Disperser Tracks 2020 — The Numbers

This year has been something, I tell you what. So much so that I decided on a bit of a year-end summary.

A summary of my blogging efforts, my life, what I observed and think about the year, and whatever else comes up as I write these posts. That’s right . . . posts, because it would be difficult — and draining — to write about all those things in one post.

Therefore, I begin with is by far the easiest thing to write about . . . numbers. Specifically, numbers pertaining to this blog, and more specifically, numbers for the year and numbers for the ten years this blog has been in existence. 

Here we go . . .

The big jump in visitors and views for 2020 is due to The Alphabet  Challenge (LINK), as can be seen below.

It stands to reason because approximately every two weeks there are four posts — the stories and the voting post — that will each see multiple views. In contrast, most of my posts (with a few notable exceptions also noted below) only get views for a few days and then pass into obscurity.

Here are the view stats for the top 2020 posts . . .

The posts with green bars before the titles are posts published this year and — as noted — the majority are The Alphabet Challenge posts. Note that they trail by a significant number the Firefly Limited Edition Serenity Blueprints post (LINK).

Discounting the Alphabet Challenge, most of the posts that got a lot of views are from a number of years back.

In fact, if you look at the all-time numbers, nothing from the last four years ranks all that high (I’m only showing posts that got more than 400-lifetime views.

Now, the numbers are skewed a bit by the fact that when a visit to the “Home Page” is counted, it could, in fact, be for a current post, only it won’t get counted as such. With the current theme, you can’t read a post on the home page, so we’ll see how that works. Then again, I’m not sure how views from the Reader are counted. This is what yesterday’s visits look like . . .

Note that despite the daily reminders, only two views to the “V” stories were recorded . . . and I don’t know if those views were by people who read the stories or were just people who accidentally dropped in there and quickly left.

The thing with these numbers is that they are a far cry from the statistics I used to be able to get . . . and that’s because WordPress (and Google metrics, and other metrics aggregators) want to charge for the information. That’s fine, I suppose, but I don’t want to pay for it, so here we are, left to look at imperfect compilations such as . . .

click for a larger view

What do those numbers actually mean? I don’t know. About the only number I have confidence in is the number of posts (2,828 before this one goes live). And even then, it’s not like I counted them all. I’m trusting WordPress to give me an accurate count. But, given they came up with the Block Editor, how much can/should I trust them?

Of more interest is where all these visitors come from, but even here things can be a bit murky. This is the visitor map provided by WordPress . . .

I can compare the above to the all-time statistics (except that too is off because they don’t go back to the beginning of the blog) . . .

. . . and be saddened that the one visitor I had from Greenland did not visit me again in 2020 . . . and that no one from North Korea likes me . . . but, you know what? I had a visitor from  Iceland (but not in 2020 — and they too did not return)!

. . . still haven’t snagged Svalbard and a few other countries that show up as white on the maps.

I have another counter that gives me live reports and slightly different numbers, but only from 2015 onwards, when they reset the counters . . .

The total visits here show much higher for the year. In part, that’s because they count my visits to the blog (about 6K — that number includes all the times I reply to comments, look at comments, edit stuff, etc.) but that still leaves about 7K more views than reported by WordPress.

And that’s not counting the fact the countries don’t match the WordPress 2020 map above.

Really, what does all this mean?

Nothing. Nothing at all.

Wait . . .  it gets me a year-end post, so maybe it counts for something.

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.


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