Sterling Ambivalence (sterlingnorth) wrote,
Sterling Ambivalence

Reader Appreciation Post: or Let this be a Lurker's Paradise.

I'm going to steal an idea from the online journaling community. I'd like to know who reads this site. I'd also like to know how you found this site, what you like about it, and (this will probably be frightening easy) what you dislike about this journal. Frankly, I want to hear from all the people who read this journal, but have never or only occasionally left a post in a comment.

Why do I care?
Well, every so often, I get an interesting and unexpected comment. For example, I received a comment from allensbp, an Enoch Allen, whom I surmise is an aspiring writer who suggested I post more about animation. He did this on my Rosa Parks post, but that was the latest post by when he commented on the eleventh of November. I do like to talk about art and cartoons and animation and to watch the industry from my position as an outsider from roughly 5,000 miles away from its center at Hollywood, but at the time of the post I haven't posted anything about animation in months.

Curiosities like that lead me to wonder how people find this journal. Except for occasionally posting to journals I read and comment in, I don't self promote this page. I'd suppose I get most of my readers from people searching Google, however I doubt I update frequently enough to be very high in the Google spidering queue. Infrequent posting (and negligible linkback) also hurts me with blog search engines like Technorati and IceRocket. Such sites are pretty lousy when it comes to any blog outside of the top 10% of popularity or posting frequency. (I appear on Technorati less than half of the time I link to an article they track. I don't think I ever appear on IceRocket, despite its claim that I am in the system.)

Continuing on, I probably wouldn't be worrying about these things if it wasn't for the limitations of LiveJournal. LiveJournal does not offer many -- no... LiveJournal doesn't offer any tools to gague readership for its journals. For those of you who are running websites, or journals over on services like WordPress or TypePad, you can get statistics about how people find your site -- whether it be from a Google search, or from a link from another site -- or how many people read your site over a period of time (how many hits it receives. Elsewhere, on Google's Blogger, you can use Javascript to set up some sort of tracker. That's disallowed on LJ for concern of LJ password theft. That said, SixApart's sister service TypePad allows for such script on its sites, even allowing for people to make money through advertising via Google's AdSense. Note, SixApart's TypePad also has a authentication based commenting system, TypeKey, which appears to remain persistent across sites. It's one of the few things I wish from LJ since its purchase by the Trotts.

Back to the idea of the delurker post, or as I prefer to call it, the reader introduction post. I know the online journal community would like to attribute it to someone posting back on September 21st, but I've seen other sites do such a thing even earlier, so I'll just say it's prior art. Leave a comment, tell me how you got here, what you like or don't like about this journal (for example, you can accost me for promising to post about something, but never actually following through on my promise). If you don't have an LJ journal, and have no clue what an OpenID is (don't worry, I don't either), feel free to post using the Anonymous option. If you have a website somewhere, feel free to link to it here. As long as it isn't spam, I'll check it out.
Tags: internet, meta

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