This is a post on my other blog, about the mechanics of popularity.
I remember setting up the Multo blog a few years ago: my first blog explicitly meant for public consumption. On the “Follow” widget — the button that allows readers to follow a blog via email notifications — there is an option to show the count of the blog’s followers.
My first reaction: why would I want to do that?
It’s an insecurity reflex, of course, one left over from high school. I was never one of the popular or cool kids, though I was lucky enough not to be one of the pariahs, either. Like most of us, I flitted on the edges of the cool circle — the very outer edges, in my case — once in a while being noticed, mostly not. As my life, so will be my blog, my mind said. Why would I want to advertise my obscurity to the world?
The thought process wasn’t admirable, but perhaps the instinct was correct. …
It’s based on an article I read recently, but it’s also a meditation on chasing your numbers. Sometimes it’s appropriate to do that, of course. And sometimes, it’s not.