Second piece of the puzzle: someone out there’s new website

(CLICK TO ENLARGE)

Oh boy! Someone out there has discovered the joys of the internet (after it’s been around as a popular item for, what, 15 years!)

So, in September, they decided to start a blog! What an idea! I had an idea myself like that several years ago. “Since we have something we want to say, let’s say it!”

Anyone blogging on WordPress has the added benefit of being able to accurately track their numbers on Quantcast. It’s great, because Quantcast filters those fans of yours who hit your blog five times a day. (Side note: don’t worry you-know-who, it’s not a jibe at you!)

I like Quantcast, because I don’t have to filter out my fans, and my friends. My friends can come and read me, and I don’t feel like I’m just blogging to them. Not that it matters either way. Sometimes I just blog to blog.

Here I am, as “Hoofin to You” on Quantcast. Not the most read blog in the universe, but I do get about 1,000 unique visitors “globally”, which for me, means 97% Japan. The other day, I had 66 Global, and, what, 22 others from the America. I am certain the 22 was outside the 66, since my Sitemeter numbers jive. Those are confidential, since they are sometimes the particular places, the URLs, from where my readership reads me.

As you notice, I had a recent Global high of 156 on September 28, which had actually started to rise a few days before that.

Now let’s go back to the mystery blog above, which for the day I did the screenshot, had 8 visitors in Japan, 2 from the U.S. Let me point out, that this is not the same blog as “Karen”, from yesterday. This is on its face a wholly unrelated one, and I have no reason not to conclude otherwise at this point.

That mystery blog, which Quantcast accurately picked up as being created in September, had its one glory day on September 24. And it’s been downhill ever since.

It’s as if that blog, so far, was created to say something around September 24 (no matter which date the actual blog entry might say). Since then, well, look out below.

Notice my blog has those peaks and valleys? Those valleys are the weekends. Any regularly read blog declines on the weekends, because the office traffic is not in the office. Plus it’s people’s weekends—who wants to sit around reading blogs?

Now, how do you get people reading your blog at a peak for just one day, (which inevitably tapers off . . .?) Usually it’s when you’re featured as a link on one of the bigger blogs out there. Shawn Thir’s “Let’s Japan” or Arudou Debito’s “Debito.org” has done that to me (for me!) in the past. Other times it can happen if you happen to post a link in the comments section of a well-visited website, like, say, Gaijin Pot.

So, so far, it looks like the mystery blog had something significant that they had to get off their chest on September 24, even if it was drafted a little earlier. They obviously wanted it read, and since then, they haven’t seemed to have the urge to put out their later insights.

Who knows? Maybe because it’s been that since that time, they’ve been using their boss’ computer system to see if any, other, particular bloggers out there have read their little nugget of wisdom from September 24.

OK quiz players, let me leave you with one final thought, a hypothetical: If you wanted to say something bad about someone that wasn’t true—which I know none of you would—would you do it over the internet? OK? Then, would you, week after week use your employer’s computer to check up on whether the target of the slander had something to blog in response?

You might use an assumed name (one that sounds like a real person, or two real people, but isn’t). But you start leaving all these bits of hard evidence all over the recorded internet that somebody could trace back to you?

Then, you show up to work on the day after your Japanese holiday and your upper-level company management might have the evidence about what you were up to in their in-box?

Would you do that?

[Update: As it can’t be helped, I get the one or two of the many read-from-work regulars this morning e-mailing to tell me, “hey, it’s not ME!” Yes, of course, I know. It isn’t.]

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23 comments

  1. Kei · November 4, 2010

    I am so confused right now.

    • hoofin · November 4, 2010

      Hello, Kei. In short, the blog I highlighted yesterday has something in it (something on it) that leads to yet another blog with some pretty nasty stuff. The nasty blog is the one I’m talking about today.

  2. Kei · November 4, 2010

    Ohhh found it. You should address those things directly and correct the inaccuracies. Why not just post a response on their blog/yours and link them?

    How can you see other people’s blog stats? Do you use this power for good or for evil?

    • hoofin · November 4, 2010

      I am addressing it “directly” — it’s just I don’t go around correcting the internet. That’s the equivalent of having to go around in real life and ask people if they heard about some bad comment made by an “anonymous” person, and “let me correct that for you!”

  3. Kei · November 4, 2010

    Well… they say any publicity is good publicity? I wish they’d give my blog such an oddly heated review. Maybe then I’d get more than 2 views a day.

    • hoofin · November 4, 2010

      Write an e-mail and ask them for one.

  4. ken44 · November 4, 2010

    Several things about that blog review:

    1. Did you actually sue Temple U? If so, that helps explain why you blog alot about the university which I thought a bit odd.

    2. Was the description of your academic background correct? If so, that`s quite impressive. So what the hell are you doing teaching English in Japan?

    3. The complaints about your political commentary? Well, it is YOUR blog after all.

    4. But most of all….Why did you bring this up? Why didn`t you ignore it? I doubt any of your regular readers would have known such a blog existed if you hadn`t mentioned it.

    • hoofin · November 4, 2010

      Ken44 says:

      1. Did you actually sue Temple U? If so, that helps explain why you blog a lot about the university which I thought a bit odd.

      Yes, I was involved in litigation with Temple University during 1995-96, which stemmed indirectly from an unrelated lawsuit from 1992. BUT I am a relative of several people who pay Pennsylvania taxes, which Temple benefits from. So it’s a mixed situation—and one I’ve been candid about before. Just Google “Gundlach AND Reinstein”, or anything with my name in RL and Temple. You will probably find at least the banner of the appeal. On such, mention was [made] : https://hoofin.wordpress.com/2010/04/10/u-s-justice-john-paul-stevens-to-retire/

      It’s difficult when you are an alumnus of the graduate school of a university, have multiple relatives paying into it, been a past contributor yourself, and also on “one side of the V.”, to be entirely objective about an issue with it. But I have never held myself out to be entirely objective, just someone giving my views. If they are pissing tens of millions away to Tokyo landlords for someone’s academic fantasy, then whatever my background with Temple might be is irrelevant, ne?

      2. Was the description of your academic background correct? If so, that`s quite impressive. So what the hell are you doing teaching English in Japan?

      I am a J.D. and a CPA. If you Google “Frederick W. Gundlach”, I think you’d find enough support. For the CPA, you have to go to New Jersey’s “My License” and look me up. My license expires on 12/31/2011. (You have to believe I am Rick Gundlach, though.)

      3. The complaints about your political commentary? Well, it is YOUR blog after all.

      Yes, that part made me laugh. They are the connoisseurs of blogs, and pretend to be objective. Yet, oh Christ, they have a political bias! Some objective commentary!

      I support the Democrats, but not when they are over the line. I’d like to be able to support traditional Republicanism again, but I think it’s dead.

      4. But most of all….Why did you bring this up? Why didn`t you ignore it? I doubt any of your regular readers would have known such a blog existed if you hadn`t mentioned it.

      Good question. I brought it up, because it’s out there on a search. Even if a few of the people who had independently hit the slander site on a whim decided to come visit me, don’t they have the right and responsibility to know that that OTHER site is basically a slander site? I would rather confront problems head on.

      I’ve been blogging for over seven years, on and off. So I know how people who are against freedom of speech operate. They basically start taking half-truths and making a story line about you, as a threat to get you to stop talking about whatever it is they want to silence you about. (Usually they make the object of their discontent clear.)

      So, for someone who took an oath, the decision is clear: you either support the First Amendment, or you cave in to anti-constitutionalism and thuggery. As I’ve suggested, I narrowed down who the Japan blog reviewers are. Why ignore it? Potentially, several hundred internet users already saw it. How “ignore” then? The toothpaste is already out of the tube . . .

  5. ken44 · November 4, 2010

    —Well… they say any publicity is good publicity? I wish they’d give my blog such an oddly heated review. Maybe then I’d get more than 2 views a day.—-

    Good luck. Although a review I would really like to read is one on Debito`s blog.

    • hoofin · November 4, 2010

      This is what makes me laugh. In those persons[‘] (person?) creating a blog “sock”, they pick second-tier blogs to critique, rather than go at Debito. Arudou is Number #1, as far as I can figure, in solo bloggers who talk about Japan. Japan Probe and maybe Shawn of Let’s Japan are bigger, but their format is entirely different. When it comes to pure bloggers, Aldwinckle is Number One. [Aldwinckle = Arudou]

      Yet they are entirely silent so far as to Debito. They give me a scathing review, even though I am 1/100th of Debito.

      The pattern they established is that they are against solo bloggers who have anything negative to say about the JET Program or against Interac.

      That might also narrow down who the bad guys are by the way, which I’ll handle in another post . . .

  6. Kei · November 4, 2010

    Who the bad guys are? They use their real names on the site…

    • hoofin · November 4, 2010

      They do not. Please wait about 20 minutes (8:00 Japan time) for my November 5 post to show up in the system.

      • Kei · November 4, 2010

        Whaaaaaat??? I am on the edge of my seat.
        It’s a shame because a blog reviewing blogs is a good idea, but not if their sole purpose is to slander one guy they have what appears to be a personal issue with, and use fake names to do it. Not to mention there’s really not much substance in that review other than they have a big problem with your support of democrats, and your criticizing of Temple U. (I don’t know why you said you thought they had a problem with criticizing JET because it’s not mentioned in that review or in ANY other blog they gave a thumbs down to. )

  7. chuckers · November 4, 2010

    I found what you were referring to yesterday and read the “review.”

    My response: “Meh!”

    I come back here daily (often more times than necessary) because I find it relevant and interesting at this point in my life.

    I doubt that the site actually generates all that much traffic towards other sites and if it does, like Kei mentions, there is no such thing as bad publicity. Hardly worth losing sleep over. I doubt I will ever go back to that site as it doesn’t really meet my needs (whatever they may be.)

    • hoofin · November 4, 2010

      Chuckers, I appreciate your compliment.

      I shared the thing over there with my readers because I want people to see what how slander in the modern age looks and works like.

  8. Eido Inoue · November 23, 2010

    What’s the connection between Interac and JET? Why would they focus on (at least what I assumed to be) two very different spectrums of the English biz in Japan?

    • hoofin · November 23, 2010

      Beats me. It looks like the actual author or authors (i.e. whoever is using the alias) didn’t like the fact that something had been posted about either Interac or JET. As I looked at it and studied it a bit, the coincidences seemed to go to someone who didn’t like the Interac/Dispatch ALT posts of late August, and then the week of September 24th.

      Some time went into their setting up the Japan Blog Review hit site, and then the couple of sock blogs that link to it.

      I think my first actual post on Interac was in late May. The JET kid was well after that. So I just don’t really see it being the JETs. I think the dig at “having the hots for Renho” but “her being out of my league” was really just a shot at me, and not the jigyou shiwake.

  9. Kei · November 24, 2010

    I never heard the JET kid story, what was that?

    • hoofin · November 24, 2010

      Whoever authors the Billowy Kimono website took offense at the fact that I feel JET should be scrapped in favor of a Teach for Japan program.

      One of the other commenters who follows me day-to-day threw him in as a theory, since he allegedly co-blogs with a female JET. Plus, this strategy of saying something negative, then linking to my site and hitting the link seven or eight times to get my attention.

  10. Kei · November 24, 2010

    Hey, I think it’s time to do a blog post outlining what a Teach For Japan program would look like ideally, and how it would differ from JET in real specific terms. So far all you have said is “JET is a waste of money and doesn’t provide any measurable benefit to the country, The End.” But you haven’t said “these are the specific things I would like government sponsored English teachers to do in Japan that I can say for a fact JET doesn’t.”

    There has also been some light controversy recently involving ALTs and personal blogs. I think it’s time JETs were required to sign statements agreeing not to represent the program on the internet (like any major company makes employees do). This billowing kimono website looks REAAAALLLY irresponsible.

    • hoofin · November 24, 2010

      Kei says:

      So far all you have said is “JET is a waste of money and doesn’t provide any measurable benefit to the country, The End.”

      I think I hit on those issues somewhere along the line this summer. I’m not sure what you have in quotes is what I said.

      Regards JETs making comments about JET while employed by them, I have to think about that a bit. JETs have a right to talk up the program, don’t they? They have a right to discuss working conditions–at least with other JETs. It’s probably ill-advised to go out attacking people who want to see Japan make reforms to the program.

      I don’t know if there is an issue with ALTs and personal blogs. There, too, the issue would be where the line is drawn between duty to an employer versus personal freedoms that are not part of the employment bargain.

  11. Kei · November 24, 2010

    Well I was paraphrasing. But seriously, I want to see your outline for a better government run English teaching program, specifically how it would differ from JET or NET.

    You’re right that participants should be able to blog and discuss JET life, but unfortunately I think the amount of JETs blogging about political and cultural topics generates too much negative attention to the program. It’s one thing to say “I was a JET and this is an idea of what my average workday was like,” and another to say “I’m a JET and I have the following contentious ideas about Chinese-Japanese foreign policy, or foreigner treatment in Japan, or the way Japanese people act.”

    Plenty of companies make you sign statements saying you won’t identify yourself as an employee on the internet or other public forums to prevent exactly the sort of thing you experienced via this guy’s blog: JETs, nameless except for their self-purported participation on the program, attacking you for your ideas about reform, or other such issues. They don’t speak for JET itself, or make any decisions regarding it’s policy, but that’s how they’re representing themselves. Why include the fact that they’re on the JET program otherwise? The specifics of one’s work information are irrelevant when blogging about opinions. They’re just trying to borrow from its collective credibility, which is just bad for JET.

  12. Pingback: Clue #3: There is no Sergio Lombardi or Dominique Jennings Flemings | Hoofin to You!

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