Has anyone worked out the average number of active posters who are active at any one time?
Zeldar, as the resident statistician (and many thanks for your ongoing efforts), do you - or any other interested parties - know how many active Dopers there are at any one time? By active, I suppose I mean the number of Dopers who have posted at least once in a month, and then that figure averaged out over a three, six and twelve month period. That way, we’d know roughly how many active posters there are at any one time. And whether the number is rising or falling.
Interesting questions that I have tried at various times to address. And thanks for the kind words, and recognition.
It’s been a while, but I tried by way of several (at least two) threads to get “lurkers” to speak up. Many did. I’ll retrieve links to those threads in a little bit for you.
There was a time, back when the “stand and be counted” threads (I’ll link to those, too) were a hot topic that one of the other folks used a data mining app to retrieve lots of data from profiles and such and he (I believe it was a he) had some good results that might be expanded on.
I’ll be back with data in a little while.
Good idea, by the way. I know Giles seems to be keen on this sort of thing, too.
VBulletin readily gives you this information. You can plug in any period of time and it will tell you how many users have logged in during that time. Most message board Administrators make that statistic visible on the front page. For some reason, the powers that be here have decided that this is Super Secret Information that must not be shared with the rabble.
It’s possible, albeit tedious, to get an accurate count of some universe of Dopers. Go to the “Advanced Search” page. Where it says “Search by User Name,” type in three letters and/or numbers. A list pops up of all Dopers who start with those three characters. Count that list. Repeat this procedure 46,556 times to account for all three-character combinations.
Maybe someone could make this their Ph.D thesis and get funding.
This probably covers all Dopers present and past, though.
If I understand you correctly, that would give us all the people of have registered on the SDMB. I am interested in how many different people post on the Dope at any one moment. From that, it can - or should be - not too difficult to find out how many are active in given periods.
It hadn’t occurred to me though that, as hajario has mentioned, this may be super secret information. If this is so, I apologise, and I will be happy to backpedal gracefully and exit stage left from this enquiry. (Or should that be inquiry?)
While I await TubaDiva’s response with baited breath, I can’t see that it should be a problem. I can see how it might affect advertisers to know how big an audience they’re selling to, but only in the same way as the current age breakdown threads could help them target the products they’re pushing; and those threads haven’t invoked the ire of TPTB.
Except, on reflection, if it turned out that there were only, say, three active participants, that might reduce the advertising potential somewhat.
At the bottom of the main SDMB page you’ll see this sort of thing:
What’s Going On?
Straight Dope Message Board Statistics
Threads: 533,537, Posts: 12,122,242, Members: 88,875
Welcome to our newest member, GonzalezVic
You could keep a file of this sort of data and monitor how it changes over the time frame you’re interested in.
10-4 on the labor intensive. You can see why and how TPTB have left it to us to code around their unwillingness to share such secret data.
My suspicion is that even if we could get right at the data itself, there would still be a fair amount of guesswork in coming up with average anything.
My own usage as an example. I had been away for months without even checking in. Then a month or so ago I jumped in with both feet so that what had been 0 posts per day for quite a while has jumped up to more like 30 posts per day. The average wouldn’t tell you much about my actual usage.
Yes, but it’s not anyone’s usage that I’m interested in. Once someone has made a post in a given time frame, he’s on the scale. It’s the number of posters who have been active (and one post in this scenario is active) in a given period.