Looking back at 2023
Looking back on the highlights of 2023:
- The site continues to attract a huge number of visitors from around the world. The archive saw roughly 3 million hits from about 1 million visits in 2023.
- We published 30 new samples, from 12 countries, up from our 2022 numbers.
- We welcomed Veracruz to our family of Mexican states, and we greatly expanded our collection of Colombian and Western Australian subjects. But we’re still looking for more new places. See our Wish List to find out our top priorities.
- We welcomed three new associate editors: Rhea Dowden, Amaia Villegas, and Roxanne Wellington.
- In Memoriam: Associate Editor John Graham passed away earlier this year. You are missed, John.
- Thanks to our senior and associate editors, and also to our other contributors. In fact, 2023 saw almost as many submissions from non-editors (contributors and self-submitters) as submissions from editors.
- My podcast, In a Manner of Speaking, now in its seventh year, continues to be extremely popular. A favorite feature is the “Guess that Accent” quiz, in which listeners are challenged to identify a brief extract from an IDEA sample. My 2023 episodes featured the work of Eric Armstrong, Rhea Dowden, Rinda Frye, Daydrie Hague, Deric McNish, David Nevell, Sarah Nichols, and Amin Rahman. My thanks to them.
- Our fall fund drive prompted generous donations from several first-time donors. Our deepest thanks to all who gave. However, as is typical of such drives, the percentage of users contributing was very low: just 0.000018%. It’s never too late, of course, to support IDEA, the free research resource you have come to value. The Support IDEA button is a permanent fixture on the site.
- We continued to expand the cultural and ethnic diversity of IDEA. While the website will always focus on English (it’s in our name, after all), we now strongly encourage all ESL speakers to speak not just in English but also in their native language on their IDEA submission. This doubles the value and cultural representation of IDEA, as IDEA visitors can hear not just the subjects’ English-language accent but their native-language dialect too!
Happy New Year to all our IDEA friends!