Do help/support/trouble shooting forums represent an accurate cross section of users?

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by LethalWolfe, Oct 5, 2003.

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  1. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    Jan 11, 2002
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    #1
    Or do the number of visitors to help/support/trouble shooting forums skew in favor of those who are having problems?


    Lethal
     
  2. rainman::|:| macrumors 603

    rainman::|:|

    Joined:
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    Location:
    iowa
    #2
    absolutely not. far more people go there because of problems than those who are normal but want to help. it takes a certain kind of person to go just to help out, but anyone with a problem who knows of support forums will go. that's why people that monitor the forums will often see a problem as much larger than it really is.

    pnw
     
  3. beefcake macrumors 6502

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    #3
    I'm not sure where this is coming from, but I think in general tech support forums on the internet are misleading if you look at sheer numbers. What you have on tech forums are a small number of regulars who can answer almost any question thrown at them. The rest are moderately tech-savvy computer owners who are smart enough to go to a forum when they have a problem.

    So, if you ignore post # and look at the number of invidual posters, there'd be more people with problems than without. After all, if you're not having problems or aren't qualified to be giving tech advice to strangers why go to the forums?
     
  4. cb911 macrumors 601

    cb911

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    #4
    i'd say that there are far more people on help forums that are having trouble, but there would be a small percentage of hardcore people there that just know alot, and help out.

    kind of like MR. it seems that lots of the people here are looking at switching, or buying a Mac, tracking Apple's hardware releases. there is ony a small percentage of long-time users that stick around to help out.
     
  5. revenuee macrumors 68020

    revenuee

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    #5
    How could a help/support/trouble shooting forum show as an accurate cross section? It can't, thats not it's purpose. The numbers you see of posts should be taken as percentages.

    If 100 people post they have a problem, when there are 10000 users of the same product, thats only 1% of the users having a problem.

    Statistically thats normal
     
  6. Chealion macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Location:
    Calgary, Alberta
    #6
    Do they represent an accurate cross section? Not a chance.

    If you look at the Airport section in Apple's Disscussion Forums, you'd think no one anywhere could get one to work. Help Desks, collect the people looking for help, and only those who actually feel ok with registering, and are confident enough to be able to pose their question. Some people are just very shy that way. Though on the internet, its easier to ask questions as its anonymous for the most part (not really, but it feels that way). Its also easier to get flamed and your feelings hurt as plain old text is rather blunt.
     
  7. dcb macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2003
    #7
    That is assuming that all people with problems visit the board. if 100 people visit and there are 10000 users, the 100 people WOULD be a cross section of users with problems because in the real world, only a small percentage of people will visit a support forum to find an answer...especially when there is a pretty good phone support system, walk in stores, etc. So statistically speaking, in your example, the issue would be much larger than 1% Does that make sense or are you guys just going to call me a troll some more?
     
  8. revenuee macrumors 68020

    revenuee

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    #8
    you make a good point

    Okay lets say in that case, you have a 900 more people that use phone tech, or go into walk in stores, then throw in a few people that try to fix these things themselves and succeed. That raises the number to 10%. This again, using my knowledge of stats. is still average. I could be wrong however, i think many of the examples in class were based on theoretical numbers. We would need a little more information from Apple to really be able to calculate it.
     
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