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GO is a
community-curated open studio project.

Showing posts tagged stats
Sep 13

Open Studio Weekend Visitation Statistics

As the nomination phase of GO continues this week, now is a good time to review the weekend and share some statistics about weekend visitation rates. Here’s a brief rundown of what happened, and we’ll explain these figures in the paragraphs which follow.

  • Estimated visitors: 18,000
  • Estimated studio visits: 147,000
  • Total participating artists: 1,708
  • Total neighborhoods with participating artists: 44
  • Total registered voters: 10,319
  • Total voters who checked in to at least 1 studio: 6,106
  • Total voters who checked in to at least 5 studios and are therefore eligible to nominate: 4,929
  • Total studio check ins: 48,918
  • Average number of studios visited per participant: 8

Let’s look at what these numbers mean and how we got to the estimated totals. Among artists surveyed informally throughout the weekend by GO staff, only 1/3 of visitors were visibly using mobile devices to check in to studios or were seen writing down artist codes. Based on this, we are taking the total voters who checked in to at least 1 studio (6,106) as a baseline and using this to project an estimated attendance of 18,000. The same holds true for studios visited; 48,924 check-ins would correlate to approximately 147,000 studio visits. These estimates, however, are conservative. As one indicator, many families were visiting studios together, but children under the age of 18 could not register per the voter guidelines; as another, we saw groups of people where only one person was recording visitation. We do know traffic was dispersed throughout the borough, but it seems double tornado warnings and transportation issues in Brooklyn could not keep people from visiting artists during GO.

Based on our own travels and what we are hearing via share your story feedback, it’s clear some artists had more visitation than others, but even these metrics surprised us. Sharon and I were in some of the larger studio buildings in Bushwick around 3:30pm on Saturday and artists reported having only had 7 visitors by that time (we heard things picked up a lot on Sunday). At the end of the day on Sunday, Sharon and I walked into a Gowanus studio, where the artist (with a counter) clocked us as being visitor 297 and 298, while another artist just a few blocks from there reported a weekend total of roughly 125. In lower density areas like Bay Ridge, artists reported between 8-12 visitors; some with fewer. An artist in Prospect Heights estimated roughly 300 for the weekend, and another artist in Crown Heights wrote to say, “more people came through here than I ever expected.”  Large venues like Screwball Spaces in Red Hook counted 1500 for the weekend even with the F/G trains not running and the building being in a relatively isolated area. A smaller studio in a residential area of between Carroll Gardens and Red Hook reported roughly 50 on day one. What’s clear is assumptions about traffic flow were sometimes true and other times false.

Noel Hefele, an artist in Prospect Lefferts Gardens, made a timelapse video of traffic to his studio. Fast forward to day two when the camera is positioned a little better. 24 artists participated in PLG and, as you’ll see, the neighborhood really turned out to support them.

From the feedback we heard during the weekend and comments still coming in, a few things are ringing loud and clear. Many people have reported that visitors to their studios were unlike those for other open studio events; visitors were engaged and focused. Artist feedback indicates a high level of discussion happening in the studio. Most artists said there was a mix of traffic - 30% invited friends, 70% new visitors. This mix changed from neighborhood to neighborhood, but overall we heard artists gained a new audience for their work. Also, it felt like some neighborhoods had residents turn out in force; feedback from Crown Heights, Prospect Heights, and Prospect Lefferts Gardens indicate the majority of foot traffic came from their own neighborhoods with higher engagement than anyone expected.

We’ve been getting a lot of questions statistics, and in the coming month, the web team will be analyzing a lot of the data, and we’ll be releasing stories and visualizations about weekend patterns. As you see us release data, you’ll find we aim to do it in a respectful way; you will never see a list of artists and/or neighborhoods and how they placed. You will see us focus on data in aggregate and use specific examples to show trends representative of the whole.

We think you’ll be just as surprised by some of the information as we have been, and we look forward to sharing it with you.

Aug 10

Moving on to Mobile

The GO web team—along with David Wilkinson, who’s working with us to develop the iPhone app from across the pond—is putting in a lot of hours right now on mobile development because we have a lot of ground to cover in the next month. In addition to the iPhone app and SMS text check-in, we’ll be developing a mobile-friendly check-in page because we expect mobile use to increase substantially as people move about Brooklyn during the open studio weekend.

This is quite the contrast from the artist registration period when we felt most users would be utilizing desktops or laptops to create their profiles. In those early phases of the site, we concentrated our web development efforts on creating a solid experience, but not a mobile one. As we move into later phases of the project, we are switching gears and spending more time on mobile development because we know in this stage it’s going to really count.

As you can see here, during artist registration the majority of users were not visiting the site using mobile.

During artist registration, when we contrast “visits” to “visit duration,” you can see 16.88% may have visited GO on their mobile devices, but only 4.9% stuck around for any kind of duration. This isn’t too surprising because the site wasn’t optimized for small screens, but I’m not sure if this represents traffic we lost or if artists just went to their desktops/laptops to complete registration.

Across the board our statistics were showing Apple devices as the majority visiting the site during the artist registration period. Given that we had to select just one platform for the upcoming app (limited budget, limited time meant one platform), we’re hoping these metrics are similar among voters because the iPhone is what we developed for.

With the aim to make the mobile experience inclusive as possible, text messaging will work across all mobile devices which is why its always been at the very top of the web development todo list.

Of course, there’s one thing that does not require any web development at all. For those participants who don’t want anything to do with a mobile device during the open studio weekend, there’s always the clipboard to write down artist codes and enter them back on the website!

Aug 08
There’s been a lot written about what email domains say about the people using them, but I wonder what they say, in the case of GO, about a borough or a specific project.  
As you can see from the graph above, the majority of artists participants are using gmail accounts—62.2%, in fact. 29% of artists are using older school domains like aol, hotmail, yahoo, and earthlink.  The remaining 8.8% are using verizon and edu domains with a smattering of vanity domains.
So, what we’ve got in terms of artist registration is a pretty diverse range. Paul Beaudoin, our Lead Programmer, broke things down a little bit more:

So, gmail has best coverage in all major neighborhoods - with the highest gmail coverage (in a neighborhood with many studios) occurring in Bed-Stuy with 67%. The runner-up domain Yahoo has a personal best in Sunset Park with 13% (where gmail dominates of course). Interesting that Boerum Hill has the lowest gmail dominance; lots of people with vanity domains there. 

It’s interesting to cross-reference these stats with the login type. Even though 62.2% of artists were using gmail accounts for GO, only 2% decided to use gmail as an option to make login simpler. 
One other thing to note is the correlation of support requests to email domain. Overwhelmingly, we saw more support requests coming from the 29% bucket of older school domains.  It won’t surprise many web professionals when we say that so many of those issues came down to people having trouble with our site while using non-standard and co-branded browsers, like those that aol users get by default.  In addition, earthlink has a lot of advanced options for users to control unwanted mail, which completely flummoxed any automated emails from us…like email verification notifications. Often we found that people didn’t realize they were using a special browser or had enabled really aggressive email filtering; each support request would become a special hunt to figure out what had gone awry in systems that many of us don’t use on site.

There’s been a lot written about what email domains say about the people using them, but I wonder what they say, in the case of GO, about a borough or a specific project.  

As you can see from the graph above, the majority of artists participants are using gmail accounts—62.2%, in fact. 29% of artists are using older school domains like aol, hotmail, yahoo, and earthlink.  The remaining 8.8% are using verizon and edu domains with a smattering of vanity domains.

So, what we’ve got in terms of artist registration is a pretty diverse range. Paul Beaudoin, our Lead Programmer, broke things down a little bit more:

So, gmail has best coverage in all major neighborhoods - with the highest gmail coverage (in a neighborhood with many studios) occurring in Bed-Stuy with 67%. The runner-up domain Yahoo has a personal best in Sunset Park with 13% (where gmail dominates of course). Interesting that Boerum Hill has the lowest gmail dominance; lots of people with vanity domains there. 

It’s interesting to cross-reference these stats with the login type. Even though 62.2% of artists were using gmail accounts for GO, only 2% decided to use gmail as an option to make login simpler. 

One other thing to note is the correlation of support requests to email domain. Overwhelmingly, we saw more support requests coming from the 29% bucket of older school domains.  It won’t surprise many web professionals when we say that so many of those issues came down to people having trouble with our site while using non-standard and co-branded browsers, like those that aol users get by default.  In addition, earthlink has a lot of advanced options for users to control unwanted mail, which completely flummoxed any automated emails from us…like email verification notifications. Often we found that people didn’t realize they were using a special browser or had enabled really aggressive email filtering; each support request would become a special hunt to figure out what had gone awry in systems that many of us don’t use on site.

Aug 06
As we continue to take a look at site statistics over the course of the project, one of the things that interested the web team was the use (or not) of single sign on.  You may recall, when we ask you to login to the site, we give you a number of choices—you can login using your existing Twitter, Facebook, Google account or you can elect to create your own local login just for www.gobrooklynart.org.  
During artist registration, overwhelmingly 78% of artists decided to create unique accounts just for GO. Facebook registration followed by 18% and very few artists decided to use Twitter or Google account integration.
We actually went back and forth quite a bit before deciding to implement all those login options. We questioned whether it would confuse more people than it would help (early user testing found people were confused by the options), but in the end we decided to do it since it seems an expected feature in web sites that require you to have an account.  
Given the overwhelming use of local accounts, I’m not sure we’d implement all those options the next time around.  I’m curious to see if there’s a difference when it comes to voters—do they take advantage of the account options or similarly will most people setup local accounts? We’ll post an artist-voter comparison after the open studio weekend.

As we continue to take a look at site statistics over the course of the project, one of the things that interested the web team was the use (or not) of single sign on.  You may recall, when we ask you to login to the site, we give you a number of choices—you can login using your existing Twitter, Facebook, Google account or you can elect to create your own local login just for www.gobrooklynart.org.  

During artist registration, overwhelmingly 78% of artists decided to create unique accounts just for GO. Facebook registration followed by 18% and very few artists decided to use Twitter or Google account integration.

We actually went back and forth quite a bit before deciding to implement all those login options. We questioned whether it would confuse more people than it would help (early user testing found people were confused by the options), but in the end we decided to do it since it seems an expected feature in web sites that require you to have an account.  

Given the overwhelming use of local accounts, I’m not sure we’d implement all those options the next time around.  I’m curious to see if there’s a difference when it comes to voters—do they take advantage of the account options or similarly will most people setup local accounts? We’ll post an artist-voter comparison after the open studio weekend.

Jul 18

Artist Registrations by Neighborhood

As part of an ongoing series to look at GO statistics, we thought it would be interesting to show percentages of artist registrations by neighborhood. 1861 artists registrations across Brooklyn, break down into neighborhoods as follows…

You can explore registered artists in each neighborhood by visiting the neighborhoods area of the website.

Jun 22

Wow, well we are refreshing our stats page every few minutes today because we are really, really close to seeing 1000 artist registrations.  As of this writing, we are at 954 with 45 of Brooklyn’s 67 neighborhoods represented. Bushwick is now leading in the stats, but artists in Greenpoint, Sunset Park and Gowanus are reporting in almost equal numbers.  Strong numbers also coming in from Red Hook, Williamsburg, Prospect Heights, Crown Heights, Park Slope and we are seeing a boost in registrations coming from Prospect Lefferts Gardens.  

Today marks the “7 days left" to end of artist registration.  We encourage everyone to get their registrations in as soon as possible and publish well ahead of the deadline. This is going to be an exciting seven days.

Jun 15

It’s Friday, so that means it’s stats time; here’s what’s going on with GO.  557 artists are now registered as of this writing. We are now seeing registrations in 41 of Brooklyn’s 67 neighborhoods. Sunset Park registrations are still leading, with Bushwick a close second.  Very strong registration numbers coming out of Gowanus, Red Hook, Greenpoint, and Clinton Hill.  And, it’s not all about those areas because we are seeing our map is filling in areas south and east of Prospect Park as well! If you are an artist with a studio in Brooklyn, you have 14 days left to register!

Jun 08

291 artists are now registered for GO; as we near the end of our first week of artist registration, we’ve been elated and surprised by the geographic spread of studios that we are seeing.  Out of 67 neighborhoods in Brooklyn, artists are offering to open their studios in 35 of them - that’s over half! Sunset Park is leading the pack in registrations, but we are seeing some of our first activity coming through in Ditmas Park, Midwood, Sheepshead Bay, and more.  It’s starting to look like all of Brooklyn may open their doors September 8-9.