The readers of our Scoople iPhone app (iTunes) pick a side of a news story by simply tapping “yes” or “no” buttons. They can also test how well they have their fingers on the pulse of the news by predicting the majority sentiment. Here is an example:
As we approach 100k picks, we were curious how well our users are batting. You might think it’s easy to predict what most people think about the news. Well, actually only a minority is batting better than 0.700. Do you think you could be among the mere 10% of news junkies who can accurately guess the majority opinion more than 80% of the time, a batting average of over 0.800? We challenge you to download Scoople and prove it!
Our data in more detail:
The chart above tallies batting average of our users. As you can see, almost every player is batting at least 0.300. Batting 0.500 is achieved by more than 80% of the players. Being right half of the time appears to be very doable. There is a decline for those players batting 0.700 - only about 40% achieve it. But then, all of a sudden there is a very steep drop off - only 10% have the skill to bat 0.800, while batting .900 is a small elite group of 2.5%. In other words, the majority public opinion is less predictable than you might think.
For you statistically minded readers, is this graph surprising, interesting, reminding you of something else? Let us know! We are @dygestnews.