Well, maybe it's not that simple, but it's not much more complicated either according to this poll, which bears out most of our basic prejudices.
Conservatives prefer Fox, Rush Limbaugh and NASCAR and dislike comedy; liberals prefer documentaries, the Daily Show, world music and a secular society; and the mushy middle, the moderates, have a taste for daytime television, self-helps books and Oprah.
More interesting to me is the demographic data used to separate the blues from the reds, found here. The fact that over 95% of conservatives, liberals and moderates said they were "very likely" to vote in a national election tells me the results are skewed by a faulty self-perception.
One can imagine a self-described liberal touting his habit of visiting museums, even though he hasn't been in years. Or a conservative railing against the crudeness of certain television, even though she faithfully TiVos Family Guy and Drawn Together.
But this is a blog, so we won't get bogged down in such nuance.
Among the least surprising findings about our entertainment habits:
- Conservatives were more likely to watch only two channels out of the 24 highest-rated networks: Fox and Fox News.
- Over 90% of conservatives said they never enjoy reggae, electronic music or Latin music. Over 95% said they never enjoy world music and punk music.
- Cerebral material like documentaries and arts and educational programming all appeal more to liberals, who are 57% female.
More surprising, or at least unexpected:
- "House": one of the very successful TV shows with almost an equal number of adherents across the political spectrum.
- "The Da Vinci Code": in almost every demographic category, except for the ultra-religious, this was the movie seen by the most people.
- News: over 70% of each political group said they watch the news everyday
One other interesting tidbit: conservatives seem to believe that TV, movies and books usually contain a political message meant to influence or challenge their beliefs, and think a person's viewing/reading habits correlate with their politics (Nearly two in three conservatives think it is possible to predict a person’s politics when they know the person’s entertainment preferences, while 55% of liberals and 50% of moderates agree.)