Surveys, or how I learned to stop worrying and love the silent majority

Casey Ho pidgin at
Thu Jan 8 00:20:07 EST 2009

Survey results have been posted:

Both a summary and raw data are available.

If you can think of good followup/more detailed questions on a future
survey, let me know.  Some of the data here is obviously too vague to
act on.

Here is some basic analysis of the results (comparing questions
independently of one another).  Feel free to analyze the data and do
more complex things.

- At least 1/3 of Pidgin users have Pidgin installed on both Linux and Windows.
- The top reasons why people use Pidgin: It's free (89%), it supports
all accounts (73%), and it has no ads (70%)
- The top protocols: MSN (67%), Google Talk (51%), ICQ (44%)
- Protocols with less than 5% usage: Bonjour, Gadu-Gadu, Groupwise,
MySpace, QQ, SILC, SIMPLE, Sametime, Zephyr
- 71% of users have at least one plugin installed.
- 24% of users still use the default clients.

Overall, users are satisfied.  For each question, more people were
satisfied than not satisfied, so absolute numbers don't matter that
much.  These make most sense when compared to one another.
- Out of the four interface related questions (buddy list, chat
windows, chat input size, preferences), people disliked the preference
UIs the most.
- Out of the other items, stability is the least liked.  While the
2.5.3 hang issue probably skews this number, results from the first
few days of the survey indicate that this was a problem before 2.5.3,
and write-in comments often mention crashes.

All features listed here are popular, so I'll just list the big
winners and losers

- Most requested features: Voice and video.  No surprise.
- Least important feature: Facebook
- Most popular features that aren't voice/video involve security.
Password security and encrypted IM both got huge votes.  Password
security might be artificially inflated due to the wording of the
question, but encrypted IM is presumably huge because it requires
friends to have it too.
- Most popular write in (not scientifically measured) is probably fast
MSN file transfer

A lot of people wrote in long and detailed responses.  I highly
encourage reading / scanning the responses because it's too hard to
summarize.  Overall people wrote in a lot of requests and complaints,
but in the feedback section they were positive and said thanks.


There's the quick and dirty summary.   Enjoy.


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