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The Return of the Worm:<BR>Introducing the NZ Election Reactor

Scoop Independent News has formed a partnership with leading polling company, Roy Morgan Research, to bring the original Worm back for the NZ 2014 Election.

Scoop Independent News and Roy Morgan Research
Joint Media Release

The Return of the Worm. Introducing the NZ Election Reactor.

Scoop Independent News has formed a partnership with leading polling company, Roy Morgan Research, to bring the original Worm back for the NZ 2014 Election.

Roy Morgan's online, mobile and live Reactor tools record the unvarnished gut reactions of voters, displaying how positively the public feel about specific things NZ politicians are saying on the television.

The Worm has frequently caused a stir in the US, Australian and NZ elections. The Reactor (the original Worm I) first appeared in NZ on TVNZ for the Election Debate in 2002. Then on TV3 in 2005, 2008 and during the live TV3 political debate in the 2011 NZ Election.

"The Reactor is ground-breaking as it enables crowd-sourced reactions to provide a precise picture of how specific developments, political promises and news events affect the public mood," says Scoop Publisher Alastair Thompson. "The art of political punditry is to interpret these things based on hunches and experience. The Reactor provides us pundits with data and evidence to back up our views.

"As a company with a strong lineage in digital innovation around election reporting, Scoop is delighted that in this, our sixth NZ election, we can innovate further and deliver a clearer understanding of just how NZ's democracy is working on the inside," Mr Thompson says.

Today, in partnership with Roy Morgan Research, Scoop has launched an interactive multimedia feature which we plan to run from now till the election on September 20th called Political Highs & Lows Of The Week.

Presented by Scoop, and powered by Roy Morgan Research's Reactor technology, Political Highs & Lows Of The Week will measure the immediate emotional reactions to the political messages which they are receiving in the broadcast media each week. 

A video clip of the previous weeks Political Highs & Lows will be compiled by Scoop and we will invite Scoop Media Cartel readers to participate by giving us five minutes of their time to tell us how strongly they agree or disagree with what the politicians are saying.

Initially the NZ Election Reactor will invite New Zealanders everywhere to react online with the Reactor. In the coming weeks we will also deploy the Mobile Reactor App to reach as wide as possible an audience.

If you’d like to take part in the 2014 NZ Election Reactor test.


The Reactor research method is particularly powerful for delivering insights into why voters are changing their views in the lead-up to an election," says Roy Morgan Research CEO, Michele Levine. "It shows us very clearly what resonates with the electorate and the issues that affect voters most strongly – positively and negatively."

"The Reactor has been proven over more than 30 years to be a remarkably accurate predictor of how electors feel about key issues and, ultimately, how they vote.

"In the 2013 Australian election Roy Morgan ran detailed post news event polling which showed us a significant portion of the vote could swing over a very short space of time, up to 3% in 24 hours or less, seemingly on the basis of a particular news ‘hit’ in the campaign.

"Identifying and understanding which elements of the political campaign cacophony are reaching the emotional core of voters is a key to understanding what is moving voter preference and why.

"These days elections in English-speaking Western democracies are almost universally coming down to the wire. And who wins in the end is often the party which delivers the most effective ‘emotional’ nugget to the electorate in the final days."

“This month, the Morgan Poll was hailed as the most accurate predictor of the results of the Indonesian Presidential Election, although the final results are yet to be confirmed as counting continues. In recent years the Morgan Poll has demonstrated a great deal of accuracy in several Australian Federal & State Elections including last year’s Australian Federal Election – the final Morgan Poll mirrored the election: L-NP (53.5%) cf. (ALP 46.5%)”, Ms. Levine said.

After each  "'Political Highs & Lows Of The Week" Reactor feature is published and tested the results will then be published with an overlay enabling the public to see how various segments of the population have responded to the clips.

For example, out of the first week’s video clip, we see strong positive reactions towards Prime Minister John Key from National voters – as would be expected, and a muted reaction to Labour Leader David Cunliffe’s apology for being a man. The strong opposition towards whaling displayed by Greens Party List MP Gareth Hughes scored a strong positive reaction from both Greens electors, Labour electors and supporters of Other Parties.

About the Reactor Highs & Lows of the Political Week

A cross section of over 300 voters from all over New Zealand gave their reactions to video clips of politicians in the news last week – continuously scoring their agreement & disagreement from 0 – 100.  The results are displayed as graphs in the Reactor player (the original Roy Morgan Worm).

When you view the results in the Online Reactor Player here, you’ll be able to analyse New Zealander’s reactions by Gender, Age, Voting Intention and Roy Morgan Helix Persona segments as well as access Metrics for even more detailed analysis.

Here is a representation of the Reactor results by Party.

Roy Morgan Scoop New Zealand Election Reactor - Week 1 Results

View last week's Reactor results here.

For further information:




Gary Morgan:

+61 3 9224 5213

+61 411 129 094

Michele Levine:

+61 3 9224 5215

+61 411 129 093

To help ensure that the accuracy of the results across the spectrum of New Zealand electors, Roy Morgan will be supplementing the crowd-sourced data with the responses of a selected panel of respondents taken from its 12,000 strong market leading Single Source Survey Panel.

We will be able to view segmented data by voting preference, gender, age and Helix Persona™ – Roy Morgan Research's revolutionary new segmentation system.

For more information please call Scoop's Alistair Thompson ( on +64 4 910 1844 or Pip Elliott ( at Roy Morgan Research in Auckland: +64 9 969 6950.



Roy Morgan Research

The Reactor and Scoop Media Cartel

Scoop Media is the publisher of, New Zealand's oldest and largest independent online news service. reaches 300,000 unique NZ visitors monthly and publishes around 1000 news items every week including a live real-time feed of political news and reaction. The Scoop Media Cartel is a group of leading NZ current affairs blogs which Scoop works together with to sell marketing services. Other sites in the Scoop Media Cartel include Russell, and

Helix Personas