Tuesday, January 17, 2023

QotD: Clickbait Edition...

"Their hearts were in the right place, but their desire for sensationalism made me uncomfortable. They wanted juicy content, not a careful examination of the facts.

I didn’t want to work with them, and I didn’t want to follow them, and that upset them. And while I hate upsetting people, I also know that social media algorithms reward hysteria to an unhealthy extent.
My blog has always functioned as a sort of online diary, mostly about stuff I saw on the internet that I thought was interesting or cool or on which I wanted to comment (or mock). You know, a log of stuff I saw on the web. Sort of a "web log", if you will.

In the early years I sat there and counted hits and stuff, but it was never a driving force behind why I'm writing here. It's been eight years since I posted about the traffic numbers on the blog and I couldn't tell you what they are on a typical day anymore.

There are lots of tricks you can do to boost traffic, but I've never employed them precisely because this is a personal hobby blog. 

Some of these gimmicks are fairly innocuous, like including SEO-friendly terms and topics or writing catchy post titles or reaching out to other sites for link shares.

Others are really toxic, like starting beef (whether real or kayfabe) with a busier site, or writing specifically to get people riled up and stir their negative emotions. The stats package can't tell the difference between hate clicks & rage clicks or love clicks and like clicks, after all. And if it's clicks and attention and internet fame you're really after, who cares how you get it, amirite?