I know in a political election year we all cringe when someone approaches us with a “survey,” especially since those are almost always slanted to one side or the other. But here’s a great one — the PubForge Open Source Collaboration Survey. If you or someone at your public media station haven’t yet taken the survey, please do so right away.
The early results are interesting, as promoted by new media leader Dale Hobson (North Country Public Radio) in a recent e-mail to public radio folks (excerpted here):
Open source software has been widely adopted by stations as a whole: A majority of stations utilize open source software for some aspect of their online service. Where open source tools are not in use, there is considerable interest in finding ways to use them.
Allocating resources to web development and maintenance is critically low:
- More than half (55%) of respondents have ZERO full-time employees developing their website.
Top of the development list–stations are looking for:
- 72% – Freestanding player for streams, archives and user created playlists
- 72% – Tools to integrate existing social media networks into public media sites
- 68% – Complete CMS website solution, including audio file management
- 66% – Software to enable more community participation for public media
- 61% – Application for supporting micro payments (granular giving) to enable giving around specific content
In addition, the survey provides a snapshot of how stations are managing web content, what in-house skills and tools are available to them, how they are tracking visitors, and what they want to be able to do online, given the necessary resources.
There are more charts, more quotes and summary statements if you visit the site to see it all.
We need these kinds of surveys to be as accurate as possible, and the results are already illuminating. If you’re at a station, work with the web, and have just a few minutes, please take the survey.