The second set of results from the 2012 U2 Fan Survey is now available, and it takes us through section D -- i.e., four of the nine total sections.
As a reminder, the survey was open from April 5th through April 30th. We received completed responses from 3,530 fans in 79 countries this year, both of which are down from 2010. We think that's likely due to the band being in downtime right now, meaning less traffic to @U2 and fewer fans being aware of the survey.
If you missed our recap of the first set of results, feel free to go back and catch up there. Below are a few thoughts on this second set:
WIRE (u2-list) population is slowly declining. When we asked this question on the first U2 Fan Survey in 2005, 19.4 percent of survey takers said they used to be members of the WIRE, the very first mailing list for U2 fans (started way back in 1992). This year, only 15.1 percent answered in the affirmative. Not surprising, just a little sad for us old-timers.
Forums are pretty popular. About 73 percent of all respondents said they're registered on at least one U2-related forum. But they're mostly lurkers because, in the follow-up question (C5), about 75 percent said they post less than once a month on forums. (Feel free to try the @U2 Forum if you want to join that 73 percent.)
Fewer freeloads? In this year's survey, 48 percent said "yes," they've downloaded a U2 song or album without paying for it. That's down a fair bit from the 55 percent who answered "yes" in 2010. So, either fewer U2 fans are downloading songs without paying, or fewer are willing to admit that they've done so!
Live setlists are a big hit. In this year's survey, a whopping 90 percent of fans said they've followed U2 setlists live online via Twitter or forums. Wow. That's up from about 78 percent back in 2010.
Twitter's gaining steam. On a related note, Twitter is a lot more popular this year (48.5 percent say they don't use it) than it was in 2010 (66 percent said they don't use it). Note, too, that only about 77 percent of fans who say they use Twitter also follow The Edge's account. Not sure what's up with that other 23 percent.
Bono is loved. Edge is respected. Adam was a fashion mistake. Just like in 2010, this year's survey takers said Bono is their favorite U2 band member, but Edge is far and away the choice as most skilled musician in the band. This year, fans voted Adam's October-era afro as the worst fashion mistake in U2 history, a switch from 2010 when Bono's mid-80s mullet won that honor.
U2 has longevity left. Although the numbers are down a bit from 2010, about 66 percent of fans think U2 will still be together and making new music for at least the next eight years. (Bono and Adam will turn 60 years old in eight years, by the way.) In 2010, 74 percent of survey takers felt the band has at least eight years left.
Ready to see all of the replies to Sections C and D? Visit our U2 Fan Survey page. And stay tuned as we post more from the 2012 U2 Fan Survey in the coming days and weeks.