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Marketing Professor: Only Hufflepuffs Totally Loyal to Harry

Posted by: sue
October 20, 2008, 04:33 PM

The Telegraph is reporting tonight that a professor in the UK has done a study on readers of the Harry Potter novels, with the findings apparently revealing there are four distinct type of readers. According to the report, Professor Stephen Brown of the Ulster Business School says the groups closely mirror the Houses of Hogwarts, and indicates the breakdown of the groups as follows:

  • 'Hufflepuff' readers take the tales at a slow, steady and systematic pace and enjoy re-reading the books over and over.
  • 'Gryffindor' readers are eager and energetic and will devour the latest Potter book in one sitting, but quickly move on to new things.
  • 'Ravenclaws' are subversive and take the stories with a pinch of salt, while 'Slytherin' readers are not fussed about the books.They prefer the films but pretend to have read the books when it suits them.

Speaking about potential sales and continuing interest in Harry Potter now that the seventh and final book in the series has been published, Professor Brown said "It is an interesting time in the development of the Potter brand because a lot of people have moved on. It will only be people who revel in his world who will continue with their admiration of the brand," he forecast.

He also noted that "Only the Hufflepuffs are totally loyal to Harry, the Gryffindors are already moving on to other things, the Slytherins never really liked him anyway and the Ravenclaws are too busy writing their own fan fiction or posting spoof videos on YouTube."

Finally, Professor Brown said that the Harry Potter novels by J.K. Rowling do not have staying power, and noted "It could come back into fashion but I think it could be like many fads and just fade away and people will look back and say 'Why did we ever read this stuff?' "

No word if Professor Brown has ever visited a Harry Potter fan site while doing the research.

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Dividing people into 4 personality groups is all well and good for a fiction world but ultimately is even sillier than Professor Trelawney’s astrology which at least has 12 options with room for adjustment based on rising signs or whatever. This marketing professor is simply using his marketing knowledge to gain publicity by discussing part of pop culture that has a lot of draw. It’s no different than a few years ago when doctors were trying to link Harry Potter to obesity and depression.

Posted by Heather on October 21, 2008, 01:30 PM report to moderator

I think the fact that this article is prominently published is a sign itself that HP is more than just a fad. Is it always going to be as hysterically popular as the moment the books were released? Of course not. But it will easily have the staying power of Dahl. There is nothing transitory about the things that make the books great to read. The interactions between the memorable characters, the witty and ironic dialogue, the riveting conflict between good and ultimate evil, these are devices that are timeless and will continue to captivate readers regardless of current trends and fads. There is nothing in the books that ties them to the 1990s. You could read these books in 50 years and they will still seem current because the themes and devices are timeless. In fact, the books could already be 50 years old. There is no mention of e-mail, cell phones, the internet, microwave ovens, etc. The only things that might possibly date the books are the Ford Anglia and the dates on Lily and James’s gravestones. Everything else could apply to any time period.

Posted by Kosmo on October 21, 2008, 01:51 PM report to moderator

i was sorted into the house of Gryffindor and i’m still here. so take that professor!

Posted by mara on October 21, 2008, 01:57 PM report to moderator
Proud Ravenclaw

Ravenclaws are determined to overanalyse every single aspect of the books, and won’t give up until they have all the answers, even if it means re-reading books 100 times. There, I fixed it!

Posted by Proud Ravenclaw on October 21, 2008, 02:03 PM report to moderator

so.. I’m a Gryffingdoor reader the first 24 hours after a Harry Potter book is released, and then I transform into a Hufflepuff reader.. yet my house is Ravenclaw…. interesting O_O

Posted by Sophie on October 21, 2008, 02:05 PM report to moderator

“It could come back into fashion but I think it could be like many fads and just fade away and people will look back and say ‘Why did we ever read this stuff?’ " This guy doesn’t know what he’s talking about! I don’t trust a word of his supposed study. “Professor” Brown, why don’t you go back to your text book and joyless existance and leave us to enjoy life!

Posted by Sarah09 on October 21, 2008, 02:10 PM report to moderator

Sue.. you just posted this because it says good things about hufflepuff, right? you don’t actually think this “study” of this “professor” is correct, right? heck, i could probably make a better “study” if i was drunk and drugged! seriously, this guy’s a fraud!

Posted by Ylet on October 21, 2008, 02:15 PM report to moderator
Author By Night

His point would be stronger if he had a better understanding of the fans. The Ravenclaws he describes can be Hufflepuffs; they can also be Slytherin.

Ultimately, I think it would be better to separate it between the people who are still into it, the people who were REALLY into the books and then stopped liking them July 22nd 2007, the people who were casual all along… etc. And those have sub groups as well.

I’m one of those fans who is still into it, still reads fics, and still gets fanfic ideas. It wasn’t a fad to me. But I do get the sense that it WAS to a lot of people. It’s like Beanie Babies – you have people who were obsessed that suddenly threw them all in boxes to go to storage, and then you have people who still have a display.

Posted by Author By Night on October 21, 2008, 02:29 PM report to moderator

Okay, I was like TOTALLY a Slytherin before – I absolutely disliked Harry Potter..
But because I bothered to read the books, and see the films – I am a Gryffindor now cause I love Harry Potter now XD

Posted by Chiqa on October 21, 2008, 02:31 PM report to moderator
Leif Longbottom

If that was the most interesting thing in the professors report he shouldn’t be teaching anything higher than 3rd grade.

I thought it was going to be more about Aggressive or Passive Strength or Weakness as personality traits. That might be a bit more college level.

Posted by Leif Longbottom on October 21, 2008, 03:02 PM report to moderator
Aurora  Duv

Bunch of whooy.. I always test out to be a slytherin, adore the books over the movies big time!, but according to him I am Huffledor!

Posted by Aurora Duv on October 21, 2008, 03:03 PM report to moderator

This is a total bull!

I mean, I’m a true Ravenclaw, and I’ve read each of the books at least 10 times. I’m still re-reading the books at the moment.

I know lots of Slytherins and Ravenclaws who are doing the same thing, and lots of Hufflepuffs who don’t. I dunno on what this so called Professor has based this essay, but I do not find this report accurate.

Posted by Patricia on October 21, 2008, 03:11 PM report to moderator

Yeah i’m hufflepuff too i guess… Workin on Half blood prince for the 4th time… Which is not as many compared to some…

Posted by blu3tick on October 21, 2008, 03:14 PM report to moderator

This guy doesn’t know us at all. Speaking for Ravensclaws we are loyal and quite obsessive about the most minute details. He should come over to the poll commenters and study us. LOL

Posted by Rhiannon on October 21, 2008, 03:16 PM report to moderator

I disagree with Brown’s hypothesis that Harry Potter would just fade away like a trend and “come back” years later. No trend lasts 10+ years, sorry.

For the years that the books were coming out, I was totally obsessed with the books. I read and reread them, waited in line for books 5-7, watched the movies, participated in all the online stuff. Though since the seventh book came out, I’ve been kind of bored with it. It’s still one of my top favorite series, If not my favorite, and I keep up with the HP news a little more passively. The books are over though, it’s just not worth spending so much time on. I subscribe to the Leaky RSS feed, listen to PotterCast (among several tech podcasts), but that’s about the extent of my fan stuff now. I’ve moved on, though I’m still impatiently waiting for the next movie. But the books are over, and I can’t devote half my time to them anymore. I have a “new media” empire to build.

Posted by redwall_hp on October 21, 2008, 03:18 PM report to moderator
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