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October 11, 2004

Getting to Know You

The results from the art blog readers survey are in. 198 readers responded, 15% of whom read this here weblog on at least a weekly basis (9%, or 17 respondents, once or more daily). But there are so many figures to sift through I don't know where to begin. I could really use someone to Tufte-ify this stuff for me—I am a visual guy for Christ's sake. Nonetheless, some quick first impressions...

Just for the sake of solidifying Tyler Green's status as Art Blog Dean, let me note that MAN rather unsurprisingly runs away with the frequency-read stat, blowing away the competition with 62% of readers (114 of 185 respondents) checking in once or more daily (and, I believe, his is the only site that the majority of all respondents read more than "occassionally"). Tyler's nearest competitor checks in with 28% (47 of 168) reading once or more daily, with third place at a healthy 22% (35 of 157). (Note that a few listed weblogs that most certainly should've ranked with MAN, notably greg.org and About Last Night, did not advertise the survey themselves and so are probably not effectively represented here.)

Moderately surprising stat (to me, anyway):

How old are you?
30–39 (40.9%), 40–55 (27.6%), 19–29 (24.9%), 56 or over (6.6%), 18 or under (0%), with 17 readers skipping the question

Truly outstanding stat:

How often do you travel outside your home region specifically to see art (e.g., a museumís permanent collection or a special exhibition)?
2–4 times a year (38.3%) + 5 or more times a year (20.2%) = 58.5% (107 of 183 responses, only 15 abstaining).

Some comments excerpted—grist for the mill:

"My biggest problem with most art blogs is that they don't post enough... As a contemporary art collector in the lower midwest, I really want/need more interaction with people who care about the same things I do."
"The first list of blogs that were provided, many of them i had to say that i read only occassionally or not at all, not because i dont like them, many of them i think are fantastic and would read everyday, but sadly they are updated so infrequently that i dont even bother to check for new content anymore."
"I am most rewarded in reading the art blogs when I find myself wanting to go see whatever the writer is referring to, or nodding my ehad [sic] in approval or disapproval with whatever is written. All of you, keep it up. It's a great service and I hope more people start doing it. Thanks."
"The major cities ought to have Better artbloggers."
"Too many blogs have names that sound the same."
"OK. What the fuck. I can only read artblogs and see art, for that matter, because I make a point of NOT doing surveys like this -- which are usually put out by corporations in search of some way to better sell something I don't want."
"My only request of art bloggers who visit commercial galleries, when possible, is to try and list prices."
"Maybe a consortium of artblogs?"

More from Todd, Todd and Caryn.

"Getting to Know You"
Posted by Dan at 02:19 PM



What I am most interested in seeing is over time how the various blogs change due to the survey.

Play Ball!

Posted by: Zeke on October 12, 2004 at 12:21 PM

I think I'm mostly interested seeing any changes over time that might register in possible future surveys.

Caryn of abLA and Todd of Gallery Hopper both expressed surprise at the meager number of respondents. I too was a bit surprised but must admit that I had no clue what to expect.

We kind of lack context here as this is the first survey of its kind. What it does provide, though, is a benchmark.

Posted by: Dan on October 12, 2004 at 05:32 PM


As both Caryn and Todd are in way larger cities than Montreal, I can understand their surprise. Although, from my perspective as long as someone (including myself) blogs only about visual art, there is a limit to how many people are going to read it.

Using a 10 to 1 ratio for the respondents, we come up with about 2,000 people reading art blogs. My gut tells me that this sounds reasonable, although if I were to pluck a number out of the air, I'd pick 3,000.

I agree with you about it being a benchmark (although if most galleries don't have benches, shouldn't we call it something else?) and look forward to the next one.

Play Ball!

Posted by: Zeke on October 13, 2004 at 12:32 PM

Referenced in this post:

About Last Night
Art.Blogging.LA: Survey Says
Edward Tufte
From the Floor: Art Blog Readers Survey Results
Gallery Hopper: Art Blog Survey Results
Iconoduel: Brother Can You Spare Some Time?
Modern Art Notes