14 December 2004
Should I have a counter?

I don’t have to.  Brian, for instance, doesn’t.  He reckons that it would just get him all obsessed by the hit rate rather than the more important business of writing stuff.

As it happens I do have a server-side counter as part of my package with Hosting Matters.  So, debate over?  Not quite.  I find that server-side counters (as opposed to their on-the-page equivalents) tend to measure funny things, like, for instance, control panel log-ins.  It also seems remarkably difficult to get them to tell you things like where people surfed in from.

The other advantage of on-the-page counters is that they are comparable.  If, as I did, you make your stats public then you can see that while you get 200 hits a day, Instapundit gets nearer 200,000.  Of course, the key thing here is that you have the same counter - counters have a sneaky habit of counting different things which can lead to different counters coming up with wildly differing results.

I suppose, in summary, it is just about worth having one.  And if you are going to have one it had better be the same one as everyone else.  And that means Sitemeter.

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  1. Aren’t counter statistics going to be rendered meaningless once everyone is using something like Bloglines?

    Posted by Andy Wood on 14 December 2004 at 10:04pm

  2. Bloglines does give you a count of the number of subscriptions.  I would say that would become the statistic of choice.

    Posted by Patrick Crozier on 15 December 2004 at 07:05am

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