For Pollsters, Finding Respondents Gets Harder Every Year

Pew Research Center reports that societal and technological changes have made it increasingly difficult to contact and persuade respondents for the purpose of surveys.  For a typical telephone survey, the contact rate (percent of households in which an adult was reached) was 90% in 1997, but today, it is just 62%.  The cooperation rate (percent of households contacted that yielded an interview) was 43% in 1997 but is only 14% in 2012.  Despite the declining rates, Pew maintains that polls continue to supply precise data.
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