Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Record Readership Levels!

Yes, I am perfectly well aware that the whole thing was way too long. Yes, I do realize that blogs attract an audience that wants immediate gratification. Yes, I understand that the blog format works best when the posts are both short and frequent. With all that in mind, it was perhaps a mistake on my part to undertake an examination of a topic as complex as the police secondary employment story. It took an enormous amount of my time to pull the whole thing off, and my natural tendency to write in a detailed and very verbose style meant that I ended up demanding one hell of a lot from my readers. For those of you who did manage to make it through all three parts (or even halfway through one of them), I both apologize and extend my gratitude.

Was it all worth it? Well, I'm proud to say that The People's Republic attracted more readers on Sunday than it ever had on any other day before that. Monday was even better. And Tuesday was the biggest day in this blog's rather short history. And not only were more people coming here, but those who did visit seemed to get more out of it. The average visitor spent far more time connected to the site, and viewed far more individual articles, than they ever had in the past. None of these numbers are huge, but they are a new record for the The People's Republic, and I take a certain degree of pride in them.

That was the good news. The bad news is that the series didn't generate anywhere near as many reader comments as I had expected. And I was unhappily surprised to see that there were no contrarian comments made in response to these posts. I had rather expected that, with the ability to post comments anonymously, I might draw the ire of a few FOP members who would tell me that I was full of shit. Or at least a snide comment or two from Matt H. But, so far at least, it hasn't happened. I guess I'm only surprised because I was writing about something that I didn't -- and still don't -- know very much about. I'm almost certain to have gotten a few things wrong here and there. I expected that my errors would be caught and spit back in my face to impeach the credibility of what I was trying to say.

It didn't happen. And I don't know why. If I was an egotistical butt nugget, I would pat myself on the back and tell myself that I had written something so convincing, so unimpeachable, that it was simply impossible to argue with. But I'm not that egotistical, and -- while I stand behind every last word of what I wrote -- I'm sure that there are points in there where a contrary point of view would really help to illuminate the story even further.

As I'm sure I've noted in the past, I don't write these posts with any expectation (or even hope) of making an impact of any kind. But I'm beginning to suspect that this long series of very long posts may have made even less impact than usual. There is no indication at all that the mainstream press has any interest in the story. The city didn't pick up my trash today and still hasn't plowed the street I live on, but I really doubt that they are doing that out of a desire for revenge. There isn't any suggestion that this issue has been noticed by the Peduto campaign, who could -- maybe -- get a little bit of mileage out of it if they wanted to.

Heck, even the rest of the burghosphere is pretty damn silent about the end of the series. I got some nice advertisement for all three of the posts over at the Burgh Report, which encouraged its readers to take a look at them. Yet only one local blog, the Pittsburgh Comet provided any kind of review or reaction to the posts themselves. And everyone else -- even the most vehemently anti-Ravenstahl members of the burgosphere -- haven't mentioned the series in any way. Hell, John McIntire devoted nearly all of his MacYapper post today to a discussion about, and even a few pictures of, Jennifer Aniston's naked breasts. And frankly, as breasts go, her's aren't even all that great.

Don't get me wrong. The Admiral is not crying out for love and attention. My feelings aren't hurt. I'm proud of what I wrote, happy to see so many readers here, and that's more than I usually take away from the things I post here. The effort was worth it to me, simply for those reasons alone. But I am thinking that maybe it's time for a slight change in style for the things I post in the future. I'd like to stay on political topics and focus on local political figures, but it does seem that I would make a bigger splash if I could incorporate a few pictures of naked breasts every once and a while. Does anyone have any topless pictures of Darlene Harris that I can use?

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh Contraire !!!

Jennifer Anniston ROCKS!

Smitty said...

admiral
call me confused also...not even a wink and a nod from the Peduto camp...

Anonymous said...

How can you expect anyone in this City to address an issue of substance when there might be (or god forbid was) a few inches of snow on the ground?

malificent said...

You have done a thorough job on this topic. Perhaps there are no contrarian comments because:

1. Contrarians' attention span is minimal at best & they didn't take the time to read thru.

2. Contrarians, confounded by the solid facts you provide, are unable to come up with retorts. I, too, don't know much about the topic, but the research/reporting you provided did not appear to have holes in it.

As far as the MSM picking this story up, maybe some of them, right now, are working on digesting this info into the manageable bites necessary for Pittsburghers.

I'm glad that your readership is up. However, if you ever experience zero readers, (can't even bring yourself to read your own blog), do not, for the love of mercy, post a photo of a topless Mrs. Harris.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a big comments poster, but I read all three articles and loved them. Better than the Post-Gazette, way better than the evening news. It took some time to get through, but in the end it was worth it. Keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

I know some things about the subject, and I have to tell you, one of the reasons I didn't really comment is because I had little to add - your facts are 100% accurate, and as complex of an issue as this is, the conduct of Luke is stupifyingly simple - he wanted to throw a bone to a very vocal minority. I agree with you 100% that there is no difference between what Luke did and what Tom Murphy did (with the exception, of course, of the letter from Joe King). No doubt, Luke got a call or two from the infamously cheap Steelers organization or the cultural district, but if Luke was any kind of leader who understands that his responsibilities are to the community as a whole, it would've been an easy call for him to tell the Steelers, etc. "I understand your concerns, however..."

It's appalling that the maintstream media still hasn't picked up on this, although I agree with the writer above, razor blades, er, I mean snow is falling from the sky, nothing else matters. Let's hope that there's a decent reporter out there that will pick up this ball and run with it. I'm sure Peduto is aware of this issue, let's hope that he's waiting for the timing to be right - Anna Nicole and snow will trump good government every time.

Judge Rufus Peckham said...

You've provided a very valuable service with this series and are to be commended for it.

the comet said...

I said it before in another comments section ... do not equate your # of comments with # of readers!!! Some of my favorite blogs get very few comments.

And don't stick the jack on "MSM" pickup -- I'm rather glad they're not slapping something together without their own rigorous research. And IMHO IMHO IMHO, I don't think a lot of the accusatory comments about the awful MSM is likely to make them more likely to pick up something like this.

Mark Rauterkus said...

Authoritarian posts generally don't endear comments. When you are off base -- then they come. So, it is a sign of being on target that so little reply followed.

Furthermore, your opinions are clearly stated. Those are hard to pick a bicker with as well.

Winks and nods don't translate well on the net.

Anonymous said...

Comet may be correct about the media not responding to criticism, but these are more than accusations. Many of us implore the MSM to put out a more meaningful product. It's their City also and I'd like to think they give a shit. But, if it isn't happening, odds are it won't happen.

Matt H said...

"Or at least a snide comment or two from Matt H"

It was actually a pretty good read. Nice to see someone spend so much time into something like that. I haven't read every single word of it yet to make a comment but two thumbs up for effort...

The Rooneys Must be Poor said...

Aw, Luke was just looking out for those poor, poor, Rooneys - I mean, $10,000 (10% of the amt. they pay the cops who work their games) may not be a lot to you or me, but its BIG $ for the poor, poor, Rooney family...

Smitty said...

yeah the rooney's are starving, McClatchy's and the Succo's only brought in 20 million last year,and the spineless PPG claimed the other day that the "eggle" is racking in big bucks...three beggars that the cops are throwing a bone to

Anonymous said...

You know, the private employers also get a reduction in their insurance premiums for having security services (you know, like having airbags/ABS on your car). They're more than quick to take advantage of the perks, but head for the hills when it comes time to take responsibility for their part-time employees.

macyapper said...

C'mon... Jennifer's breasts aren't excellent?

Please

EdHeath said...

Just a thought, what might the Act 47 board and the intergovernmental interagency, intergalactic board(s) have to say about this? Pittsburgh is forgoing revenue for what reason? Unless Opie can show businesses moving into the city because they are not paying the city for off-duty police protection, I think the various boards might get annoyed ...