Recently this silly blog managed to grab the attention of its 400,000th set of eyeballs. At around the same time, it recorded its 3000th comment. That doesn’t necessarily speak to its popularity as much as it speaks to my inexplicable persistence in crunching out new material every week.
One reason for the persistence: My stats show that most weekdays, there are between 500 and 700 clicks on this blog. As two-bit non-commercial blogs go, it’s decent but modest data. Every time I start to think that’s an impressive figure, there are moments like the one Friday, wherein I asked readers to start an Open Thread. We heard crickets, yet the blog still had 567 views Friday.
I started writing LAF on February 12, 2008, a throwaway post fueled by a high octane beer. I wrote nine posts that month. I somehow got a total of 225 clicks the entire month.
The month to month stats show that LAF peaked last summer, at about the time I announced I was going to work at WXIA. The blog, which started as a media critique, became tamer and more introspective. Views dropped, but less than I expected. To see the graphics more clearly, click on ’em.
I know this because WordPress provides a “dashboard” which allows me to manage the blog’s look, and to get a sense of its place on the internet. For example, if NewsBlues links to one of my posts, I can see the incoming link. It’ll tell me how many people clicked it to get to LAF. My views always spike when NewsBlues lifts my material (except that one time, when they swiped my copy and info, but kinda forgot to link to me. And no, I didn’t gripe to them about it. It seemed an honest oversight. They’ve consistently given LAF credit when due. Plus, they’ve given me a free subscription.)
So here’s the weird and somewhat creepy part:
My dashboard also tells me what search engine terms people use to find LAF. Because I’m mentioning WGCL’s Dagmar Midcap and WAGA’s Suchita Vadlamani in this post, my views will spike. Apparently, there are untold numbers of lonely, hairy, Cheetoh-chomping dudes living in their parents’ basements who objectify these two News Professionals and have asked Google to notify them whenever their names appear on the internet.
Hey fellas! How’s it going out there?
Here are snapshots I’ve made of my all-time search engine terms. Although Midcap may have the Atlanta market’s most notoriety, objectification-wise, Vadlamani significantly outdoes Midcap, statistically speaking, in a straight-up name-to-name comparison. (However, many searchers add words like “legs” and “husband” and “journalism awards” [Kidding. Sorry.] to the names, and those are counted separately.)
It’s worth noting that the only menfolk who crack the top tier are Jeff Hullinger, Jim Axel, Steve Schwaid, myself (with “blog” included) and Gregg Leakes. Leakes is the husband of NeNe Leakes of “Real Housewives of Atlanta” fame. I mentioned him exactly once on this blog. Likewise, prior to now, I’ve mentioned Vadlamani exactly once.
It’s also worth noting what I would consider to be the dark horse third-place finisher after Vadlamani and Midcap: Joanne Feldman, the weekend meteorologist on WAGA.
(This data is limited, however to folks I’ve actually mentioned in an LAF post. There’s been no mention of, say, meteorologists Jennifer Valdez of WGCL or Karen Minton at WSB or Ashley McDonald at WXIA. Until now.)
In the second tier (see right), I couldn’t be more delighted to see WXIA weekend anchor Valerie Hoff, myself, and Tom Waits listed consecutively. And Franz Kafka makes the list.
Here are two last oddities from the dashboard:
LAF’s most views in one day — more than 1500 — was the result of this post. I learned that if you write something controversial about college football, the eyeballs come out of the woodwork.
This is my most-read post ever. Some wildly popular blog in Dallas TX linked to it. Dallas was / is the hometown of former DeKalb police chief Terrell Bolton. Apparently, he’s still a controversial character there.
But this post is rapidly gaining, apparently thanks to internet creepos with Cheetoh-stained computer keyboards.
Thanks for visiting, guys. Not to be rude, but you might consider getting a life.