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  • Writer's picturehenryfarleyjohnson

A Quick Post About Hallmark Cards

Loyal reader/roommate N. and I stopped by Rite Aid yesterday to pick up a birthday card, and she observed how much the card lengths varied depending on whether they were for mothers or fathers.

Equipped with R and some free time, I decided to test her hypothesis by scraping Hallmark's website. Is there a difference in word count between cards for moms and cards for dads? Let's take a look:

N. is correct! Cards addressed to mothers have an average length of 41.2 words (inside and outside combined), while cards addressed to fathers have an average length of 34.2 words. Put another way, cards for moms are about 21% longer than cards for dads!

As it turns out, the average length of the outside text is almost identical for both sets of parents-- it's the inside of the cards where almost all of that 7-word difference comes to be.

This difference, it should be noted, is statistically significant (the p-value is around .02), though that's only if you're assuming this is a representative sample of all greeting cards.

In the interest of word counts, we'll end it there!


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