2006 mardi gras
Crowd numbers - 200,000 people disappear!
On Saturday evening 4 March at 11 pm the media were reporting that there were 500,000 people at the 2006 mardi gras parade.
On the day of the parade and early evening the media were repeating the mardi gras organisers' estimate that 500,000 were gathering for the parade. Some reports said the organisers' figure was 450,000 people.
Then the reports saying that this was indeed the number were printed online by 11 pm that night.
BUT by Sunday the figure was being quoted as 300,000 people.
An amazing article in the Sydney Morning Herald reported on the reasons behind the change.
When SMH asked a Mardi Gras spokesman yesterday why overnight they had REDUCED their crowd estimate from 500,000 DOWN to 300,000, "Scott Gillespie, assured the Herald the 300,000 figure was accurate, because organisers were using a new internationally recognised system of crowd-counting - "something to do with so many heads per square mile or something", he said. But he was unable to provide further information, nor find anyone else who could do so."
What is the reason for the change in the figure overnight?
The real reason is that the media were confronted about the accuracy of the figure - we sent all the media another email (having previously sent a press release) challenging them about their reports and giving them an analysis of how to calculate crowd numbers.
We have known all along that they were NOT accurate -
Gay pride fairytale hits Sydney
Some reports quote the organisers' figure at 450,000....
By Sunday / Monday the organisers' crowd figure had been revised DOWN to 300,000 people.
Mardi Gras winner
And this is the revealing article from the Sydney Morning Herald on the change to the crowd figures....
A fairytale ending to the night before
When mardi gras folded in 2002 due to financial problems, and with debts $700,000, the 'assets' were bought by a consortium of interests.
However in 2005 the organisation, now called 'New mardi gras', was again in financial trouble with debts of over $300,000.
They blamed poor bar sales, excessive fencing costs for its
In addition to their operating loss, mardi gras said last year they had been told they owed $196,000 in tax from the 2003 season!
In an effort to show how valuable the mardi gras is to the economy of
It was conducted by Professor Ian Marsh, of the
How they found out who actually came to
Fund-raising flop threatens to rain on the Mardi Gras parade