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Results of the 2006 ATS Visitor Survey

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posted on Jul, 25 2006 @ 09:07 PM
Our 2006 survey of members and visitors has concluded with an amazing 2,350 respondents in one week of polling. This was the first demographic and psychographic survey we've done in which we also invited unregistered guests to also participate. And there are some interesting surprises.

Question One
First up, we asked our users: "How often do you visit ATS?"

As you can see, the single-largest group are those responding this is their first time visiting ATS with 670 users or 28.5%. However, if we combine the users who responded "every day" and "several times a day", we have 889 respondents (38%) who are daily visitors.

Question Two
Next, we asked our users: "What is your age?"

This was a significant surprise. In past surveys of members, the 18-25 age group was by far the largest single group on ATS, however, now the older 25-35 group makes up the majority of users at 584 or 25%. And an additional surprise was the decline of the "under 18" group, which now represents our smallest at 237 respondents or 10%. While it's clear from comments in our discussion forums that many members assume a dominance of younger users, these numbers contradict that assumption and paint a picture of a much older audience than was assumed.

Question Three
We asked our users: "What is your education?"

Following the older skew of question two, the responses here followed by showing a high level of education that in past surveys. 1,691 respondents (72%) indicate they are either in college, or have graduated with degrees as high as Doctorate (3%). Past surveys of members have shown a reasonably impressive number of college-eduated users, but the responses to this question indicate an even high level of education.

Question Four
Next, we begin to ask our users questions related to ATS and our topics with: "How long have you been interested in the topics covered by the discussions on ATS?"

This was the first time we asked such a question, and the response is eye-opening. 1,010 users (43%) responded they have been interested in ATS topics for as long as they can remember. But 364 (our second highest group at 15.5%) indicated that this was their first exposure to our topics (we hope we were gentle)... that means that about half of our first-time visitors have some degree of "conspiracy or alternative topics experience".

Question Five
And now for the biggest surprise of the entire survey as asked our users: "Which of our topics interests you the most?"

The hands-down winner by a significant margin was Aliens &UFO's, followed by Government & Military secrets, followed by "Other", followed by Religion & Paranormal, and followed by Science, followed by 9/11 conspiracies. Only 8% of you selected 9/11 Conspiracies as the topic that interests you the most, placing it 6th out of 10! I was personally astounded, flabbergasted, bemused, befuddled, and generally confused. If we observe the quantity and frequency of discussions surrounding the possible conspiracies related to the attacks of 9/11, we would certainly draw a very different conclusion that the results of this question.

Question Six
And the surprise continued as we asked our users: "Which other topics are you most interested in?" (Respondents were encouraged to pick all that apply.)

Even when given the opportunity to select 9/11 conspiracy topics as a secondary or tertiary interest, our respondents still kept that topic in the sixth overall position. Government & MIlitary Secrets won the day in this question, with Science and Religion & Paranormal following closely behind.

Question Seven
Now it's time to see what people think of us as we asked our users: "Please rank your overall opinion of the topics and discussion on AboveTopSecret"

An overwhelming majority of 1,077 picked "very good", followed by an impressive 607 indicating "the best on the Internet." These numbers combine for 1,684 (72%) responding that our members are either very good, or the best their is. Excellent work.

Question Eight
Next, we asked our users: "When not on AboveTopSecret, what else do you do online?" (Respondents were encouraged to pick all that apply.)

There are not many surprises here as the responses generally jive with nearly every other online survey of user habits and trends. However, there is a slight skew where our users tend to be more likely to be active on other discussion boards, and a startling 2.6% who indicate there is nothing else they do online other than visit ATS.

Question Nine
Now we asked a few conspiracy-related questions: "Do you agree with this statement: There have been and continue to be deep government conspiracies and cover-ups?"

A significant majority of 82% agreed with that statement, and only 3% disagreed. This would seem to be a reasonable distribution given that other sources and anecdotal data indicates that most people believe in some level of government conspiracies.

Question Ten
Our next conspiracy-related question asked: "Do you agree with this statement: The popular mainstream media has been hijacked as a means to control and influence thoughts, opinions, and knowledge of the general public?"

A surprising 71% majority agrees with this statement, while only 8% disagree. This is a rather strong conspiracy-related statement, and it is somewhat of a surprise to see such strong agreement, especially given that in this survey, we have the input of a large number of first-time site visitors.

Question Eleven
Our final question asked: "Do you agree with this statement: A conspiracy exists in which the U.S. two-party political system has been systematically manipulated to created an environment of automated attacks of the "other side" over mundane issues as a means to deflect serious discussion away from important topics?"

Again, a very strong conspiracy-centric question resulted in a heavy-skew in favor of belief in the statement. Nearly two-thirds (63%) of respondents agreed with that sweepingly deep conspiracy statement, while those disagreeing are in the "single digits" at 9%. Also, a large number, 28%, indicate they're not certain which shows this is our most difficult question.

This survey was by no means a scientific analysis of general opinion as it is a completely voluntary poll of visitors to during a one-week period in July of 2006. However, the sampling of users is our broadest yet with 29% of respondents reporting their first visit to ATS and 16% reporting it was their very first exposure to conspiracy-related topics. Because of the broad base of respondents, some interesting findings have emerged.

9/11 Topics Are Not Important to Our Visitors
Topics related to 9/11 conspiracies ranked sixth overall in both topics that most interest visitors, and secondary topics that also attract interest. This quite literally an earth-shattering surprise for us. Given the volume of topics and frequency of new topics, we expected a very different result. This indicates that the users interested 9/11 Conspiracies are either a very vocal small group, our our users are growing tired of that particular conspiracy subject.

ATS Visitors are Well Educated
This is by no means a dig at our current members, but it has long been assumed that our user-base is heavily skewed toward high-school aged users. However, our survey indicates an overwhelming number of users with some college or college degree. In fact, more than half of all users report have attained some type of degree.

(more conclusions coming later, I wanted to get the data up)

As of Novement 1, 2006, a total of 49,172 people took this survey, but there has been no significant change in the ratios presented above.

[edit on 1-11-2006 by SkepticOverlord]

posted on Jul, 25 2006 @ 09:09 PM
Many surprises here... The biggest of which is the fascination with aliens over conspiracy!


posted on Jul, 25 2006 @ 09:18 PM
I am not so surprised that aliens and UFOs rank number one in favorite subjects. Seeing how it is perhaps the oldest continual conspiracy subject of modern times, and more and more people are taking a serious look at UFOs and aliens now that a rash of stuff has been declassified.

I suppose the reasons for the drop in 9/11 conspiracy interest is the constant circular arguing over insignifigant points that keep getting rehashed over and over again. Thats why I opt out of most 9/11 conspiracy threads now. Ive argued what I felt is important, and frankly, arguing whether or not a missile hit the pentagon is a non issue and one not worth wasting time with. I suppose alot of others have been turned off by that paticular aspect of 9/11 conspiracy. That and arguing over the WTC explosives/demollition stuff.

Other than that, the only thing Im surprised by is the age grouping.

posted on Jul, 25 2006 @ 09:25 PM
Doh! I though question four was asking for how long we have been interest in ATS for, so I clicked 2 years.
But now I would change my vote and say I’ve always been interested is these topics.

One more thing, I’m a big military buff, so when I answered yes to the question of whether the US government was/is involved in a conspiracy/cover-up I voted yes because I was mainly thinking about "black" programs, not of some nefarious evil plot or anything like that. Anyway great poll, interesting results.

[edit on 25-7-2006 by WestPoint23]

posted on Jul, 25 2006 @ 09:42 PM
I find the age ratio very pleasing indeed, is nice to know that we have a mature audience and growing.

That makes the quality of the thread very attractive to the more educated crowd.

But the best of all is that ATS still holds its rank as a UFO information side.

That is what got me here the first time.

posted on Jul, 25 2006 @ 09:56 PM
Informative poll to say the very least about it.

The members polled shows that we have an educated, mature, well-informed group of members. They are concerned with issues of much greater import than the 911 attack...the concept of alien existance and it's eventual proof will have a much greater effect on humanity as a whole, imho. There could be no greater revelation in the history of mankind than the introduction among us of beings from another system.

I think this is good news for shows we're truly a global phenomenon focussed on wider issues than any one country provides.

I don't wish to minimize the impact of 911 globally, but there are potentially greater repercussions to the discovery of an alien presence.

Another reason why we have so many mature members is the effort made toward making ATS a civil place to debate. No one enjoys the types of one-liner trolls and
frivolous flamefests which other boards allow. It's that regulated behaviour here which fosters intelligent, yet heartfelt, discourse without fear of low minded mockery which draws the type of membership represented by this poll.

posted on Jul, 25 2006 @ 09:57 PM
Interesting results overall. Based on such (and I understand it isn't a scientific survey) I would be interested to hear whether the big Three still consider ATS a conspiracy oriented website? There seem to be a diverse range of interests now, and while some elements of conspiracy can be found in nearly all catergories, my gut feel is that there are a lot of threads not based on conspiracy per se, but the quest to understand complex subjects. "Deny Ignorance" may have evolved from conspiracy discussion, but it is a perfect mantra for all things discussed on ATS.

I'm not saying that ATS isn't or shouldn't discuss conspiracies, I'm just interested to see if S.O, Springer and Simon feel that things have changed over the years from their initial concepts and goals for the site.

Thanks for the work in breaking down the poll Skeptic, much appreciated by all

posted on Jul, 25 2006 @ 10:10 PM
Some of the results of this poll are the very reason why I choose to spend my time here. Well done, ATS.

[edit on 25-7-2006 by loam]

posted on Jul, 26 2006 @ 01:40 AM
Man, and here I was thinking it was only for people visiting
(meaning non-members), I can't believe my ignorance sometimes.

Not alot of the poll surprises me, I mean with Alien&UFOs being the mos tpopular, that's to me sorta obvious, I mean considering how many threads are created each day, and how many posts/replies are created as well.

The 9/11 thing does'nt surprise me that much either, I've always thought of it as being a small group of people.

Well, I applaud our Skeptical Dictator for making the poll, and for taking the time to do the math and figures to break down the results.

posted on Jul, 26 2006 @ 02:50 AM
Hmm ATs'ers want more reptilians
.Seriously 80% of my posts were in the ufo\alien section but i voted 9\11 and WOT as my intrest points.I am jawdropped just like any other user.I thnik it's time for the 3 amigos to concentrate more on ufo's,ET.May i suggest more interviews with guys like staton friedman,david icke and john lear.

posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 01:36 PM
Wow nicely done and there were even pie charts. And I think everyone who reads my posts knows how much I love pie...even in chart form.

I certainly wasn't suprised at any of the answers. Though I would think the age group skewing older could have to do with long time members who were in the previous demographic when the joined but are now hitting the 25-35 range.

Loyalty to ATS seems pretty solid, but agian not a statistician so I'm probably wrong about this.

My only concern is that there is nothing in this survey that talks about how gotdang good lookin' we all are, that should be corrected in the next survey.

Hey a mirror, gotta go.


posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 02:00 PM
Hey Springer and SkepticOverlord.. Young people are curious and want to know about thing s they cannot find in their local or national news -- tv or pages.

I believe ATS is a great site 'cause of ideas. I suspect ideas from members are brought to the ATS threads out of the same interests. Are they here, are they real and how can I capture one on vid/cam? or really any other way.

Great charts Amigos.


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