for drugs we never knew we needed and the anchors hawking their latest books on The Crisis in the Media.

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Response to Sherman A1 (Reply #1)

Sun Feb 17, 2019, 11:43 AM

3. I agree

And we can't forget that all those polls that vary from week to week gives all the trolls that come here, more chances to divide DU. Heck I see posters, newbies usually, support or bash different candidates on different days, and the ones I dislike the most are the ones who post and run. They never seem to come back and discuss the controversial things they toss out for other posters to argue about.

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Response to Andy823 (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 17, 2019, 03:14 PM

4. Well,

DU is a discussion board and most of what is posted is opinion, trolls, newbies, old timers and alike included. I can make up my own mind on which candidate I support without much help. If someone or someones want to "Divide DU" well that's really not going to work too well in my case as I will get along pretty well even with them expressing their opinions or not.

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Response to Yosemito (Original post)

Sun Feb 17, 2019, 11:25 AM

2. You misunderstand.

It's not "if you don't recognize the name, you will never choose that person."

Nor is it the only factor in play. By all means, let's say that the most important thing in whether plants grow is the presence of light, put a seed in bright sunlight with no air, water, or soil, and pronounce the idea that green plants need light to be false. We can also rule out water, dirt, and air, and then say it's obviously the Great Grower Xrtujpt that's responsible for plant growth.

Identifiers can substitute. "Zaphod Yue Ibn-Vladimir y bar-Sanchez" may be completely unknown, but if he's running against "John Smith, American Nazi Party" I'd expect dear Zaphod to be preferred. If he's (D) and going against Trump, that 'name' "D)" will carry weight.

If I'm polling a bunch of white skinheads and "Brendan Johannsen" and "Deshawn Brown" were on the survey, who do you think they'd prefer?

Identifiers can be positive or negative, they can be explicit or tacit. Name recognition can be negative or positive, explicit or implicit. It varies by group.

It's the same when you're putting together a multiple choice test. If you don't know the answer, it's a likability contest for which answer you pick. It's always a "trick" (from the students' perspective) when you put down similar words as distractors.

We don't need the same idea barely outlined but with a new name and discoverer when the old one works better.

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