Friday, May 02, 2008

Local Elections England/Wales - how bad?

Really bad, really, really bad. The beeb are still insisting on going more and more down the road graphically orientated tom foolery with Jeremy Vine when what they really need are Charlie McCreevy and Ivan Yates arguing over the direction of the transfers of the Ballydehob local bigwig on the anti fish scale tax party.

One problem for me is that they only report seats gains and losses not the % that a party got in which council area. With 1st past the post it is possible that a disaster decline can be masked or that a minor gain can translate into a large seat gain. The national vote share projection is some help but for the really nerdy amongst us (I'm saying us so I must be including myself in that number) we want to see how the % vote has changed in each council. And nowhere on the beeb site can I find that. And they appear to be completely at a loss as to how to report on the Mayoral count with the only semi useful quote being "With 27% of votes counted in each of the 14 electoral areas - Mr Johnson has the lead in 9 while Labour's Ken Livingstone is ahead in five." how big are the 9 areas compared to the 5 and ahead by what margin! God help me but with a few dozen Tallymen we'd have a projected first count at this stage on 27% of the vote counted, and we'd have some idea where the 2nd choices were going. And this in the birthplace of parliamentary democracy.

Update: according to the Guardian blog there are screens at the count centres that are giving the 1st preferences and 2nd choices as they are counted. So why is no one reporting the actual numbers? Do they think people can't understand them?

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