Following the release of the latest Herald-Digipoll yesterday, the Herald website carried a Preferred Prime Minister poll, which I followed with interest, having seen several similar polls hi-jacked in recent months.
Throughout the day yesterday, John Key had a clear lead - consistantly polling at over 60%, while Helen Clark was polling at around 28%. Always happy to give trolls like roger nome a hard time on Kiwiblog, I posted "progress scores" several times throughout the day, and again this morning. Here's what I posted at 8.44am"
"Inventory2 Says: August 29th, 2007 at 8:44 am
Herald “unscientific” (their words) PPM Poll update:
Key: 3492 votes (60%)Clark: 1611 votes (28%)
Total votes @ 8.40am: 5773
Even Labour’s famed “poll-spammers” seem to have deserted the sinking ship SS Labour!"
By this time, the poll had been relegated from the nzherald.co.nz front page, given that these things normally only have a shelf life of 24 hours.
Tonight, I logged on to Kiwiblog before coming on here to blog, and found an interesting post:
"peter mck Says: August 29th, 2007 at 7:29 pm
Slightly off topic again - but in the Herald Poll yet again Labour are spamming votes in favour of Clark in the preferred PM poll they are undertaking - over 400 votes have been lodged in favour of John Key in the past hour.
Is this a trick Muldoon would have done if a poll went against him?
This is just another display from a desperate and pathetic Labour Party."
Naturally curious, I went and investigated - and found the poll reinstated to the front page! The graph was completely different, and there had now been 11,926 votes cast. In that time, Clark’s total went from 1611 to 7002 (+5391), and Key’s total went from 3492 to 4124 (+632), and Clark now led Key by the same margin he had enjoyed over her - 60% to 30%. Quelle surprise!! I smell a rat! The last time a poll changed dramatically like this, IP addresses at Parliament were traced as the source of the spamming. Is the 9th Floor busy again tonight - a little damage limitation?
Postscript: In the time I have been blogging this, a further 119 votes have been cast, with only 34 of these for Clark (28.5%). It would appear that normal business has been resumed!!!