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Friday, February 25, 2011


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Ricco Saenz

Hum, why do so many surveys have those race/ethnic fit-yourself-in boxes? That ethnicity classification presented on the survey may sound quite clear in the US, I don't know, but... see, I live in South America - I was born in South America - but I'm not from any "Spanish Culture" origin. OK, you can call me Latin-American (don't call me Hispanic, please, I do not come from a Spanish speaking country/culture), but... South America also has 2 countries which are not "Latin" at all - and 3 countries and one territory which are not former Spanish colonies. How are you gonna classify them? (Oh, and how will the Caribbean people fit the categories presented on the survey?) Also, I'm not sure any "Latin" identity would really encompass other identity keys (black, Asian or whatever) for those who are not in the US - maybe they will, maybe not. But ok, even by taking the standards presented on the survey, I don't feel it's accurate to say I'm "a person of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American or other Spanish culture or origin regardless of race". See, it seems to imply that people from South America are all from some "Spanish culture or origin" - which I'm not. Also, is Mexican culture "Spanish"? Are all people in Mexico from "Spanish origin"? See, I think that classification may not work even for people from former Spanish colonies. Oh, wasn't Texas part of the Spanish colonies in the Americas? Maybe there are people from Spanish origin there. How about the Spaniards themselves? Are they European or Latinos? I mean, they are from a Spanish culture (probably the only Spanish culture out there) and from Spanish origin. Oh, wait, some are Basque, some are Catalan, some are Galician... Damn, this is getting too difficult. OK, I can always choose "other" for my ethnicity/race, but I have the feeling that the survey was made to put me in the "Hispanic or Latino" category, so... I just feel uncomfortable with that. Maybe it's just me being over sensitive about it. But why, not being from a former Spanish colony, would I fit the same category as Mexicans? Let me guess: because in the US people would classify me as "Hispanic"... Well, even if it's like that in the US (and this is just a hypothesis), it doesn't work everywhere.

CronoCloud Creeggan

The survey was pretty good...asked the right questions to get some interesting info. And it was nice to be acknowledged in the gender selection dropdown box (transgender male to female)

My avatar is usually somewhat between 2 and 3 on covered up-ness. I show more skin than #2 usually, but not as much leg as #3

Kim Anubis

Some of the fields would not accept my responses and instead displayed a notice that I needed to use positive numbers even though I was giving it positive numbers. Perhaps it was shocked and just didn't believe me when I estimated how much I've spent on avatar accessories over the years?


Kim A. - did you only enter numbers? Maybe it didn't read it properly if you entered commas or letters into the box.

Kim Anubis

No letters or commas ... I think it must have expected s certain number of digits and my answers didn't match.

Dale Innis

That was fun. :) It does make some assumptions (like that AVs have a fixed gender), but that's natural. I got slightly stuck on a page that had nine things, and ten boxes to fill in to rank them. It wouldn't let me continue until I'd filled in all ten boxes, so I don't know what I gave a "0" to! Or maybe all of my answers were shifted by one...

Gwyneth Llewelyn

1) A word of advice to all academics doing surveys: don't ask for people's skin colour, gender, age, or annual income at the beginning of the survey. Recent research has shown that this will influence survey takers, who will not respond truthfully but according to stereotypical, expected behaviour for that specific class. Ask your other questions first, then put these last. I wish I could find the paper which has published this astonishing result of research, and how decades of "bad" surveys might have precipitated the wrong conclusions, even though the researchers had otherwise done a good job! (By contrast, marketeers that have this paper are now fond of influencing results by asking those types of questions at the very top to make sure they get the answers their bosses or clients wish to hear :) )
2) I also agree with Ricco above. For a non-US resident, for whom it would be actually shocking (not to say discriminative and anti-constitutional) to ask for someone's skin colour, I'm always baffled at the type of reply I'm supposed to give, because all those classifications make little sense to us Europeans. Italians, Greek, Turks, and coastal Croatians have very likely a similar skin colour but would all resent being classified under "Hispanic"; by contrast, most Spaniards I know have a lighter skin colour than the coastal Portuguese; which of us would be "Hispanic" and which would be "Caucasian"? Anyway, the colour scheme for the hand that is shown on one of the survey pages is a far better indicator, since it doesn't attach any labels to the skin colour. It's just a colour. Skin colours change over the course of the year, anyway...
3) Dale, you're right; on that page I had to View Source to see what the first option actually was. I have no clue why it wasn't displayed properly, as it certainly was in the HTML...
But it was still an intriguing survey; I'm quite curious as to the results!

Gwyneth Llewelyn

Hrrmpf I missed a closing tag above; Hamlet, when are you going to dump Typepad and start using a real CMS with proper comments like WordPress? ;)

Gwyneth Llewelyn

... oh, and it floods the rest of the comments too! *siiiiiiigh*

Hamlet Au

Gwyn, I hate Typepad and would love to switch to WordPress, but I'm really afraid of how much the move will hurt my testicles.

Nica Pennell

The racial questions were a bit tricky for me too, since my avatar isn't human and doesn't come from an Earthly cultural background. Also, as a satyr, not wearing pants doesn't exactly equate to immodesty. Oh well. Hopefully I've provided them a fun little outlier to cull out of their data. At least the gender stuff was relatively straightforward. :)

Oh, and one question was definitely broken for me, question 11 asked me to rank ten things from one to ten and provided ten text boxes to enter numbers in, but there were only nine items in the list. Pity there wasn't a general feedback section at the end I could leave a comment about that in, hope whoever's running this notices this blog post and comment thread here.

Nica Pennell

Heh. And I just now re-read the earlier comments myself and noticed that the broken question was mentioned already. What was the "hidden" option, out of curiousity?

Hitomi Tiponi

I started filling this in but it seemed to have the usual 'self-esteem' type questions that the scientologists suck you in with and are based on pseudo-science psychology, so I gave it a pass in the end. A bit too American for me.

Laetizia Coronet

There. Tag closed.
Indeed, surveys which ask for ethnic backgrounds are very much an American thing, and so are the descriptions in this one. Still, I got by very well, being that my choices are simple enough.

Now I'll just rez a chair on the village square in Cowell and wait for the money to roll in, thank you very much :)

Wizard Gynoid

it's not hard to *game* this survey. it's pretty apparent what the agenda is.

Ravyn Rozensztok

That was an interesting experience. It seemed to want me to 'fess up to using my avatar as slutty idealized extension of myself that I have to use meet needs that not being fulfilled in my real life.

Do SL players really perceive avatars as real people? In this age of twitter/facebook/linkedin I react to avatars as virtual characters guided by real people sitting at a computer - just pretty dolls that are made of bits and bytes - not as actual beings that I invest any feelings of lust, love or affection for.

To me an avatar has always been just a slightly more animated and prettified social message delivery system.


A lottery is a form of gambling which involves the drawing of lots for a prize.Lottery is outlawed by some governments, while others endorse it to the extent of organizing a national or state lottery. It is common to find some degree of regulation of lottery by governments. At the beginning of the 20th century, most forms of gambling, including lotteries and sweepstakes, were illegal in many countries, including the U.S.A. and most of Europe. This remained so until after World War II. In the 1960s casinos and lotteries began to appear throughout the world as a means to raise revenue in addition to taxes.


A lottery is a form of gambling which involves the drawing of lots for a prize.Lottery is outlawed by some governments, while others endorse it to the extent of organizing a national or state lottery. It is common to find some degree of regulation of lottery by governments. At the beginning of the 20th century, most forms of gambling, including lotteries and sweepstakes, were illegal in many countries, including the U.S.A. and most of Europe. This remained so until after World War II. In the 1960s casinos and lotteries began to appear throughout the world as a means to raise revenue in addition to taxes.

Academic Assessment

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