Past PSB Survey Results - 2015 Surveys

This page presents the results of surveys I've conducted in the year 2015. The results of surveys conducted in 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 , 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016, and 2017 appear on separate pages.

Note: The response in each survey that received the most votes is highlighted in bold red. I usually list the responses in descending order according to the number of votes, but in a few cases I've decided that the results may be clearer or more meaningful if I list them in some other order. Incidentally, I do vote in my own surveys—and, yes, I vote only once. More often than not, what I vote for doesn't come in first place. In the results below, the symbol ¤ appears after the item(s) that I voted for in each survey.


Survey 742 - Week of December 27, 2015
How will they commemorate the 30th anniversary of Please? (321 voters)

A recent posting on the Pet Shop Boys' official website stated that in 2016 they will be "celebrating the 30th anniversary release of the first PSB album." In light of this statement, what do you think they are most likely actually to *do* to commemorate the release of Please? (Even if you believe they might do more than one of these things, please pick the one that you believe is most likely to occur.)

35.2% - Reissue the album in a boxed set with bonus tracks, videos, and other special features
15.3% - Reissue the album both remastered and with bonus tracks ¤
15.0% - Stage a special commemorative concert (either a one-off or a series of shows) in which they perform the album in its entirety, from beginning to end
15.0% - Probably nothing more than make another mention of it on their official website when the time comes
07.8% - Release a special totally remixed or "re-programmed" edition of the album in which each track is given a new arrangement or "treatment"
06.9% - Appear on a radio show and/or issue a special video (such as on YouTube or Vevo) in which they talk at length about the album, track-by-track
03.1% - Something else not mentioned here*
01.9% - Reissue the album with remastered audio

*Among the "something else" possibilities suggested by voters:

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Survey 741 - Week of December 20, 2015
Your opinion of PSB's performance at the MAMA show (263 voters)

Which of the following statements comes closest to describing how you feel about the Pet Shop Boys' recent performance at the Mnet Asia Music Awards (MAMA) ceremony in Hong Kong, during which they were joined onstage by the K-Pop group f(x)?

30.0% - It was good—not great, but good.
17.9% - I haven't seen it, so I really can't say.
15.6% - It wasn't awful, but it wasn't very good, either—a rare PSB misstep.
11.4% - It was pretty good in and of itself, but it represented missed opportunities in that they repurposed costuming from the Electric Tour. (A "new look" would've had more impact.) ¤
10.3% - It was OK, but I would've liked it more if f(x) hadn't performed with them.
07.6% - It was excellent—a real PSB triumph!
06.1% - It was terrible—one of the most disappointing things they've ever done!
01.1% - I have an opinion very different from any of those expressed here.*

*Among the alternate opinions shared by voters:

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Survey 740 - Week of December 13, 2015
Favorite and least favorite non-#1 or -#2 Top-10 single (359 voters)

Of the Pet Shop Boys' U.K. or U.S. Top 10 hits that didn't reach #1 or #2—those were the focus of my survey week before last—which ones are (1) your favorite and (2) your least favorite?

Please note that some voters abstained from voting from either their favorite or (more likely) least favorite track, which results in different total voter counts used to calculate the favorite and least favorite percentages below.

Favorite:

26.2% - Left to My Own Devices ¤
12.5% - Can You Forgive Her?
10.6% - Rent
10.0% - So Hard
08.6% - Domino Dancing
05.6% - Suburbia
05.0% - Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)
03.9% - A Red Letter Day
03.6% - You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You're Drunk
03.3% - It's Alright
02.5% - Miracles
02.5% - Before
02.2% - Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)
01.7% - Se A Vida E (That's the Way Life Is)
00.6% - How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?
00.6% - I'm with Stupid
00.3% - Somewhere
00.3% - Absolutely Fabulous

Least Favorite:

21.0% - Absolutely Fabulous
14.6% - Before
14.3% - I'm with Stupid ¤
12.9% - Somewhere
06.7% - Se A Vida E (That's the Way Life Is)
06.2% - You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You're Drunk
03.9% - How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?
03.4% - Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)
03.4% - A Red Letter Day
02.8% - It's Alright
02.2% - Miracles
02.0% - So Hard
02.0% - Rent
01.4% - Opportunities (Let 's Make Lots of Money)
01.4% - Suburbia
01.1% - Can You Forgive Her?
00.6% - Left to My Own Devices
00.3% - Domino Dancing

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Survey 739 - Week of December 6, 2015
What would you most like to occur with an upcoming release? (312 voters)

Regardless of how likely (or unlikely) you think it is actually to happen, which of the following things would you most like to occur with an upcoming release by the Pet Shop Boys?

31.1% - A U.K./international #1 album (but which doesn't do nearly as well in the U.S.)
18.9% - A U.K./international #1 single (but which, as usual, is ignored in the U.S.)
13.8% - A Grammy Award in a performance or songwriting category ¤
11.2% - An Oscar-winning song in a major motion picture
10.9% - A collaboration with any artist of your choice*
07.4% - A major U.S. hit single (though not necessarily #1, and regardless of how it performs anywhere else)
03.5% - A Top-10 U.S. album (though not necessarily #1, and regardless of how it performs anywhere else)
03.2% - Something else not listed here**

*Among the artists with whom voters indicated they would like PSB to collaborate are Disclosure, Giorgio Moroder, and Gorillaz.

**The only "Something else" specifically mentioned was from a voter who said that he wouldn't make any such suggestions "Because whatever happens can't be predicted, otherwise it would be boring." There's something to be said for that perspective.

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Survey 738 - Week of November 29, 2015
Rating PSB's six biggest hits (398 voters)

The songs listed below (in chronological order according to their release as singles) are the Pet Shop Boys' six biggest hits—the ones that hit either #1 or #2 on the official U.K. singles chart. Please rank them according to how much you personally like them. That is, please rank your favorite #1, your second-favorite #2, and so on, down to your least favorite of the six as #6. (Please remember that designating one as your "least favorite" doesn't mean you don't like it; it just means you don't like it as much as the other five.)

In the following table, the songs are listed in order of the average rating they each received, with the best average rating (that is, the closest to 1) listed first. The title of the song that received the best average rating is highlighted in red. In addition, percentages in red text are for the song that received the most votes for that particular rating (that is, the highest percentage per column). Cells shaded in pink are for the rating that received the most votes for that particular song (thus the highest percentage per row). As always, the ¤ symbol indicates how I voted for each song and rating (and therefore only one per column and row). Please note that because a few voters abstained from voting for certain songs or rankings, the percentages (which are based on the total number of voters) in any row or column do not total to 100%.

 
#1
#2
#3
#4
#5
#6
Avg
West End Girls
29.1%
20.1%
15.3%
¤ 12.6%
12.1%
10.1%
2.86
It's a Sin
25.6%
¤ 17.8%
18.1%
17.3%
10.6%
10.1%
2.98
Always on My Mind
17.1%
22.1%
17.8%
18.6%
16.1%
¤ 7.8%
3.16
What Have I Done to Deserve This?
¤ 11.3%
17.1%
16.6%
21.1%
17.3%
15.8%
3.61
Heart
9.10%
10.1%
16.3%
14.6%
¤ 22.4%
26.6%
4.08
Go West
7.3%
12.6%
¤ 14.3%
14.6%
21.4%
28.9%
4.14

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Survey 737 - Week of November 22, 2015
'To stream or not to stream' the next PSB album? (288 voters)

Should the Pet Shop Boys make their new album (scheduled for Spring 2016 release) available on streaming services, such as Spotify, Apple Music, Google Music, Pandora, and Rhapsody? If so, when? Which of the following responses comes closest to expressing how you feel about this?

20.8% - Yes, they should make it available on streaming services, but not until a month or so after its release (since releasing in that way sooner may hurt physical and digital sales). ¤
20.5% - Yes, they should make it available on streaming services on the day of release. It may result in lower physical and digital sales and lower the album's chart positions, but that doesn't bother me. Besides, it will help bring new PSB music to a wider and perhaps younger audience.
17.7% - Yes, they should make it available on streaming services on the day of release. It would likely increase exposure to the music, which may encourage more people to buy a physical or digital copy, thereby actually promoting greater sales.
17.0% - I really have no opinion about this, or I have such mixed feelings that I'm unable to choose one of the other responses.
15.6% - Maybe they should make some of the album (say, three or four tracks) available on streaming services as a promotional strategy, but not all of it.
08.3% - No, they should never make it available on streaming services (for whatever reason).

It's well worth noting, however, that although the "wait until a month or so" option came in first place (with 20.8% of the voters), the two "on the day of release" options—which differed only in the rationale for preferring that option—together claimed a far larger number of votes (20.5% + 17.7% = 38.2%).

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Survey 736 - Week of November 15, 2015
Preference regarding the "remaining career" of PSB (312 voters)

What if you could choose between the Boys ending their career of releasing new music sooner rather than later, but maintaining that high quality up until the last, or them continuing to release new music for a longer period, but with the quality declining in such a way that there's maybe only one or two real "gems" per each new album? Would those few gems, in effect, justify the rest of the music being "sub-par"? In short, which would you prefer—less PSB music, ending sooner, but mostly of high quality, or more PSB music, lasting longer, but only a comparatively small portion of it of high quality?

65.1% - Less music, ending sooner, but mostly of high quality ¤
34.9% - Less music, lasting longer, but only a comparatively small portion of it of high quality

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Survey 735 - Week of November 8, 2015
Track-by-track comparison of three albums (360 voters)

In a three-way track-by-track-by-track battle among three consecutive Pet Shop Boys "middle period" albums – Very, Bilingual, and Nightlife – which song is your favorite for each album position? (That is, please choose your favorite "Track 1," your favorite "Track 2," and so on. Thus you can place a total of 12 votes, one for each "track group.")

Note: The percentages below are based on the votes submitted only for the particular tracks in question. Abstentions aren't counted toward determining percentages for these results; therefore the percentages for any given track total to approximately 100%.

Track 1
67.9% - Can You Forgive Her? (Very) ¤
17.6% - Discoteca (Bilingual)
14.5% - For Your Own Good (Nightlife)

Track 2
50.8% - I Wouldn't Normally Do This Kind of Thing (Very) ¤
29.6% - Closer to Heaven (Nightlife)
19.6% - Single (Bilingual)

Track 3
49.4% - I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More (Nightlife)
37.4% - Liberation (Very) ¤
13.1% - Metamorphosis (Bilingual)

Track 4
61.2% - A Different Point of View (Very) ¤
22.9% - Happiness Is an Option (Nightlife)
15.9% - Electricity (Bilingual)

Track 5*
43.1% - Dreaming of the Queen (Very) ¤
29.4% - You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You're Drunk (Nightlife)
27.5% - Se A Vida É (That's the Way Life Is) (Bilingual)

*Voted the "most difficult choice" by a plurality of voters (14.5%); see below.

Track 6
51.1% - Yesterday, When I Was Mad (Very)
39.3% - It Always Comes as a Surprise (Bilingual) ¤
09.6% - Vampires (Nightlife)

Track 7
44.3% - A Red Letter Day (Bilingual)
40.4% - The Theatre (Very) ¤
15.3% - Radiophonic (Nightlife)

Track 8
51.8% - Up Against It (Bilingual)
32.9% - One and One Make Five (Very) ¤
15.3% - The Only One (Nightlife)

Track 9
52.4% - To Speak Is a Sin (Very) ¤
37.5% - The Survivors (Bilingual)
10.1% - Boy Strange (Nightlife)

Track 10
47.6% - Young Offender (Very)
30.8% - Before (Bilingual) ¤
21.6% - In Denial (Nightlife)

Track 11
38.8% - To Step Aside (Bilingual) ¤
30.9% - One in a Million (Very)
30.3% - New York City Boy (Nightlife)

Track 12
73.9% - Go West / Postscript (Very) ¤
15.4% - Footsteps (Nightlife)
10.7% - Saturday Night Forever (Bilingual)

Bonus Question

Which one of the choices above was the most difficult or "painful" for you to make?

14.5% - Track 5
12.2% - Track 7
12.2% - "I didn't find any of them to be a difficult choice in the least."
11.0% - Track 1
08.1% - Track 11 ¤**
07.2% - Track 9
07.0% - Track 8
05.2% - Track 3
04.9% - Track 2
04.9% - Track 10
04.6% - Track 12
04.1% - Track 4
04.1% - Track 6

**Regarding my own vote: I found the choice for Track 11, between "To Step Aside" and "One in a Million," to be downright painful. I love them both so much. But I finally went with "To Step Aside." And in terms of personal painfulness, choosing Track 8 wasn't too far behind.

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Survey 734 - Week of November 1, 2015
How "campy" are the Pet Shop Boys? (313 voters)

The words "camp" and "campy" have often been used by critics and commentators to refer to various aspects and elements of the Pet Shop Boys, their work, and their career. Which of the following statements comes closest to describing the extent to which you believe the element of "camp" plays a role in "the world of PSB"?

55.0% - Noticeable, but minor. There's been some camp from time to time, but not nearly as much or as often as some people seem to believe. ¤
24.6% - Major but not dominant. There's always been a lot of camp there, but much more that isn't camp.
13.7% - Insignificant—little camp, if any. There's really never been much of anything "campy" about the Pet Shop Boys and their work.
03.5% - I really don't have an opinion on this subject.
03.2% - It's a—if not the—predominant element in their work and career. In fact, camp plays a major role in nearly everything they do.

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Survey 733 - Week of October 25, 2015
The most "Halloweenish" PSB album (346 voters)

What, in your opinion, is the most "Halloweenish" Pet Shop Boys album (not counting hits compilations, Disco 4, the Closer to Heaven cast album, and their live albums)?

50.9% - Nightlife ¤*
25.4% - Fundamental
03.8% - Behaviour
02.9% - Battleship Potemkin
02.6% - Alternative
02.3% - The Most Incredible Thing
02.0% - Very
01.4% - Electric
01.2% - Disco
01.2% - Actually
01.2% - Relentless
00.9% - Disco 2
00.9% - Format
00.6% - Introspective
00.6% - Bilingual
00.6% - Release
00.6% - Disco 3
00.6% - Elysium
00.3% - Please
00.3% - Yes

*Regarding my own vote – For me it boiled down to a three-way race among Nightlife, Fundamental (those two for obvious reasons, clearly agreed upon by a large majority of the voters), and Very (clearly agreed upon by only a very, very small minority of the voters). Why Very? It's the orange packaging—which might even be thought of as a "costume" for a CD case—and all the outlandish costuming the Boys themselves employed for the singles and videos. But I finally settled on Nightlife, and I strongly suspected it would indeed come out on top in this poll. (The song "Vampires" broke what otherwise I felt was a tie with Fundamental, although that song alone wouldn't have been enough had it not been for the album's nighttime theme, orange-dominated color scheme, and the Boys' costuming.) I had no idea, however, that it would "win" by such a huge margin!

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Survey 732 - Week of October 18, 2015
Where you first heard PSB music (345 voters)

To the best of your recollection, where did you first hear Pet Shop Boys music?

44.1% - On the radio (including a car radio) ¤*
29.9% - On television
05.5% - Playing on the stereo in the home where I grew up (because, for instance, my parents or a sibling had at least one of their albums)
04.3% - Playing in a danceclub, bar, or other such venue
04.1% - Playing on the stereo in the home of a friend (including someone you were dating at the time) or some other relative
03.2% - I simply don't remember (and can't even make a good guess)
02.3% - On the internet or from downloaded digital files
02.3% - Some other place or in some other way not listed here**
02.0% - Playing in a record store or other shop
01.2% - Playing in my own home (as opposed to that of my family) from a recording owned by my spouse/significant other or that I bought without having heard the music first (such as on a whim or on account of a very positive record review)
01.2% - Playing on a stereo in my college or boarding school dormitory
00.0% - In a live performance

*Regarding my own vote, as I've noted elsewhere, I distinctly remember first hearing PSB for the first time on my car radio while driving home from work right when the second version of "West End Girls" began to climb the charts in the United States on its way up to Number One. So it must've been early 1986. I didn't become a fan, however, for several years, not until after the release of Discography, which piqued my interest, and then Very, which got me hooked.

**Among the other places noted by voters:

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Survey 731 - Week of October 11, 2015
Favorite PSB song with a "question" title (369 voters)

What is your favorite Pet Shop Boys song the title of which asks a question?

29.8% - Can You Forgive Her?
25.5% - What Have I Done to Deserve This? ¤
13.6% - Do I Have To?
07.3% - How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?
06.5% - Did You See Me Coming?
05.7% - Was That What It Was?
05.7% - Was It Worth It?
03.8% - Why Don't We Live Together?
02.2% - What Keeps Mankind Alive?

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Survey 730 - Week of October 4, 2015
Have you ever been accused of being "obsessed" with PSB? (290 voters)

Has anyone ever accused you of being "obsessed" with the Pet Shop Boys?

39.7% - Yes, but only in a light-hearted, joking way.
35.5% - No, not really.
14.8% - Yes, both (by different people and/or on separate occasions) as a serious criticism and as a joke. ¤*
10.0% - Yes, and it was meant as a serious criticism!

*Regarding my own vote, you can imagine how I've occasionally been teased by my friends about my alleged "obsession" with PSB—although, to be honest, I don't consider it an obsession at all. I suppose that's all a matter of opinion and perspective. But through the years, on even rarer occasions, I have received a few negative, even somewhat nasty emails (such as this one and this one) from anonymous trolls deriding me for my seemingly obsessive fandom. Fortunately, I haven't received any more of those for at least two or three years now.

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Survey 729 - Week of September 27, 2015
Favorite PSB-composed song the title of which begins with "I" (345 voters)

Of the Pet Shop Boys-composed songs in which the narrative persona is absolutely "front and center," so to speak—so much so that the very first word of the title is the pronoun "I" (including the contraction "I'm" for "I am")—which one is your favorite?

25.5% - I'm Not Scared
15.1% - I Wouldn't Normally Do This Kind of Thing ¤
10.7% - I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More
09.0% - I Want to Wake Up
08.4% - I Made My Excuses and Left
07.0% - I Get Excited (You Get Excited Too)
07.0% - I Want a Lover
06.1% - I Want a Dog
04.6% - I Didn't Get Where I Am Today
03.5% - I'm with Stupid
01.7% - I Get Along
00.9% - I Want You Now
00.6% - I Can't Say Goodnight

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Survey 728 - Week of September 20, 2015
Satisfaction with the x2 "release strategy" to date (299 voters)

How satisfied are you with the "release strategy" to date—that is, what and how much has been released so far—of the Pet Shop Boys' own record label, x2 (which they established with the release of their most recent album, Electric)?

23.7% - Somewhat satisfied ¤*
21.7% - I think it's too soon to say
20.4% - Neutral or mixed feelings
14.4% - Very satisfied!
14.4% - Somewhat dissatisfied
05.4% - Very dissatisfied!

*To explain my own position on this matter (which was echoed by a number of other voters), I'm generally pleased with the release of Electric and its associated singles and b-sides, although less than thrilled overall with the quality of the single remixes. I do wish, however, that something else—even just one more item—had been released on x2 by now, such as an Electric Tour concert DVD or a CD recording of A Man from the Future. But, again, in general, I'm satisifed with what we have so far—just not very satisfied. Besides, who knows what the Boys still have in mind for us—in addition to a new album in the spring?

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Survey 727 - Week of September 13, 2015
The PSB single that might have done best in the "Disco Era" (280 voters)

Of the Pet Shop Boys' singles that they themselves composed, which one do you think would have stood the greatest chance of being the biggest hit back in the mid- or late 1970s, at the height of the "Disco Era"? (Please keep in mind, however, that there were many huge hits at the time that weren't in the disco style, so your choice certainly doesn't have to be a "disco" track.)

36.8% - New York City Boy ¤
05.7% - It's a Sin
05.4% - What Have I Done to Deserve This?
04.3% - Domino Dancing
04.3% - Was It Worth It?
03.6% - Heart
03.2% - I Wouldn't Normally Do This Kind of Thing
02.9% - West End Girls
02.5% - Left to My Own Devices
02.1% - Can You Forgive Her?
02.1% - Se A Vida E (That's the Way Life Is)
02.1% - Did You See Me Coming?
01.8% - Before
01.8% - Beautiful People
01.4% - Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)
01.4% - Love Comes Quickly
01.4% - Rent
01.4% - Vocal
01.4% - Thursday
01.1% - Jealousy
01.1% - You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You're Drunk
01.1% - I Get Along
01.1% - Leaving
01.1% - Love Is a Bourgeois Construct
00.7% - So Hard
00.7% - A Red Letter Day
00.7% - I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More
00.7% - Home and Dry
00.7% - Minimal
00.7% - Integral
00.7% - Together
00.7% - Winner
00.7% - Axis
00.4% - Being Boring
00.4% - DJ Culture
00.4% - Liberation
00.4% - Paninaro '95
00.4% - Love etc.
00.4% - I'm with Stupid
00.4% - Flamboyant

The following singles didn't receive any votes:

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Survey 726 - Week of September 6, 2015
Ever felt the Boys had "jumped the shark"? (334 voters)

Have you ever felt that the Pet Shop Boys had "jumped the shark"?*

*"Jumped the shark" – A pop-culture idiom that refers to the particular moment or incident when a cultural endeavor (such as a television show, product, or brand) or an artist (such as an actor or musician) has started a noticeable and ongoing decline in quality, often as the result of questionable creative decisions of a gimmicky, trendy, or outlandish nature made in what appears to be a desperate attempt to maintain popularity. It's commonly viewed as signaling "the beginning of the end." (Coined in the 1980s by U.S. radio personality John Hein, the phrase was inspired by a notorious incident on an episode of the popular 1970s TV show Happy Days.)

53.9% - No – never!
22.2% - Yes, I did once, but I later changed my mind about it. ¤**
12.9% - Yes, on more than one occasion, but each time I changed my mind about it.
11.1% - Yes – in fact, I still believe they've jumped the shark!***

**Surprised by my choice? It dates back to my very early days as a PSB fan. If you recall, I first became a fan in 1993 in the wake of Discography and Very, both of which I loved. But then came Disco 2, which I didn't like very much at all. However, I wrote it off as an anomaly (and rightly so). Next came Alternative, which was terrific, but it was older music, assembled and repackaged. When brand new PSB music finally appeared in the form of Bilingual, I was initially somewhat disappointed, liking less than half of the album (although a few of the songs, such as "It Always Comes as a Surprise" and "To Step Aside," I did love immediately). At that point, I figured that the Pet Shop Boys had jumped the shark. Fortunately, it didn't take long for repeated listenings to make me appreciate Bilingual far more. (In fact, I eventually grew to like it so much that it now ranks fairly high in my list of favorite PSB albums.) So, within a month or two following the release of Bilingual, I figured that PSB hadn't jumped the shark after all—and since then I never have again believed they've done so—"Love Is a Catastrophe" notwithstanding. wink

***Among the temporary or permanent "shark jumping" moments or incidents cited by voters:

A number of voters suggested various other songs, albums, or events they considered PSB "low points" (such as "Legacy," "The Sodom and Gomorrah Show," "Footsteps," Closer to Heaven, Ultimate, certain dance mixes, the truncated version of the Pandemonium Tour in support of Take That, the multiple sleeves for Release, and even such popular albums as Very and Electric), that they nevertheless did not regard as instances of "jumping the shark."

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Survey 725 - Week of August 30, 2015
Artists most musically/stylistically similar to PSB (325 voters)

Which three of the following artists strike you as being the most stylistically or musically similar to the Pet Shop Boys? (You may select fewer than three if you wish, but you shouldn't choose more than three.)

Note that since voters could place up to three votes, the percentages below total to more than 100%.

41.5% - New Order ¤
38.5% - Erasure

21.5% - OMD (Orchestral Maneouvres in the Dark)
¤
19.1% - Electronic (not counting their collaborations with Neil/PSB)
18.2% - Depeche Mode
15.4% - Human League
14.8% - Hurts
13.8% - Sparks
08.6% - Eurythmics
08.0% - Soft Cell
07.1% - Bronski Beat
06.8% - A-ha
06.5% - "Some other artist not listed here"*
05.5% - Kraftwerk
05.2% - Lightning Seeds ¤
04.9% - Daft Punk
04.6% - Tears for Fears
03.7% - ABC
03.4% - Alphaville
02.8% - Savage Garden
02.5% - Communards
01.8% - The Buggles
01.8% - Duran Duran
01.8% - Roxette
01.5% - Ultravox
01.2% - Howard Jones
00.6% - The Cure
00.6% - Devo
00.6% - Gary Numan/Tubeway Army
00.3% - Thomas Dolby
00.0% - Spandau Ballet

*Among the other artists suggested by voters are (in alphabetical order):

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Survey 724 - Week of August 23, 2015
Your preferred role in the "PSB crew" (290 voters)

If you had the chance to be part of the "Pet Shop Boys crew"—and assuming (on the "honor system" ) you are actually qualified to fill such a role—which of the following would you most like to be?

20.7% -"None of them (I don't believe I could and/or would like to fill any substantive role of this nature for PSB)" ¤*
13.4% - Backup musician / vocalist
10.0% - Manager
09.0% - Publicist / public relations
08.3% - Engineer / mixer
08.3% - Programmer
07.6% - Photographer / videographer
06.6% - Some other role not listed here**
05.9% - Electronic designer (lighting, audio, visuals, etc.)
03.1% - "Roadie" / equipment handler
02.4% - Bodyguard / "minder"
01.7% - Dancer / choreographer
01.0% - Clothing / costume designer
01.0% - Haidresser / cosmetologist
01.0% - Stage / set designer

*With regard to my own vote, I believe I'm not at all qualified for the role I would most like to fill, that of backup musician or vocalist. And the role I probably am most qualified to fill (at least among those listed), Publicist / public relations, I wouldn't want. Even a role I'm probably even more qualified to fill—writer/chronicler in the mode of Chris Heath—wouldn't much appeal to me because that sort of thing isn't where my interests as a writer lie. (I'm more of a literature/music/pop culture analyst.) So I'm left to choose "none of them."

**Other roles suggested by voters as ones they would prefer to fill:

Incidentally, I didn't include "Producer" among the choices for voting only because I consider that a very special role requiring exceptional skills. I also think of producers as being outside of the "PSB crew," so to speak. But, come to think of it, I wouldn't mind being a PSB producer myself—only I think I'm even less qualified to fill that role than that of backup musician/vocalist.

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Survey 723 - Week of August 16, 2015
Ranking their large-scale "special projects" (269 voters)

Please rank the Pet Shop Boys' (Tennant-Lowe's) four major large-scale "special projects" beyond the typical realm of popular music (so far) in terms of how you would rank their overall quality and/or how much you like them, with 1 being "The best of the four" and 4 being "The weakest of the four."

The percentages in the rows and columns of the table below do not total to 100% because voters could abstain from ranking particular works at all, such as if they felt they weren't sufficient familiar with them to do so. The works are listed in ascending order based on the average rank; the lower the average (that is, the closer it is to 1), the better. (Abstentions—no ranking—for any specific work are not counted toward the calculation of the average for that work.) The "plurality rank" for each work (that is, the rank assigned to a work by the largest number of voters) is indicated by the pink-shaded cells, so there's only one of these per row. The highest percentage of votes for each rank is indicated by bold red text, so (aside from the average) there's only one of these per column.

  Ranked #1 Ranked #2 Ranked #3 Ranked #4 Average
Battleship Potemkin (film score) 38.3% 26.0% ¤ 19.0% 12.6% 2.06
Closer to Heaven (stage musical) 35.7% ¤ 24.2% 17.8% 18.6% 2.20
The Most Incredible Thing (ballet) 13.0% 26.8% 31.6% ¤ 24.5% 2.71
A Man from the Future (orchestral-choral suite/songcycle) ¤ 10.0% 20.4% 24.9% 36.8% 2.96

Bonus question (180 voters) –

Based on the four they have created so far, which of the following statements comes closest to summarizing your feelings about the Pet Shop Boys' large-scale special "outside" projects?

68.3% - "I love the fact that they create these large-scale special projects from time to time, and I generally like the results!" ¤
20.0% - "Although I generally don't like these special projects very much, I do appreciate that they get to exercise their artistry and creativity in this way from time to time."
08.9% - "I wish they wouldn't spend time on such projects and would just focus on creating great pop music!"
02.8% - "I really have no opinion about this one way or the other (for whatever reason)."

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Survey 722 - Week of August 9, 2015
The greatest PSB protest song? (310 voters)

The ten Pet Shop Boys songs listed below are those that I personally consider to be their greatest "protest songs." Which of these do you consider to be the greatest PSB protest song of all?

34.5% - Integral ¤
16.8% - It's a Sin
08.1% - How Can You Expect to Be Taken Seriously?
07.7% - We're All Criminals Now
06.8% - After the Event
06.5% - A Red Letter Day
06.1% - The Theatre
05.8% - Shopping
04.8% - DJ Culture
01.9% - Birthday Boy
01.0% - "Some other song not listed here"*

*Other tracks (or larger works) suggested by voters as candidates for the greatest PSB protest song (although not all of them were those voters' own choice):

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Survey 721 - Week of August 2, 2015
Attend multiple shows of a PSB tour? (302 voters)

If you have the opportunity to attend more than one Pet Shop Boys concert during a particular tour, what are you most likely to do: attend just one of the shows on that tour, or attend more than one?

37.1% - "I'll attend more than one show if I can, but not necessarily as many as possible."
21.2% - "I'll attend just one show on that tour, but no more than that, even if I have the opportunity to do so." ¤*
16.6% - "I'll attend as many shows as I can!"
13.9% - "I've never had the opportunity to attend more than one PSB show on any given tour, so I really can't say."
11.3% - "I've never attended a PSB concert at all (for whatever reason), so I really can't say."

*In case you're wondering about my own vote, I would imagine many of you might believe me such a fanatical PSB fan that I would attend every live performance of theirs possible. But I'm afraid that's not the case. My "fanaticism" has a very pragmatic side to it. I would consider it wasteful and self-indulgent for me (mind you, I'm making no judgment about anyone else; my opinions in this matter apply only to me) to pay to see multiple iterations of essentially the exact same live show. That being said, I can completely justify watching a video recording of a live show over and over again since I don't have to pay extra to repeatedly watch a DVD or videotape that I've purchased.

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Survey 720- Week of July 26, 2015
Listen all the way through or skip tracks? (277 voters)

Which of the following Pet Shop Boys albums do you usually (that is, more often than not) listen to all the way through at one sitting, and with which ones do you usually (more often than not) skip one or more tracks while listening to it?

Note: In the following table, the figures for each album don't total to 100% on account of scattered abstentions by various voters for individual albums. Albums are listed in descending order based on the percentage of voters who said they tend to listen all the way through. Although this does not result in a strictly ascending order in the second category (albums for which voters tend to skip one or more tracks), the general pattern is that of ascent, and the album that came in last place in the first group (Disco 2) indeed came in first place in the second group. I find it remarkable that the majority or plurality (indicated by the pink cells) voted "listen all the way through" for exactly half of the albums listed and "skip one or more tracks" for the other half.

 
Listen all the
way through
Skip one or
more tracks
Behaviour
¤ 68.6%
22.7%
Actually
61.4%
¤ 26.0%
Very
¤ 60.6%
28.2%
Electric
58.8%
¤ 30.3%
Please
¤ 57.8%
30.3%
Introspective
¤ 56.3%
30.0%
Yes
55.6%
¤ 31.0%
Fundamental
¤ 50.2%
35.7%
Relentless
¤ 44.8%
35.7%
Bilingual
¤ 39.7%
46.9%
Disco
37.5%
¤ 42.6%
Alternative
33.6%
¤ 47.3%
Nightlife
34.3%
¤ 51.6%
Elysium
32.9%
¤ 55.2%
Release
30.0%
¤ 55.2%
Disco 3
27.4%
¤ 52.3%
Format
27.1%
¤ 52.7%
Disco 2
18.4%
*¤ 59.2%

*Speaking only for myself, I hardly ever listen to Disco 2 at all anymore. On rare occasions I'll dig it out to listen to just one or two tracks, which accounts for how I cast my own vote.

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Survey 719- Week of July 19, 2015
Favorite sides per PSB studio album (332 voters)

For each of the Pet Shop Boys' studio albums, which "side" (or in the case of the vinyl double-album Electric, which disc) do you prefer?

Note: The breakdown by "sides" is based on the vinyl editions of each album. In the following table, the figures for each album don't total to 100% on account of scattered abstentions by various voters for individual albums. Also please note that these figures should be taken only in comparing a particular album's sides, not the sides of different albums. For instance, it would surely be quite mistaken to suggest that Side 1 of Nightlife is "the most popular Pet Shop Boys album side" just because it drew the highest percentage of voters compared to the album's other side. Undoubtedly many if not most (if not all) of the voters would say that they prefer some other album's Side 1 or Side 2 compared to Side 1 of Nightlife.

 
"Side 1"
"Side 2"
Please
¤ 66.9%
29.8%
Actually
27.4%
¤ 67.5%
Introspective
¤ 61.7%
33.1%
Behaviour
¤ 62.3%
33.1%
Very
¤ 75.3%
20.2%
Bilingual
¤ 50.0%
44.3%
Nightlife
¤ 79.8%
14.2%
Release
¤ 66.6%
26.2%
Fundamental
46.7%
¤ 47.6%
Yes
¤ 61.7%
32.8%
Elysium
65.4%
¤ 27.1%
Electric**
49.1%
¤ 46.1%

**For Electric, the voting was for either of the two vinyl discs, not sides.

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Survey 718 - Week of July 12, 2015
The Pet Shop Boys' "signature song" (355 voters)

I think most if not all of us can agree that "West End Girls" is the Pet Shop Boys' "signature song." But what do you think of this? Do you think it would have been better if another song had filled that role in the Pet Shop Boys' career? Or do you believe it's good that "West End Girls" is their signature song?

54.1% - "Yes, I think 'West End Girls' is a great signature song for the Boys!"
31.8% - "I think it's OK that 'West End Girls' is their signature song, but I think one or two others might have made even better ones." ¤
08.2% - "Actually, I disagree with the premise of the question. I don't believe 'West End Girls' is their signature song."
05.9% - "No, I think 'West End Girls' is a very unfortunate signature song for the Boys. One or more other songs would have been so much better for their career!"

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Survey 717 - Week of July 5, 2015
The chances of a studio recording of A Man from the Future (293 voters)

It's now been nearly a full year since the live world premiere of the Pet Shop Boys' composition about Alan Turing, A Man from the Future, yet there's still no word of the pending release of a studio recording. In light of this, which of the following statements most closely matches your own belief with regard to the prospects for the eventual release of A Man from the Future?

31.1% - "I doubt it will ever be released on account of its limited commercial appeal."
22.9% - "I believe a studio recording of it, pretty much as it was originally performed, is likely—it's just not happening as quickly as many of us had hoped."
17.4% - "I believe a studio recording in a form significantly modified from its original performance—perhaps even expanded somewhat—will eventually occur." ¤
14.3% - "I doubt there will ever be a studio recording, although if it's ever performed 'live' again, it might then be recorded for release."
09.9% - "I really have no opinion about this (for whatever reason)."
02.4% - "I have an opinion very different from any of those described here."*
02.0% - "It may be recorded and released if funds to do so wre raised via advance contributions, such as through PledgeMusic, but probably not otherwise."

*Among the other opinions offered by voters were:

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Survey 716 - Week of June 28, 2015
The most summery PSB studio album (354 voters)

What, in your opinion, is the Pet Shop Boys' most summery studio album? To put it another way, which album best evokes or reflects a warm, bright, enjoyable mood of summer, or at least reminds you most of summertime?

58.2% - Bilingual ¤
10.7% - Electric
07.9% - Very
07.9% - Yes
05.9% - Introspective
04.8% - Elysium
01.4% - Actually
01.1% - Please
00.8% - Behaviour
00.6% - Fundamental
00.3% - Nightlife
00.3% - Release

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Survey 715 - Week of June 21, 2015
How the Pet Shop Boys have changed you (320 voters)

In which (if any) of the following ways have you been personally changed by the Pet Shop Boys? (Select all that apply.)*

*Because voters could make more than one choice, the percentages total to considerably more than 100%.

61.6% - "The Pet Shop Boys have introduced me to knowledge (historical incidents, historical figures, artists, works of art, etc.) of which I was previously ignorant." ¤
45.6% - "The Pet Shop Boys have helped change or broaden my musical tastes." ¤
39.7% - "The Pet Shop Boys have introduced me to or helped improve my opinion of other specific musicians and their music." ¤
34.7% - "The Pet Shop Boys have helped improve my knowledge of and fluency in the English language."
25.9% - "The Pet Shop Boys have helped change my opinions about gay people, gay rights, and/or issues related to other sexual minorities, and/or have helped change my feelings about my own sexuality."
24.1% - "The Pet Shop Boys have influenced my taste in clothing and/or other fashion." ¤
15.0% - "The Pet Shop Boys have helped change me in other ways not listed here." ¤*
14.4% - "The Pet Shop Boys have significantly influenced my social, sexual, and/or romantic life."
11.6% - "The Pet Shop Boys have helped change my political, social, and/or economic views in one or more other areas (that is, aside from those related to gay people and other sexual minorities)."
09.1% - "I really don't believe the Pet Shop Boys have changed me in any significant way."

*Among the "other ways" noted by voters:

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Survey 714 - Week of June 14, 2015
Favorite Tennant-Lowe song based on a classical work (353 voters)

The following ten Tennant-Lowe songs* are based at least in part on specific classical compositions. Which of these particular songs do you personally like the most?

*The choices didn't include "Go West"—which is based on Johann Pachelbel's "Canon in D"—because it wasn't written by Chris and Neil. For details about the classical compositions on which these songs are based, please visit my website's list on that very subject.

21.0% - Love Is a Bourgeois Construct
14.7% - All Over the World
14.4% - A Red Letter Day
11.3% - Delusions of Grandeur
10.8% - Liberation
10.5% - Jack the Lad
10.2% - King of Rome ¤
03.1% - Happiness Is an Option
02.0% - Time on My Hands
02.0% - Hold On

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Survey 713 - Week of June 7, 2015
Ever surprised to discover a fellow PSB fan? (282 voters)

Have you ever been surprised to discover that someone else is/was a Pet Shop Boys fan? If so, which of the following surprised you in this way? (Please select all that apply to your personal experience.)*

*Because voters could make more than one selection, the percentages total to more than 100%.

33.0% - No, I've never been surprised to discover that someone else was a PSB fan.
22.3% - A particular singer or musician ¤
21.6% - A friend or acquaintance (including "internet friends")
17.7% - An employer or co-worker ¤
12.8% - Some other particular celebrity or public figure ¤
09.2% - Some other much older relative
07.4% - A romantic/sexual partner
05.3% - A much younger relative (including a child of your own)
04.6% - A relative of about the same age
04.6% - Some other category of person not listed here
02.5% - A teacher
00.4% - A parent

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Survey 712 - Week of May 31, 2015
Going back in time to when Chris and Neil first met (299 voters)

Imagine you had a fully functional DeLorean Time Machine (as in the famous Back to the Future movies) and had an opportunity to go back to August 19, 1981, to that King's Road electronics shop in London, when and where Neil and Chris first met. If you had the chance (be honest, now—we're anonymous), which one of the following things would you most prefer to do?

43.5% - Just stand back to witness their meeting and perhaps subtly eavesdrop on their conversation, but take no other action and don't interfere in any way. Then return to your own time shortly afterward.
22.1% - Introduce yourself to them and a few months later get back in touch with them, offering to produce their first album, thereby attempting to establish yourself as "the Pet Shop Boys' first producer.
13.4% - Refuse to go back in time to be involved in their first meeting in any way, not even as a passive witness. ¤*
07.7% - Wait until they begin talking and then try to join the conversation in hopes of eventually becoming the "third Pet Shop Boy" (or "Girl," as the case may be).
06.0% - Let Chris and Neil meet and have their first conversation, but then after they've gone their separate ways, try to "hit on" one of them in hopes of establishing a personal (non-musical) relationship.
03.7% - Introduce yourself to them and try to keep in touch afterward as a trustworthy friend, but otherwise not try to play any role as a "Pet Shop Boy."
02.7% - Simply try to prevent them from meeting, period, so that the Pet Shop Boys never form. You could then try to assume their place in the future pop music world, "writing" and releasing their music as your own.**
00.7% - Introduce yourself to Neil and try to talk about synths and music, thereby attempt to replace Chris in the future Pet Shop Boys.**
00.3% - Introduce yourself to Chris and try to talk about synths and music, thereby attempting to replace Neil in the future Pet Shop Boys.**

*I feel I ought to explain my own vote – As much as I would love (as a "PSB scholar") to go back and witness and overhear their first meeting (just as I would love to witness, say, Shakespeare's first presentation of Hamlet to his acting troupe), I would greatly fear that my interfering with history in any way whatsoever—even in as seemingly innocuous a fashion as simply being present in the same room with them—might inadvertently change history and prevent the Pet Shop Boys from ever forming as a songwriting partnership and performing duo. Therefore, out of that fear, I would refuse to go back to try to witness that event. Now, if I could be absolutely, positively guaranteed that I could not change history, even if I tried, then I would go ahead and go back. This was a common premise of time-travel fiction of the 1950s and '60s: that history cannot be changed. For instance, there was a classic old Twilight Zone episode where a modern man (portrayed by Russell Johnson, the actor who would soon go on to greater notoriety as the Professor on Gilligan's Island) who somehow found himself back at Ford's Theater on the night Abraham Lincoln was assassinated tried to warn the President, only to find his actions thwarted in such a way that events occurred precisely as history dictated.Similarly, old Superman comic books of the 1950's and '60s always maintained that Superman could not change history; it was an absolute limitation to his powers. But this view of time-travel began to change radically circa the 1970s, what with the development of theories of "alternate timelines" and the like. (Sure enough, in the 1978 Superman movie, Superman did alter history to save Lois Lane's life.) Hence, nowadays it's no no longer "standard belief" that history could not be changed even time-travel were possible. That being said, I personally believe that if time-travel into the past ever were possible in real life—which I very, very seriously doubt, although I'm far more open to the possibility of traveling into the future (since, in a way, that's precisely what ever day of our lives is)—history would indeed prove inviolable. Still, unless I had that absolute assurance, I would refuse to go back into the past for any reason, including to witness the first meeting of Chris Lowe and Neil Tennant.

**As negatively as most of us might view opinions such as these, I'm highly gratified that some of the voters were honest enough to choose them. That's why I included them as choices.

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Survey 711 - Week of May 24, 2015
Best choice per album of lead single? (350 voters)

Which of the following songs do you think were the best choice as the lead single from their respective albums, and in which cases do you think a different song from the album would have made a better choice as the lead single?

Please note that the figures for each song/album don't total to 100% because many voters didn't make a choice for some of the songs/albums. The percentages are based on the total number of voters in the poll—not the number of voters specific to each individual song/album.

The best choice of lead single from its album

Lead single
Album

NOT the best choice of lead single from its album
¤ 85.1%
"It's a Sin"
Actually
06.0%
¤ 63.4%
"Love etc."
Yes
18.9%
60.3%
"Can You Forgive Her?"
Very
23.7% ¤
57.1%
"So Hard"
Behaviour
25.1% ¤
52.9%
"Domino Dancing"
Introspective
29.1% ¤
¤ 46.3%
"Home and Dry"
Release
34.3%
40.0%
"I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More"
Nightlife
41.4% ¤
32.9%
"Axis"
Electric
49.4% ¤
32.9%
"I'm with Stupid"
Fundamental
49.7% ¤
21.1%
"Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)"
Please
60.6% ¤
15.7%
"Before"
Bilingual
67.7% ¤
12.9%
"Winner"
Elysium
74.3% ¤

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Survey 710 - Week of May 17, 2015
A strong personal connection with a PSB song? (313 voters)

Have you ever had an unusually strong personal connection with a particular Pet Shop Boys song in which you felt that its lyrics accurately reflected a specific event or occurrence in your life? If so, did the release of that song roughly coincide with the timing of that personal event or occurrence?

44.4% - "Yes, I have had that sort of strong personal connection with a particular Pet Shop Boys song, although the release of the song did not coincide with the timing of that personal event." ¤*
37.1% - "Yes, I have had that sort of strong personal connection of a particular PSB song with a specific personal event, and the release of the song did coincide with the timing of that personal event."
18.5% - "No, I've never had that sort of strong personal connection of a particular PSB song with a specific personal event."

*Regarding my own choice, I can think of at least three PSB songs with which I've had this sort of strong personal connection. Interestingly, one was released well before the event that "connected me" to it, while the other was released well afterward. While I found "Being Boring" emotionally moving from the first time I heard it, it didn't strike a deeply personal chord until some years later following the death of someone close to me. By contrast, I had a strong personal connection with "Was It Worth It?" from the start, but mainly because it so accurately expressed feelings that I myself had some years before. And listening to the Boys' rendition of "Go West" can sometimes nearly bring me to tears when I think of the vast numbers of gay men of my generation—including personal friends and acquaintances—who were lost to AIDS. And it also gives me chills when I think how easily one of them might have been me. If that's not a strong personal connection, I don't know what is.

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Survey 709 - Week of May 10, 2015
Unreleased songs you'd most/least like them to release (271 voters)

Of the following "official but unreleased" non-instrumental Pet Shop Boys songs, which one would you most like for them to complete and release, and which would you least like for them to complete and release?

Most like for them to complete and release
Least like for them to complete and release
21.0% - You've Got to Start Somewhere ¤
19.2% - In the Club or in the Queue
16.2% - Bubadubadubadum (All My Wasted Time)
14.8% - Only Love
13.7% - Bounce
04.1% - Motoring
03.3% - Oh, Dear (Walking Down the High Street)
03.3% - Tall Thin Men
22.5% - Bubadubadubadum (All My Wasted Time) ¤
19.9% - Tall Thin Men
15.1% - Oh, Dear (Walking Down the High Street)
10.0% - Motoring
05.2% - In the Club or in the Queue
04.8% - You've Got to Start Somewhere
04.4% - Bounce
03.3% - Only Love

Note: The percentages in each column don't add up to 100% because not every voter cast a vote in each category.

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Survey 708 - Week of May 3, 2015
Do you own and wear any "PSB clothing"? (370 voters)

Do you own any "Pet Shop Boys clothing," such as items (t-shirts, caps) sold on the official PSB website or at their concerts? And if you own any, do you ever wear it?

43.8% - "Yes, I do own some PSB clothing, and I've worn it on occasions that really have nothing to do with PSB."
38.9% - "No, I don't own any PSB clothing."
13.0% - "Yes, I do own some PSB clothing, but I never wear it." ¤*
04.3% - "Yes, I do own some PSB clothing, and I've worn it to PSB concerts or other PSB-related events, but not anywhere else."

*Regarding my own choice – It's not that I'm an obsessive collector who, instead of wearing his PSB clothing, puts it in plastic bags and preserves it for posterity or as an investment. Nor am I "ashamed" in any way of wearing my PSB clothing. Rather, the only PSB clothing I own are some t-shirts received on several occasions as bonuses for renewing my membership in the now-defunct official PSB Fan Club. But those t-shirts sit unworn in a drawer. You see, I have a perhaps bizarre idiosyncratic (some might say neurotic) attitude about clothing that might even be described as an "anti-fetish." I intensely dislike wearing clothing with prominent writing on it of any kind, and I also dislike clothing that has "pictures" or other imagery of any non-abstract sort, the one exception being Hawaiian shirts (for which loud floral patterns and the like are de rigueur). Mind you, it doesn't bother me in the least for other people to wear such clothing. It's fine for them, and I certainly don't have any negative feelings about it. It's just not fine for me. So my entire wardrobe consists of solid colors, plaids, stripes, and abstract, non-pictorial designs—again with the exception of three or four Hawaiian shirts. (I really have no idea why Hawaiian shirts, of all things, transcend my aversion.) Nearly all of the t-shirts that I actually wear are either solid white or solid black, with one each of solid gray, yellow, red, and blue thrown into the mix for a touch of variety. At any rate, I'm afraid that even my devotion to the music of the Pet Shop Boys can't make me deviate from this sartorial quirk.

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Survey 707 - Week of April 26, 2015
Either/or preference regarding a chosen artist and PSB (333 voters)

If you could choose between any artist or band of your choice covering any Pet Shop Boys song of your choice or an artist or band of your choice (perhaps the same one) recording a brand new Tennant-Lowe song that's never been heard before, which would you prefer?

56.8% - "I would prefer for the artist or band of my choice to cover a Pet Shop Boys song of my choice."
43.2% - "I would prefer for the artist or band of my choice to record a brand new, never-heard-before Tennant-Lowe song." ¤*

*Regarding my own choice – Since I'm primarily interested in the Boys as songwriters, I think I would always prefer an option that would unveil a brand new, previously unheard Tennant-Lowe song.

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Survey 706 - Week of April 19, 2015
The most effective PSB album lead single (409 voters)

What, in your opinion, was the best or "most effective" lead single from a Pet Shop Boys studio album?

52.6% - "It's a Sin" from Actually ¤
17.1% - "Can You Forgive Her?" from Very
06.6% - "Love etc." from Yes
05.9% - "So Hard" from Behaviour
04.9% - "Always on My Mind" from Introspective*
03.7% - "Axis" from Electric
02.4% - "Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)" from Please
02.0% - "Before" from Bilingual
01.7% - "I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Any More" from Nightlife
01.5% - "Home and Dry" from Release
01.0% - "Winner" from Elysium
00.7% - "I'm with Stupid" from Fundamental

*As I stated in a footnote to this poll, several of these choices of lead single are debatable. As it turns out, none are more so than "Always on My Mind" from Introspective. That was also the one that I struggled the most with myself in setting up this survey. Although, to be sure, "Always on My Mind" was the song from Introspective that was first released as a single, it was roughly a year before the album came out, with another Actually single ("Heart") coming in-between. I felt—and many voters clearly felt even more strongly—that "Domino Dancing" might also be viewed more reasonably as the Introspective lead single. But I knew that, whichever song I chose for the poll—"Always on My Mind" or "Domino Dancing"—there would be some voters who would disagree with my choice. Since I ultimately chose "Always on My Mind," I heard from a number of those who favored the other song. In hindsight, I regret not having chosen "Domino Dancing" for this poll. But, by the same token, I have no doubt that if I had done so, I would then have received complaints from the supporters, so to speak, of "Always on My Mind." C'est la vie. At least I can take comfort in the very likely fact that, considering the extremely lop-sided margin by which "It's a Sin" came in first place, the final outcome would not have been affected even if I had gone with "Domino Dancing."

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Survey 705 - Week of April 12, 2015
The best PSB album "bookends" (410 voters)

Which Pet Shop Boys studio album has, in your opinion, the best "bookend songs"? In other words, which one has what you believe to be the strongest combination of opening and closing tracks?

22.0% - Behaviour - "Being Boring" / "Jealousy" ¤*
18.8% -Very - "Can You Forgive Her?" / "Go West" (incl. "Postscript")
15.9% - Electric - "Axis" / "Vocal"
12.0% - Actually - "One More Chance" / "King's Cross"
06.8% - Introspective - "Left to My Own Devices" / "It's Alright"
05.4% - Please - "Two Divided by Zero" / "Why Don't We Live Together?"
05.4% - Nightlife - "For Your Own Good" / "Footsteps"
05.4% - Elysium - "Leaving" / "Requiem in Denim and Leopardskin"
02.9% - Bilingual - "Discoteca" / "Saturday Night Forever"
02.9% - Fundamental - "Psychological" / "Integral"
02.0% - Yes - "Love etc." / "Legacy"
00.7% - Release - "Home and Dry" / "You Choose"

*Regarding my own vote - Although Very is definitely my favorite PSB album, it's hard to beat the combination of "Being Boring" (my all-time favorite PSB song) and "Jealousy" (not one of my favorites, but magnificent nonetheless) as bookends. In fact, I would even rate Introspective's opener and closer as the second-best PSB bookends. In my book, Very come in third place in the "bookends race."

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Survey 704 - Week of April 5, 2015
The last time you listened to PSB aside from digital files (420 voters)

To the best of your recollection, when was the last time you listened to Pet Shop Boys music on CD, vinyl, or tape—that is, on any physical format other than digital files on a computer or other similar device (such as a smartphone, iPod, mp3 player, etc.)?* (For the purposes of this poll, watching PSB DVDs or videos doesn't count, nor does hearing PSB on the radio or television or seeing them perform live.)

20.0% - More than a month ago, but sometime during the past year ¤*
17.4% - More than a year ago
15.7% - Sometime during the past week
13.8% - One to four weeks ago
12.9% - I'm not really sure—certainly quite a long time ago
09.3% - Earlier today
08.3% - Yesterday
02.4% - Never – I've only listened to PSB via digital files
00.2% - Never – I don't listen to PSB music, period**

*In fact (regarding my own vote), I can narrow it down to sometime in July or August 2014. I remember that because it was right around the same time—probably within a week or two—of the live debut of A Man from the Future in late July 2014.

** I offered this option simply for the sake of any non-fans who might have happened upon my website and felt like voting. It would appear that one did.

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Survey 703 - Week of March 29, 2015
Your least favorite "favorite" PSB song (420 voters)

What is your least favorite "favorite" Pet Shop Boys song? That is, among these very popular PSB songs—ones that earned from my site visitors the highest average rating among the tracks on their respective albums during my various "Rating Project" surveys—which one do you like the least?

14.3% - Delusions of Grandeur
12.6% - Home and Dry
12.1% - Thursday ¤*
08.3% - Shameless
08.3% - You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You're Drunk
08.3% - Leaving
07.6% - A Red Letter Day
06.9% - The Way It Used to Be
06.7% - Integral
05.0% - It's a Sin
04.5% - West End Girls
03.1% - Being Boring
01.2% - Can You Forgive Her?
01.0% - Left to My Own Devices

*I feel I should point out that I do like "Thursday." In fact, it's my favorite song on Electric. I just don't like it as much as all the other songs in this poll, which is precisely what it's all about. I imagine that's the case for most of the voters, regardless of the song they selected as their "least favorite" of the bunch.

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Survey 702 - Week of March 22, 2015
Your favorite "least favorite" PSB song (448 voters)

What is your favorite "least favorite" Pet Shop Boys song? That is, among these relatively "unpopular" PSB songs—ones that earned from my site visitors the lowest average rating among the tracks on their respective albums during my various "Rating Project" surveys—which one do you like the most?

17.0% - To Face the Truth
16.3% - I Want a Dog
08.9% - Love Is a Catastrophe
08.0% - One and One Make Five ¤
06.9% - Hit Music
06.7% - Violence
06.3% - Psychological
05.8% - The Sound of the Atom Splitting
05.8% - Hold On
04.9% - Legacy
04.9% - Shouting in the Evening
03.3% - Electricity
02.9% - The Only One
02.2% - The Former Enfant Terrible

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Survey 701 - Week of March 15, 2015
The Boys' strongest "one-two knockout punch" (451 voters)

Which pair of back-to-back Pet Shop Boys studio albums deliver, in your opinion, their strongest one-two knockout punch? Or to put it another way, which pair would be most likely to convince someone who's completely unfamiliar with PSB that they're real championship contenders?

40.4% - Behaviour & Very ¤
14.9% - Actually & Introspective
13.5% - Please & Actually
10.9% - Introspective & Behaviour
07.3% - Fundamental & Yes
04.4% - Elysium & Electric
04.0% - Very & Bilingual
01.6% - Release & Fundamental
01.3% - Bilingual & Nightlife
01.3% - Nightlife & Release
00.4% - Yes & Elysium

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Survey 700 - Week of March 8, 2015
Ever disappointed in a PSB album? (411 voters)

Have you ever been disappointed in a Pet Shop Boys album? If so, which one(s)?*

38.2% - Disco 2 ¤
29.2% - Elysium
29.0% - Release
17.5% - "No, I've never been disappointed in a PSB album!"
15.1% - Nightlife
11.2% - Bilingual
10.2% - Ultimate
06.8% - Yes
06.3% - Disco 3
06.3% - Fundamental
06.3% - Electric
05.1% - Concrete
03.4% - Introspective
03.2% - Behaviour
02.7% - Very
01.9% - Pandemonium
01.7% - Disco
01.0% - Relentless
01.0% - PopArt
00.7% - Please
00.5% - Actually
00.2% - Discography
00.2% - Alternative
00.0% - Format

*Because voters could choose more than one album, the percentages total to more than 100%. Please keep in mind that, in some cases, low percentages figures for a particular album may be as much a reflection of unfamiliarity with that album as it of an "active" lack of disappointment. This is especially true for such albums as Relentles, Concrete, and Pandemonium, which either had limited release or weren't released in all regions.

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Survey 699 - Week of March 1, 2015
Would a PSB political endorsement influence your vote? (261 voters)

Would an explicit political endorsement by one or both of the Pet Shop Boys influence the way you would vote in an election?

68.2% - "It would have no effect whatsoever, either positive or negative, on how I would vote." ¤
11.9% - "If I were undecided, it might sway me toward the party or candidate they endorsed."
08.4% - "I don't vote and a PSB endorsement wouldn't change that."
06.1% - "It might encourage me to vote, but not necessarily for that particular party or candidate."
04.2% - "It might cause me to change my mind in favor of a party or candidate they endorsed."
01.1% - "Actually, it might encourage me to vote against the party or candidate they endorsed."

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Survey 698 - Week of February 22, 2015
Strong, unusual emotional reactions at a PSB concert? (284 voters)

Have you ever had a strong, unusual emotional reaction to a specific "PSB moment" during one or more of their live concerts? If so, which of the following have you experienced? (Check all that apply.)*

42.6% - "I became extremely excited—even ecstatic." ¤
36.3% - "I felt very proud of them." ¤
21.8% - "I was moved to tears."
16.9% - "I had a flashback of moments in my life."
15.5% - "Unfortunately, I've never been to a live Pet Shop Boys concert."
13.4% - "No, I've never been unusually moved by a specific moment at one of their concerts."
09.5% - "I was tremendously surprised." ¤
07.0% - "I was saddened."
06.7% - "I laughed uproariously."
03.5% - "I had some other unusual emotional reaction not described here." **
02.5% - "I was extremely disappointed."
02.5% - "I found myself getting angry."
01.1% - "I was frightened or startled."

*Since voters could make more than one choice, the percentages total to more than 100%.

**Among the other unusual emotional reactions reported by voters were:

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Survey 697 - Week of February 15, 2015
In favor of PSB asking for pledges for special projects? (322 voters)

Would you be in favor of and would you support the Pet Shop Boys doing something similar to this (soliciting pledges and advance contributions) if it were the only way for them to record and release an "official," high-quality edition of one or more of their special projects, such as a studio recording on CD of A Man from the Future, a DVD of Battleship Potemkin with their score, a DVD of their ballet The Most Incredible Thing, or a filmed production on DVD of their stage musical Closer to Heaven?

38.8% - "Yes I would be in favor of this and would financially support any PSB projects like that!" ¤
31.1% - "It would depend on the project. I would favor and support some, but not others."
16.5% - "No, I would neither be in favor of this nor financially support it, regardless of the project."
13.7% - "I would be in favor of this, but I probably wouldn't financially support it through an advance contribution."

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Survey 696 - Week of February 8, 2015
Favorite PSB song containing "I love you" or "I'm in love with you" (375 voters)

What is your favorite Pet Shop Boys song that includes the lines "I love you" or "I'm in love with you" (or very close to it)?

21.3% - Rent
15.5% - Heart
12.0% - A Red Letter Day
07.2% - To Face the Truth
07.2% - Here
06.7% - It Must Be Obvious
04.5% - Se A Vida É
04.3% - A Face Like That
02.9% - A Different Point of View
02.9% - E-mail
02.9% - Pandemonium
02.7% - Go West ¤*
02.4% - Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off You)
01.9% - Vulnerable
01.6% - Falling
01.6% - Break 4 Love
01.1% - She's Madonna
00.8% - Je T'Aime… Moi Non Plus
00.5% - Some other song not listed here that includes the lines "I love you" or "I'm in love with you" (or very close to it)**

*Surprised by my choice? It was a tough decision for me, but I made my choice based on which of these songs I generally most enjoy listening to. Put like that, for me it had to be "Go West," although "Heart" and "Se A Vida É" wouldn't be too far behind.

**Although some voters made this choice and several suggested alternate songs, none of those alternates included the lines "I love you," "I'm in love with you," or very close to it. As I noted in my comments accompanying this poll, I excluded from consideration the many wonderful PSB love songs that don't include those words, among them some of my own favorites (such as "It Always Comes as a Surprise," "Liberation," and "King of Rome"). I had to limit the choices in some way; otherwise there would have been far too many of them for a good, manageable survey. Besides, I ran a "greatest PSB love song" poll less than two years ago, so I felt this one had to be different.

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Survey 695 - Week of February 1, 2015
Preferred topics for future PSB songs (256 voters)

Of the following issues or topics, which three would you most like for the Pet Shop Boys to address in future songs? (If you like, you may choose fewer than three.)*

35.9% - Their own personal lives
27.0% - History / historical persons or events
18.0% - LGBT rights / issues ¤
17.2% - The "new cold war"
15.2% - Religion ¤
14.8% - Science and technology
14.1% - Popular / celebrity culture
13.7% - Consumption / consumerism
12.1% - Poverty / economic inequality
11.7% - Terrorism
11.7% - Environmentalism / climate change
11.7% - Politics in general
10.5% - Privacy issues
07.8% - Some other topic not listed here**
07.0% - Gender inequality
07.0% - Corporations
06.6% - War / international conflicts
06.6% - Population control ¤
04.7% - Animal rights
03.5% - Child welfare / abuse
03.5% - Racial inequality
03.1% - Health issues
02.3% - Sustainable development
02.3% - Biodiversity
01.6% - Arms control / nuclear proliferation
00.8% - Natural disasters

*Because voters could make up to three choices, the percentages total to considerably more than 100%—actually, much closer to 300%.

**Among the other topics suggested by voters:

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Survey 694 - Week of January 25, 2015
The song WHIDTDT might have replaced on Please (378 voters)

If the Pet Shop Boys had been able to include "What Have I Done to Deserve This?" on their first album, Please, as they had originally hoped, which track, in your opinion, would it have been best for them to eliminate to make room for it?*

*"Opportunities (Reprise)" and "None of them" weren't included among the choices because one of them (or between the two of them) would almost certainly have attracted the large majority of voters, rendering the poll highly predictable and thus much less interesting.

27.8% - Violence
19.3% - Later Tonight
16.7% - I Want a Lover ¤
14.3% - Why Don't We Live Together?
06.3% - Suburbia
05.6% - Tonight Is Forever
05.0% - Two Divided by Zero
02.6% - Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)
01.3% - West End Girls
01.1% - Love Comes Quickly

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Survey 693 - Week of January 18, 2015
On the similarity of the Boys' personalities (346 voters)

Which of the following statements comes closest to describing your opinion with regard to the similarity of personalities of Neil and Chris?

48.8% - "I believe Chris and Neil have very similar personalities in some ways, but very different in others, which makes for a good mix."
18.9% - "I believe Neil and Chris have very different personalities, which helps account for much of their success." ¤
18.5% - "I suspect Neil and Chris actually have more similar personalities than it would appear given their 'public personae.' I suspect they play up their differences as part of 'the act.'"
09.0% - "I really don't know and/or care enough about their personalities to have much of an opinion about this."
03.2% - "I believe Chris and Neil have very different personalities, but they've managed to be successful in spite of those differences."
01.4% - "It seems to me that Chris and Neil have very similar personalities, which helps account for much of their success."
00.3% - "I have an opinion very different from any of those listed here."*

*The only alternate opinion shared by a voter is that Chris and Neil appear to have significant differences in tastes and interests, but that doesn't necessarily mean that they have a major difference in their personalities. Their contrasting tastes and interests give them "much greater appeal because it highlights their separate identities" as well as offering "the chance3 to feel a connection to one or the other."

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Survey 692 - Week of January 11, 2015
Which "PSB books" do you own? (374 voters)

Which of the following books about the Pet Shop Boys do you own?

63.1% - Pet Shop Boys Catalogue, by Philip Hoarer and Chris Heath ¤
54.3% - Pet Shop Boys versus America, by Chris Heath ¤
54.3% - Pet Shop Boys, Literally, by Chris Heath ¤
28.3% - Pet Shop Boys, annually, edited by Chris Heath ¤
23.0% - None of the books listed here
12.8% - Pet Shop Boys Special, by Robin Mackintosh ¤
11.5% - Pet Shop Boys: Introspective, by Michael Cowton ¤
05.1% - Pet Shop Boys, by Jordi Bianciotto
04.5% - Pet Sounds: Pet Shop Boys - The Mega-Mix Annual (editor unknown)
04.0% - Pet Shop Boys de A à Z, by Vincent Laufer
01.6% - Pet Shop Boys (S'il Vous Plait?), by Anthony Coucke

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Survey 691 - Week of January 4, 2015
"Most wanted" possible PSB-related events of 2015 (429 voters)

Of the following possible PSB-related events, which three would you most like to occur in 2015? (Please rank your top three as "Most wanted," "Second-most wanted," and "Third-most wanted," however you prefer.)

Most wanted Second-most wanted Third-most wanted
60.6% - The release of the new studio album produced by Stuart Price

11.0% - A new PSB single that makes it into the Top 10 of the U.K. and at least some other countries

06.8% - The release of a career-spanning "PSB rarities" collection (older but previously unreleased tracks)

06.3% - The release of A Man from the Future on CD and/or DVD/blu-ray ¤

04.9% - The re-release of the PSB studio albums since Bilingual with "Further Listening" bonus discs

04.0% - The release of DiscoVery, the Electric Tour show, or some other live show on DVD and/or blu-ray

03.3% - The release of It Couldn't Happen Here on DVD and/or blu-ray

01.6% - A brand-new live tour with a new staging and setlist

00.5% - A reversal of the decision to close the PSB Fan Club

00.5% - Something else not listed here*
16.6% - The release of A Man from the Future on CD and/or DVD/blu-ray

15.1% - The release of the new studio album produced by Stuart Price ¤

13.8% - The release of a career-spanning "PSB rarities" collection (older but previously unreleased tracks)

12.6% - The release of DiscoVery, the Electric Tour show, or some other live show on DVD and/or blu-ray

12.6% - A new PSB single that makes it into the Top 10 of the U.K. and at least some other countries

09.6% - The re-release of the PSB studio albums since Bilingual with "Further Listening" bonus discs

09.1% - A brand-new live tour with a new staging and setlist

06.3% - The release of It Couldn't Happen Here on DVD and/or blu-ray

02.1% - A reversal of the decision to close the PSB Fan Club

00.0% - Something else not listed here*
17.9% - The re-release of the PSB studio albums since Bilingual with "Further Listening" bonus discs

15.9% - The release of a career-spanning "PSB rarities" collection (older but previously unreleased tracks) ¤

13.5% - The release of DiscoVery, the Electric Tour show, or some other live show on DVD and/or blu-ray

11.0% - The release of A Man from the Future on CD and/or DVD/blu-ray

11.0% - A new PSB single that makes it into the Top 10 of the U.K. and at least some other countries

07.7% - The release of the new studio album produced by Stuart Price

07.2% - A brand-new live tour with a new staging and setlist

07.2% - The release of It Couldn't Happen Here on DVD and/or blu-ray

03.7% - A reversal of the decision to close the PSB Fan Club

01.9% - Something else not listed here*

One other way to report the results of this survey would be to indicate the total percentage of voters who chose each option, regardless of whether it was for most, second-most, or third-most wanted. Here, then, are those figures (which total to considerably more than 100%—instead, nearly 300%—since each voter could cast three votes):

83.4% - The release of the new studio album produced by Stuart Price ¤
36.4% - The release of a career-spanning "PSB rarities" collection (older but previously unreleased tracks) ¤
34.5% - A new PSB single that makes it into the Top 10 of the U.K. and at least some other countries

33.8% - The release of A Man from the Future on CD and/or DVD/blu-ray ¤
32.4% - The re-release of the PSB studio albums since Bilingual with Further Listening bonus discs
30.1% - The release of DiscoVery, the Electric Tour show, or some other live show on DVD and/or blu-ray
17.9% - A brand-new live tour with a new staging and setlist
16.8% - The release of It Couldn't Happen Here on DVD and/or blu-ray
06.3% - A reversal of the decision to close the PSB Fan Club
02.3% - Something else not listed here*

*Among the other possibilities suggested by voters:

I'm afraid I have no way of knowing, however, how these specific suggestions were ranked by those who submitted them (first- or third-most wanted; interestingly, no one picked "Something else" in the second-most wanted category).

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