I’m looking at a nice consumer benefits survey report.
The organizers asked the participants the standard sort of questions to assess whether they had access benefits such as critical illness insurance, short-term disability insurance and long-term care insurance.
The access and take-up rates reported seemed high.
Then, it hit me: The rates might be high because the participants were pretending to know what some of the benefits were. A significant percentage of them may have no idea how to tell the difference between critical illness insurance, short-term disability insurance and a hole in the wall.
When possible, organizers of this sort of survey ought to start including fictional, somewhat absurd options, in one or two questions, to verify what the baseline level of fake answers is.