Strekfan Roster Questionnaire

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Fan Survey
Title: Strekfan Roster Questionnaire
Surveyor: Jacqueline Lichtenberg
Date(s): 1970/71
Medium: print
Fandom(s): Star Trek: TOS
External Links:
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In 1970/1971, the Strekfan Roster Questionnaire were two fan surveys issued and compiled by Jacqueline Lichtenberg for Leonard Nimoy Star Trek Fan Club of Concerned Fans . One was for zine publishers and one for general fans.

A complete list of zines that the Roster Questionnaire was in: Pastaklan Vesla #3, T-Negative #9/10, The Voyages, Impulse #3, Galileo II, Maybe #13, and the LNSTFCCF yearbook.

This questionnaire is related to another one of Lichtenberg's projects, A Strekzine Roster.

Volunteered Info Turned Into Profit

The questionnaire was included in several zines, along with pleas for free publicity and distribution by fans and encouragement for fans to purchase these zines. The questionnaire's return postage was paid for by fans.

From Boldly Writing: "This was the first announcement of a survey of Star Trek fans. Although LNSTFCCF folded before completing the survey, Jacqueline Lichtenberg, who originated the questionnaire and analyzed the data, sent the results to other fanzines and included them in Star Trek Lives!."

"Star Trek Lives!" was a 1975 mass-market pro book that made a lot of money for Bantam Books.

From Lichtenberg's Intro

Enclosed are another copy of the Roster Questionairre, a copy of the Questionnaire from which the Strekzine List has been compiled. The List will be available from Michael Sobota for $1.50. It has 59 entries, 33 tabulated from returned questionnaires and it runs 15 pages. I hope Mike will be sending you a proof copy soon as possible. I am enclosing one of my circulating copies of the list of Strekzines who received my questionnaire...

Mike is also taking orders for an Index to THE MAKING OF STAR TREK. The Index will be published soon. SASE ilke for info.

The Questionnaire will be published in PASTAKLAN VESLA #3, T-NEGATIVE #10, and IMPULSE #3. But these fanzines are limited editions and more copies of the Questionnaire are required. We would be most appreciative of any aid you can give in distributing the Questionnaire. Meanwhile, tell people to place orders for above 3 zines.

We expect 1000 or more returned questionnaires, and cannot possibly finance all of them so we are depending on fan publishers to help us provide this service to fandom and to their readers. I've asked Mike (our publisher) to consult with you on the stencil problems. He set the Roster Questionnaire up 4 long pages. I hope he can help you provide copies to anyone who enquires of you. At any rate, forward me the names and addresses of such enquirers so they won't be lost to trekdom,. We shall bend over backwards to see they are contacted by somebody who can let them have a copy of the Roster Questionnaire.

Questionnaire #1: For Zine Publishers

This questionnaire was quite short, only two pages.

Info from this questionnaire was added to the already existing The Strekzine Roster.

Dear Fan Publisher:

If you publish one or more fanzines with a Star Trek orientation, or know of any, please help, I am collecting data in an attempt to construct a comprehensive profile of ST fandom and would appreciate your aid. Please fill' out the enclosed questionnaire and return it to me promptly. The results of this poll will, be published in the LNSTFCCF's Yearbook. I intend to make this list as widely accessible as possible, so all answers provided by you should be considered a public disclosure. I am also trying to construct a reader profile of Sf fandom. Would you be willing to send me a copy of your mailing list? By cross-correlating mailing lists, I hope to draw some statistical conclusions about the ebb and flow of ST fandom since cancellation. If you can enclose such a list, it would be most appreciated. The results of this effort (if they materialize) will be made available to fan publishers and readers (potential contributors.)

Please provide one and only one name and address on the zine you publish. Space is limited, brevity essential. Any further comments you care to make on your publication(s) or suggestions of other ST fanzines which should be placed on this list would be appreciated.

If you have seen T-Negative #8, your comments on Spock's Affirmation would be most sincerely appreciated.

If you find the query format does not apply to your publication(s), please amend it to suit rather than failing to reply.

This list is meant to include all Strekzines extant. This means zine which are no longer published as well as all "one-shots" which I am calling "pilot-zines" because of the tendency to go serial! This means, as well, special ST issues of non-ST zines like this one.

May You Live Long and Prosper Greatly, (Mrs.) Jacqueline Lichtenberg.

Questionnaire #2: For General Fans

This questionnaire was much longer than the first one. Depending on the zine it was printed in and the size of font, it ranged from 4-6 pages.

To All Star Trek Fans; I Greet You,

I am in the process of. collecting data on the ebb and flow of ST fandom past, present and future with an ultimate goal of writing an article for the general press. I realize that the accompanying questionnaire may be too deeply searching to allow you to answer candidly, however, since my facilities are extremely limited, this survey is far too small to be statistically valid unless every questionnaire is returned. Please, make every effort ta respond openly and promptly. If you would rather remain anonymous, just put your name on a separate piece of paper.

The fact that you responded to the questionnaire will be recorded separately from the data you have provided. Even if you don't send in your name, please do return the questionnaire. One possible outcome of this questionnaire is the construction of a Strekfan Roster for distribution to all Strekfen. Registration on this Roster would be free, but copies would cost an amount calculated to make it self-sustaining. Addresses could not be kept current. So it is advisable to provide your most permanent address (i.e. parents' or grandparents' or friend who will forward ST mailings to you to keep you in touch).

Since there are over 50 ST fanzines extant and new ones forming constantly ... and the field is rapidly reorganizing, it is of interest to every ST fan to keep in touch.

There are many exciting activities., in progress, ranging from the' invention of a Vulcan language by a linguistics professor and several scientifically oriented college students and graduates, to the complete history of the Vulcan Reforms. Other fans are engaged in developing Romulan history, and social structure while others are seriously trying to remedy the faults of Federation Law. Some are involved in developing the character-depth of such personages as Dr.. McCoy and Chekov while others devote their time to satire of the UFP-Universe or collecting "bloopers." There are amateur filmmakers, film-clip collectors, data organizers, Vulcan Sociologists, and hosts of beginning writers, artists, poets, and literary critics.

Somewhere among all of this intense activity, there may be something that you didn't know was going on. Answering the enclosed questionnaire could bring you this information, and hours of diverting amusement 

If you publish a zine which is regularly but only partially devoted to ST, please note this also, however, there are no current plans to survey this enormous field.

[snipped]

This is a large undertaking by one person. It is conceivable that I will have to handle 1000 of these questionnaires. Your cooperation is absolutely essential if we are to be able to make our existence known and felt in the general press. That sort of publicity is the only way to keep interest in ST alive during the hiatus between cancellation and revival.

As I wait to hear from you, I bid you: Live Long and Prosper Greatly, Jacqueline Lichtenberg

Lichtenberg Talks About This Survey: 2003

From a March 2003 interview with Jacqueline Lichtenberg: (reposted August 2004):

Star Trek Lives! was originally conceived as a newspaper article. When I found myself (already a professional sf author) writing and gleefully letting fanzines publish for free my ST fanfic, I knew I had a news story here. Before Trek, sf fanzines on paper did not publish fiction. Only articles and letters but never real fiction.[1] Star Trek fans changed not only the world, but fandom too. And the existence of fanfic was news. I knew that because I grew up in a news family. So I decided I'd write a little newspaper article for our local paper. So I needed to know the basics -- who what when where and how many -- that's the formula for a news article. So I started a chain letter asking people who published fanzines to tell me all the fanzines they were reading and how many subscribers they had. It got bigger and bigger... So eventually, I put out a questionnaire to all the names and addresses of readers, writers, editors, and publishers of fanzines -- trying to find out why they like Star Trek.

In the midst of this the first ST con happened in nyc. So I took my idea to Gene Roddenberry and he said sure make it a book, and when you sell it call me and I'll do an intro. That took a few years, and how we sold that book to Bantam (it ended up with a 2 publisher auction) is a long story -- but once sold, I called him and he did the introduction. [2] [3]

Lichtenberg Talks About This Survey: 2016

In 2016, Lichtenberg talked about this survey and its impact:

I set out to write a short article [about fannish interest in Star Trek] and tried to peddle it to my local newspaper and put out a few letters. There were more zines and subscribers and readers and contributors than I thought, and the number kept growing as I tried to count them. There were people I actually didn't know personally. Wow. That's news!

So I put out a questionnaire and asked all the zine publishers to publish it. That's how fandom worked before Twitter and Facebook. That's when I realized that this was a book, not a newspaper article. To get all the zines, I put out a round-robin letter and asked each zine publisher to sign it with name and address and to pass it on to another zine publisher. Eventually, there were hundreds of zine publishers on my list when it got back to me. Trying to be sure that everyone knew everyone, I published the Directory of Fanzines. [4] But I still needed the same information for a nonfiction book. In the end I got back enough questionnaires to fill a thirty gallon garbage can, where I stored them for years until I had to throw them away.

It took five years to write that book. It took taking on two coauthors to get the job done. Once I had the contract, I went sort of white-faced as I realized the sheer volume of incoming mail, all wanting that Directory of Fanzines. So at a Trek con in New York, I called a meeting in my room and appointed one of the volunteers to head a Star Trek Welcommittee to introduce people to each other the way that the National Fantasy Fan Federation Welcommittee had welcomed me to science-fiction fandom when I was in seventh grade. I put a POB number in the back of Star Trek Lives! as the direct contact to the Star Trek Welcommittee, and the hundreds of volunteers answering thousands of pieces of mail kept the Directory of Fanzines current for decades. The Welcommittee grew as Star Trek Lives! went through eight printings and attracted new people into what was the prototype organized structure. [5]

References

  1. True. They were devoted primarily to criticism and discussion. SF writers didn't give their work away; they were out to earn money selling their work to prozines like Amazing Stories, Astounding Science Fiction, etc. See Science fiction fanzines on Wikipedia.
  2. StarTrekFans.Net from a chat with Jacqueline Lichtenberg, 8 March 2003, accessed 9 May 2012
  3. August 2004 repost: STARTREKFANS.NET -> Jacqueline Lichtenberg Chat Transcript,
  4. Lichtenberg may be referring to The Directory of Star Trek Organizations.
  5. from "The Fifty Year Mission: The Complete, Uncensored, Unauthorized Oral History" by Edward Gross and Mark A. Altman, published in 2016 by St. Martin's Press