50K SURVEY: RESULTS

Last modified: Saturday, January 6, 2001 6:20 PM

I'd like to thank everyone who participated in the survey, and especially those who wrote those flattering comments. :^) As I said, it was mainly to satisfy my curiosity, but I thought some of you might be interested in the results too.


 

number of responses: 31
  1. Your age group:

    less than 10 years old:    0%
    10-17 years old:    6%
    18-25 years old:    19%
    26-30 years old:    23%
    31-40 years old:    32%
    41-50 years old:    13%
    more than 50 years old:    6%

     

  2. How would you characterize your involvement in customizing?

    I don't customize, but like to look:    6%
    Just started within the year:    45%
    Been doing it for more than a year:    48%

         

  3. Please rate your interest in the following topics:

    TOPIC:    INTERESTED    NEUTRAL    NOT INTERESTED
    World War II:    45%    35%    19%
    Spy/Secret Agent:    61%    29%    10%
    Star Wars:    55%    26%    19%
    Alien/Monsters:    71%    13%    16%
    Medieval/Fantasy:    66%    28%    7%
    Movie Personalities & Themes:    67%    23%    10%
    "Full-figured" Females:    80%    17%    3%
    Reviews:    77%    20%    3%
    Technical/How-To articles:    97%    3%    0%
    Reference/Software Tools (javascript):    41%    52%    7%
    Captioned Photos (humor/stories):    79%    21%    0%

     

  4. Do you feel that stronger content warnings are needed for the sake of children who might browse this web site?

    Yes:    10%
    Don't know:    23%
    No:    68%


    DEBRIEFING

    The 31 responses weren't a huge sample, but this wasn't exactly an event of cosmic importance. The results weren't totally surprising either, since if you think about it, it's like a self-fulfilling prophesy: People visit because they're interested in the subject matter, and survey participants are probably aware of what I'm interested in... which is what winds up as the subject matter. Well duh!?

    QUESTION 1: The age distribution is pretty much what you'd expect. GI Joe is at heart a baby-boomer phenomenon, which places the largest clump in the 31-40 year old group. Although Joe was introduced in '64, his popularity lasted into the 70's, with the Adventure Team series being the biggest sellers. Recently, there's been a resurgence of interest in 12" articulated figures, following a general trend of increased interest in toys by teens and adults. Also, the material at the web site is related to modeling -- this has always held interest by a wide-ranging age group.

    It's interesting to speculate on why the curve drops off at the younger age categories. I believe that it's probably true for a more "standard" Joe web site's audience, as well. My guess is that sci-fi and media-centered toys and video games probably compete heavily for leisure time attention at these age categories. This can also be a very expensive hobby!

    The reason why I asked this question was to verify who I thought the target audience was. I have been concerned that my tone was too "adult" and cynical for a really young audience. Again, whether this is the result of the "self-fulfilling prophecy" (SFP) or not, it's a welcome relief to know that the really young ones are staying away (or don't answer surveys).

    QUESTION 2: No surprises here. This mainly shows that interest in customizing figures is growing. Quite a few people have taken up the hobby with the year, and I don't see that trend as changing. The overall hobby is growing and customizing is a natural extension to an interest in GI Joe. (I'm glad that some non-customizers out there find this stuff interesting too... Sorry for the really boring stuff!)

    QUESTION 3: I think the results were heavily influenced the SFP thing, plus the inadequately thought-out survey... I slapped the sucker together.

    Most surprising was the relative disinterest in both WWII and Star Wars customs, which are very popular subjects for customizing. My supposition is that because this web site isn't devoted exclusively to either of those topics, it attracts those who are... well, not interested. In those areas I've become more of a consumer than a customizer, since so much great stuff is coming out from those guys with factories.

    The "Reference/Software tools (Javascript)" category scored lowest in the "interested" rating and highest in the "neutral" rating. This probably was because it wasn't a very good category, since I hardly knew what it meant! The popularity of "Full-Figured Females" wasn't surprising, but the "captioned photos/humor" was. I like the strange/funny stuff, but I wasn't sure if anyone else did. Great, now I can recycle material.

    QUESTION 4: Moral judgements are difficult territory, since there are so many different attitudes about stuff which falls in the gray area. Other than an occasional obscenity, the content here really isn't worse than anything one could see on TV, as one respondent noted. Whether that exonerates, or whether stuff like this contributes to the decline of our civilization, is debatable. Personally, I find it very weird that you can be responsible enough to be drafted to kill people, but at the same age, not responsible enough to drink or smoke. Somehow it all makes sense, I suppose. Although the majority of the responses didn't believe a stronger content warning was necessary, I put one on anyway.

     


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