Inane questions in surveys

For the most part I quite like doing surveys, and I'm signed up with a few survey companies. I like the political and more general surveys rather than the consumer ones, although a lot are of the latter type.

What bugs me most, though, is the sort of questions they ask about some consumer products. Things like how 'close' I feel to the company, and I just don't, as a matter of course, feel close to companies I buy products from. They sell me a product I want to buy and that's the end of our relationship.

One type of question I particularly hate is where they ask me to associate certain words with a product, or ask me to describe my emotional attachment to it. I had one on cleaning fluids the other day and the options were things like:

When using this product, do you:

  • Sing Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah in joy?
  • Declare your love for the company by sending them roses?
  • Grab your tinkle in priapic excitement?

Okay, I'm exaggerating there, but if you do surveys you'll know the sort of question I mean. It's a cleaning product FFS — how thrilled can a person be by it? Sometimes all the answers reflect good, positive emotions, whereas if the cat's just thrown up and I have to use their product to clean the floor, I'm going to be angry, grumpy and swearing a lot.

Another sort of question I hate is where they ask if I know about a particular brand and, after I reply in the negative, they still go on to ask my opinions about it anyway. I swear this is true — I had that sort of question about Tampax the other day.

Then there's the questions where none of the answers are relevant to me and there's no 'I don't know' option. I just have to lie to get the survey to move forward and that's a waste of my time and theirs.

Is it just me? Do people really get feelings of joy about a company that manufactures their cleaning fluids, washing-up brushes or cat litter?

Article tagged with: Misc, Opinion