Just Learned About You

Recently we stumbled upon some statistics about you – our visitors to Today in Montclair.  According to the Quantcast seers, you are an older, over-educated crew with eclectic interests.  Here are the detailed findings.

Quantcast Demos

Your Rank and Serial Number

Quantcast produces core demographics for Today in Montclair visitors, along with a number that displays how we vary from the “100” national average.  When 55 percent of visitors are male, this reflects a “111” index because the male-female split is usually 50/50.

Anyway, our demos reveal a crowd that’s settled and accomplished.  Over three-quarters of us have gone to college or graduate school.  We are doing pretty well financially, with 37 percent earning $100k+ per household.

We’re also long in the tooth.  Nearly half of visitors are between 35-49 years old, while another quarter are in AARP territory already.  Some 81 percent have no kids at home, which reflects our collective age.

Quantcast - Audience Likes

Your Myriad Pursuits

Montclarions turn out to be curious beings but not exactly Renaissance scholars.  Quantcast reports that our visitors are twice as likely to surf nature, political and travel sites as average U.S. web visitors.

Regional and local news, like Today in Montclair, would be consumed at 1.7 x above average.  However no one seems obsessed by local happenings, as other high level interests include non-profits, online trading and car rental sites.

Finally Montclarions are likely to continue learning by visiting school, books, news and reference sites at 50 percent above average rates.  Rounding out the probable pursuits are gardening, food and technology as well.

Although all these online results come with built-in biases, it’s still fascinating to peer into the mirror and see the reflection…of granola techies, perhaps.

Oakland From Afar

We’re away from Oakland for a few days, and on the chilly East Coast.  There are no blossoms or signs of spring here.  There is plenty of crime and mayhem.

Essex County, NJ bears some resemblance to Oakland.  It’s home to Newark as well as Short Hills.  Of course, this is part of the Sopranos’ playground.

With all the Montclair and Oakland happenings, we are missing home now.  Please feel free to post messages about doings today in Montclair – and we’ll be back in a day or so.

Tweets From Today In Montclair

There was plenty of Twitter news yesterday, because the messaging system crashed briefly.  We think this outage happened while Barbara Walters and friends were chatting about it on their daily gabfest, The View.  Once again, an arcane SOMA start-up has entered the mainstream.

In a nutshell, Twitter enables you to leave short notes or “tweets” about anything.  You can subscribe to what your friends, families and work associates are saying, too.  Your faithful Montclair Blogger even decided to jump on the bandwagon, and began sending tweets as well.

Twitter MontclairOak

For starters, we show our blog headlines as another access point.  You can pick them up online, via your computer, iPhone or crackberry.  The place feels kind of empty right now, though that can change quickly if you sign up and follow us.

Twitter creates an informal channel to send quick messages to each other.  We hope to discover neighbors who want to comment about their Montclair doings, and create a two-way street.  (This is quite different than our social site, where there’s more time and room to share things.)

Anyway, I decided to check what folks are already saying about Montclair on Twitter.  Things are looking up since last year, when we read disparaging tweets about snooty Montclarions admiring their own perfection.

One San Franciscan recently went biking in Redwood Park, and grabbed a nice burger afterwards in Montclair.  After driving around different Oakland neighborhoods, he tweeted:  “It was very nice. Oakland does have a bad rap.”

Now let’s see what Montclarions have to tweet, in a whopping 140 characters or less.  It’s okay if you need to complain about your commute – or say whatever comes to mind.

How The Montclair Social Network Goes

Right before the holidays, we set up a social network for Montclarions to connect and share things.  Yes, it’s a place where you are the center of the universe, and many early adopters have joined and begun posting.  You can check it out – right here.

We couldn’t find an informal way to connect Montclarions online, and wanted to see if this did the trick.  Our other networks on Facebook and LinkedIn are filled with family, friends and colleagues who don’t share Montclair in common.  You could ask who’s going to rent the old yarn shop but they won’t care – and so you don’t ask either.

Montclair Social Homepage

Here are recent examples of what folks want to know or discuss a bit.  Of course, you’re welcome to answer resolutely, hazard a guess or otherwise offer your two cents:

  • Are there door-to-door commuting services to SF locations?
  • Do you know about the Tues accident, on Moraga at Masonic?
  • How are you feeling about the downtown violence this week?
  • Where are all the culverts and streams that run through town?
  • Would you like to join a solar panel deal?
  • Is the new Mickey Rourke film decent or not?

We’re hoping to provide an easy way to connect with other villagers, without any effort.  You can ask questions or comment through postings, share events and schedules, set up discussions, post documents or photos, and more.  You can share with everyone, your friends, individuals…or restrict for your own use.

It can be a hassle to remember to visit, though.  We suggest taking the network updates with you, like we have done under “our social network” heading in the right-hand column.  If you have Yahoo or other portals, log into Google, or use other readers, then copy this link for the Montclair Social Network or the Today in Montclair blog too.

If that previous paragraph confuses you, then please ignore it (!) and just visit this blog or the social network directly.  For more information about the social network, check out this quick tour or learn how to sign up.  This social net is for you, and we’ll see how useful it becomes in the weeks ahead.

Montclair Mirror: Your Searches Tell All

Today we would like to share what’s interesting to Montclarions, as reflected by the most popular searches conducted to find Today in Montclair and postings clicked once here.  In case you are worried, nothing traces back to individuals at all.

Let’s start with what you searched throughout 2008.  Bar none, the Hans Reiser case was the most sordid and popular news of the year.  Beyond that infamous murder case, our most prevalent concerns related to local fires, burglaries, voting, home values, and a little shopping.

Reiser On 48 Hours

All Things Reiser: Our famous murder case featured computer expert Hans Reiser, who killed and buried his wife in the hills.  We were aghast at the court proceedings, Nina’s recovery and their poor kids.  CBS-TV even aired a special 48 Hours program last night, where Hans reflected on his crime:

I felt that I was trying to keep my children safe….I feel very sad.  Sometimes, sometimes keeping children safe doesn’t lead to happiness.  In the law, there’s a difference between killing and murder.  I think that Rory deserved to be safe, which is different from thinking that Nina deserved to die.  I don’t think that people who hurt children or threaten to hurt children should die, but I think that children should be safe.  And I’m very sorry that Nina died.

Fires: There’s ongoing interest in local fires, long after the flames have been snuffed out.  As everyone knows, there were two main events this past year, namely the pre-season Hiller flare-up below homes and above Rt 24; and the late-season Tilden blaze mistakenly set during controlled burning.

Crimes: Of course, all the local crimes deserved our attention and there were some creative efforts like the restaurant stick-ups.  More recently, there have been perpetrators casing the hills and later breaking in.  While we have apprehended some burglars, there’s ongoing interest in how to protect our hearths.

Voting: This civic discourse was heartening, at national and local levels.  We wanted to attend an Obama rally, know exactly where to vote, and find out election results.  The interest in village leaders, local reps, and measures like OO and  WW was strong as well.

Home Values: The top searches related to median prices which recently held steady, as well as foreclosures and their movements.  Many villagers have lived here a long time, before cheap credit appeared.  As the market contracts and job losses mount, we’re holding our breath for the bad news ahead.

Pizza, Pizza: The sad truth is that Montclarions searched for pizza places more than anything else, except the Reiser murder.  Do you recall The Net (1995) with Sandra Bullock, when she ordered pizza online?  It’s nothing today to check menus or reviews online, though we still place orders by phone.  Searches for other edibles paled by comparison.

More Goods: Yes, the web has become our new yellow pages.  The searches for clothing, gifts and kids stuff remained steady all year.  Of course the search volumes spiked over the holidays, including decorations, village events and giving back to others.

So there you have it, a Montclair mirror held up to our collective souls.  We care about larger issues in our community, staying safe at home, and maybe trying to save a little time.  Just a microcosm of Hills life, I suppose.