Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Girlfriend Index

The Girlfriend Index is, quite simply, the number of different google results an activity returns when inserted at the beginning of the phrase "with my girlfriend'.

Scholars differ on the precise significance of the Girlfriend Index.
the coffee table behind me

When I wrote this 4 years ago, it was the only thing that came up if you Googled the phrase "40k with my girlfriend".

Since then, Warhammer 40k's Girlfriend Index has gone up 600%. So that's...something.

"40k with my boyfriend" brings up 3 different results.
"40k with my mom" brings up 1
"40k with my dad" brings up 6
"40k with my sister": 1
"40k with my brother": 5,350
"40k with my wife" 7
"40k with my husband"  4 (well, 4 about gaming, a fifth was about  remodelling a kitchen)
"40k with my daughter" 3
"40k with my son" 5,440

And in case you thought the RPG was doing better...
"Dark Heresy with my girlfriend" and the like bring up zero (P.S. Dear Google: I play Dark Heresy with my girlfriend)
"Dark Heresy with my wife" brings up 1 and it's someone commenting on this blog.

"Pathfinder with my girlfriend" 2
"4e with my girlfriend" 1
"3.5 with my girlfriend" 4
"AD&D with my girlfriend" 1
"D&D with my girlfriend" 14,800
"D&D with my sister" 14,900
"D&D with my daughter" brings up 7 results, 3 of which are decidedly OSR
(Shadowrun, 13th Age, Blue Rose, Rifts, Dungeon World, FASERIP: 0)
White Wolf games are hard to google since "vampire with my girlfriend" could mean a lot of things...
"LARP with my girlfriend" 5
"Warhammer with my girlfriend" 4
"Exalted with my girlfriend" 0
"RPGs with my girlfriend" 6 results, 3 about tabletop
"CoC with my girlfriend" 4 results--all of which refer to Call of Cthulhu and none of which refer to Corrosion of Conformity.

Next glass ceiling: we also played 40k with our girlfriend.
Only one result for that so far.
See you in 2017.


  1. "Rolemaster with my girlfriend" 0... :(

  2. I wish I could honestly say that these results surprised me at all ...

  3. Did you use the abbreviations for "girlfriend" as well? I just googled "D&D with my GF".
    "About 436,000 results (0.32 seconds)" says Google.
    "Warhammer 40k with my GF" results are slightly less.
    "About 405,000 results (0.23 seconds)"
    Granted, many of those are probably wrong hits. Still, you might want to add it. Oh, and BF for boyfriend. I got 10 results just on the first page.
    Keep in mind, I'm not saying it's perfect. What I'm saying is, when you make conclusions based on data you gathered, you should make sure you've gathered all the available data. Otherwise, some people who dislike your conclusions would use it to dismiss the results.
    Have fun,

    1. What you just wrote would have been worth typing if I'd drawn any conclusions.

    2. @Asen

      I think Zak was searching for the exact string (that is, using double quotes with Google).

      A search for "Warhammer 40k with my GF" returns 1 hit.

  4. "play Magic with my girlfriend" gets around 2400, and that's just to filter out things like Magic Mike and "the magic is gone with my girlfriend."

  5. I wonder if there is a way to control for the gradual expansion of the internet. Like, if there are twice as many people on the English-speaking internet as there were 4 years, ago, the +600% increase in the girlfriend index would be adjusted to +250%

  6. I probably have not used that particular phrasing in any of my commentary on gaming, but I have played countless roleplaying games (multiple editions of D&D, new Mage, Over the Edge, a slew of indie games, multiple LARPs including the one we now run) with my wife, and with the women I dated before I met her. That's to say nothing of Magic: the Gathering, which my wife got me back into after years away from it, and tons of boardgames.

  7. "D&D with my Grandmother" yields only 2 results despite the fact that two of my players play D&D with their grandmother.