Bloggers thrash Apple analysts at predicting stuff


Quoting analysts is a common way to make tech news look less driven by opinion or corporate PR: the analyst gets identified as an expert and the reporter gets a second source. But the deal is a rotten one, because analysts often seem no more aware of industry goings-on than the reporters who quote them.

Now, if that were true, you'd expect some objective survey of professional analysts' predictions to come out no better than that of bloggers. Perhaps a couple of brilliant ones would kick ass and justify the herd's status as dispensers of wisdom for media and investors.

Turns out that the pros are, according to Fortune, almost all worse than amateurs. The difference is so stark it can hardly be accounted for by chance: either Fortune's methodology was contrived to make them look bad, or professional analysts have a systematic bias toward saying things that turn out to be inaccurate. [Fortune via Daring Fireball]