Don't Be Counted!

By Nicholas Levis

October 12, 2007:

Today many of us received a long e-mail addressed to "Dear 9/11 Truth Movement Member," purporting to be from an anonymous "psychology student in the New York City area" ( It asks for participation in a "9/11 Truth Movement Survey" consisting of 80 mostly multiple-choice questions that will eat up a good part of your day. Among its stated goals, the survey is aimed at finding out "Who the TM members are and how they gather and communicate information," "What attracts people to the TM," "Why they stay involved and become activists," and "Why they drop out."

I am urging everyone not to fill out this survey and not to forward it to anyone else - except perhaps as a warning - and in general, never to respond to anonymous requests for personal information.

However, if you feel so inclined, since the sender already has your e-mail, perhaps you should respond to urge him or her to announce an immediate cancellation of the survey. In that case, you can include a link to this article.

Here are a few of the problems to consider:

- The surveyor does not make clear how the e-mail list of recipients was harvested, or why the recipients should be considered representative of the abstract concept, "9/11 truth movement," which the message does not attempt to define. The surveyor's invitation to forward the survey to others also means responses will be received from people he or she did not contact in the first place. What is to prevent those who actually oppose the very idea of a "9/11 truth movement" from also responding, so as to taint and distort the results?

- Even if one believed in the utility of such a survey and in the possibility of accurately delimiting the "members" of a group known as the "9/11 truth movement," the approach remains wildly un-scientific. No serious professor should be allowing it. A self-selected group of e-mail respondents do not constitute a random sampling of the group under study, and therefore cannot yield generalizable results about that group. (In this case, those whose instinct is not to respond are likely to constitute the majority, with good reason.)

- Yet once the results end up in the public domain, which they will thanks to the anonymous surveyor's stated intent to "share the results with all participants," they will be used and exploited as though they constitute an accurate picture of "the 9/11 truth movement."

- While certain to be inaccurate due to methodology, and invalid due to its inherent assumptions, the results of the survey may still affect those who self-identify as "truth movement members" by either reinforcing or discouraging opinions they already hold. This will favor group-think over critical assessment of one's own chosen facts and opinions. Are we genuine skeptics or followers? Are we activists or navel-gazers?

- The survey evinces no interest in the truth of any given statement per se, only in the opinions of people who self-identify as members of the "truth movement" (which is perhaps coyishly abbreviated as "TM," indicating a brand name). If we are a movement with goals for political change proceeding from "truth," we should care less about which ideas are more or less popular amongst us than about how to confirm or disprove these ideas empirically and, if we can confirm them, how best to convey them to a larger public.

- A great many of the questions including the first 27 are indistinguishable from a standard marketing or product-development survey, in this case aimed at a "wired," youthful demographic. The questions are designed to identify what kind of consumer you are, whether you belong to Internet "social networks" like Facebook (a "none of the above" category is not included for that question), how many podcasts you consume, etc. Regardless of the surveyor's intent, the results will serve as fodder to those forces who are determined to treat "9/11 truth" exclusively as a niche market for consumer products.

- There are hundreds of known exponents of 9/11 research and 9/11-related activism. The multiple-choice questions offering a choice of one's favored "spokespersons" are restricted to a handful of such persons, and a bias favoring the new and spectacular will be obvious to anyone familiar with the names on offer as potential "9/11 truth spokespersons." These names are by no means a representative sampling of active or potential "spokespersons," and at best indicate that the surveyor hasn't bothered very much to research the movement or its history. (If you have read the survey, you will know what we mean.) This is also true of the questions relating to favored films, news sources and especially radio programs - which for some reason are restricted to a long list of the mostly-similar offerings available on two radio networks only (GCN and RBN), with a couple of tokens thrown in from "Air America."

- All of the above is aside from the question of whether having a "best spokesperson for 9/11 Truth," especially one determined by a survey, is a good thing.

- Once again: Who is this anonymous "psychology student," what is his or her institution, and why should we believe any statements about the survey's intent? How do we know this isn't going to turn into yet another attempt to distract away from the political issues 9/11 truth addresses, and to focus instead on the purported psychology of "truth movement (TM) members"? (Note also the surveyor's possibly ominous interest in "Why they drop out" of the movement.) Regardless of the surveyor's intent, that is exactly how the results will be used by others, including the so-called "9/11 debunkers" who may themselves provide a large number of the respondents as a hoax.

Counting you can act as a way to put a cap on your numbers. By definition, a movement static enough to count is no longer moving, but has been splayed out on a table for dissection by its academic superiors. Don't let a "psychology student" or any other uninvolved academic purporting objectivity define who we are. And most of all, don't let any definition of "who we are" substitute for the dynamic struggle for truth in the public sphere, which is what our actual purpose should be.

You could also fill it out

You could also fill it out with all the wrong answers. Tell them we get our orders from the White House. That should pollute their info pool.

Respectfully, I think that would be a bad idea...

Because these false answers would then be presented as true representations of the "truth movement" and treated as such by debunkers and the like. I think if you respond in any way, it should be to demand that the surveyor announce the cancellation of this survey.

"Truth is not measured in mass appeal."

Show "NO!!! Because, I say BE counted." by Erin S. Myers

I am using my real name and that should suffice.

"Truth is not measured in mass appeal."

"Suffice", funny you say that.

Did I single you out? I think not. But I did single out an article titled "Don't Be Counted".

What did I say about it 'on balance'? Something about BEing counted... by putting every bit of one's self upon the scales that someone else may try to use against you/us.

How to foil attempts at compromise? By beating someone to the trick.

What can it tell you/us/me when we see someone trying to intimidate, embarrass, or counter the efforts trying to uncover the whole truth? That your real name and character, personal, unique, distinguishable from billions and billions of others... when combined in harmony, even in few, against a War of Lies, even an enemy of many... is a weapon of truth unstoppable.

Did this receive equal attention on balance with the suggestion about a birth name as the example? If vote points and posted comments are the implied measure... I still wouldn't know. But I'll trust my friends will have read it, and will practice as they see fit. See you at choir practice then.

Take care,


post the questions,. that would be telling!

well come on! you are not going to leave us just with that,. you gota post the questions!!! I'm more interested in what they are asking,. I would never respond to such a crazy questionare however the questions they ask could be quite telling. post it as a pdf or text file so we can all read it and get an idea of what they are after. could just be a bad student project,. or as you say an attempt to misrepresent peoples opinions,. however like you point out the 'study' is flawed on the face of it so would not likely be taken as serious anywho,.

Show "Feel free to vote down and collapse." by Phaedrus

Don't leave out the introduction, it's also telling...

(Check out the very first words in the e-mail received from Dr. Anonymous.
& Please vote down to collapse!)

SUBJECT: 9/11 Truth Movement Survey: Your Help Needed!

If you are no longer involved with the 9/11 Truth Movement and do not wish to participate in this survey, please type an X here and send it back to me: __

If you were never involved with the 9/11 Truth Movement, I apologize for this unwanted email. Please type an X here and send it back to me:__

To the other recipients of this email, please forward it to the 9/11 Truth Movement members on your mailing lists. Thank you!

9/11 Truth Movement Survey

Dear 9/11 Truth Movement member,

I am a psychology student in the New York City area. Over the past year I have been moderately active with the 9/11 Truth Movement (TM). I have an opportunity to do something through my schoolwork that may help the TM, and hopefully will help me pass my sociology course, which is about social change, activism, and the internet. The questions below are designed to give us in the TM a better understanding of these issues:

Who the TM members are and how they gather and communicate information
What attracts people to the TM
Why they stay involved and become activists
Why they drop out
What role the internet plays in TM research and activism, and how that can be improved
What the most common goals of the TM are and which are seen as most achievable
What TM members view as the most and least successful elements of the movement
What strategies should be stressed to increase membership and achieve the TM goals?

Assuming I get enough completed surveys, I will collate the results and share them with everyone who has responded. I'll remain anonymous for now. In the past I have expressed opinions about some aspects of the TM that I don't want to influence anyone who completes the survey.

While it's unlikely that I will be a major Truth leader, perhaps by doing this small thing I, and we, can help others on the front lines put this information to good use.

Completing the survey

I considered making this an online form, but decided against it. I believe this format will give you more flexibility in your responses and will keep replies from those not in the TM to a minimum. Of course, you don't have to complete this in one sitting. You can copy and paste this into a document and complete it at your leisure offline. I would like to receive all responses by Friday, October 19.

Where you are asked to make a single choice, please indicate it with an X to the left of your choice. For instance, if you choose item 2 on this list, your reply should look like this:
1) Duck
X2) Spoon
3) Fern
4 )Street

Where you are asked to rank items by order of preference, put a 1 next to what you think is the highest/best/most important/most preferred, and mark the rest in descending order . Indicate the rank by writing the number to the right of the choices. In this case, "Fern" would be your favorite, and "Duck" your least favorite:
1) Duck 4
2) Spoon 3
3) Fern 1
4) Street 2

If you do not see the answer you want, please write it in. PLEASE WRITE IN ALL CAPS.

Thank you for taking the time to complete this survey. Please return it to me at

The Questions

Personal information and email addresses will be kept strictly confidential. While it's important to me that your responses are as complete as possible, if you feel a question is too personal you can leave it blank.



"Who the TM members are and how they gather and communicate information"

I'd say that's probably a very large part of what they're after.

Assuming there is a "they"

I'm avoiding speculation on what cannot be known. Taking the survey at face value, as though its author is exactly as claimed (an occasional "truth movement" supporter), my point is to show the many ways in which this is a bad idea no matter its possible hidden intent. Above all, a survey like this encourages the disturbing trend and mindset within the "TM" itself toward smug emphasis on one's identity as a "member" (and consumer), as opposed to rejecting static definitions of "what we are" and caring more for "what is to be done," i.e. striving for actions that actually change the state of the world (including changing the composition and role of the "TM" at any given time).

Evolve or die.

"Truth is not measured in mass appeal."

This is in large part a hunch...

"They" was intended to be gender non-specific AND/OR a suggestion about the number of persons responsible for the email.

As you may recall, Portland was the subject of a big anti-terrorist/emergency response "table-top exercise" in August called Noble Resolve and next week will "host" TOPOFF 4. A number of things happened during NR that suggested to me that one hidden aspect of it might well have to do with collecting data about how a potentially resistant community might gather and share information, possibly to use for the benefit of TOPOFF. More of the same seems to be going on in the build-up to TOPOFF as well. It seems to me increasingly possible that there is an entity or maybe many entities which have been tasked with learning more about the ways in which new technology is intersecting with communities of resistance.

Frankly, I'm not too worried about attempts to quantify various aspects of "the TM" apart from this aspect because the methodology of this study is so bankrupt on its face that I'm not sure even marketers would put much value in it.

All true enough...

But remember, and I'm not disagreeing with you on anything substantive: bankrupt methodology is what market studies are usually all about - especially when it's a contracter or independent consultant selling the bullshit to a client, no standards ever need apply, reality is strictly what you can con the client to swallow. Every word of this particular study smells of someone who purports niche marketing as their profession, probably still on a student level. (Practically all of these words - marketing, profession, student - probably need to be in quotes.)

"Truth is not measured in mass appeal."

My take on it:

quote from intro: "If you were never involved with the 9/11 Truth Movement, I apologize for this unwanted email. Please type an X here and send it back to me:__ "

This means the "student" (mossad probably) has already somehow gathered a truher list (Google is Israeli owned) because if he sent this e-mail randomly to everyone he would't ask for non-truthers to return the mail by typing X-es simply because it would involve to much people !
If non-truther people of his list would return the mail, the "student" could improve the selection criteria for the new list! A perfect list is the ultimate goal of course to lock us away as terrorists in front of the sheeple and the information provided by the survey is a bonus for the criminals as we would do their job. Brilliant.

Ergo, everyone who received the mail should return it with an X as this can only make the situation worse for the "student"! (or ignore it)

Where do you get that?

I see no reason other than a reflex assumption (based in a prejudice) that the student is likelier to be "Mossad" as opposed to any other possibility (all of which are speculative - face value in this case will suffice to critique the survey on its own lack of merit). Nor am I going to accept "Google is Israeli owned" or see the relevance of Google to this matter at all, without your even bothering to provide a substantiating reference. This is paranoia. Do you know where you stand?

"Truth is not measured in mass appeal."


1- of all the speculative possibilities one might be more probable than the other; you assume they are all the same which is only true if you have not any information at all which is silly after 6 years!

2-Israeli spies were all over the place during 911, just watch this FOX piece on youtube
israeli were caught celebrating the attack, later telling on national TV they were "documenting the event"

There was and is a lot of intelligence collection going on so it is probabable that this student might be part of it.

3-Google, one of the biggest search engines, collects all kind of search data which could be very valuable for secret services.


Are you so ignorant or am I so paranoia?

BTW: What is truth measured by in your opinion?

Absolutely do not respond to

Absolutely do not respond to this "Survey"

Last year someone did the same thing using to initiate a survey here on blogger.

Point is this, unless the person doing the survey can be verified you might be handing over valuable information on how to destroy the truth movement.

This isn't the first time a survey has been collecting IMPORTANT information to better understand us, and it will not be the last.
Truth Revolution: The Eleventh of Every Month

Crash the Boards.

Crash the boards over at Bill Maher's Overtime blog...

He said he thinks we should all be on Paxil. Let's tell him what we think of him. Or take the nice and polite tact. Whatever you think will work. Peace.

Show "Esoteric aspects of 9/11" by Al uh Looyah

Smells like another conspiracy smasher scam job

Richard D. Brinkman
I think someone has too much time on their hand at pretending to be funny, I'll wager those jokers at conspiracy smasher fabricated this scam...

Great job Nick!

Great job Nick!