Barefoot Man criticises Compass poll analysis

George Nowak, better known as local musician Barefoot Man, last week called the headline of a 24 May article in the Caymanian Compass concerning an online poll, biased and misleading.

George Nowak

George Nowak, a.k.a. Barefoot Man. Photo: Courtney Platt

The article about the poll, which asked respondents if they thought local radio stations should be required to play music created by local musicians, appeared under the headline: ‘Poll: Let radio stations play what they want’.

Mr. Nowak, who is also the chairman of the Cayman Musicians and Entertainers Association, said numerous other local musicians feel the way he does about the headline.

As with all previous articles about polls, the headline indicated the sentiments of the majority of respondents.

‘Let’s dissect the Compass poll,’ Mr. Nowak wrote in a statement. ‘More than 42 per cent responded YES, play local music,’ he said, referring to the fact that 15.2 per cent of respondents said yes, no matter what the format of the station, and 27.6 per cent said yes, only if the music matched the radio station’s format.

‘Format or no format, who cares,’ Mr. Nowak stated. ‘The point is that 42 per cent said yes, play local music.’

Acknowledging that 53 per cent of respondents indicated the radio stations should play what they want, Mr. Nowak stated the stations should play what they want.

‘But don’t forget about the 42 per cent that said yes,’ he said, adding that the figure proves radio stations wrong in their contention that the public does not want to hear local music.

Mr. Nowak also indicated the sampling size of 508 was not big enough, given Cayman’s population of approximately 42,000, meaning just more than one per cent voted in the poll.

‘Of that, almost 50 per cent said yes, play local music, and just a tad over 50 per cent said no, let the stations play what they want.’

Mr. Nowak offered a different way at looking at the poll results.

‘Only one per cent of the island voted, so that means 99 per cent don’t care if local music is played, so let’s play it!,’ he said. ‘Sure, I’m being sarcastic, but no more sarcastic and prejudiced as the page 9 headline in [the 24 May] Caymanian Compass.

Mr. Nowak suggested the Compass could have used a headline for the story something like: ‘Poll proves radio stations wrong: The public wants local music.’

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