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UC Magazine

Readers speak up

Readership survey results

by Deborah Rieselman

"Most comprehensive and best overview of the University of Cincinnati I have ever read." So said the comment scrawled on the bottom of a readership survey included in the print version of the November '03 "Making the List" issue.

What a relief. Putting together 61 lists was more of a headache than I ever dreamed -- not only in gathering, organizing and writing, but also in spell-checking and fact-checking. But if readers appreciated it, I can live with the bald spots from pulling out my hair.

Thanks to the 217 persons who took the time to fill out and mail surveys back to us, one thing was abundantly clear: You love lists.

"Best issue I've ever read." "Tops of all university publications I've seen." "Enjoyed reading every word."

Now, I'd like to think everyone reads every word in every issue, but I have a better grasp on reality than that. Still, one person used eight exclamation points in two sentences of glowing accolades. I would have edited those out of manuscript copy, but I certainly loved getting them from a reader. Editors live for such compliments.

In all, about one fourth of our respondents made a point of mentioning that this was their favorite issue. Of course, a handful had negative comments: "Too laborious to read." "Missed feature articles." But those were balanced out with "makes me proud to be a graduate."

Your favorite topics were UC's new president, history, campus rumors, famous alumni and sports. After tallying your answers, we discovered that 88 percent read at least half of the November issue, only a slight increase from your normal reading habits, but a 20-percent increase from two years ago.

In terms of shelf life, about three quarters of our respondents said they keep the magazine for a month or longer, including 40 percent who either hang on to the issue indefinitely or pass it along to someone else. Many also said they would keep the lists issue as their official university reference guide.

Regarding the magazine's impact, 94 percent of our respondents said they receive at least half of their information about UC from "Cincinnati Horizons."

That puts us in an important role. One we don't take lightly. One for which we're indebted to you. So if you have any additional comments, be sure to e-mail us.

"It gets better all the time," one person wrote.

Thanks for helping us get there.