Comparison: Voting Burners

Something that makes me proud to call myself a Burner is the participatory aspect of the event – from planning and transportation to building and removing all evidence of Black Rock City after the event. I would venture to say that these data further support my belief that Burners are citizens who turn their ideas and beliefs into actions.


In comparing the 2012 and 2013 Burners, there was a very small increase in those who are not eligible to vote in the United States (US). My assumption is that most of those not eligible would be from another country, so the increase of over 12,000 Burners between 2012 and 2013 may very well be American citizens.


The trend seems to continue as around 12,000 more Burners in 2013 have also voted in at least one election, though this doesn’t imply they vote regularly – the following graph shows US voters who voted in any of the last four elections.


Between the 2012 and 2013 Burns, the largest growth was in voters participating in all four of the last elections (9,000+)! The only decline was in those who voted in only 1 of the last 4 elections. Overall, most Burners in both years displayed voted in all four of the last four elections (the number of people voting in none of the last 4 elections remains the same as the graph above).


So does this mean Burners are also activists? What about their political leanings? Personally, I feel that a trip to the playa is the best rejuvenation for political disenfranchisement, so I would explain the increase in US voters as a need for a temporary Utopia and escape. What do you think?

Written by: Tabicat
Edited by: Wendi Corbin Goulette


4 responses

    • According to United States Election Project, US Voter turnout in the latest US Presidential election back in 2008 was around 58% of the eligible voting population. Minnesota, in that election, had a turnout just over 75% of the eligible voter population. The Bipartisan Policy Center Report, calculated a higher number of 62.3% in 2008 but a number of 57.5% in 2012.

      Our data indicates that of US eligible voters who participated in Burning Man in 2012, 88.3% voted in at least one of the last 4 US elections. In 2013, 89.5% of Burners who were US eligible voters actually voted in at least one of the last 4 federal elections. The implication is that Burners tend to much more likely to vote than even

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