WOW.com has an interesting discussion topic this morning, entitled: "Does gender influence class choice?", written by a guest writer, Henry Phillips. Phillips has carried out a survey of the preferred class choice of players and matched them up with gender, to see if there are any difference.
Unfortunately, such self-selecting opinion polls are notoriously unreliable, suffering from a number of biases based on who is sampled, the way questions are worded and the tendency of people to say what they think would be appropriate, rather than what they truly believe. These make Phillips's conclusions questionable (and that's before you get to the speculation that he builds on those numbers).
So, is everything he's done worthless? No; in fact it gives us some very useful information, although it's not the information he intended to gather. Phillips has kindly linked to a web page containing the actual responses and the statistics he gathered from them. We can compare those numbers with the figures from Warcraft Realms (WR) about what classes people actually play (as opposed to the ones they say they play). The differences between the two tell us a lot about the way different classes are perceived by the player base (or at least the players sampled by Phillips). A class that shows up as popular in his statistics, but not in the actual played class statistics could be considered "cool"; it's over-reported in his data set either because people are proud of playing it or because they believe that's the right answer to give. Conversely, a class that is more popular in the WR data than in Phillips's survey might be considered "uncool" - people who play that are less likely to admit it.
Sadly, the WR data don't seem to include DK class numbers, but it's possible to compare the other classes. By taking the ratio between the percentage of people who reported playing a class to Phillips to the percentage of people who actually do according to WR, it's possible to identify which classes are considered coolest by WOW players.
As you'll see from the chart at the top of this post, there are two stand-out cases: the shaman and hunter. Far more people actually play hunters than admit to it, whereas far more people claim to play a shaman than actually do. In fact, by this measure, a shaman is over twice as cool as a hunter.
Perhaps it's the association with
My main is SAN is a shaman. In case you haven't guessed!