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Media, Science

Those Liberal Spinmeisters

Posted by Hannah / January 20, 2006

Martin. Layton. Harper. That's the spin ranking a computer algorithm determined after analyzing the speech patterns of three prime ministerial candidates. The algorithm was designed by Queen's University professor, David Skillicorn, and isn't subject to the rules outlined in Bill 101, and could not compute the degree of spin delivered by Gilles Duceppe. (Okay, I made that last bit up.)

According to a story in New Scientist:

[The] team analysed the usage patterns of 88 deception-linked words within the text of recent campaign speeches from the political leaders. They then determined the frequency of these patterns in each speech, and averaged that number over all of that candidate’s speeches. Martin received a ranking of 124, while Harper and Layton scored 73 and 88, respectively.

“I think it’s expected that any party in power is going to use spin more than the challenging party,” Skillicorn says. “They have a track record to defend.”

Wondering what deception-speak sounds like? Researchers at the University of Texas, Austin, developed a psychological model that identified distinct speach patterns among those who intend to deceive their audience, such as a decreased use of personal pronounds (I, we, me, us) and words of exception (however, unless).

Not surprisingly, Conservative party members are eager to use the analysis to point to their leader's honesty, while the Liberal spokespersons say the algorithm clearly needs some work.

Now if only someone would apply it to GWB's monologues.



Teto / February 5, 2015 at 09:11 am
I've related the whole Google PageRank saga on this blog brofee and I've also told how's PageRank has not showed up for me from my home network. Though I've been confident of the actual PR of this blog, it's been a little disconcerting that it hasn't appeared consistently. Well, this morning was the first time it has ever showed up for this blog. ProBlogger mentioned a few days ago that another PageRank update or refresh might be going on, but I haven't read about it from any other source.

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