I have learned in college that in order to get an accurate poll of what a population thinks about a political issue, then you must take a random sample. The sample cannot discriminate against things like race, economic status, job title, etc. The sample must also be taken from a very broad audience you can't just select people from one city or state.
Understanding this made me think about feedback wow gets. I believe that most the feedback on forums is bias. Forums is generally going to pull in 2 types of players the "fanboys" and "wow haters". There is rarely room for average players and they usually get yelled down by both groups because they are not on either side. I believe this is true on all world of warcraft forums not just mmo-champ.
So is this assumption correct? The logic of it seems to fit the case.
The only way you could get an accurate sample is if you made a popup box in-game that offered a free LFR/N/H (depending on your progress) Sha-touched weapon for filling out a survey, or 1 month free gametime if you have cancelled your sub.
Your assumption is correct, all reviews are like what you described, so don't trust reviews online unless they are overwhelmingly positive or negative with a large number of reviews. Also keep in mind only certain demographics buy certain products - you won't find your average Joe Schmoe reviewing a high-end gaming computer or a Ferrari.
Originally Posted by Nemah
“When people talk about the good old days, I say to people, 'It's not the days that are old, it's you that's old.' I hate the good old days. What is important is that today is good.”
― Karl Lagerfeld
Look at it this way-- browse the first couple of pages of the WoW forums, and see how many "I'm quitting!" posts there are. Compare that to the number of "I'm staying!" posts. If the forum activity had any sort of statistical validity, WoW would have died off years ago.
Yes in that drawing data exclusively from a forum is a bad idea for exactly the reasons you've postulated.
No in that Blizzard does not make decisions based exclusively on this data. Nor is all the data they pull simple polling data; if they pull meaningful data, they draw mathed out ideas, concepts etc from the forums; things with meat behind them.