Eight out of ten journalists (not to mention their long-suffering readers) are fed up with flimsy PR surveys. It’s a fact… well it might have been had we done a survey to ‘prove’ it.

Just today we read that office workers waste an average of 40 minutes a week on social networking websites such as Facebook and Twitter and that this is costing the British economy £1.38 billion a year in lost production.

Lots to ponder here. What do we mean, exactly, by terms such as waste, office worker, week, production and cost? Precision is crucial in any kind of research for it to carry weight and meaning.

Has the time come for some kind of authenticity check or kitemark system for PR surveys? This might help journalists feel confident that the sample size, methodology, questionnaire etc were all managed to professional market research standards.

Not for a minute are we suggesting that the findings about ‘office workers’ and their social media habits are anything other than fair and perfectly accurate or that the survey was handled anything other than thoroughly professionally from top to bottom. But a kitemark would prove that this was the case.

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