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The AboveTopSecret.com Membership Demographic Profile

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posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 07:21 AM
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ABOUT ABOVE TOP SECRET The ATS Demographic Profile Summary of our demographic survey of members. Currently, the audience that visits and participates in AboveTopSecret.com is the largest and most active of any other online community dealing with similar topics (politics, political cover-ups, extraterrestrials, and related current events). Over 1,200 registered members visit every day and over 2,000 visit every week. Our members contribute between 2,500 and 3,000 new messages (or posts) on a daily basis, attracting over 30,000 unique non-member visitors every day. The raw numbers, while impressive, do little to help us and visitors understand actually who our members are. Often, external analysts may review our basic subject matter and cast doubt on the actual nature of our membership. Our first-ever demographic survey clarifies our amazing members, and explains why the quality of our community content attracts so many visitors. First, a core understanding of the type of person who contributes to online discussion board communities. It's been long established as far back as 1992 by CompuServe and America Online (and more recently by Jupiter Research) that regular participants in online discussion groups are typically regarded as "thought leaders". This means that, in their offline circle of friends, these people tend to have a strong influence on the opinion and actions of their peer group. Those who regularly participate in these discussion communities do so out of a desire to learn and share their opinions with as many as possible. While people who engage in online discussion regularly do so behind a fictional persona, the offline psychographic profile is still one of a typical "thought leader". A summary of the survey details from 723 respondents (33% of weekly visitors) is provided below. On the whole, the ATS member is very well educated, male, over 26-years old, is extremely loyal to the community, and a has been a member more than 6 months. Age and Gender The single largest demographic age group on ATS is the ever popular 19-25 segment. 26% of all survey respondents reported being in this age range. If we project to a "digital" or "millennial" demographic of 13-25, our "digital generation" audience segment is slightly over half at 51%. However, 48% of the online membership of ATS is 26 or over. This was a significant surprise as we expected a much younger skew of our membership. (update: as the survey extended to one week, we saw these numbers shft slightly -- in the first few days of the survey, our audience skewed slightly older, indicating our older members are those who tend to visit daily.) No surprise is a strong male-centric skew with 86% of all respondents reporting to be male, and 14% reporting female. Typically, online communities as a group tend to be more of a male dominated environment, but our numbers or more male dominated that reported industry averages. Education Fully 71% of survey respondents report "some college" education or higher. This means the ATS membership is among the most educated of all online discussion communities, with industry averages reporting that 63% of community members have "some college" education or higher. In addition, 34% of respondents report a 4-year degree or higher. Length of Participation A reflection of the overall loyalty of membership is seen in this category. Slightly more than 53% of members report coming to ATS for more than nine months. This is much higher than the reported industry average of 5 months for the typical online community member's active period. (update: during the first three days of our survey, this number skewed less than 50%, perhaps indicating a portion our long-time members tend not to visit every day.) Frequency of Visits Another exceptionally strong indication of the loyalty of the typical ATS member is clearly shown in the reporting of how often they visit ATS. Just over 75% of all survey respondents report visiting ATS every day (or more than once a day). Topics A final, and significant attribute of the extremely loyal nature of the typical ATS member is the reporting topics of interest. Nearly half (42%) of all survey respondents reported that no one single topic drew their interest, but rather the entire community is what interests them the most. The remainder of the topic choices were a statistical dead-heat with the exception of a significant spike in interest in extraterrestrial-related topics. Added Features The most important added feature of the core ATS community is the collaborative news portal ATSNN with 44% of all survey respondents reporting using it more than any other added feature. Our blogs and BelowTopSecret.com (off-topic general discussion) combined to total 41%, showing that many of our members enjoy the core topics, but also enjoy chatting on almost anything with other ATS members. Finding ATS Finally, as an indication of how well ATS is indexed in search engines, 51% of all respondents report originally discovering ATS through a search engine search. A strong "word of mouth" component was also reported, as 39% of respondents report first arriving at ATS through a recommendation (from a friend or website link). Complete survey results can be reviewed at: www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/survey/results7.php (These numbers have been updated and the report slightly modified after additional responses were received.)




posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 07:26 AM
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WooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooHoooooooooooooooooooo!

(technically two words I know)



posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 07:39 AM
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The results as a whole mirrors my excpectations. There seems to be a high number of intelligent as well as verbally skilled individuals in the community. However, it's a bit sad that there aren't more female members. How about a female recruiting campaign?



posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 08:08 AM
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I am not suprized. ATS has some of the best revolving staff there is.



posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 08:44 AM
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I was very interested in the age profile I wanted to know the average age of the people in the boards

Since I joined I had the feeling that most members were older meaning older than teens and with more than your average education, this and the maturity of most post is what it keeps me coming into this site.

It is good to read information and opinions coming from people that have knowledge of what they are addressing in the topics, not that I dont like to see some refreshing new sides from the younger generation after all they will be the leaders of the future and what they learn now will influence their decisions latter in life.

I am very satisfied with the results.



posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 09:18 AM
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I question the interpetation of "Topics" because there weren't enough choices. I had to pick "everything" because none of the forums listed were ones I liked. Now it may be that those forums are the most popular ones, but given that this is a survey, thoroughness requires the whole shebang.

That being said, my favorite forum is Miltary and Government Projects.

It would also be useful to segment sub results by length of stay at ATS. I suspect the results will be different.


[edit on 2-9-2004 by ktprktpr]



posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 11:01 AM
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I echo your sentiments ktprktpr. Not enough topics to choose from.



posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 11:18 AM
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A summary of the survey details from 448 respondents (20% of weekly visitors) is provided below. On the whole, the ATS member is very well educated, male, over 26-years old, is extremely loyal to the community, and a has been a member more than 6 months.


I AM Scifi....errr....I mean ATS.



posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 11:45 AM
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Originally posted by ktprktpr
I question the interpetation of "Topics" because there weren't enough choices. I had to pick "everything" because none of the forums listed were ones I liked.
That being said, my favorite forum is Miltary and Government Projects.


I agree, I had to pick campaign issues because my favorites weren't on there.. I couldn't pick everything because well I don't like everything.



posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 11:51 AM
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The 448 respondents is a good number for the period of time it has been up...I only hope that it stays up a bit longer so that we can gain a firmer knowledge of our demographics...statisitcal inferences can be made from what has been gathered thus far, but they can only be relied on to a certain degree....

If this is an Access data file, I'd be more than happy to dump it into SPSS and run some cross-tabs or whatever you guys may need/want...but I'm sure that's already in the works knowing you guys...



posted on Sep, 5 2004 @ 07:06 PM
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Now that over 700 members have responded, the actual survey results can be seen here: www.abovetopsecret.com... Thank you everyone for responding and helping us create a profile of the amazing members of ATS!



posted on May, 7 2006 @ 07:46 PM
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Over 1,200 registered members visit every day and over 2,000 visit every week. Our members contribute between 2,500 and 3,000 new messages (or posts) on a daily basis, attracting over 30,000 unique non-member visitors every day.


Come-on, you visitors!

Join in the fray and join today!

We look forward to your posts.



posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 01:01 PM
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Well, after reading through all of the demographics, and finding it interesting, I was wondering if we could have such a survey again at some point? It would be neat to see how things may have changed up, and if they still stay about the same.

I know that there is a lot of work going on with the new format of the site coming soon, but this would still be cool to check out. Just a thought.



posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 01:17 PM
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Originally posted by niteboy82 I was wondering if we could have such a survey again at some point?
www.abovetopsecret.com... The 2006 ATS Visitor Survey.



posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 01:21 PM
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I forgot that I had taken it.

There is no blush emoticon, so we'll just have to pretend.

Thanks SO. This is why I never can get offended by a blonde joke. :shk:

[edit on 11/28/06 by niteboy82]



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