"The more psychotic the voter, the more likely they were to vote for Bush.": An Opportunity for the Republican Machine
The Onion's Iraq War Recommendations

Blog Traffic Volatility (Revised Iron Blogger Edition)

Until very recently, I thought all blogs had traffic patterns rather like mine: that there was a certain baseline level of traffic punctuated by huge spikes. For non-ego related reasons I happened to compare my traffic with that of some other sites, and discovered that my traffic pattern seems to be the exception rather than the rule. Given my baseline readership, I seem to have the largest volatility in blog traffic I can find. I think I know why my traffic behaves that way. I just don't understand why everyone elses's doesn't.

The closest match I can find for my traffic patterns is Making Light. (And I think this is attributable to a shared blogging philosophy.) But Patrick and Teresa Nielsen Hayden start with a much higher baseline readership and still don't have traffic spikes as high as mine. Is anyone measuring this sort of thing?

(Click on the graphic to play with the Alexa graph tool.)

Why does my traffic behave this way? Partly because I take the idea of the blogger as public intellectual seriously, and partly because I am interested in the problem of how to re-envision the data served up to us by the news media, and that on occasion, I have been very successful at that.

UPDATE: Here's a link to a page on the mathematics of volatility in the stock market. The difference between stock volatility and blog traffic volatility is that blog traffic mainly moves up from a baseline and then returns to traffic of a similar order of maginatude, whereas stock volatility can go in either direction, through the roof or through the floor.

SO I DECIDED TO PIT MY SPIKES AGAINST SOME STIFFER COMPETITION: I went to the Truth Laid Bear's Blog Ecosystem and pitted my spikes against those of some of the Ecosystem's top ranked sites: "Higer Being" 8. Stop The ACLU (2728 blogs linking in); and "Mortal Humans" 13. Mudville Gazette (1948 blogs linking in); 21. BLACKFIVE (1537 blogs linking in); and 23. the evangelical outpost (1375 blogs linking in). (The Truth Laid Bear is a bit confused about me, but here I am at #4008.)

So. Look at this:

Guess what? I still win. OK. So this is great for my sense of self importance in the world and all that, but what the heck is going on here? Am I unique, or am I representative of a specific type of blogger?