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FactCheck Subscribers Find Us Clear, Unbiased, Reliable and Useful

More than 21,000 respond to our survey. A very few say we tilt left. Even fewer say we tilt right.

November 23, 2004

Modified: November 23, 2004

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More than 21,000 FactCheck.org subscribers responded to our online survey conducted Nov. 13-19. That's roughly 30% of all those who signed up to get our articles emailed to them. Overwhelmingly, those who responded found our articles clear and easy to understand, politically unbiased, reliable, and helpful in forming opinions about the candidates and their positions.

Journalists make up only 2 percent of respondents, but most of them found our articles helpful and nearly half quoted us as an authority. Teachers made up 10 percent of the respondents, and one in three used our articles in class.

One in six who responded worked in the 2004 presidential campaign at some level. Few Kerry nor Bush workers thought our articles made their opponent more careful about stating the facts, however.

A note of caution as you read these results. Our subscribers are not a random sample of everybody who visits our site, and the subscribers who chose to respond to our invitation to take this survey are not a random sample of all subscribers. So we don't pretend that these results are anything like a scientific sample of all who visit our site. But with that said, we are gratified at what we consider a very high response rate for such a survey and at the very favorable results.


For a .pdf version of this report click here.
FactCheck.org Subscriber Survey Results
(21,586 respondents;
Conducted Nov. 13-19, 2004)
99% found us "clear and easy to understand."
94% Found us "free of political bias."
Of the 6% who saw bias, most thought it was liberal but nearly one in four said it was conservative.
Those seeing liberal bias were mostly GOP or Independent;
those seeing a rightward tilt mostly Dems.
  Do you consider yourself to be a Republican, a Democrat,
an Independent, or what? (Optional)
  Democrat Independent Republican Other
Was the bias you detected pro-Democrat/liberal or pro-Republican/conservative, or some other?
19.09% 65.78% 90.79% 55.79%
Republican/conservative 60.58% 21.60% 3.32% 25.26%
Other 20.33% 12.62% 5.88% 18.95%
Totals 100.00% 100.00% 100.00% 100.00%
99% found us "reliable and accurate."
Pie Chart D4_T6_1
93% found us helpful in forming an opinion of the candidates.
Legend D4_T7_0
97% voted in the presidential election.
Pie Chart D4_T8_1
Among those who voted, 78% said we made them more confident in their choice.
90% shared FactCheck articles with others.
Of those who shared articles, 43% did so once a week or more. . .
. . . but most didn't use the "email to a friend" feature.
Only 2% said they are journalists, but . . .
Pie Chart D4_T13_1
. . . nearly two-thirds said we were helpful to them in preparing news reports, and . . .
. . .nearly half said they quoted FactCheck as an authority . . .
. . . usually after verifying our information for themselves.
  Did you verify FactCheck.org's information independently? Totals
  Always Most of the time Seldom Never  
Did you cite FactCheck.org as an authority in news reports?
24.78% 44.78% 24.35% 6.09% 100.00%
No 14.89% 28.09% 23.83% 33.19% 100.00%
10% said they are teachers . . .
. . . mostly at the high school and college level.
Q19: What level do you teach?
  Counts Percents
0 100
Grades 1-6 331 15.59% bar_c0.gif
Grades 7-9 212 9.99% bar_c0.gif
Grades 10-12 538 25.34% bar_c0.gif
College Undergrad 736 34.67% bar_c0.gif
Graduate 306 14.41% bar_c0.gif
Totals 2123 100.00%  
About one teacher in three used FactCheck material in class.
High-school teachers were most likely to use FactCheck in class.
  What level do you teach?
  Grades 1-6 Grades 7-9 Grades 10-12 College Undergrad Graduate
Did you use FactCheck material in any of your classes?
15.11% 32.08% 42.94% 36.55% 22.55%
No 84.89% 67.92% 57.06% 63.45% 77.45%
Totals 100.00% 100.00% 100.00% 100.00% 100.00%
One in six worked in a presidential campaign . . .
. . . eight out of ten for Kerry.
(A) Which side did you support?
0 100
Bush 10.87% bar_c0.gif
Kerry 84.51% bar_c0.gif
Other 1.59% bar_c0.gif
Prefer not to answer 3.03% bar_c0.gif
Totals 100.00%  
A few workers on each side said FactCheck made their opponent more careful about facts . . .
  Did FactCheck cause the candidate you opposed to be more careful
about stating facts accurately?
  Yes Uncertain No  
Overall 6.13% 36.07% 57.79% 100.00%
Which side did you support?
8.94% 49.59% 41.46% 100.00%
Kerry 5.61% 34.18% 60.21% 100.00%
Other 1.85% 51.85% 46.30% 100.00%
Prefer not to answer 12.62% 33.01% 54.37% 100.00%
. . . but nearly three times as many said we made their candidate more careful.
  Did FactCheck cause your candidate to be more careful about stating
facts accurately?
  Yes Uncertain No  
Overall 17.90% 63.02% 19.08% 100.00%
Which side did you support?
18.47% 63.52% 18.01% 100.00%
Bush 15.72% 60.16% 24.12% 100.00%
Prefer not to answer 17.48% 59.22% 23.30% 100.00%
Other 1.85% 66.67% 31.48% 100.00%
More identified themselves as Democrats or Independents than as Republicans.