India perceives poorly, 12th on ‘misperception index’

Forbes magazine

New Delhi, Dec 21 :The proverbial “wisdom of the crowd” is not all that reliable when it comes to Indian public, going by an online survey which revealed a wide gap between what people thought to be true and what actually was.

According to the MORI Perils of Perception Survey 2018, done by Ipsos India, an independent market research company, Indians stood at 12th rank in the “misperception index”, behind several countries like, Italy, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea, Chile and Argentina, among others.

The countries which performed poorer than India were Thailand, Mexico, Turkey, Malaysia, and Brazil, which were ranked first in five, in that order.

Among the questions which revealed the wide chasm between what people perceived and what was real, was the number of Muslims in the country. Participants, who were asked this, guessed the number of Muslims in the country to be at 32 per cent of the total population, whereas the actual number was 14 per cent, the company said in a press release.

Their guess was even poorer when it came to number of immigrants in the country, which they estimated to be 24 per cent on average, while in reality immigrants constitute less than one per cent of the total population.

When the participants were asked about the size of Indian economy out of 200 countries, the people underestimated even that, putting it at 50th position, while in reality India is the seventh-largest economy of the world.

Most interesting was Indians’ guess at how many times their compatriots engaged in sex in previous four weeks. Guessing liberally, they estimated women to be doing it 27 times and men to be at it 32 times. But the number stood much lower at three, for both the sexes.

The survey was conducted during September 28-October 16 this year in 37 countries online.

The people surveyed for the study in India were not nationally representative and referred by the surveyors as “Upper Deck Consumer Citizens”.

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