2021 Christmas Stats Reveal How We Really Feel About Yuletide

Christmas Tree Funnel Chart with Pie Chart Baubles

Each December, everybody harps on about the Christmas charts. Well, here we have the only Christmas charts that matter. Hark! It’s Christmas Custom Charts. Glory to the festive pie… and bar and funnel.

Sorry, that’s the eggnog making me woozy.

Anyway, in December we ran a series of Yuletide-themed polls on LinkedIn and the results are in. And our product manager Morgan Folsom had a great time turning the stats into beautiful charts brimming with holiday cheer using our app, Custom Charts for Jira. (I mean, you just couldn’t get them looking this Christmassy with native Jira because they don’t let you change the damn colors.)

So, sit back with a glass of mulled wine (because, truthfully, the thought of eggnog makes us all wanna vom), and enjoy finding out what people really think about Christmas in 2021.

Let the charty party commence.

When do people put up their Christmas trees?

When do you put up your Christmas tree Custom Chart (funnel chart)

Christmas is a busy, fun, exciting, and (for some people) supremely annoying time of year. It’s also rather contentious as to when that time of year actually is. The commercialism of Christmas seems to push the holiday earlier and earlier, but a lot of people will insist that it’s not Christmas till this date or that, and therefore, abominable to put up your Christmas tree before that time.

In the delightful funnel chart shown above, which Morgan has made to look like a Christmas tree by sorting from smallest to biggest, and customizing the colors of the segments, the vast majority of those polled (63%) said they put up their tree on the first day or weekend in December. This makes sense. December 1st is the first day of Advent, so it’s when the official countdown to Christmas begins.

The next biggest percentage of people (20%) said they put their tree up on Christmas Eve and NOT before. This could be because the twelve days of Christmas traditionally start on Christmas Day and end on January 6th. (Really, though? Radios stop playing Christmas songs after Boxing Day, and who in their right mind is still doing Christmassy things post-New Year?) Other possibilities are that they’re less keen on the holiday (bah, humbug!) and endeavor to put it off as long as possible, or maybe they just hate Christmas trees.

Personally I was among the 7% who voted for right after Halloween (yay, I get to be the star on the tree). And yes, a number of my friends roll their eyes and shake their heads, but let’s face it. Christmas starts in at least November these days. Christmas markets open early-to-mid-November. At pretty much the same time, town centers switch on their Christmas lights and Santa sets up camp in his department store grottos. Most shops have some Christmas stock long before November, but the moment Halloween’s over, tinsel, singing reindeer, pamper sets, and mug cakes flood the shelves quicker than you can say ‘deck the bloody halls’.

If all that wasn’t enough, in 2020, digital radio station Heart Xmas started playing 24/7 Christmas songs on October 25th, and in 2021, launched even earlier on October 15th!

Is Die Hard a Christmas movie?

Is Die Hard a Christmas movie Custom Chart (Pie Chart)

Ah, the argument that pops up every year without fail. Funnily enough, Dictionary.com defines “die-hard” as “a person who vigorously maintains or defends a seemingly hopeless position, outdated attitude, lost cause, or the like”.

From the looks of the pie chart above, this could be said about the 19% of people who continue to insist that Die Hard is not a Christmas movie. Indeed, when I spoke to Morgan about this, she said, “Wait, wasn’t this argument settled years ago?” Well, it kinda does look like it, with a whopping 81% now agreeing that, yes, Die Hard is a Christmas movie.

For those of you who still refuse to accept the truth :wink:, here’s an awesome article that analyzes the frequency of references to Christmas in the script, the number of Christmas songs on the soundtrack, the intentions of the people who made it, and the movie’s commercial and cultural context. *SPOILERS!* The conclusion of the study is that Die Hard may or may not have been a Christmas movie originally, but it certainly is now.

Where do people tend to lose Whamageddon?

Where do you tend to lose Whamageddon Custom Chart (Tile Chart)

Once bitten and twice shy, I keep my distance, but you still catch my… ear.

Now, I’m not remotely surprised that a majority (40%) voted for “What the fuck is Whamageddon?” in our third poll. I myself had to look up what it is. For the uninitiated like me, Whamageddon is a game where a player tries to go as long as possible without hearing Wham!’s Last Christmas. The game starts on 1st December and ends at midnight on Christmas Eve. If you lose, you’re sent to a kind of afterlife called Whamhalla, where you get to enjoy Last Christmas on a permanent loop. If you’re unexpectedly knocked out, it’s called a Whambush.

The tile chart above shows that our second most popular answer (26%) was “Er, I WIN wherever I put it on”. Clearly we had some Wham! fans taking part in our polls. Good for them.

Most hated Christmas traditions

Hated Christmas Traditions Custom Chart (Bar Chart)

Sometimes Christmas really boils our Buck’s Fizz. We dedicated our fourth poll to all the Scrooges and Grinches out there, asking what they hate the most about this incessantly recurring season.

Interestingly, as shown by the beautiful bar chart above, the results of this poll were neck and neck. The winning answer was “Shops doing Christmas in September” with 33%, which makes sense given the results of poll 1. But it was only 5 percentage points ahead of “Hearing that damn Mariah song” (28%). As much as Mariah Carey thinks she’s the queen of Christmas (because of, like, one decent song), it would seem she’s not on everybody’s Christmas list.

Coming close behind Ms Carey’s earworm was Elf on the (fucking) Shelf, with 26%. This relatively new tradition is fast becoming every parent’s Yuletide nightmare thanks to daily pressure on their creative prowess and constant post-elf shenanigans clean-ups. (My partner’s already said, quite categorically, that we’re not doing any of that Elf of the Shelf shit when we have kids.)

I guess I was surprised that more people didn’t vote for “Buying gifts for twats” (13%). This means either that most of our voters are fortunate to like all the people in their lives, which is lovely, if unlikely, or that they simply leave the twats off their buying list. A bit difficult for some of us, particularly if the twats we know don’t know we think they’re twats (or we’re lumped with the office knobhead in Secret Santa).

Best thing to have on a Christmas jumper for the office party

Best thing to have on a Christmas jumper Custom Chart line chart

Once upon a time, Christmas jumpers were that ugly, itchy, gaudy thing knitted by your nan. You’d smile and wear it once for a photo on Christmas Day (just to prove you’d worn it). Then you’d banish it to the back of the wardrobe to be eaten by dust mites.

Not so in 2021. Today the Christmas jumper is an ironic genius festive fashion staple, worn by the coolest, the nerdiest, and everyone in between. They’re also a great excuse to be naughty.

As it happens, you can see from the lovely green line chart above that a big majority of voters like the idea of using festive knitwear to take a dig at penny-pinching bosses. “Where’s My Christmas Bonus?” was the clear winner with 61 votes (58%). Coming in second was “Jolly as Fuck” with 28 votes (27%). This would suggest that people think “Kiss My Baubles” (7 votes – 7%) and “Tinsel Tits” (9 votes – 8%) are a touch risqué for the office. (Here at Old Street, they’re probably not risqué enough. 🤣🤣)

By the way, “Jolly as Fuck” wasn’t the original option. It was going to be “When I Think of You I Touch My Elf”, but LinkedIn’s 30-character limit pissed on my pudding. Boo.

Christmas Custom Charts Dashboard

And here’s a delightful dashboard of all our charts (really makes our Jira jingle :wink:).

There you have it. If you voted on our polls, you’re probably already aware that a metric shit ton of Christmas cheer is on its way to you, currently in transit on Santa’s sleigh.

Which just leaves me to say: on behalf of everyone at Old Street, MERRY CHRISTMAS! I’ve off to watch Love Actually and put obscene amounts of Quality Street in my face.

Meme of cat that got fat over Christmas

Christopher is a self-confessed nerd who’d probably take the cake on Mastermind if Star Trek: Voyager was his specialist subject. He writes fiction about time travel, conspiracies and aliens; loves roller coasters, hiking and Christmas; and hates carpet, rom-coms and anything with chilli in it. He’s written extensively for technology companies and Atlassian partners and specializes in translating complicated technical concepts, specs and jargon into readable, benefits-driven copy that casual readers will understand.