Tuesday, February 24, 2009

It's Just a Number

I keep telling myself it's only a number as I stare in dismay at the digits. "Don't think about the number" you're told, "It's about how you feel". I try. I really try, but it's not working, so...

OK, who jumped ship? The other day I had 24 followers and now there are only 23 of you. Did I say something to cause offense/offence? It must have been something fairly egregious to make someone take the trouble to go to their Layout page and "un-follow" me. It's not something you do accidentally.

I knew I shouldn't have displayed my followers. I was just trying to be polite and acknowledge the people who like to read the drivel I come up with. I know I'm really bad at linking and following and all that stuff, although I do get around quite a bit and comment when I have something pithy to say. I'm not as exciting as those who somehow manage to post every day, but I said in the beginning that I would try not to burn out, and quite frankly, I'm very proud to still be here given the way my weeks often pan out.

Of course, now that every waking moment is filled with trying to figure out how, and why, I lost a follower, my attention has turned to the amount of followers other bloggers have. After a bit of research, I now realise that 24 (ok 23) is nothing at all to write home about. I have just found a very funny blog, I Need a Martini Mom, and she has 498 followers. 498? Go see for yourself.

Of course I had to stalk her and ask how long she has been blogging. Surely since 1992 at the very least. Instead however, she replied that something weird was obviously going on since she had just lost 20 followers in as many minutes. Now, if anyone mentions the word "schadenfreude" (Wiki - 'pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others') they might not be far from the truth. I have lost a far greater percentage (I think) of my followers than she has. However, not to appear too heartless, I think I would be quite gutted to find 20 people abandoning my blog in less than an hour.

As I said, it's just a number.

(Two minutes later).

Would you believe that in the time it took to write this post, I lost another follower. How low can you go people? I am now at a loss for words...

What on earth have I said?

My self esteem is in pieces. On the floor. O me miserum.

No. (Pause and wipe tear.) Don't. Anyone. Follow me. Just. To. Make. Me. Feel Better. I couldn't bear that.

It's just a number.

(I missed my calling didn't I? Eat your heart out Winslett.)

.

34 comments:

  1. Oh dear, we can get blogged down by things like that!
    One of my followers has died & no one has removed her & I don't think I feel I want to throw her out.

    Some bloggers give up!
    Glad you haven't! Enjoy reading your blog & you & I started out at around the same time, didn't we?
    I don't feel I can write everyday, though! There has to be a life outside blogging but I can't think what it is! Hee hee.

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  2. Expat Mum, am signing up right now to follow your blog. That's one you've replaced.

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  3. Oh how funny Ex-pat, I was just thinking the same thing today about my blog. I've lost two followers in two days. Sometimes I think they decide to move on to Google Reader or another reader service like Feedblitz and read your posts there. Its difficult not to watch those numbers and not feel hurt when someone leaves isn't it?

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  4. I go through the list when that happens but I can never work out who's left. I think it might be a case of 'spring cleaning' though. I know I ought to do some: I either follow or blogroll so many people it's becoming difficult to keep up!! But blogs are just so... Interesting.

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  5. Terrible isn't it, being digitally erased without knowing why? Someone erased me from their friends list on Facebook last week and it made me feel really paranoid - it was an old school acquaintance and I have a feeling she thought I just wasn't cool enough!

    Another blogger I know told me they are going to get rid of their stat counter because they have become obsessed with it....

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  6. Happened here too! The sad thing is, can't figure out who left. Maybe that says it all though, do you think?

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  7. Hi there! First timer over at your place, found here through BritGal. I can only say: lol, numbers! When I started blogging, I was happy to have 30 visitors per day. And then it grew to a hundred. Two hundred. Touching three hundred. And you find yourself waiting for those 400 people to find to your blog all at the same time one day. And the hours you spend writing add up quickly!
    Thankfully, I love to blog! but I read you on the number thingy.
    Expat greetings from West Africa,
    Esther

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  8. oh bugger... Fhi (woman of no importance ) has just posted similar...read my comments there...it is odd hope it wasnt me in error.. (I didn't check spellings so apologies in advance!)

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  9. I feel your pain. I look at my stats near obsessively, and see when people leave my Twitter feed, or drop off the RSS feed of Brit Out Of Water, and each one cuts like a small penknife to the kidneys. Then again, every joiner seems like a small pyrrhic victory.

    I have no idea why I'm so bothered, given that I don't even sell ads and it's not like my livelihood depends on it. Maybe it's a desperate desire to be liked?!

    Oh no, I've been in America too long - I need therapy!

    Love me! Love me!

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  10. I feel your pain. I look at my stats near obsessively, and see when people leave my Twitter feed, or drop off the RSS feed of Brit Out Of Water, and each one cuts like a small penknife to the kidneys. Then again, every joiner seems like a small pyrrhic victory.

    I have no idea why I'm so bothered, given that I don't even sell ads and it's not like my livelihood depends on it. Maybe it's a desperate desire to be liked?!

    Oh no, I've been in America too long - I need therapy!

    Love me! Love me!

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  11. God - if I die, please feel free to un-follow me. That would just be too weird.
    And thanks for all the comments letting me know I'm not the only one obsessing. At least I don't have a stat counter or other flashing number thing going on. That wold put me over the top I fear!

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  12. I read your blog all the time but am now an official "follower". Keep up the good work!

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  13. I know what you mean ExpatMum!
    The other day I too los a follower but for the life of me couldn't picture who it was... and I only have 18 followers!
    I don't think I've ever followed you so I'm off to do that now and make your numbers up!
    Big Hug!

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  14. This is the first I visited your blog and I must say I like your style. I will be visiting again

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  15. I'm TRYING to be a follower on Pond Parleys, but it won't let me comment. It gets to the word verification and then says Loading... In desperation, after I'd clicked on the button about 4 times and got the same thing, I wondered if that WAS the word verification, and tried typing in Loading... - but it wasn't. That was yesterday. I tried again today, and got the same thing. Any help?

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  16. I've hardly got any followers Expat Mum, but I do try to stay abreast of the blogging and reading other people's. I'm like one of those old stags on the edge of the herd, stumbling to keep up. Trouble is kids, work, cleaning, visitors are taking up all of my time (plus entering competitions!).

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  17. I've used the Following thing to try and keep up with posts rather than subscribe to RSS feeds. It worked for the most part. Then it stopped working. I don't get it.

    You know what? Followers might say you have 29 there, but google reader tells me you have 78 subscribers. It's not all bad news!!

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  18. A Brit D - I do? I haven't even looked there. I hope I'm not being neglectful!
    Iota - that happened to me yesterday on about three blogs. I just gave up. I will hand this little query over to Mike as I'm useless on the technical front. I got an I-phone last week and I'm about to chuck it out the window!! Should have listened to my inner voice telling me to get the old-lady phone instead of the kids who thought the I-phone was "cool"!

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  19. Whatever you do, don't start looking at your stats. That's my poison - and it's bitter indeed!

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  20. Well, now you're up to 30 followers, so that post worked :-)

    In addition to the 78 ABD says you have in google reader, you have another 9 at bloglines.

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  21. Jeez - I didn't even know Bloglines existed. How less tech-savvy could a blogger be?

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  22. You're placing far too much faith in the persons reporting the numbers, which fluctuate wildly due to the fascinating workings of the interwebs... :-)

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  23. You know I think maybe there was an issue on Monday, because I went from 93 to 87 in an afternoon. I was totally gutted as well (especially having been heading for 100), how SAD is that LOL. But now you have made me feel better, because maybe they had a problem?

    This tickled me though, because I nearly posted the exact same thing, and then thought omg they'll all think I'm a real sad f****r! Well guess what, when I read yours and then the comments I LOL and then thought thank god it's not just me - so thank you!

    Just for your info' most of the blogs with 500 or so followers have been featured as the Blog of Note. I have seen this happen to 3 people on my blogroll in as many weeks and they have gone from like under 100 to over 500+!! I keep hoping maybe they'll find me eventually from them!LOL

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  24. I admit it. It was me. I am still annoyed you went skiing. In Colorado.

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  25. Now don't be greedy, you have over three times as many followers as me! Yours, from a tragic corner of West Wales!

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  26. With a membership drive like this, NPR should be hiring you for their next call for cash, Expat Mum! I think my next post is my 300th, so I'm wondering how I can get away with doing something similar without looking like I'm copying you...!

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  27. No matter what people say, I feel my self esteem plummet a few notches when I get a notice that someone has unsubscribed from my site feed. The unsubscribes get sent to my email! Pure torture! I want to message them back and say, "WHY? What did I do? Come back to me??!"

    www.MomMostTraveled.com

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  28. Google Reader? Bloglines? I'm getting too old for this stuff ;)

    For my Lindenwald site, I have an actual sign up list with about 60 subscribers on it. In all the years I've had it, only two have written to ask me to take them off, but I still obsess over them; what did I do to make them leave?

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  29. Followers? I've never understood this follower thing. I wonder if I have any followers. I use Google Reader to read other peoples blogs but have no idea how other people track mine. I sort of hope I don't find out as it will just be something else to obsess about.

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  30. Well you totally got me expat. I joined your ranks out of sheer pity. ;D

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  31. Now you've made me feel really bad because I only have 14 followers and have been blogging for what feels like forever and it's my fault because I'm rubbish about blogging etiquette and spending time at other peoples blogs and 494!!! or whatever you said. Shit. This is bad. AND YOU HAVE 31 COMMENTS - much more than I get. I am going to start a counselling for bloggers blog and work out how to keep our self-esteem up in difficult circumstances. How come I've got so few followers? Lx

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  32. 78 ABD's?? what are they then and google reader, does anyone look at that?? Am l missing something crucial>>

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  33. Had to comeback on this and say also 'Google Reader'???

    But I also came back to ensure I was a Follower for you and typically it ain't loading, but I'll check later dude!

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  34. Sorry I was in FL! Now I'm back!

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