2013-05-26 Popularity

For a while now, I’ve been using Google’s +1 button at the bottom of the page. They’re special because they require two clicks: the first click loads the button code from Google, which you then have to click. If you don’t click anything, no code is being loaded from Google and hopefully you’re not being tracked. I also no longer use Google Analytics to track my stats so in theory Google shouldn’t be seeing any of your reading on this site.

Usually my +1 counts are really low—mostly zero, in fact. Recently I noticed a few blog posts with more than ten +1. And now that I’ve announced the winners of a little contest I’m running every year, I see how far up the number could go… if only I blogged stuff that was more relevant to other people. Look at the last entry...

→ 62 people clicked +1

Oh well. As I’m noticing how much time I’m spending just reading the blogs and Google+ itself, I hesitate before posting on my own blog. Am I really adding much? In a way I felt better when I didn’t think of the audience and felt free to write a two sentence blog post about a movie I saw. These days I often wonder what the readers that come here for RPG posts will think.

Since I don’t know how to make my writing more relevant to my readers, perhaps I should try to make my writing more natural again. We’ll see.



Ironically, I started following due to some technical post, though I don’t remember exactly what it was now (probably Emacs-related). The RPG posts are bonus material for me. They have reignited my desire to play, which I haven’t done (for a number of reasons) in somewhere around 14 years. Your posts reminded me how much I love it. I haven’t +1’d any of your posts because I mostly read them through my RSS feed reader, but I will make an effort to open the posts on the site and +1 them when I think they’re great. Sorry to bring you down with my lack of feedback.

– Josh 2013-05-28 14:21 UTC

No worries. The lack of popularity is not bringing me down. :) What I find intriguing, however, is how the imagined audience changes what I feel comfortable writing about. Perhaps the post was a replacement post for a darker collection of thoughts on self-censorship, the balance between tolerance (benevolent reading of others) and intolerance (the blocking, reverting and uncircling of others), vulnerability (linking to posts and comments I want to criticize and naming names, the fear of making enemies, attracting the attention of unwanted readers) and negativity (ranting, negative reviews, complaints)… it’s still very much muddled up.

As for RSS readers: I’m always frustrated by the lack of +1 buttons in Reeder. Google Reader has it and its closing down. :( Don’t feel compelled to click through and +1 posts – that’s too much work and I don’t do it when I read other blogs. Do feel free to leave a comment every now and then, however. :)

AlexSchroeder 2013-05-28 14:37 UTC

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