Aspergers on the fallacy of statistics

Posted: September 4, 2012 in entertainment, life, literature, Uncategorized, writing
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

How do you make sense of how successful your blog is? Anyway you do it, the best a person can be working on is misleading information.

Page views: Some people may judge how successful they have been based on the number of people who have clicked on their pages. However, the page views never tell a person how many people have actually read the article or whether they clicked away after three sentences. Did they read the whole article? A person could argue that it is better to have fewer people view it who actually really liked it then many page views of people indifferent to the article and the blog. Statistically, however, a person always wants to see a bigger number not a smaller number, not stopping to try and figure out the story behind what they are seeing. Also page views can go up or down based off of what tags a person uses, someone who is into fashion may come across an article I wrote expecting a more indepth look into fashion while I used fashion in a more widespread way but felt the need to include that tag. A person into fashion would most likely click away. While missing a few tags makes it harder for people who would actually be interested in the article miss it.

Most viewed articles: See what I had to say about tagging articles in the previous paragraph and how this to is misleading instead of a way of judging what kind of articles you should be writing about.

Likes: A person can click like on an article that they enjoyed. However, this statistic like all statistics is misleading. What do they like about it? Do they like the image that you included? do they like the small segment of the article that they read or did they read the whole thing?  Are they supportive friends or are they strangers who have no personal connection? A supportive friend is great but they are often more predisposed to being generous. However, it is equally important to trying to keep them happy. A stranger clicking “like” to an article makes one feel better that someone you don’t know is reading your article and enjoying it. A cynical person would suggest, however, that viewing many pages other people wrote and clicking “like” is a good way to get people to come back to your own page.

Number of people following: This statistic is also a heartwarming statistic that does not tell the full story. What about all the people who read a couple of your article but don’t click follow because they don’t want to be bombarded by email? Is it better to have a small number of loyal followers and have a really honest personal blog that many people may not relate to? or is it better to aim for a mainstream audience where the followers may not be as die-hard? In addition, just because you are following another person’s blog does not mean you read the whole thing, or that you even check it regularly.

Personal feelings: A person may feel that the article they just wrote is the best or that they are writing a really good, important blog. That they are really successful and that the people reading them will really enjoy their work. That they know what is important. However, personal feelings is the most subjective biased way of deciding anything and therefore, quite possibly the least accurate way.

Messages: Who doesn’t like some back and forth communication on one of their blogs. However, not every person who reads a blog will have anything to say about it or even if they do they may be exhausted from a long day of work therefore, may simply click “like” and who is to good to turn these people away. That doesn’t mean that they didn’t take anything away or that they didn’t gain some new insight that just means that they didn’t have anything they had anything to say or that they wanted to say at that moment in time.

A mix of all the measures: Some people may argue that you can only get a complete picture by taking into account all the other statistics and indicators in order to truly tell how successful you are, however, if the statistics are all lies or  misleading at best how do you honestly think that by looking at them you will get a clearer picture? That is like trying to figure out a really tough puzzle by looking at senseless riddles.

Financial success: If anyone achieves financial success, gets tickets to shows or gets any real recognition for their work on a blog in the outside world that would be rare and second, yes that would be a real indicator of a successful blog. However, just because your blog never nets you that perfect job does not mean that it is not good or worth reading and writing.

It simply means that success is fleeting and hard to nail down. Write your blog if you enjoy it don’t worry about succeess, and the second you stop enjoying it simply stop writing it.

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Comments
  1. […] a whim — just right now — and perhaps spurned on by this blog post over on Mr. asperger today, I clicked through my stats page to see my top viewed posts of all time. […]

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