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Saturday, January 07, 2006

SURVEYING THE RESULTS

I've compiled the final results of the New World Notes reader survey, my first attempt to get a handle of who you are that's reading this, what you find worthwhile with this blog, and what you don't.   251 readers took it-- my copious thanks to them all-- which means roughly 2-4% of total readership, a pretty good sample.  Nearly 96% of them describe themselves as Residents, which suggests that the survey skews at least slightly-- I'd estimate about 15-20% of my total page views every year come from mainstream press articles and non-SL blogs like Boing Boing, Joystiq, and Instapundit (to name a few that linked to NWN last year), likely clicked through by folks who aren't predominately Residents of Second Life.  Despite that, I think it's fair to assume this 251 is a pretty accurate representation of the most interested and dedicated readers of this blog.   

A selected summary of their opinion is below.  (For brevity's sake, just one-five of the largest answers in each category are displayed.)  Look for me to take this feedback into account, in the next twelve months of New World Notes.

REAL WORLD DEMOGRAPHICS

The average NWN reader is mostly male, young, American, and makes a wildly disparate income; a plurality work in computers and Internet technology, but a large majority are gamers and computer-savvy.

Gender
Male: 75.1%

Age range
26-35: 35.1%
18-25: 24.6%
36-45: 22.2%

Annual Income
Under $20,000:    27.3%
$20,001-30,000:  11.6%
$40,001-50,000:  10.7%
$30,001-40,000:  10.3%
Over $100,000:    10.3%

Locale
United States, East Coast........ 23.8%
United States, West Coast....... 22.2%
United States, Middle America.. 16.1%
Western Europe.................... 14.9%
United States, South.............. 10.5%

Occupation
IT/Computers......... 36.1%
Academia/Student.... 17.0%
Education/Training.... 6.2%
Media.................... 5.0%
Art/Graphic Design.... 4.6%

Other Software/Computer Use
Graphic Design (Adobe Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro, etc).. 85.4%
Development Coding Language (C++, Java, SQL, etc)..... 43.7%
Web Design (Dreamweaver, GoLive, etc)................... 39.7%

Computer/videogames besides SL

Play an hour or more per week: 59%

SECOND LIFE DEMOGRAPHICS

Most NWN readers are "hard core" participants of Second Life, though almost all of them spend at least an hour in-world per week.  Nearly 40% earn part of their real like income from SL, with over 10% earning at least enough to, say, buy a new computer, or even make an entire living wage from their efforts.

Average time in-world
Over 10 hours a week......... 58.4%
Between 1-9 hours a week.... 29.4%

Average annual real life income from Second Life activity
Under $1000....  26.7%
$1001-20,000... 9.4%
$20,001+........ 2.4%

NEW WORLD NOTES PREFERENCES AND BEHAVIORS

Reading NWN inspired me to...
Use my SL account to seek out subjects mentioned in NWN.... 53.5%
Has had no impact on my SL usage one way or the other....... 32.8%
Use my SL account more frequently in general....................19.1%

Chief interest in reading NWN

As a Resident in Second Life................................ 65.0%
As a fan of online worlds and online games in general.... 6.2%

Favorite kinds of NWN entries

About cool content (games/machinima/builds, etc.)....... 19.7%
'Slice of life' stories on the SL experience.................... 13.1%
Deep thought' entries on SL as a social phenomenon....... 13.1%
About artistic/scientific/educational applications of SL... 11.5%
About in-world political/social controversies................. 8.2%
Examinations of Linden Lab policies........................... 2.0%
Profiles of renowned Residents................................. 2.5%
Interviews with real life celebrities in SL (Doctorow, etc.).. 1.2%

Least favorite kinds of NWN entries

About sex and relationships..................................... 26.3%
Links to other SL blogs/websites............................... 12.1%
Interviews with real life celebrities in SL (Doctorow, etc.).. 11.6%
About in-world political/social controversies.................. 10.3%
Examinations of Linden Lab policies............................ 6.9%

Interested in New World Notes podcasts 
Yes: 43%

New World Notes Expos showcase the best in Resident-created content. The next Expos should feature...

Architecture.................. ....................................... 41.9%
Scripting.............................................................. 37.7%
Private islands/themed areas...................................... 35.6%
Educational, research & other non-profit applications in SL.... 35.2%
In-world Art........................................................... 32.6%

SOME REACTIONS AND CONCLUSIONS

I had been planning to devote more NWN coverage to the sexuality of SL (and still do, when the right story emerges), though I was surprised how many readers show a distinct disinterest in reading about it at all.

I'm also surprised how little interest there was in reading stories that examine Linden Lab policies, at least in the sense that I meant for that category-- coverage of LL rules and decisions when many Residents disagree with them.  It's possible most readers didn't interpret the selection that way, but a related choice, stories "About in-world political/social controversies", also drew tepid attention. 

I think last year's NWN coverage was fairly light on "slice of Second Life" stories, and aim to do more of those this year; similarly, I'm always happy to provide more blather on deep thoughts on SL as a social phenomenon.

Interest in NWN podcasts is substantial enough for me to try a few of those out; as it turns out, I already have plans to produce one with another blogger.

The survey, it should be noted, has already informed my coverage: high desire for a virtual archicture expo (which remained constant throughout the poll) is partly what inspired me to devote an entire week to the subject a few weeks ago.  I'll try to have an Expo for the other top-rated subjects (Scripting/Private islands/etc.) throughout 2006. 

The write-in request to host a "best llama avatar contest" wil likely, alas, go unfulfilled.

Posted at 10:09 PM | Permalink

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Comments

Unfortunately I missed out on completion of the survey, although I find the results very interesting.

I found NWN via a news article about SL (forget where) before I knew anything else about it, and found the articles difficult to understand and follow.

However, I did venture over to SL and becamse a resident, quickly catching the bug, and now seek out interesting articles on the subject. Those very same NWN articles are now of great interest, particularly the 'Slice of Second Life' ones and I do hope to be able to listen to a podcast shortly (Maxx Monde's is the only one I'm currently aware of).

Posted by: Flugel Flasheart at Jan 9, 2006 8:02:56 AM

Hamlet, we have no sex in SL.

We have no LL policies.

Wait. What I meant was. There's no LL policy on sex in SL.

Wait. I mean...hmm...

Posted by: Prokofy Neva at Jan 9, 2006 8:04:26 PM

How very curious. I'm quite sure I entered this survey but my age range doesn't show in the results. Was the software so astonished that it failed to grasp my entry altogether?

Posted by: Garnet Psaltery at Jan 10, 2006 3:15:20 AM

Heh. No, I only listed the most statistically substantial numbers-- generally, if a selection isn't listed, it garnered less that 5%.

Posted by: Hamlet Linden at Jan 11, 2006 2:40:53 PM

East Side represent!

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