Words don't lie, part II: Perception Analyzer reveals no Jack Kennedys at vice presidential debate
debaron at illinois.edu
Fri Oct 3 04:29:13 UTC 2008
There's a new post on the Web of Language:
Words don't lie, part II: Perception Analyzer reveals no Jack Kennedys
at vice presidential debate
During the first presidential debate last week, CNN used a Perception
Analyzer to track audience responses to the candidates. Members of a
focus group in Columbus turned the analyzer's dial to the left when
they didn't like what they heard, and to the right when they did,
which presumes they prefer being right of center. Analysis of the
results showed that most of the audience stayed awake for most of the
The network deployed the Perception Analyzer again at the vice
presidential debate last night at Washington University in St. Louis,
only with a twist: CNN turned it into an IQ meter for Gov. Palin, and
a foot-in-mouth detector for Sen. Biden.
In the end, though, the technology didn't tell us any more than the
candidates did. Palin showed no palpable IQ deficits, though she did
once call her opponent Sen. Obiden and she mis-named the general
commanding American forces in Afghanistan. Biden outscored her by
showing more grasp of concrete detail, while keeping both feet planted
firmly on the floor. . . .
To no one's surprise, last night in St. Louis neither candidate proved
to be Jack Kennedy. Neither even came close to channeling Lloyd
Bentsen. Fortunately, neither of them looked to be the next Dick
Cheney, either. And former Vice President Quayle held onto his title
of "dumber than a sixth grader." . . .
read the rest of this post and see pictures of the Perception Analyzer
at work on the Web of Language
Professor of English and Linguistics
Department of English
University of Illinois
608 S. Wright St.
Urbana, IL 61801
read the Web of Language:
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