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3 Another possible variable to predict forecast accuracy would be whether a voter had been following the polls. Unfortunately, this question was never asked in these NES data (with the exception of a 1980 panel). However, we do have plentiful data on media usage, which would be the vehicle for poll-watching. The media variable (see Table 1) is significant in only two of the eight contests. Thus, while information about polls is available almost exclusively through the media, the tendency to be a heavy media consumer makes little difference in our model. Furthermore, and perhaps more important, there is evidence that, although poll stories have become a much more common news event over time (e.g., the number of poll stories on American network television news broadcasts more than doubled between 1972 and 1980), the overall ability of the electorate to predict the winner of presidential elections follows no such time trend (see Figure 1).