Azara Blog: Scots allegedly want to keep British Summer Time

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Date published: 2010/10/30

The BBC says:

Scots are narrowly in favour of the UK switching to British Summer Time all year round, a survey has suggested.

About 3,000 people took part in the internet survey by energy firm Npower, as the UK prepares to move the clocks back one hour this weekend.

Keeping the clocks one hour ahead of GMT would provide more daylight in the evenings, when most people are active.

In the study 53% of respondents were in favour of the idea, while 35% were against and 12% undecided.
Richard Cotton, head of sales for Npower hometeam, said: "Our research found that the greatest annoyances about the clocks going back for people in Scotland are leaving the house while it's still dark (43%), having to have the central heating on (47%), and feeling a general lack of enthusiasm for the day (40%)."

It is unfortunate that the media perpetually give free publicity to companies and organisation pedalling these surveys. It is particularly unfortunate that the BBC does so. Not only are most surveys that are publicised not scientific (so the sampling is not random) but likely the questions are suspect so the answers are meaningless. The remarks by Cotton indicate that this survey is a bad one. So one of the advantages of the clocks going back is that there is more light in the morning (which of course is offset by the disadvantage that there is less light in the afternoon/evening). But Cotton remarkably claims the opposite, so that 43% of Scots are allegedly annoyed about the clocks going back because it (falsely) means "leaving the home while it's still dark". The other two things that Cotton mention also have nothing to do with the clocks going back. Indeed, all three things have more to do with winter in general than with the clocks. Perhaps the government should just make everyone happy and ban winter. Whatever, the BBC should not have given free and uncritical publicity to Npower.

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