In the American radio program Prairie Home Companion's fictional Lake Wobegon, we are told on each show's introduction, "All the children are above average." I'm reminded of such hyperbole frequently when I hear how many people analyze various user behaviors for online products. In this case, however, too often the mistaken assumption is that all users are, in fact, "average." In my field, I've seen advocates of online news publishing cite statistics that the average user of even the best online newspaper site visits 5.7 times a month for a total of 34 minutes a month. Oddly, these advocates…
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