How we measured Americans’ feelings about football and the Super Bowl

SoFi Stadium in Inglewood on Sept. 12, 2021.
(Gary Klein / Los Angeles Times)

The LA Times/SurveyMonkey poll set out to measure feelings about football and Super Bowl, both in the U.S. as a whole and in the Los Angeles region.

Each day, a huge range of organizations — schools, churches, bowling leagues, companies and more — use SurveyMonkey’s online platform to poll their members, customers or associates.

In total, more than 2 million people take SurveyMonkey polls on an average day, giving the company access to a broad cross-section of the American public.


To conduct surveys on questions of broad public interest, like this one, SurveyMonkey randomly selects some of those people and asks them if they’d be willing to take an additional online poll. Those who say yes get a survey to fill out.

As with traditional telephone surveys, the results then are weighted to match standard Census Bureau measures of the nation’s population — to make sure that the sample mirrors the nation’s distribution of age, race, gender, geography and education levels.

The result is a representative sample of the adult population.

In this case, the poll, which was developed jointly by SurveyMonkey and The Times, was conducted in English and Spanish from Feb. 1-7 among a national sample of 7,590 adults. The sample included 1,659 Californians and 743 people who live in Greater Los Angeles, which encompasses Los Angeles, Orange, Ventura, San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

As with all polls, the results are subject to sampling error. For this survey, the modeled error estimates are 2 percentage points in either direction for the national sample, 3.5 percentage points for the statewide California sample and 5 percentage points for the Los Angeles metro area.