• United States
News Editor

Someone call Ballmer’s mom

Apr 14, 20062 mins

They’re fun and I vote in my fair share, but online opinion surveys also suck (even the ones we post). I’ve said so before.

Even though they suck — self-selected samples yield sucky data, they just do — these polls also sometimes produce remarkable results, as in you can’t help but remark upon them. Take, for example, this poll posted Monday, April 10 on this site and headlined “Favorite Microsoftie.” Voters were asked to choose from four options: “Bill,” “Steve,” “None of them,” and “That guy I knew in college who I think works there now.”

Twenty-six people this week have taken the time to participate in this silly exercise — including yours truly.

The top vote getter with 10? … That guy people claim they knew in college.

Second place? … None of the above — with 9 votes.

Third? … That would be the world’s richest man, who tallied seven votes.

Leaving Steve Ballmer to bring up the rear with — and if you’ve kept a running tally you’re already ahead of me — not a single vote. Zip. Nada. Goose egg. … Ouch.

Now zero-for-only-26 might not seem so horrible to some, but keep in mind that those are just the people who voted. We can’t tell how many others saw the opportunity to toss poor Steve a mercy vote and yet declined to do so.

Honestly, someone needs to send that link to a Ballmer friend or relative. This just ain’t right.

News Editor

In addition to my editing duties, I have written Buzzblog since January, 2006 and wrote the 'Net Buzz column in Network World's dearly departed print edition for 13 years. Feel free to e-mail me at