Many thanks to all the readers who responded by leaving their stats in the comments. I’m surprised and gratified to hear from so many lurkers!
I’ve shut down the comments now so that I can collate the results and summarize them in a new post.
A few days ago our Norwegian correspondent The Observer translated a delightful article from NRK — Norway’s official state broadcast service — about the demographics of the patrons of “Islamophobic” websites. Gates of Vienna was specifically listed among those sites whose readers fit the following profile:
Single, childless men over 65 years, with little or no education are overrepresented on Islam hostile websites, according to a survey done by Klassekampen [“Class Struggle” — a Norwegian communist newspaper].
I’m certain that Andreas Malm and Tor Bach, the authors of this useful report, are far better statistical analysts than I. Unfortunately, NRK does not describe these experts’ investigative methodology, except to say that they “used the internet analysis tool Alexa” to discover the characteristics of the average Gates of Vienna reader.
By a happy coincidence, Dymphna and I have been handed our own batch of statistics on the demographics of our visitors. Nearly a hundred readers, most of whom usually lurk, were prompted to comment on the translated NRK report, and many of those volunteered data about themselves.
I extracted the demographic information (age, sex, marital status, number of children, and level of education) for fifty-one of those commenters. It’s not a very large sample, given the thousands of readers who stop by here every day, and it’s very much a self-selected group. Based on NRK’s report, one might expect that the typical Gates of Vienna reader is too feeble-minded, rheumy-eyed, and palsied to read the “Captcha” characters and utilize the comment form properly. So self-selection and the senile incompetence of our readers could well have skewed the sample.
Still, our results are probably at least as meaningful as those cobbled together by Messrs. Malm and Bach.
Demography is destiny, so toothless and cretinous septuagenarians who cling bitterly to their Islamophobia are destined to become Gates of Vienna readers — if, that is, we believe those erudite geniuses at Klassekampen.
However, if our modest sample is any indication, a surprising number of men and women destined to read this blog turn out to engineers, surgeons, law students, and various professionals of all stripes.
The data drawn from the comments included 13 women and 38 men — that is, more than 25% of respondents were female, hardly the cesspit of testosterone posited by Mr. Malm. The youngest was 15, and the oldest was 77. The mean age of the participants was 43.6 years.
The level of education for the average volunteer was about halfway between a bachelor’s and a master’s degree.
More than half (54.9%) of the respondents were married. The average number of children for each (including all the childless participants) was 1.25.
For the purposes of this study, I’ve constructed a statistic called the “Concupiscence Index”, which counts being married as one point, and then adds an additional point for each offspring. The scattergram below plots concupiscence against age, with color-coding to distinguish the men from the women:
As you can see, the women in our sample are somewhat older and somewhat more concupiscent than the men. The graph also makes it clear that the demographic bulge for both sexes is well under the bitter-clinger age of 65.
For those who are interested, here’s a tabular breakdown of the educational level of people in our sample:
|< High school||2.0%|
And this is a grouping by age:
|70 & up||5.9%|
Below are various comments which contributed no data to the statistical study, but may be of interest to our readers.
First, an overview from Egghead:
The archetypal GoV reader is a person with a brain AND a conscience who wants to see Western civilization survive in all its past, present, and future glory.
Also, from another reader:
Probably the one factor most GOV readers have in common is some knowledge of history.
This comment made me laugh the loudest:
If this guy [Andreas Malm] actually had access to the bond markets, well, no wonder Europe’s broke.
On the methodology:
The ‘research’ is almost certainly the result of the ‘One Big Idea’ syndrome, and the ‘big idea’ in this case is cultural relativism, multiculturalists categorise anyone who is critical of this delusion as socially or intellectually isolated, or just barking mad.
Where do they find this tosh?
Anybody who is SERIOUS about protecting women and girls from rape, sex trafficking, bodily mutilation, enslavement, and other abuse will focus on the area where the problem is by far the most severe: the Muslim world.
From Seneca III:
The desperation, the desperation! Their search for explanations to challenging opinions in areas where only a modicum of intelligence can provide a rational, carefully reasoned riposte is pitiful.
From Beach Bum:
Nice to see all these upstanding people speaking out against the falsehoods presented about them in the Norwegian MSM.
From a man whose “political sympathies lie with the historical Left”:
If you told me 5 years ago that I would today be against any immigration of non-whites into any European countries I would have told you that you were mad.
From a young man in the UK:
I’m usually less agreeing with most of you, and I’m not particularly politically minded. I think it’s the fact that the Islam question so to speak has got to the stage where it’s getting people involved who normally wouldn’t.
I’m currently debating a vehement leftist, who is also a very strong environmentalist. Yet his views on Islam are more in line with really far to the right bordering on fascism.
From our youngest participant:
I’m a man sure, but I’m 15. I can tell you now that there will be no ‘‘class struggle’’ in my country, not whilst I’m still breathing!
From a “proud Norwegian”:
Though this so called survey shames me to the roots of my patriotic heart. I read håvamål and meditate on the verses’ meaning and how I can use them to evolve as a person, I read history and many other genres of literature.
And finally, this commenter probably speaks for most of our readers:
We have been here the whole time, just on mute.
A note on the methodology
As mentioned above, the data used in this study were drawn from a very small self-selected group, and thus cannot be said to signify anything, statistically speaking.
To make the results even less certain, lacunae in the data — concerning sex, age, education, marital status, or the exact number of children — were filled in by deduction and guesswork.
Readers who match the demographic profile listed by Klassekampen could have overwhelmingly avoided commenting on that post, skewing the distribution of age and other characteristics of those who decided to comment. Additionally, the commenters who did respond could be liars.
So who knows how reliable my analysis is?
However, I’d be willing to bet that it’s at least as reliable as the communists’ conclusions summarized in the NRK article.
And, unlike the study conducted by Andreas Malm and Tor Bach, our methodology is transparent and well-described. Anyone who wishes may harvest the same comments, fill in the gaps using the same sort of guesswork, and draw up their own version of the same statistics using widely available computer software, a hand calculator, or a pencil and paper.
There’s no sleight-of-hand or flimflam here. I’m biased (and proud of it), but I don’t let that influence my calculations.
Math is math.