We’re getting very close to when the federal election has to be called, so it’s a good time to walk through what will happen once we enter the formal campaign period.
Once the date is announced, the panel will be locked and no one else will be able to sign up join the panel. There will be no more short surveys once the election is called (although there may be a poll or two if the funding can be found). You must join the panel to be part of the formal campaign surveys.
Because we do not know when people decide who to vote for, but it has been estimated a third of voters decide in the last few weeks, there will be a survey issued each week of the formal campaign. This will come out at 6am Sydney time Thursday morning, and close at 10pm Sydney time on Sunday night.
If you miss one, don’t worry about it.
It is most important that you complete the ‘exit poll’ survey in election week that asks you who you actually voted for. To encourage people to do that as close as possible after voting, we’ll be giving away 5 $100 Visa gift cards, drawn randomly from the people who complete that survey by 7pm *in your time zone*. You must have signed up to the panel, completed the first or catch up survey, and the election ‘exit poll’ survey by 7PM on election day to be eligible to win. (Note: if you vote more than a week before election day, you’ll be diverted to the ‘exit poll’ survey rather than the normal survey in the week before the election.)
The first survey when the election is called will take about 20 minutes, as we’ll recheck a number of things like your electorate and who you think will win. The remaining surveys we will aim to keep down to 10 minutes. We’ll ask different things in each one, but a number of questions will be repeated – sorry about that, we know you get bored by the repetition, but we do need to ask who you’ll be voting for exactly the same way each time.
After the election there’ll be one final survey asking how you feel about the result – and then we’re done!
We’re also going to be putting up all the question blocks from previous surveys, so panel members can answer anything you may have missed and want to answer. This won’t change the results in any of the blog posts, but will be used to present a more complete picture of voter behaviour in the final report, and government reports, and academic writing on the election.
If you have any questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org or message us on Facebook or Twitter.