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A little Blog and Internet User 101...

This is just a short post to explain how much a blogger can a find out about their readers - for anyone who might want to conceal their identity when visiting blogs.

Some bloggers - bloggers like me - who just love numbers and watching the ebb and flow of numbers, sign up to sites where they can watch the traffic to their own site. As you can all see down on the right hand column of my blog, I have a Feedjit widget which shows where my visitors come from.

On my dashboard, it also shows what phrases they may have used to find my blog, what platform and browser they use, and which site link they may have followed to come to my blog.

I also use a free program called StatCounter. StatCounter tells me the ISP of the person who is reading my blog and it - very conveniently for me - logs an individual's visits together, so I can see how often one individual has visited over the past few days, when they visited and more importantly, where they visited from. So, if other people link to my blog from their site or blog, I can see that information and follow the link back.

I thought knowing this might help some of my readers out - those readers who might be under the illusion that I don't know they are stalking my blog and reporting what I say back to others who might not be big fans of mine.

I see you. If you don't want me to see you, best not visit, hey :D.


Very informative :) and i don't mind being seen :P
Sif said…
Most people don't :D.

Those people who have nothing much to hide.

This is directed at those people who only visit this blog so they can then pour over all my shortcomings with others who feel somehow superior in one way or another. I don't mind so much that they do that - gossip and bitching happens and affects the people participating more than those in their sites - I just want them to have all the information so they know I know they are stalking me.

Otherwise, I'd just be stalking them stalking me... Hahaha!
Rhianna said…
lol about the stalking the stalker. I must live under a rock I had no idea that you could keep track of so much info
Sif said…
Rhianna, it's fantastic for a nerd like me! I love seeing where my readers hail from and what brings them to the blog. Many other blogs track statistics for business purposes (because they are required to divulge numbers to be eligible for PR opportunities) but don't ever look at their numbers until an outside party asks them.

Me, I read my stats at least once every day. I love to know how people found this blog and whether they come back or not. If they are regulars I can see what their reading habits are over a period of time etc.

And then there are the inevitable trolls, the people who disseminate bad feelings only for their own entertainment. I like to have a handle on them as well, especially to figure out if they are people who know or may have known me in the past, or just trolls romping randomly through the inter webs...

I'm a people watcher from way back - it goes hand in hand with my writing!
Sarah Mac said…
Thanks for this Sif - I've had feedjit from the begining but it's not 100% accurate if someone follows you via mobile and it does occasionally change the location people are coming from for no particular reason.

I'm going to take a look at the stats counter, it's seems far more in depth.

I'm facinated by the people who visit too and, like you, I suspect that I have had visits from people who's intentions are to 'dig dirt'.

For that reason I have put some posts back into draft for now.

Generally I'm just looking out of interest but there is one person where I'm very much stalking the stalker (and no, they aren't the person I suspect of having alterior motives).

I actually prefer people not to know that they can be tracked which hopefully doesnt sound creepy, after all, it's not like I can see into their underwear drawer or anything!

I just wouldn't want them to change their reading habits because they felt they were being watched.

Having said that, everything I do is open and public so it's not so very different from them watching me.
Sif said…
Yep, I totally get what you're saying there, Sarah.

I'm pretty much an open book (at least until I discover some deep corner of my psyche which has been hidden, even to myself, hehehe). There is nothing I say on this blog I wouldn't say in public - it has to be that way because this blog is very public. I always think about what I write before I post it, even if I'm writing passionately. I don't knowingly lie about or misrepresent anything or anyone I write about and am perfectly happy to have other people's perspective represented in commentary on this blog. As I say in my manifesto - I'm open to being wrong and to learning new facts on any subject.

I'm an open book and anyone who wants to take issue with anything I write on this blog is welcome to do so.

It's because I try to be as open and upfront as I can be that I posted this post today. Many people who use the internet know they can be tracked, but as I recently discovered on Facebook, many users of the net have very little idea of what others can find out about them in just a few clicks.

So, if stalkers want to stalk, that's fine by me - I cannot control that, and it does kind of thrill me that even people who wouldn't give me the time of day in the real world just can't stay away on the net (where they believe they can't be seen). I just wanted to be sure they knew I could see them.

It's a bit like playing hide and seek with toddler... They put their hands over their eyes and believe that because they can't see you, you can't see them either.
Sarah Mac said…
It's EXACTLY like hide and seek with a toddler Sif :)

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