Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Study: Majority Of SFGAmWorld Forum Posts Written At Second Grade Reading Level Or Below

After conducting his latest study of various amusement park fan site forums, noted psychologist Don Petersen announced this week that 79% of the posts in the SFGAmWorld forums are written at or near a second grade level of comprehension. The site eclipses the previous benchmark held by the forums at Theme Park Critic by a full three grade levels.

“SFGAmWorld’s forums are a wasteland of poor grammar and atrocious spelling,” said Petersen in a phone interview with ARN&R, “and repeat offenders are commonplace. The boards are populated by enthusiasts who misspell “enthusiast” in their signatures, overly smug moderators with a deity complex, and people who engage in discussion about Tom Cruise-themed attractions.”

Normally, Petersen’s conclusions are primarily based on the Flesch Kincaid Readability Test, but in this particular case, special conditions were factored in.

“Most park forums are littered with hebetudinous gibberish, and one should almost expect subpar fundaments.” said Petersen. “But in this case, the absurd subjects of most of the forum topics were taken into consideration. Multiple examples of idiocy can be easily found, such as topics discussing Mr. Six merchandise being marked down, fantasy musings about if Marriott still owned the park, and a thread about an insecure poster desperately yearning for attention.”

Petersen is currently planning a 2007 Fright Fest trip to the Gurnee, IL park for his University of Iowa psychology doctoral students. “It’ll be a fascinating experience, getting to see some of these forum members in the wild, so to speak.” Petersen said. “I’m sure I’ll be reading many dissertations about how much smarter they are than the general public and their unhealthy obsession with park performers.”

--CMV (Hey! Look! Send the hate mail directly to the author!)

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