MORE Cones Wins!
In the inaugural poll conducted by Maui Insight, its readers voted by a 4-1 margin that they want Maui's hyperbolic news site to cover orange rubber safety cones more, not less.
Responding to complaints by a reader in Idaho that it was time to end over-covering rubber cones all over the place on island, and that "most" readers agree with her, the poll was posted to the Maui Insight Facebook Group at 6:16 p.m. on Sunday.
Results: 75% of readers want more cones, while 25% want less. Officially, the vote was 25-9 for more cone attention in Maui Insight outlets.
"We had a feeling this was the true sentiment of readers, but we didn't want to assume, we wanted some type of validation," said Keith Jajko, the site's editor and chief troublemaker. "The readers have spoken: Just like with more cowbell for Blue Oyster Cult, they say more cones for Maui Insight!"
The voting occurred over a 48-hour period, double the original intent, because Jajko said the results were initially lopsided toward the more-cones crowd and he wanted to be fair to no-cones readers with slower internet connections.
Jajko said an interesting breakdown of the votes is that only 1 of the "less cones" votes came from a resident of Maui, or 11%; while 11 of the 25 "more cones" votes were from Maui folks, or 44%.
"This confirms something we suspected, that mainland readers are all serious 'n' schtuff and want mostly sunset and rainbow photos, while Maui peeps are more aloha, more groovy, way more cool with stupid-silly articles and photos," Jajko said.
Among the significant comments posted to the poll:
"Orange cones are vital to the safety of our citizenry," said Robert Sargenti of Hana, owner of Maui Strings, which offers "Prohibitively Expensive Guitar Rentals & Instrument Repair."
"Your Cone posts are the highlight of my days some days," said Jennette Cavalier of Kihei. "That's not saying a whole lot about my life but I do have less than optimal days here in paradise and the cone posts definitely keep a smile (or a smirk) on my face those days!"
"While they are funny, it's redundant for those of us who don't live there," said Brooke Kauffman, from somewhere in frozen Montana.
"Yes!! More cones and Cowbell!!!" said Terry Miller of St. Louis, Missouri.
Votes are considered officially if entered by 6:16 p.m. on Tuesday, for a full 48-hour cycle.
Still, more votes seem to be entered into the Facebook poll thingy that doesn't have a button to freeze final results, Jajko noticed.
Some "End the Cone Age" proponents question the validity of the election because the period to vote was not stated up front.
"It just left it to the whim of the Senior Cone Guy, who happens to be the editor, and we feel it may have negatively influenced the election," said Mike Jacob of Carnation, Washington. "Who's to say the voting period would have been extended even further had the 'more cones' side fallen behind."
"We demand a recount," said Jim Johnston of Newbury Park, California. "I'll bet there's some Facebook Files coming that will prove election tampering."
Meanwhile, Jajko is working on a new super-serious investigative journalism series on another Maui phenomenon: little red flags on thin metal sticks all over the place.