1143.0.55.001 - Directory of Culture and Leisure Statistics, 2002  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 13/08/2002   
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BOOK BUYERS

PURPOSE

To collect information about the book-buying habits of Australians.

DESCRIPTION

The Book Buyers Survey was conducted as part of a study of book buying and borrowing in Australia that took place in November 1994 and also included the Book reading collection and the Library users Survey. A total of 384 interviews were conducted with book purchasers as they left retail book outlets. There were 52 outlets across Australia at which interviews took place; 37 bookshops, 8 department stores and 7 newsagents. Participation in the survey, by both book retailers and book purchasers, was voluntary.

GEOGRAPHIC COVERAGE

Australia

FREQUENCY OF COLLECTION

Irregular

DATA ITEMS

Number of book buyers

The number of persons who were interviewed immediately after purchasing books.

Number of books purchased

The number of books purchased just prior to the interview.

Price

The price of a book just purchased. Prices can be grouped into ranges such as:
Less than $10.00
$10.00-$14.99
$15.00-$19.99
$20.00 and more

Total outlay

The total expenditure on books just purchased.

Australian origin status

Indicates whether a book was of Australian origin; i.e. was published in Australia, was written by an Australian or had significant Australian content.

Type of book

Classifies books into categories by type. The categories are:
Adult fiction
Poetry and plays
Children's books
Biographies and autobiographies
History books
Self-help books
Text books
Other non-fiction

This data item is used to classify:
Books just purchased
Books by Australian writers last procured (i.e. purchased or borrowed)
Books by Australian writers read during the last six months

Format of book

Indicates whether a book just purchased was in hard cover or paperback.

Reasons for purchasing

Records the reasons for purchasing books on this occasion. The reasons are:
Relaxation, etc. for self
Relaxation, etc. for family
Needed for work by self
Needed for work by family
Formal study for self
Formal study for family member
Christmas gift
Other gift
Other purpose

Reasons for selections

Records the reasons for selecting the books just purchased. The reasons are:
Recommended by family or friend
Required for study purpose
Saw or heard book review
Saw or heard book advertised
Books on sale at a reduced price
Following a particular author or series
Browsing and attracted by flyleaf/cover
Interested by this type of book/subject
Other reason

Time of last book purchase

Records the time frame in which a book buyer last purchased a book. The time frames are:
Last week
Last month (but not last week)
Last six months (but not last month)
Over six months ago
Never
Can't remember or don't know

Source from which book purchased

Records the sources from which book buyers make their purchases. The sources are:
Department stores
Book stores
Newsagents
Book Clubs
Mail order distributors
Book fair, fete or market

Source from which book borrowed

Indicates whether a book, borrowed by a book buyer, was obtained from a friend or a library.

Book procurement status

Indicates whether a book procured by a book buyer was purchased or borrowed.

Frequency of book procurement

Records the range of frequency with which a book buyer procures books. The frequency ranges are:
Every week
Once or twice a month
Every one to three months
Every four to six months
Less often than every six months
Never
Don't know

Attitudes to book prices

Records the attitudes of book buyers to the price of books as compared to the price of selected other forms of entertainment. The categories of attitude are:
Reasonable
Unreasonable
Don't know

This data item is used to classify attitudes to the price of books as compared to the price of:
Cinema admission
Video hire
Compact disc purchase

Last procurement of a book by an Australian writer

Records the time frame in which a book buyer last procured a book by an Australian writer. The time frames are:
Just now (used for purchases only)
Last week (but not just now)
Last month (but not last week)
Last six months (but not last month)
Over six months ago
Never
Can't remember or don't know

Australian book reader status

Indicates whether a book buyer read, in the last six months, Australian books in the categories of Adult fiction, Poetry and plays, Children's or Biography.

Opinions of books

Records the opinions which readers have about Australian books in the categories of Adult fiction, Poetry and plays, Children's or Biography, which they read in the last six months. The categories of opinion are:
Interesting
Enjoyable
Exciting
Just OK
Humdrum
Hopeless
Stimulating
Not worth reading
Disappointing
Boring
Don't know

Comparison with overseas books

Records the opinions book buyers have with regard to how Australian books compare with overseas books. The categories of opinion are:
Better
Same
Worse
Don't know

Geographic area

Data are available for Australia only.


Demographic characteristics

Demographic characteristics for which information is available include:
Age
Sex
Country of birth
Household size

Socioeconomic characteristics

Socioeconomic characteristics for which information is available include:
Labour force status (employed, unemployed or not in the labour force)
Main activity of those not employed in the labour force
Educational attainment
Occupation (1-digit ASCO)
Household income

HISTORICAL DATA

Similar data were collected by the Australia Council in 1978 and 1989.

DISSEMINATION

Publications

Australia Council for the Arts 1995, Books: Who's Reading Them Now? - A study of book buying and borrowing in Australia, Australia Council, Sydney. Price on application.

CONTACT

In the first instance, refer to To obtain data or further information in the Introduction to this directory.

Manager
National Centre for Culture and Recreation Statistics
Australian Bureau of Statistics
GPO Box 2272
ADELAIDE SA 5001

Telephone: Adelaide 08 8237 7326
Facsimile: Adelaide 08 8237 7366
Email: nccrs@abs.gov.au


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