WSJ.com - How Insiders Were Fooled: "Thanks to lessons learned four years ago when big media made some wrong calls, the average American watching television Tuesday night got a pretty accurate picture of how the election was going.
But for about seven hours in the afternoon and early evening, several million 'insiders' with access to exit-poll data -- blog readers, print journalists, TV executives, politicos and their e-mail buddies -- had a different impression.
Aided by wishful thinking in some cases, many were convinced that John Kerry was benefitting from a powerful voter surge. The news largely wasn't reported on TV or in newspapers, but for much of the day, the nation's tech-savvy intelligentsia was zigging when everyone else was zagging.
What happened? The early exit polls were wrong in some cases. And some insiders disregarded warnings from the exit pollsters that theirs is an inexact science. By comparison, most pre-election polls were quite accurate: They gave President Bush a narrow lead nationally, and correctly identified the battleground states."