Journal readership

Josh just sent me the list of LJ users who subscribe to my LJ feed (thanks, Josh!), which I think I hadn't seen in a couple of years, so I looked it over.

Of the nearly 150 people on the list, about half are people I know via the sf world in one way or another (some close friends, some less-close friends and friendly acquaintances, a fair number of people who I don't know but who've submitted stories to us, a couple of people who haven't submitted to us but whose names I know from their publications elsewhere); about a quarter are people I know via Swarthmore, directly or indirectly (though there's some overlap there with the sf group); there are a dozen or so I know through assorted social circles (mostly eventually traceable back to Kam); and then another 30 or so who I don't know at all--either their name is entirely unfamiliar to me, or I can't find a name associated with their LJ account.

Last time I looked at the list, in April 2005, there were about a hundred people on it; 22 of those have dropped off, 67 new people have joined, and 2 (that I know of) have changed their LJ names.

And of course there are people who read my journal the old-fashioned way, without going through LJ.

So here's another open-introductions entry: if I don't know you, regardless of the format in which you read my journal, you're welcome to post a comment (in the entry on my journal page, not in the LJ copy of the entry please) and introduce yourself. You're certainly not required to do so; lurkers are also welcome. But if you want say hi, feel free. Email is also fine.

I've been thinking about journal readership in another context, too. Back in July of 2006, Scalzi posted a list of The Top 50 Personal Blogs in SF/F, as ranked by Technorati. I was pleasantly surprised to see my journal rank at #25, with a Technorati ranking of about 25,000; but knowing the ficklness of Technorati, I took the precaution of posting a comment about why I distrust Technorati's ranking system, a system which appears to be based primarily on the number of other blogs linking to your blog in a particular period.

And it's a good thing I distrust their ranking system, 'cause my journal's ranking went into freefall not long after Scalzi's post. Although my journal is probably more prominent now than it was six months ago (given the link from the Google blog sidebar), its Technorati ranking has been hovering between about 100,000 and 150,000 for the past month or two. And that's despite still getting a presumably-significant boost in ranking from spam blogs and from blogroll sidebars. I figured that part of the problem was that half the time when I post a new entry these days, Technorati's ping receiver times out, so I'm guessing that a lot of people's entries just aren't showing up on Technorati at all these days. However, as Scalzi's December 2006 updated list shows, any issues with Technorati pings sure aren't hurting the Technorati ratings of the people who are still on his list.

I suppose I could shoulder some of the responsibility for falling off Scalzi's list myself, seeing as how I haven't been posting much that's especially linkworthy, and seeing as how I haven't been participating much in online discussions.

But I think instead I'll stick with my initial reaction: "I didn't want to be on your dumb ol' list anyway, you mean Scalzi person! I'm going to take my blog and go home!"

8 Responses to “Journal readership”

  1. therinth

    Hey Jed — it’s me, Erin :D. (From Avi’s old group n’ other sf-ish stuff :)) I’m therinth, over on lj.


  2. Kyran Jaye

    I’m just a lurker… I found your blog through a friend’s LJ, and it seemed interesting, thus why I’m reading. Thought I’d say hi, since you asked. 😉 I am one of those sometimes-writer folk who never seems to finish a story, but keeps half an eye on writerly sites and blogs just in case (maybe someday…) and enough of a geek to be interested in the occasional techie stuff that pops up, and so I will probably continue to lurk on your LJ feedlist for the foreseeable future. Just so you know. 🙂

    ::goes back to lurking::

  3. Matthew Katinsky

    Hello Jed. This is Matthew Katinsky, a supporting cast member of your Swarthmore twenty-five percent. In the likely event that you remember neither my name nor face, I will add that I was roommates with DVS at Swarthmore and that I spent a fair bit of time at SWIL meetings.

    I have been reading your journal for a month now, having found it through an LJ link of someone wishing you a happy birthday (and by the way, Happy Birthday). Forgive me for “lurking” this past month, but I have enjoyed your thoughts and ramblings. I am still fairly new to twenty-first century electronic etiquette. Feel free to browse my own blog in which you will discover that I have become a rather ordinary member of society and a statisically average breeder. Cheers!

  4. Anonymous

    I believe I found you because of various OWW-SFF members.

  5. Claris (sentimentalromantic)

    Ahem. Sorry. I found you through OWW-SFF members, as far as I know.

    (I thought I had been signed in, and I hadn’t.)

  6. Jed

    Hi, all–thanks for the notes, and welcome!

    Erin: Hi!

    Kyran: Welcome. I recommend finishing a story and sending it out.

    Matthew: Yes, of course I remember you! I’m pleased to hear from you. I think someone must’ve been confused about birthdays, though, ’cause mine isn’t ’til next month. Congratulations on the offspring, and wow/yikes about the giant fireball next door.

    Claris: Interesting–I always had the vague idea you were somehow connected to Mary Anne. I think I must’ve been confusing you with someone else. Anyway, long-belated welcome to you too!

  7. Joanna

    I’m not sure if I count as a lurker or an unknown, since I did vaguely mention how I found your journal in my first comment, on your review of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe movie. But I suppose I could classify myself — and I also feel compelled to introduce myself again for your own blog-readership awareness, since I am mostly a lurker but occasionally seized with a strong desire to comment.

    I’m another ‘supporting cast member of your Swarthmore twenty-five percent’; I recognized the name attached to the movie review because I’d heard Catherine O (’01) mention you. I enjoy reading your movie/book reviews (even taking a couple of your book recommendations, Eleanor Arnason’s Ring of Swords and Guy Gavriel Kay’s The Lions of Al-Rassan), as well as occasionally skimming the technical posts or thoughts on sf/f writing.

  8. Sumana Harihareswara

    Hi! I’m a friend/acquaintance of Zed Lopez and found your journal via a link from him. I live in New York City and am learning to be a software project manager at Fog Creek Software. I used to read your journal off and on, but have now added your RSS feed to my aggregator for better consistency. Best wishes.


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