Readers’ survey results

As you (hopefully) all know by now, I’ve been running a readers’ survey since before Christmas to see what sort of things you guys want on this blog, partly to make sure you all have fun here but also partly to make sure I don’t die an early death from over-work and stress.

Anyway, the polls closed on Friday, the results are in and what’s going to happen next is after the jump. I was going to use charts and graphs to break it all down, but that seemed like a lot of effort and would somewhat have undermined my point about not doing too much work.

First of all, I’d like to thank everyone who took the time to vote and let me know what you liked and disliked. I’d also like to thank everyone who said nice things about the blog: it’s very kind of you and much appreciated! I’d also like to thank those brave few lurkers – andrea, Ms Heathen, telesnap, Morjana and AndyB – who took the trouble to de-lurk. Thanks guys: if it weren’t for you, the blog really would have been doomed!

Here then are the results:

The daily news

Still by far the biggest drain on my time, plus doing it makes me get up early in the morning. If I ever get SAD, I’ll blame it. The big problem is it’s daily and there’s not much point in my doing it if I drop back the frequency, so it’s quite a binary thing – do it or don’t do it. For me, it was the most tempting of the blog’s features to drop since it’s anything up to three hours’ work a week.

All the same, it seems to be very popular with many of you – although not universally – and enough lurkers and near-lurkers voted for it to convince me that it has a place here, still. The fact that the writers’ strike in the US means it takes me a little less time than before to do has also helped to keep it on. However, the fact so few lurkers de-lurked to say they loved it, despite having over a week of encouragement, means it’s on probation and I reserve the right to dump it if I start wailing in pain and misery from stress at some point in the future or people give up commenting on it.

Although one person requested that Doctor Who/Torchwood/Sarah Jane news got integrated into the British TV section, no one else seemed to agree so it’ll be staying separate.

Film and event reviews

Erm. I hardly ever write them, no one voted for me to do more of them – or in fact mentioned them – so guess what: I doubt there will be any more.

DVD reviews

Again, no one mentioned them specifically. But the occasional one might still pop up in the future, if I’ve reviewed something for a magazine. Clearly, though, not many people find them useful so I won’t be going out of my way to do more.

The Carusometer/TV reviews

Well, The Carusometer turned out to be far less popular than previously thought. Poor old Carusometer. On the other hand, it does have a loyal bunch of followers. In terms of work, though, The Carusometer itself isn’t much effort – a half hour at most and that typically only occurs once per series (not season. Series) – so cutting back on it won’t actually accomplish much. It’s the watching that takes the time rather than doing a graph.

So here’s the plan on that front.

  1. For starters (and again the writers’ strike is going to help here), there are going to be no more Random Carusometers except very occasionally when I have the time and I’m craving the need to watch something, anything.
  2. There are going to be fewer third and fifth episode verdicts – if something’s truly arse in the first episode or I just have no interest in it, I won’t stick around to see if it’s gone up a couple of points (cf Cashmere Mafia, Lipstick Jungle, Painkiller Jane, Women’s Murder Club, Cane, etc), which should save me 3-5 hours per show.
  3. Since The Carusometer’s verdicts don’t seem to appeal so much, I’ll be switching to a simple numeric result (eg 0-5), rather than a “corresponds to” (eg “a show in which David Caruso would guest star as…”), which should be a little more comprehendible and less off-the-wall for some people. That is unless people stick up for the verdicts now.

There was a call from a few people for more reviews specifically of British TV. I’ve always held back on that for a couple of reasons:

  1. Mostly, I hate it
  2. The only potentially good stuff is in the evenings. I probably won’t be watching it but taping it then watching it the next day then reviewing it maybe the day after that. In the whizzy world of the web, that’s too slow and I’m not going to work weekends and evenings to remedy it. That way lies madness.

As a little test, I did review a couple of British shows to see how popular that feature might be and the results weren’t very encouraging in terms of commenting, although given this is a blog that’s really been about new US shows, old British shows and Doctor Who, that wasn’t wholly surprising (plus I did pick a few odd shows to start with). So British TV reviews probably won’t be cropping up as much as I’d planned and will be on probation as well. If things start to pick up, I might well try sitting through some more of the bilge; if not, it’ll be less than frequent and will be confined to the usual suspects.

Audio plays

Far more support for audio plays than for British TV, so that bit will be staying. Ms Rullsenberg’s suggestion of reviewing Big Finish’s back catalogue is a fine one, since it requires minimal effort, has no especial deadline and can keep me going for years. I doubt I’ll be expanding to other ranges, though.

Miscellaneous

Well, despite my pointing out things like The Canon, memes, et al, no one really asked for more of them specifically, so more general writing on TV, etc probably won’t be happening. On the other hand, there were quite a few people who said they enjoyed everything about the blog, and without it, this’ll just be reviews and news, which ain’t really that great in the scheme of things. So I’ll keep some on as the occasional glue that binds everything together. Questions and realisations did get an acknowledgement from at least one person so that will re-appear at random intervals. There was a request for more episode-by-episode reviews, which would be so much work, I’m not going to go there, although I am tempted to do the occasional recap. Book reviews I really don’t have the time for, I’m afraid, Scott.

Things to come

I’m going to be busy most of this week, so there won’t be much time for me to write about anything beyond Torchwood‘s first new episode, a preview of Jericho‘s second season and maybe (if I have the time, otherwise it’ll be shunted into next week) a one-off look at some new Canadian shows, including The Border, JPod and Sophie.

Longer-term, I’m working on a proper re-design for the blog to lift it out of the Web dark ages and give it more of a focus, although that’ll be a while in coming (for obvious time reasons). I’ll also be looking at older shows and movies that I have sitting around in my collection or I’ve seen at some point and which I feel like talking about. That will see the launch of the “Sepia-coloured Carusometer”, BTW. I can hear the cries of joy, already.

If, now the results are in, you realise that one of your much-cherished features is about to disappear now’s your chance to speak out, particularly if you haven’t spoken out so far – it’s not too late to save things or suggest new features! And thanks again for voting and indeed taking the time to read the blog at all! You’re all very kind.

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