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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 1997 > Nov > Nov 23

The Roper Poll - David Jacobs Clarifies

From: "David M. Jacobs" <djacobs@thunder.ocis.temple.edu>
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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