If anything, it's just for fun! But hey, rewards! I like rewards. I also like ponies, and people I know outside of the internet liking ponies with me. It really is always going to be based on who you are showing the episode to.
You can find the entire copy paste below courtesy of GhostWolf.
The Pony Study of Science! is a research effort started by Diomedes on ponychan and that was the cause of the "Best Starting Episode" poll here on ED (which gave the researchers the list of most used episodes to test). The goal is to analyze which episode(s) give the greatest increase in interest and positive opinion gain after viewing (GhostWolf, another pony scientist, is a graduate student, and has had several high-level statistics courses). It is a common experience for all Bronies that after weeks of pestering our friends, the best we can hope for is: "FINE, I'll watch ONE episode, and then you have to stop bugging me about ponies!" So, then we need to figure out how to hook them on the show in 20 minutes.
Based on the previous fan surveys (and the huge comment debates) there are many ideas and reasons for each episode to be used or avoided, and we aim to test the most commonly used episode's effectiveness, BUT WE NEED HELP!
We are calling out to the Brony community to find their friends and family that haven’t yet seen the show and get them to join in the study. To motivate their participation (i.e. bribe them) GhostWolf is putting up at least 5 (and maybe more if we get a lot of participants) $20 gift certificates to either Amazon or iTunes (winner's choice) in a random drawing for those that complete the survey.
So here is what we want Bronies to do:
- Ask friends and family if they would be willing to watch 1 episode of the show for science (and potential cash prizes).
- Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with the AGE and GENDER of the participants ONLY (we don’t need names or contact info). This lets us randomize them correctly.
- On Saturday July 9th, we will email the Bronies back with a login name and password for each participant, who will then have 2 weeks to go to the survey website and watch the episode.
The participants must meet the following criteria:
- They must not have seen an entire episode before (clips on youtube are fine, as well as trailers and PMV’s – just not entire episodes).
- They must be at least 14 years of age or older (both male and female participants are needed - try to get as many of both as possible)
- They can be from any country, but must be able to read and understand English (the episodes will be the English versions).
In case anyone is interested, or list of episodes to test (in order of priority - based on the previous survey responses) are:
- The Elements of Harmony and Mare in the Moon (Ep 1 + 2 = counted as 1 storyline here)
- Party of One
- Sonic Rainboom
- Winter Wrap Up
- Applebuck Season
- Bridle Gossip
- Swarm of the Century
- Fall Weather Friends
- (More episodes after this, but we will need LARGE numbers of participants to test them)