From: "David M. Jacobs" <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 13:21:30 -0500 Fwd Date: Sun, 23 Nov 1997 03:49:18 -0500 Subject: The Roper Poll - David Jacobs Clarifies Hello Everyone, I thought I might peek into the List for a while to see how things are going. I am afraid that I probably will not be able to contribute much--especially in the coming months--but perhaps I can put in my two cents worth every once in a while. I am responding to Jim Deardorff and Dennis Stacy and others who were discussing the Roper Poll of 1991. I was not sure of who said what in the e-mail sent to me so I will be somewhat generic in my comments. The Roper Poll was an omnibus poll in which an actual person with clipboard in hand went to the homes of scientifically chosen randomly selected individuals. The questions asked about unusual experiences followed a series of questions about political opinions and other public matters. The poll did not include frivolous questions or questions about products or advertising. Thus, the seriousness of the questions about unusual experiences was inherent in the context of the other questions. As far as I am aware, the total number of people who were asked the questions were the ones who responded. I personally do not have knowledge of others who were asked and failed to respond, although I suppose that there must have been a few who remained silent during this part of the omnibus questioning. Roper informed us that there were three two-thousand person sweeps in the summer of 1991. I am not exactly sure why the number did not come out to exactly 6,000 people; perhaps these were the silent ones. Someone said that Hopkins and I "cooked" the numbers to make them more conservative. In a sense, this is correct. I have been quite open about this and I have written about it more extensively in my new book, THE THREAT, which will be in bookstores in a few weeks. In fact, if you read the Roper booklet carefully, we said that we accepted only those responses that answered positively to four or all five of Higher Indicator questions out of ten that were asked. Technically speaking, one could have answered affirmatively to eight of the ten questions and not made the final survey. By doing this, and thus being ultra-conservative, we were able to come up with a figure of 2% of the American population who had experiences consistent with the experiences that abductees reported having before they knew they were abductees. That is as close as we could get in trying to discern how many abductees were out there. All of this is in the Roper Poll booklet--none of it has been kept under our hats. I have talked about this at UFO conferences many times. Finally, I might add there there has been quite a lot of discussion about the questions asked in this poll. Most people are unaware that hundreds of people--abductees and nonabductees--were asked scores of questions over the previous five years that gave us a good indication of which questions were most effective to ask. Two of the questions were test questions to measure the urge to answer affirmatively, though falsely (the "Trondant" question), and one question helped us measure how accurate the poll would be (the UFO sighting question) because we had many other polls with accurate measurements of the answer. The Poll showed that less than 1% of the people answered the first affirmatively and none of their surveys were used the poll. The second showed us that only 7% of the people had seen a UFO--a very low number. Both these numbers showed us that this was going to be a conservative, accurate poll.
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