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The survey results

Before I report on the survey that ran last week on this site to gauge its performance, I’d like to take this opportunity to say thank you to all those who took the time to answer the questions. Perhaps, like cartooning itself, this is a solitary effort and sometimes it’s difficult to know just how well (or badly) one is connecting with the audience. This was a means of reaching out and allowing readers to tell me how the site is servicing the cartooning community. So thank you to the respondents.

The respondents were overwhelming professional, syndicated cartoonists – which makes sense – they are the target audience. Others included syndicate employees, gag/panel cartoonists, and lastly a few comic strip hopefuls and aficionados.

The overall response was quite positive with many stating that they appreciated the work I put into the site.

There were two negative comments – both of which deserve a response. The first was that for a site dedicated to cartooning – there are no cartoons and very little art (if any). I know just about every other blogs/news sites that deal in comic usually post some type of art related to the topic of which they are writing. I don’t know what agreement they have – if any – to use someone else work on their blog, perhaps such usage falls under fair use, or so common that nobody questions it, but I haven’t felt right about using someone’s work to further or enhance my publication. I can say that every piece of art that has been used has been with the written consent of the owner or representative of the owner. Toward the end of last year, I tried to get permission from syndicates to use official spot art, but they insisted on a case-by-case basis. Since I publish everyday and I start posting at 5:00 am MST, it became too much of a hassle to email my request, wait for a response, access the art, upload and republish the story with the art. I’ve largely abandoned such efforts for day to day posts. I would like to give props to Kathie Kerr at Universal who has been very professional and patient with me as I continually requested access to spot art. Thank you Kathie for working with me. Every employee that I’ve talked with at Universal has been very supportive of this site. Thank you.

The other negative comment was in regards to misspellings and punctuation. In response, I’d like to say – thank you for not letting me slide – for demanding professionalism. My aim is to provide a professional site, so I should take more care in to what gets posted. I’m evaluating various blogging software that has some spell checking and the like. I hope to have the going soon.

Here are the results to some of the questions.

When asked what types of stories were of most value, most valued the stories with links to other cartoonists in the news.
The other options from most valued to least are as follows:
News about controversies in the field
News about which papers drop or pick up features
News of newspaper industry
News of licensing deals
Book announcements
and lastly announcements of award winners

When asked about the least valuable types of stories they came in as:
Award winners
Which paper’s add and drop features
News of licensing deals
Links to other cartoonists in the news
News of newspaper industry

When asked about the types of features they’d like to see in the future – the overwhelming response was to include more featured interviews by almost a 3 to 1 margin. Community building features (chat rooms, bulletin boards) was the second most requested closely followed by an event calendar. Contests and podcasts were the least requested.

Before this survey, the podcast was the highest item on my list of features I’d like to produce for the site. When I looked at the very few respondents who subscribe to the RSS feed (of which the podcast would piggyback), then it’s no surprise that podcasting was the least requested.

I will announce that the Daily Cartoonist will be generating a regular featured interview or story in the near future – so be looking for that. Other items such as an event calendar will probably be added soon – as I don’t think one exists elsewhere. The suggestion of having chat rooms/bulletin boards are not high on my list as such services such as Toontalk and the The Wisenheimer already fill that need perfectly.

I asked about other products or topics that might be of interest. The question was a veiled attempt to find something else of interest to supplement the site’s content – in the fear that the current content wasn’t engaging enough. I’ve received enough feedback stating that the site was on track, that I don’t think bifurcating my focus is necessary.

In closing, thanks for your continued interest in the Daily Cartoonist. I think the site is just getting started.

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