I did a survey last week. You may have clicked it, and if you did, you’re probably a member of Nature Network, because out of the 52 people who replied seriously, 30 answered that they read this blog because they read multiple NN blogs. In the graph below, it says 28, but I corrected that for a number of written-in responses that indicated that they read NN blogs, but couldn’t keep up (see three of these reponses below the graph. One had ticked the boxes, so I did it for the others as well before analyzing.)
Now I know I actually have more readers than the 50ish who answered the poll, because 10 people said they follow me in RSS
, but Google Reader shows that 24 people subscribe to the blog through that method alone. Accounting for some people never reading feeds, and others using other feed readers, I guess I might have about twice as many somewhat regular readers.
But now, the reason I did the poll.
I promise it’s purely hypothetical at this point, but I was wondering: if I ever left Nature Network, would people follow me? It’s a valid question, because to be very honest, I have lost track of all
the blogs that moved in the recent science blog network dance. Oh, I know where they all are, and I could find them if I wanted to, but I just haven’t had the need.
I’ve moved blogs before. Or rather, I had two blogs for a long time, and gradually stopped updating one. I sort of assumed that people who read easternblot.net would also find me at Nature Network, but from talking to people I realized that many people didn’t even know I had this blog here. Just like many people here don’t realize I have a much cooler blog
elsewhere, that only gets about 5-10 hits per day, even though people absolutely love it when I show it to them. I posted a link to the latest interview on Twitter, and three people clicked it (including myself). But when I post Tweets that just say “hey, can you do me a favour and click this poll” it gets 12 hits. Why’s that then? Do my 600 Twitter followers prefer mindless clicking over cool interviews with music? Why do I have 600 followers anyway?
But to get back to the poll data, I asked who had previously been reading easternblot.net – which was the blog that got me invited to Nature Network in the first place, and that has landed me a couple of freelance jobs, some friends, and a handful of interviews. To me personally, that blog has had a much
bigger influence on my life than Expression Patterns has had.
Look at this. Just look at it:
Only 2 of the 10 former easternblot.net readers are actually looking at other NN blogs as well. Me moving my blog here has not brought a new audience to NN altogether. But more strikingly, only 2 of the 30 people who are regulars at NN were even familiar with my former blog. That was the part that made me seriously question myself. That, combined with the low proportion of my friends reading (as visualized by the people coming in through Facebook) and the absolutely ridiculously low traction of my science/music project blog means that, roughly speaking, most of you don’t care about my blog.
Most of you are here because you’re here anyway, because you look at lots of Nature Network blogs. If I were to move this blog, you would not follow it. Don’t bother telling me that you would. I’m not fishing for compliments. I can see the numbers, and I know the majority of you would not follow me if I moved my blog. I won’t move it, because it clearly attracts an audience consisting mostly of people who read it because it’s here so don’t worry about that. But I also won’t move it because I have no idea what to write in here anymore. None whatsoever. I don’t have a theme like I had on easternblot or like I have on scientists and musicians. I write about science on my work blog, and am pretty low on ideas for here. And now I see that most of you are only here because you were around anyway. You’re definitely not here to read about blogging – aren’t we all so bored with talking about that ?
So this is why you’re here, and why you don’t care about my blog in particular. More interesting is part 2, where I’ll try to explain why none of us should care at all about anyone’s blogs altogether, and in which you’ll read the full embarrassing story about a T-shirt that I’ve only worn twice in my life but that has received almost as much media attention as Lady Gaga’s meat dress.