JEDICensus needs you: Please email us with any information or suggestions you have relating to the JEDI Census.

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In The News

NZ Herald (August 2002)
BBC (August 2002)
BBC (October 2001)
ABC Austria (October 2001)
The Register (October 2001)
BBC News Report (April '01)
CNN Asia Report
BBC News Report (March '01)
Guardian Unlimited
Wired.com

 

JEDI Resources

Communications:
- Our Yahoo! Group
(email discussion group, live chat, link sharing etc)

Details:
- Organisation

History:
- Who started it?
- The life of the email

We need more information!
Email us if you have any information, especially regarding the history of the Jedi Census idea.

 

Links

Star Wars

"Count me in" UK Government Census site

ABS address the Jedi situation

Jedi Religion Forum


Do you know of any sites dedicated to the Jedi Census?
Let us know by emailing:
info@JEDICensus.org

 

Buy Star Wars stuff

The Jedi Census Tell a friend: Tell a friend about the Jedi Census

This site is dedicated to the continuation of an idea which seems to have started some time in early 2001.
It is believed that the idea originated in either New Zealand or Australia, but it has quickly spread around the world. I first heard about it in early April, and thought it was a fantastic idea...

The Idea
When a census is conducted, various questions are asked, and statistics are compiled which give a picture of the population of a country. In 2001 there will be a census in Australia, and in the UK.
The original email claims that if enough people register themselves as belonging to a religion which doesn't appear on the census form, then that religion automatically becomes a recognised religion in that country! The mail claims 10,000 people is enough!
Whether or not this is true, the detail of the email makes it worth a try.
The email requests that we enter our religion on the census form as 'Jedi'!
Even if the rule about recognised religions is not true, or not true in your country, its still worth giving it a go... imagine the official statistics of your country claiming a percentage of the population as practising 'Jedi Knights'!!!

We at JEDI Census now even think we know who may have started the whole thing.
Click here to find out...

The original email

"a suggestion for next weeks census....
question 18 deals with religion, if like me, you believe in no one specific religion or just simply object to answering that particular question, then please consider the following alternative..... we are trying to encourage people to tick the 'other' box and then fill their religion in as "JEDI" - all Star Wars fans will understand, but the point of the exercise is two-fold...
1. if 8000 people throughout new zealand do this then JEDI will become an officially recognized religion which would be a laugh, and
2. it's a bit of an experiment in the power of email, as that has been our primary means of communication, that's not to say that you can't tell others about in other ways.
but I would urge you to do the above and pass this message/idea on to as many of your friends, relatives etc as you can so we can reach the magic number of 8000, be swift as we don't have a lot of time left!
May the Force be with you"

We want to know this email's history.
Tell us if you know


UK Latest

390,000 Jedi in the UK! (February 2003)
Who would have believed it.. 390,000 people put Jedi on their Census forms as their religion, thats out of around 52 million respondants!
Let's just put that into perspective... it's 7 out of every 1000 people in the country, and it would make it the fourth largest religion by number in the UK! I think that's pretty amazing.
The following links have more info:
- BBC article (390,000 Jedi)
- BBC Results analysis (more details)
- Times article (Fourth faith)

More info and links coming soon...

 

We have won the first battle! (October 2001)
They called it a hoax. They said it would never happen. They then said that we were welcome to do it, but that they would ignore us... but they didn't ignore us after all.
"Jedi Knight" has made it onto the official list of religions for the UK census processors! This does not mean that it is officially recognised as a religion, but it means that it WILL be officially recognised statistically as a response on the census forms distributed earlier this year.
What does that mean, really? Well it means that when the official census statistics for the UK are published next year some time, we will now how many people claimed to be Jedi! And that statistic will be available in the census statistics for years to come. Consider a future civilisation looking back at our census records, as we do to those of ancient civilisations now. Consider if they have somehow managed to watch the Star Wars films (how, I don't know). The British population of 2001 will appear to all intents and purposes to be made up of a percentage of Luke Skywalkers, and Obi Wans!
A lot of articles have been written about it already (thanks to all the people who emailed me with links and info!), here's a few of the best articles...
BBC, ABC Austria, The Register.
You can also read the official document listing the valid resposes to question 10 here, turn to page 18.
(Note: The stated intention of this site was to spread the word about the campaign to have Jedi recognised as a valid response, so I guess we have attained that goal. I will continue to update the site though, especially if any other country decides to join in the fun!.)

 

It's legal (May 2001)
I just received my census form, hand delivered by a 'Count me in' bloke. Reading the legal print on the front, because of the census act it is compulsory to complete the form, and it is punishable by fine if you provide false information. BUT, question 10 (religion!) is exempt from this liability! So, it's there in print. You can put Jedi on the form and they won't fine you! At least that's how I would interpret that.

In fact, that's exactly how I did interpret it, and you can see for yourself here - Click here to view my completed question 10.

Click to enlarge
Rules on false information.
Click image to enlarge.

Australian Latest

New Zealand Stats confirmed (30th August 2002)
We have finally received confirmation of the New Zealand numbers from a more 'official' source.
The following is a link to a story published in the NZ Herald on 30th August.
NZ Herald


New Zealand Stats released (2nd April 2002)
We have been informed by someone calling themselves Malcolm Wright that TV3 in New Zealand reported on 2nd April that "the number of JEDI in New Zealand to be 53,715"
He says that Statistics New Zealand had not reported this, but were forced to release it by an Official Information Act request.
If anyone has links to this story (I've looked but I can't find!) please let me know.


Australian Latest

More than 70,000 Jedi! (August 2002)
The votes have been counted, or rather the stats have, and we now know exactly how many of you put Jedi on your Australian census forms...
70,509 of you! That's only 0.37% of the population, but when put another way it sounds a lot more impressive. 70,509 Jedi is one out of evey two hundred and seventy respondants!
The downside to this news is that the ABC are again threatening to fine people.. we'll keep you updated as we get the news.
See here for the BBC's take on the story.


The Australian Government have backed down! (May 2001)
Or rather they are denying that they ever made threats or said that you would be liable to prosecution for entering Jedi on your forms. Today (22nd May 2001) I received an e-mail from a guy called Greg Todd in Australia who claims to have been entering "Jedi" on his census froms since 1981, and he pointed me to some updated information the Australian Bureau of Statistics web site. See here.
So, all you Australians can now legally put "Jedi" on your census forms if you wish, and there will be no 1500AU$ fine!


Rest of the world Latest

Canada - 20,000 Jedi (May 2003)
Out of Canada's 32 million people 20,000 put down Jedi as their religion on their census forms. Half of the Canadian Jedi are from British Columbia, with the rest from Alberta and Ontario - maybe this has something to do with the fact that it is claimed that the Canadian campaign was started by a couple Ski Patrolers.
Statistics Canada, the Canadian census statistics people, at first said refused to publish Jedi numbers claiming it was just a media driven stunt. But they eventually produced the nnumbers we have been waiting for when asked to produce the statistics for the far fewer numbers of Rastafarians, Scientologists and Satanists. See here for Canada.com's report.


What We Need To Do

The Legal Bit

John Struik, head of the ABS census programme in Australia, states that "to be recognized as a religion a belief system with a formal organizational structure must be demonstrated." (See CNN Asia Report link)
So there is our first challenge!
We need a formal organisational structure.
The bulletin board and mailing list carry discussions on this very subject, and as the structure is built, it will be published here for all to view!

So get involved by taking part in the bulletin board discussions. Just click the option in the menu on the left.

We especially want to know the history of the email: Where did it really start? Who really started it? Do you have copies in other languages? Please, join the board and discuss...

We at JediCensus are merely spreading the word of this idea.
While we think it is a fun idea, you must make your own decision as to whether you wish to register yourself as a Jedi on your census form.
It has been pointed out that knowingly falsifying information on a census form can be punishable by a fine! Although the UK census form appears to specifically exclude question 10, its question about religion, from both the compulsory completion clause, and the false information clause! See 'UK Latest' above
ABS, The Australian Buraeu of Statistics, has also invited people to enter Jedi on their forms if they so desire, so all in all it looks like the whole idea is now legally acceptable! See 'Aus Latest' above
Anyway if there are enough Jedi, we may be able to rise above, and crush the evil empire.. ooh sorry, got a bit carried away there.
This site is in no way condoning or promoting any illegal activity, we want Jedi to be recognised as a legitimate response!

We obviously recognise the word JEDI as not having been created by anybody involved with JEDICensus. It is probably the property of LucasFilm. The copyright message at the bottom of this page relates to the design and text of this site.

Last update: 24th April 2005.
©2001-2005 Dan Gibson, GonMad, No Original Thought.