Monday, April 21, 2008

Checking up on the stats

I’ve mentioned the articles I’ve got on Triond before in these posts, so I probably don’t have to explain again that it’s one of these sites that you write for and leave your articles on in perpetuity – or at least for as long as the Internet lasts. And the incentive to do so is that they pay you. A modest sum, to be sure, but there are no strings attached – like having to have $50 or $100 on your account before they’ll fork anything out.
Anyway, I’ve now had articles on there since 7th November, 2006, and the current list numbers some 74 pieces.
I was curious to see which ones had been viewed most often, and since Triond helpfully provides such information, I can tell you that a piece called A Future Without Plastic has had just under 600 reads, which may not sound much, but is still more views than any of the posts on this blog have ever had.
Second in line is another ‘green’ piece: The End of Petroleum. This one is considerably behind the first in having only 517 views. Then we have another big drop (partly because the piece appeared five months later) to 349 views on Where Are the Willy Wonka Children? I always find it hard to believe that this one has had anywhere near that number of views; it seems a fairly innocuous topic to me. Plainly celebrity is more important than I thought.
Even more absurd, in a way, is the fourth: How to Wake Up, which is a jokey piece on getting out of bed in the morning. Why this should have been a hit I don’t know. It's also just about the youngest of my pieces on Triond.
The problem, as you can see, is that if I was trying to gauge what to write about so that people would be encouraged to come back again and again, I’d be struggling on the basis of these first four. And number five doesn’t help balance things up: Ten Places in Britain You Might Not Want to Move To.
Okay, I understand that people seem to like lists, but this is actually the first of the top five to have focus on a list. So that doesn’t help much either.
We’re now down into the views in the 200s, with New Zealand Factoids. Not the name I gave the piece, incidentally. I don’t know why they changed it from New Zealand Facts, as it's the only time they've ever done it!
This is followed by Possums and Prostates. Good grief. Here’s a medical piece that got almost no views for weeks on end and then suddenly took off. Perhaps some prostate sufferers discovered it.
Animals, Collectively, is another one of those tidbit types of writing, in which I talk about the collective names for certain animals. Again, hardly rip-roaring stuff, but that hasn't stopped it being popular.
With 150 views we get to World’s Steepest Street Not Always the Easiest to Live On. This was popular when it first arrived – perhaps because of the ‘World’s Steepest’ element – which is maybe why it’s up there with the first ten.
And the 10th place goes to Classical Music Isn’t Always Classical, which was an attempt to explain that we often call music Classical when it isn’t in the least bit ‘classical,’ just serious – or ‘fine,’ as they now say on our Concert Program.
So there you go. What' s interesting about the top-viewed list is that it doesn't entirely connect to the top earners. Eight of the top viewers are on the top earners page, but not necessarily in the same order. Two articles, The Need for Electricity, and A Green Roof Over My Head (both environmental items, so maybe there's something to be said for that area after all) managed to sneak into the top earners, with the electricity item coming third.
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