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Marketing Professor: Only Hufflepuffs Totally Loyal to Harry

Books
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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219 Comments

wilson

After I got done doing a brake job on my car yesterday, I resumed designing a cabinet for the antique vacuum tube guitar amplifier which I designed and built from scratch. The college courses I took in Calculus, Chemistry, Computer Programming, and Physics actually don’t help with that kind of project. When I stopped for a snack or a drink, I read parts of HP7 for the umpteenth time. I guess I must be a Ravenpuff.

Posted by wilson on October 21, 2008, 05:07 PM report to moderator
juliette

WHAT! The man is raving.. There will be children after children after children who will read these books (like my daughter, 10 years old) and grown ups like me, who will read and carry the books in their heart until their dying day! (sounds totally corny, but there you have it…).

Posted by juliette on October 21, 2008, 05:52 PM report to moderator
Madeline

I WOULD NEVER SAY “why did i ever read this stuff”!! harry potter has been with me for the last 8 years (maybe longer?)

this prof. sounds like a phony to me. clearly, he is not a true hp fan.

Posted by Madeline on October 21, 2008, 05:57 PM report to moderator
Alexa

I’m too am a Hufflepuff/Gryffindor, I’ve read the first two, and the fifth twice, and I’m reading the fourth again, cause it’s my favourite.

Posted by Alexa on October 21, 2008, 06:20 PM report to moderator
aughra

I wonder if E.B. White had to put up with this dismissive tone (“like many fads and just fade away”—what bs!) when “Charlotte’s Web” came out? After all, he was a well-known writer producing—ahem! children’s lit…

I have to say many good and bad things about the web, but the academic sphere, and Professor Stephen Brown of the Ulster Business School in particular, really just doesn’t get it. The web isn’t just about “fads”; it’s a new facet of our world culture. Just because it’s popular on web, and in booksales, and in movies, doesn’t mean it’s poor literature.

Posted by aughra on October 21, 2008, 06:29 PM report to moderator
Jen-en-en-a!!!

Lol, this is awesome! More proof that Hufflepuffs are the best!!! I think I’m a Gryffinpuff too…I love the way people tend to look at things!

Posted by Jen-en-en-a!!! on October 21, 2008, 06:50 PM report to moderator
Caroline

Oh this professor is obviously a ‘Slytherin’ reader! And according to him I’m also a Gryffinpuff!

Posted by Caroline on October 21, 2008, 07:23 PM report to moderator
Sara

Ok I am a Slythern and I have read the books. wtf??

Posted by Sara on October 21, 2008, 07:54 PM report to moderator
Amelia

Oh wow, I’m a Hufflepuff and that describes me EXACTLY!!! That’s stupid of him to think this is all a fad… how wrong he is…

Posted by Amelia on October 21, 2008, 08:09 PM report to moderator
Ammar Minhas

ok well iam a reader who has only stayed alive for harry potter but i do not re-read again for fear of everything ‘becoming too familiar’ worst case scenario knowing small passages off by heart – that would ruin any future re-reads or exicitement…for me i think

Posted by Ammar Minhas on October 21, 2008, 08:09 PM report to moderator
Tonya

He’s right about the readers being split into those groups, but dead wrong about the staying power. Dahl’s books aren’t nearly as good nor were they ever as popular. There’s no comparing, even. HP is on a completely different level than any other series out there and I guarantee it most definitely WILL stay on top forever. This series can’t even be called a fad. It just is. It’s so much more than just some books kids read and then eventually grow out of. It’s a part of so many peoples’ lives.

Posted by Tonya on October 21, 2008, 08:27 PM report to moderator
the laughing Man

I think there’s another group, Gryffinpuffs. People, like me, who read them eagerly and energetically, then read them again and again.

As far as a fad. I can sort of see what he’s saying. Now that there are no new books coming out it will be interesting to see the sales and interest chart for HP books. Anytime a new book or movie comes out there will be a resurgence in interest and sales. Without some new ‘thingamabob’ coming out every year how will HP fare. I don’t think it will go away as he suggests, but I think we will see a definite dropoff after the last movie.

However, look at books like Tolkien, Lewis, Charlotte’s Web, etc. These books continually sell well through the years. There’s spikes every now and again when a new cartoon, movie, or TV iteration hits, but there largely consistent sellers.

So, while HP may not be in the news on a regular basis 10, 20, even 50 years from now I think HP will always have a blip on the radar the same way many ‘golden oldies’ have.

Posted by the laughing Man on October 21, 2008, 08:31 PM report to moderator
Liana

I’m a Hufflepuff reader then, HP will be a classic, in the league w/ all the others, but the first to be a fantasy. HP 4EVER!

Posted by Liana on October 21, 2008, 08:44 PM report to moderator
Professor Cassandra

Hmm…looks like I’m a Hufflepuff. On the other hand, I’m all about the spoofs and fanfics (although I haven’t done anything on Youtube yet), so apparently I’m a Ravenclaw, too. Interesting study, but to make the statement that HP has no staying power makes it pretty obvious that Prof. Brown has never visited a fan site in his life. XD

Posted by Professor Cassandra on October 21, 2008, 09:08 PM report to moderator
Alex

I read the books quickly when they came out but I do read them over and over again, and go out of style? fad? are you kidding me? Move over Dr. Suess I know what I’m reading to my kids….

Posted by Alex on October 21, 2008, 09:27 PM report to moderator
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