The site is dying!
Look at these monthly traffic numbers. That last bar is February 2013.
I have lost a greater percentage of my readership than WoW has lost subscribers, and if WoW is dying, then I must be dying even more so!
This month saw the lowest number of page views since late 2009. There has also been a corresponding drop in uniques, those are the dark blue bars, though WordPress.com hasn’t been measuring that for very long.
As for the cause, my theory is that it is related to Google.
A few weeks ago there was a change in how Google image search works.
Previously it was like any other search, where clicking on the item returned would send you to the page on the site hosting it. Now though, Google will grab the image directly for you, allowing you to search, view full size, and copy/download without ever having to visit the site from which the image originated. Nice if you want to avoid malware on those sites I KNOW you surf late at night. Not such a good idea if you run the site and are counting page views.
This actually had a much more dramatic impact on page views at my other blog, EVE Online Pictures. Since it depends on Google image search for vast majority of its traffic, the change caused page views to plummet.
All of which would be meaningful if I actually derived any income from page views from the site.
Since I don’t, the site isn’t really dying. Certainly other metrics… number of posts, number of comments, the actual page views for the post of the day… are all steady. WordPress.com just doesn’t put up a handy bar graph of things like that, so it doesn’t have the dramatic impact that page views do when I go to the stats page. Things will continue on here as they have for the last 6+ years.
But I suspect that there are sites out there which are hurting now due to the change at Google, if my theory is correct. Ad revenues are already dropping on the web, now Google is killing off some page views. That has to be making somebody mad.
Of course, this is just my theory based on page view counts and the fact that Google image search changed. It could just be WordPress.com screwing around with how it counts page views again (or how it doesn’t count views directly to images on your site). Or it could be that I just wrote nothing interesting this month. Certainly the weekly adventure tale of the instance group has gone missing, as have most references to my actually playing a fantasy based MMORPG. So who knows.
Oh, and as I threatened, here are the results from last month’s poll, where I asked what section of the month in review posts people liked the best.
The top result was the One Year/Five Years Ago section, which is my favorite as well. Game summaries came in second. I like those too, as they let me cover bits I never got around to making a post out of.
The “Other” results were:
- All of the above – Thanks mom!
- the end – Which I am going to guess is like saying the best part of school is when I get to go home.
- Avatars that I jerk off to – I am not even sure what to do with this, besides wash my hands again.
Nobody voted for most viewed post… which was a bit of a surprise. I guess that section is just for me. New linking sites garnered no votes either. I guess that once I have linked to you, you’re done with that section. And, finally, no votes for the “Coming Up” section, for which I can hardly blame people. It tends to me a quick, last minute “more of the same” entry, plus it is at the end of the post by which point I am sure most people have moved on.
One Year Ago
I made a video celebrating the first year of the instance group, which formed up back in 2006. It was focused on what was essentially vanilla WoW and had a serious nostalgia vibe to it. It got some views.
Then I made a video about Sunken Temple in the same vein that pretty much nobody watched. That instance always got mixed reviews. (And my video of the EVE battle at EWN-2U was more popular than both combined.)
Somebody stole our guild on Lightninghoof.
And Blizzard was making money, optimizing clients, and selling new mounts.
In EVE, the war in the north had gone kind of quiet. There were some big battles over tower (e.g. EWN-2U, which was my first epic fleet battle, and 92D-OI), but the sov grind had not begun. There was some fun around VFK. I also noted that a “green” kill board seemed to be the norm for individuals. Meanwhile, CCP was making money and giving us the occasional fun statistics about the game.
And, probably most importantly, we got standardized build templates for common roles. Rift’s soul system is still deep and complex for those who want to theory craft, but for mere mortals it became possible to just get a workable build and go play.
As a group in Rift we made it to the Darkening Deeps.
I also figured that, due to the way Rift was progressing, it wouldn’t go free to play unless WoW did. I am beginning to feel less certain on that assessment, especially with the departure of Scott Hartsman from Trion.
On Fippy Darkpaw, the Planes of Power expansion opened up. For many the PoP expansion marks the dividing line between what counts as “classic” EverQuest and what is considered “the new crap.”
And EverQuest Mac was saved from the chopping block, going free for… as long as it stays up I guess.
Five Years Ago
The month started out with our Pirates of the Burning Sea enthusiasm waning.
The instance group was kicking off its Outlands efforts, after running the required equipment upgrade quests, with Hellfire Ramparts, though first we ran through lower Blackrock Spire and got access to Upper Blackrock Spire.
Turbine announced that Lord of the Rings Online had extended its agreement with Tolkien Enterprises out until 2014, with an option to go to 2017. As a lifetime member I applauded this extension.
I went to GDC up in San Francisco and had dinner some members of the VirginWorlds Podcast Collective plus Alan “Brenlo” Crosby, and got pictures to prove it. (I had a beard then… and I have a beard now… this is becoming a winter routine for me.)
My daughter got a Nintendo DS for Valentine’s Day.
I defended myself against some slander about me being a dwarf.
I summed up the annual EverQuest Nostalgia Tour.
And I found out my blog was worth $61,534.86,though I couldn’t figure out how to cash in. Since then, the value of the site has gone down. I blame the economy.
New Linking Sites
The following blogs… er blog… has linked this site in its blogroll, for which I offer my thanks.
Please take a moment to visit this site in return.
Most Viewed Posts in February
Kind of an odd mix of old and new posts on the list this month. Nostalgia seems to be high on the list. It is more powerful than some people can bring themselves to admit.
- Running Civilization II on Windows 7 64-bit
- An Unfiltered (and Unfair) Impression of Wizardry Online
- Notes from the War in Delve
- The Real Problem with Levels…
- The Nostalgic Call of the Emerald Dream
- More Than 2,500 Ships Clash in Asakai
- Missing MMO Music Features – LOTRO Leads, Nobody Follows
- Side Notes About Used Games
- Not Your Father’s House of Cards
- More Unspent Virtual Currency
- Thrilling Internet Spaceship Stories!
- Air Warrior – Vague Memories from the Early Days of Virtual Flight
Search Terms of the Month
daenerys pov boring
[Ain’t that the truth!]
lego minifigures tarot cards
[I’d buy that! But only if there was a Knave of Bricks or some such.]
what cool things you can buy for station cash for everquest
anderson cooper look like elf
[Yeah, I will grant you that]
wizardly online is a joke
[Is this a wry comment on the game’s Asian origin?]
is it normal to get scammed by the mittani, chairman of csm ???
[It’s not unusual.]
Spam Comment of the Month
Check out [redacted] site if you want to see some funny second life blog videos
[There are no funny Second Life videos. Go to YouTube and search on ‘Second Life Funny’ and see.]
Oddest Spam Source
I got a few spam messages that linked to Ron & Barb McHugh’s Miniature Horse Ranch.
Has it come to this? Spam comments to drive traffic to a miniature horse web site?
I managed to get into one fight over the course of the month. Otherwise, things were mostly quiet. Training continues as always. I am set to get my 6+ million skill point boost when they break out the destroyer and battlecruiser skills, though in reality, that will just push me towards an even more expensive clone. Grade Tau clones, at 30 million ISK a pop already inhibit me from small ship actions. Losing a cheap frigate is all fine and good until your clone gets popped.
Guild Wars 2
So, I own it. We shall see if it sticks.
Need for Speed: World
Stubbornness keeps me going here I think. I have been doing the daily gem hunt… well… daily. It takes 10 minutes or less and promises to reward players with better items with ever more consecutive daily runs. At some point I will decide if this is really true or not and give up. I am already past the 60 day mark.
The instance group successfully avoided Rift for another month. Mrs. Potshot has actually been working on an alt, and I have logged in to collect my Rift Mobile app prizes now and again… I am almost capped out on planarite… but other than that, not much fantasy gaming going on of late. Still, the Carnival of the Ass End of Telara is coming up. At least that means a new scratcher game in the Rift Mobile app. Go glass beads!
World of Tanks
All the boys in the Saturday night instance group are off playing tanks now… which brings up the “four of us, but only three can be in a platoon” issue… but we’re still having fun.
More tanks seems likely. I am still a long way from my tier IX goal. And probably a few more little tank videos. I kind of like the under two minutes,”silly thing happened” video format.
More Rift… or Guild Wars 2… well… we shall see.
Potshot, who represents the pen and paper oriented wing of the Saturday night group has been looking for something closer to actual rolling of dice. After being somewhat ignored during his online remote D&D campaign aspirations (sorry man), he has picked up Neverwinter Nights 2, which is at least more self contained. I have that installed as well now, so something may come to pass in that department, if we can figure out how to get multiplayer working over the internet.
And GDC is coming back to San Francisco again late next month, but at $250 just for an expo pass, I am not likely to be attending.