Monday, March 28, 2011

Navel-Gazing Fun With Statistics!

Can you believe we're approaching the sixth anniversary of this blog? Good lord. It seems like just yesterday that Kofi Annan came to me and said, "Mark, your words need to the fabric that keeps this fractured planet together. You must start a blog!" And really, the Secretary-General was totally correct, given the complete lack of warfare and strife that's taken place in the world since 2005. Uh...

Blogger's "stats" function only goes back a year, but it's still a fun check to see just what humanity thought was my most popular material of the last 12 months. First, let's see what brought people to the dance in the first place. As David Byrne would say, how did I get here? These were the most popular search keywords that led readers to the site....

"Inglourious Basterds analysis"
"Top 100 athletes of the 21st century"
"frankie muniz married"
"best 24 villain"
"frank muniz"
"frank muniz dead"
"robert irsay 'tall italian' "
"inglorious basterds analysis"

The first two were far and away the most popular keywords, which explains a couple of the entries on my 'most popular posts' list. These were the most-viewed blog posts of the past year...

* Brett Favre vs. Hamlet. No surprise, given Brett Favre's always-high profile, though hopefully nobody logged onto my site hoping for the infamous cock picture that Favre -- allegedly -- mailed to Jenn Sterger. I run a family blog, mister! Look for your smut elsewhere! (The word "cock" is acceptable on a family blog, right? This could be a website about a farming.) I should note, this post was BY FAR my most-viewed of the year, capturing a quarter of the total views on my blog altogether. I like to think that it was because of Hamlet, as in some confused high school kid used this post as a reference on his remedial English essay, and subsequently received an F-minus-minus. Possibly a G-minus.

* Box To The Ox. This is kind of an odd one, given that this post was thrown together in about 20 minutes on Boxing Day and doesn't really have any one subject, aside from talking about my Christmas and my grandmother on the toilet. (Boy, that sounds bad out of context.) My hunch is that people surfed onto this post due to the various boxing-themed photos I used. Lots of fans of the National wanted to find an album cover, or people wanted a shot of Muhammad Ali in action, or political junkies were really hard up for a shot of Barbara Boxer, etc.

* The 24 Best 24 Villains Ever. People love lists, it was 24's last season, makes sense.

* Inglourious Basterds, An Analysis. I'm happy this one is so popular, I had a lot of fun writing about this great film. That said, I'm fully aware that the vast majority of pageviews were undoubtedly from students looking for research sources. I mean, it has the film's title and "analysis" right there, that's catnip for lazy film students on Google. I've even received a few e-mails from students asking for my real name so they can properly cite me in their papers. Of course, to prevent the scourge of plagiarism, I agree, but only by giving them a fake name. "Inglourious Basterds: An Analysis by Laszlo Panaflex."

* The Best Films Of The 2000's. Again, people love lists.

* The Great American Posting Bash/Lisa Loeb". Here's the real outlier of the bunch, a five-year-old brief item about whether or not Lisa Loeb is attractive without her glasses. Could it have gotten a lot of pageviews simply because it's the only thing anyone's written about Lisa Loeb since 1997? Or, maybe diehard WCW/NWA fans are hoping for a revival of the Great American Bash.

* Demotivational Posters (Part One). No surprise here, it's a popular series. Hell, I found the poster stash myself by going around to various sites, so I'm just keeping the meme alive.

* The Best Athletes Of The 21st Century. PEOPLE LOVE LISTS. Looking at this list with 18 months of hindsight, I can't believe I put LeBron ahead of Tim Duncan. How moronic. Maybe my slotting Tiger at #1 is what jinxed him.

* Replacements For Steve Carell. Timely, provocative, and a question to which we still don't actually know the answer. The rumour mill has Will Arnett stepping in as the new Dunder-Mifflin boss, which I'm on board with, but I still like my Jimmy James/Dave Nelson idea. Dave Foley could really use the money, if you've ever read any of his Tweets about how his first ex-wife is bleeding him dry. It's....kinda sad.

* Old Wedding Photos Found Near A Garbage Can In An Alley Next To An Old Mattress. I love, love, love that 1065 people read this goofy-ass page over the past year.

Now, you'll notice that some of these popular posts coincide with the most popular search terms, but there are a few that stand out. There are three (three!) Frankie Muniz-related searches that led people to wondering if he was married, one wondering if he was dead, and the last just in reference to 'Frank' Muniz, in case he tries to escape his kiddie image. It might have something to do with this four-year-old post, or my references to the 'Cody Banks/Frankie Muniz jump punch' fighting technique as observed in the trailer for one of the Cody Banks films. From this, I can only glean that if I changed this blog's focus to nothing but news about Frankie Muniz and Lisa Loeb, I'd have the new Facebook.

The other random search term "Robert Irsay 'tall italian' " is even more of a head-scratcher. This is the only time I've ever mentioned Indianapolis Colts owner Bob Irsay, and when I actually Googled that search term myself, I wound up at this post, which is ostensibly about Anne Hathaway possibly being in the new Spider-Man movie, but at one point I describe Andrea Bargnani as a seven-foot-tall Italian. So hey, at least something was accurate in this post, since Hathaway sure didn't end up as "the Vulturess" or whatever nonsense that was.

Windows was by far the operating system that delivered the most pageviews, with a little over 79 percent of the readership. My fellow Mac users were in second with 16 percent, and no other operating system (iPhone, iPad, etc.) cracked even one percent. Somewhere, Steve Jobs weeps. Windows also took the day when it came to pageview by browser, at 43 percent. Firefox was second with 30 percent and Safari and Chrome tied with 11 percent each.

An even ten countries make up my readership, with over 75 percent of readers hailing from the United States. Does this mean I'll start spelling 'favourite' without the U? Hell no. In order, the ten countries are the USA, Canada, the UK, Germany, Australia, Holland, France, Brazil, Italy and Russia. To this I say what the hell did I ever do to piss you off, Republic of Ireland? C'mon, I write about U2 all the dang time, I should be generating more attention from the Irish than a James Joyce readathon.

Anyway, by sticking all my most popular searches on one page, this will quickly become the most-viewed page in Blogger history. My scheme to double readership is complete! What, did you think I'd first try to post more, or generate more quality? Pfft, silly rabbit.

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