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Low opinion of poll headline

Geraldine Hackett's excellent article warning TES readers not to equate respondent support for higher spending on schools and hospitals to voting in general elections (TES, April 21) was destroyed by the careless headline slapped above it "Opinion polls give no guide to voting". This will now go in my catalogue of horrors used in my lectures at the City University, where I teach "Understanding and interpreting British public opinion".

This is the second worst example of a misleading headline in my experience, only exceeded by "Polls useless, says MORI chief" over an article in which I tried to explain that a poll taken at the outset of a by-election, before the writ was moved and candidates selected and before the campaign had even begun, was not a forecast of its eventual outcome.

ROBERT M WORCESTER

Chairman

Market and Opinion Research (MORI)

32 Old Queen Street

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