They say blogs are dead. They say comments are dead. To my surprise, this website has surprised me. In the later years of the Sepia Mutiny weblog the number of comments started dropping off. The theory was that people were commenting more on Facebook (Twitter wasn’t huge then). Google Analytics says that more than 20,000 people are reading this website in a given month. That’s not trivial, but it’s small. That being said, the comment threads are often “hopping.”
This is good and nice. How do we maintain this? I don’t moderate much at this point but am worried about things getting out of control. That being said, this is not a job and I have lots of other things to attend to. Thoughts?
– A greater and greater portion of the traffic on this weblog is mobile (about 60% now). That’s why I redesigned it a while back. This mobile traffic is clearly driven by Indian traffic, which is overwhelmingly mobile.
– There has been a major dropoff in positive reviews on Apple Podcasts and Stitcher. Please leave some positive reviews.
– The downloads are about 50% American (USA). About 10% from India. The balance is other nations.
– I’m still doing all the editing, which is one reason the sound quality is…variable. If you want that to change, you probably should become a patron. Once we hit around $200/month I think we can afford an editor I know who does good work (she edits The Insight). Right now it is costing me $40 a month to host the podcasts and get a good Zencastr account.
But really the opportunity cost of time is the major issue for me. I enjoy recording podcasts. I generally am ambivalent about editing (it’s kind of interesting to listen, but I have to focus on other things besides content).
– This weblog now regularly gets more traffic than my primary weblog, Gene Expression.
Since people keep asking, I will post here (it will post to my total feed). Gene Expression the website kept maxing the shared hosting plan’s CPU a few weeks ago. I took it down because I didn’t want our host to blacklist it. When I have some time to spare that’s continuous I will get it back up, along with archives. The issue has been time (I used Cloudflare for what’s it worth). The host looked at the logs and suggested it might have been targeted by DoS attack.
The downside of me hosting the blog is that I have to do all the tech stuff. On the other hand, I have total control of the platform. In this day and age I am not going to give up the control, so just be patient. Honestly, I obviously don’t have as much spare time as I did when I started the blog as a 20something 17 years ago. But I’m not ditching it either.
I’ve given myself the thankless task of “tagging” all my past posts. I noticed that we don’t have a tag on “Kashmir” (the only sub-region we do have is NWFP). It sparked a thought that for a Desi blog we really don’t discuss Kashmir all that much (even though it was going to drag the region into war earlier this year).
I enjoyed doing the video cast with Kushal and Omar (Razib was unfortunately not able to join in).
I let myself “go” in this podcast since I had to get up at 4.30 in the morning to get it done so I thought I earnt a bit of a respite.
Ordinarily I’m rather reticent on the podcasts since they aren’t my guests and I also don’t want to venture too many opinions; surprisingly I’m becoming more circumspect in my old age.
At any rate it was a great discussion lots of fun and my penchant for dramatically diverging the conversation was rather welcome (Omar was very on point and it was refreshing to see that Kushal was opinionated as opposed to simply querying).
We did a fair amount of India-Pakistan but I don’t think they were the conventional perspectives. I also have to acknowledge my own biases stem from my background and life experiences.
I wrote a longer post but I decided to private blog it since I didn’t feel it was entirely relevant and I meandered (as I do).
All in I enjoyed the conversation and I found Google Hangouts a surprisingly easy interface. It’s a nice feeling to be “Live”; it was so dark that I didn’t want to switch on video but perhaps I should have and treated the audience to the dawn of a new day..