Posts Tagged ‘stats’

Dreamwidth Studios growth

May 13th, 2009

One of our admins has been updating the totals related to Dreamwidth Studios for a couple of days.  The chart below is a copy and paste from the Dreamwidth Studios article.  There really isn’t enough data to draw any conclusions but short term conclusions are still fun to make anyway.

It looks like between May 2 and May 5, a lot of new people joined and then set about importing the comments from their old LiveJournal posts.  It is the three day period recorded with the most new OpenID accounts appearing. Caught in that net, to date, includes over 334,000 different LiveJournal users.  Wow.  Over on my LiveJournal, there has been some speculation that comment importing has largely been a move similar to that of FanLib, where users were allowed to easily move their content over in order to provide the new site with lots of additional content in order to attract new users.  Comment importing is one form of quick content creation.  (Though FanLib didn’t allow you to import your FanFiction.Net reviews.  They just allowed you to import your stories.)

It looks like the number of active accounts peaked on May 5/6.  Since then, the volume of posting by new members has been lower in terms of actives in the past 7 days and past 24 hours.  To me, this suggests that people surged in to join, to name squat and to see where the service will go.  As we’re talking four days in a row below the high with about 1,000 fewer people updating daily, I’m not quite ready to buy the rational that this is a weekend trend and that the numbers will pick up.  The idea that people appear to be name squatting and not utilizing the service is confirmed for me because less than half of the people who have been active in some way have ever posted an entry.

The total accounts that have been active in some way seems pretty close to the number of people who were members of fandom_counts, a community with roughly around 34,000 people.  I’m really curious to know how much crossover there is between the two that their numbers are so close.

Dreamwidth Studios Historical Data

Date Total Accounts That are active in some way That have ever posted an entry That have posted an entry in last 30 days That have posted an entry in the last 7 days That have posted an entry in the last 24 hours
May 2, 2009 228878 27252 10359 10324 8841 4120
May 5, 2009 286805 34106 14117 14080 12592 5034
May 6, 2009 301085 36333 15603 15564 14077 4845
May 7, 2009 314431 38106 16871 16819 15294 3882
May 9, 2009 321405 38879 17564 17493 13172 2824
May 10, 2009 323769 39087 17786 17710 12115 2912
May 11, 2009 328542 39514 18157 18054 11055 3420
May 12, 2009 334359 39948 18576 18450 10352 3561

FanFiction.Net vs. LiveJournal community size

December 6th, 2008

The bot isn’t finished running yet… but while still compiling, I thought it was worth looking at some of these fandoms and how the size of LJ fandom is beginning to look, how big fandoms look versus eachother and versus FanFiction.Net community size…

This isn’t yet complete as the bot continues to run. Some fandoms may not have had their communities looked at because they didn’t cross over much with communities the bot has already looked at. There might be some naming issues which still need to be resolved. (Which were corrected when I spotted a few of them.) Some fandoms just didn’t have communities about them in the sample community list. Some categories actually contracted as we did admin work such as deleting duplicate articles and handled Article Deletion Requests… so any fandom which didn’t have over 50 new articles for categories with over 650 articles in them were excluded.

But overall, this table begins to paint an interesting picture as to the biggest fandoms on LiveJournal. FanFiction.Net column is total articles from FanFiction.Net. LiveJournal column is FanFiction.Net + LiveJournal articles (or new total of articles in the category). Difference column equals total number of members from LiveJournal.

Differences between traffic sources from November to December

December 6th, 2008

It isn’t necessarily fair to compare these periods as they aren’t the same but I did it anyway. ;-)

Getting less daily traffic on average off JournalFen, TVTropes, DeviantArt, Wikia, FanPop, FanFiction.Net, StumbleUpon, TechCrunch. JournalFen can be explained with less wank. The rest are generally not our links and we’re not actively promoting over there to generate traffic.

Up up a lot for LiveJournal we’ve been promoting heavily on LiveJournal, Chickipedia because we added links there, and Twitter because we added more followers on our recentchanges account.

It will be interesting to see if these patterns hold for the rest of the month.

Fandom sized samples… how big?

December 6th, 2008

I’ve been bouncing off the walls for a bit now as we’re supposed to be getting a new bot for Fan History that is similar to Fan Fiction Stat Bot.  (It won’t probably be ready for another three weeks to a month.  I’m not in that much of a hurry and I’d rather the developer do it right.) The major difference is that this one will look at LiveJournal, its clones and the growth/size of fandom on them by monitoring the number of new posts and total comments to a selection of communities, which will then sorted by fandom so as to be able to compare the sizes of different fandom groups.

The sample community list is about 2,500 different communities.  It represents probably about 750 different fandoms.  The list isn’t 100% comprehensive because you can’t find every LiveJournal community based on a fandom and you can’t list every fandom.  And that’s what leaves me flummoxed.  How much time should be spent building a more comprehensive list of LiveJournal communities?  And InsaneJournal communities?

The thing with the sample is that I know going in that it won’t cover everything.  It isn’t possible.  It isn’t feasible.  The communities need to be manually vetted to make sure that while they might actually say list Twilight as a fandom, the community is actually about Twilight.  (And not say a community of pictures of sunsets.)   This list takes a lot of time to compile.  I’ve probably spent in the neighborhood of 24 hours compiling the list that was used for LiveJournal bot.  The updated list which will be used for this bot I’ve probably spent an equal amount of time compiling as I’ve needed to develop lists for InsaneJournal, JournalFen, Inksome, Scribbled, Blurty, DeadJournal and  I could easily spend another week adding to the list beyond that, bringing the LiveJournal list to 5,000 communities and the InsaneJournal list to 1,000.  The other services have much less activity and fandom communities are much harder to find.  To a degree, it takes much more time to find those fandom communities for a much smaller list.  Two or three of those services are lucky to have five communities on them.

There are other issues. A lot of communities are long abandoned, not having been updated in years in some cases.  (This feels like it the case for smaller fandoms.)  They are never going to appear on any list of active fandoms as a result.  Including them feels necessary but also counterproductive because of the sparse amount of activity related to them.  Still, if we don’t have them in our list, how good of a sample do we really have?  And what is the cut off point?  I know for Fan History, we’ve posted to communities which haven’t had activity in more than a year… so new posts, new members, new comments are always possible.  Except probably in the case of role playing communities.  Those pretty much feel dead once the players have quit the game.

Another issue is sample size. How many communities is enough?  When do you stop the list?  Is it better to have fewer fandoms represented but to get a more communities represented for that fandom?  Or should we find one or two communities which we can have represent the whole of the fandom?  More fandoms or more communities per fandom?  I look at the Harry Potter and Twilight fandom lists and go ZOMG! Those huge fandoms only have about 20 communities in that sample!  They are HUGE! They should have at least 100!  Naruto, Inuyasha! Same deal! But we are still missing a whole slew of actors and television shows and anime and manga!

The dataset we are going to develop is going to be really, really interesting, and really, really useful.  It will help provide some data which can give a quantitative picture to exactly what is happening in parts of LiveJournal fandom.  It will help give a picture as to the size, comparitive size of various fandoms on LiveJournal.  You’ll also be able to examine the effect of certain events in the fandom to the size and amount of activity in fandom.  For instance, does a community being features on Fandom Wank lead to posting and membership spikes or a membership drop?  Does the release of canon cause an increase in posting volume, create a membership spike or both?  I’m really excited about getting this bot developed and up and operating.

In the meantime, you’ll see me over there busy working on adding to that list…

Fan History bot creation announcement: LiveJournal bot

October 29th, 2008

Fan History is happy to announce the launch of a new bot: LiveJournal Bot.

Back in 2007, Fan History faced criticism for not being inclusive enough, for the selection of people with articles about them being too random, for being too focused on fan fiction. In March of 2008, we took the steps to address that criticism by launching FanFictionNetBot, which created articles about FanFiction.Net users. More than 470,000 articles later, we’ve found that the response to this was really positive. For every article deletion request we had, there were at least ten people who edited articles about themselves, and who posted/commented about how it was cool that an article about them was on Fan History.

FanFictionNetBot also helped give us a really good picture of what was happening on FanFiction.Net. Did you know that only about a quarter of accounts created actually had stories posted to them? We were suprised too. Another cool facts we discovered: Harry Potter fan fiction writers on FanFiction.Net average three point three stories per author. (376,000 stories and 112,000 members of the fandom equals 3.3 stories average per author.) We were also were intrigued to discover that the Naruto, Inuyasha, Lord of the Rings, Yu-Gi-Oh, Kingdom Hearts fandoms were the next fandoms up when it came to participation by people in the fan fiction community. We were also intrigued to find that Twilight fandom had so many members; the fandom is quite new when compared to the amount of time that FanFiction.Net has been around.

It was with all this in mind that we created LiveJournal Bot. Prior to the creation of this bot, we had been adding a lot of this information by hand. This process was slow, tedious and wasn’t helping us to get a really good picture of what was happening in fandom and specifically on LiveJournal. It was also frustrating for us when people would talk about the size of fandom on LiveJournal. Obviously not everyone on LiveJournal is a member of fandom. If you’re trying get an accurate count of the number of users on LiveJournal who are members of fandom, well, the process can annoying. We are also intensely curious as to the size of comparative fan bases on LiveJournal. Is the fandom community for Harry Potter on LiveJournal bigger or smaller than the one on FanFiction.Net? Can we get a number which suggests that fandom actually has a bigger presence on LiveJournal than it does on the fan fiction-only FanFiction.Net?

After running this bot, we’ll not only begin to answer those questions, but we’ll also have a much bigger, much better, much more accurate and inclusive fandom directory. We’ll also have a better idea of what is going on in music, sports and actor fandoms that we didn’t have before because FanFiction.Net doesn’t allow fan fiction for those fan communities. We’re really excited about these additions.

Fan History is trying to take privacy concerns seriously. Users who have checked the box on their LiveJournal security settings that minimizes your inclusion in search engines won’t be picked up. The bot is compliant with Live Journal’s policies on search engine inclusion. We’re making a real effort to honor fans’ privacy wishes, so to avoid inclusion in the bot’s search, please make sure you’ve checked the appropriate box in your journal’s security settings. If an article is created about you, Fan History will be happy to delete it if you follow the steps outlined on the article deletion request page.

As we attempt this, Fan History knows that any numbers we generate are going to be problematic. For example, we’re not creating articles about everyone on LiveJournal. We’re only creating articles about people who belong to a list of roughly 1,600 fandom-based LiveJournal communities representing English, Spanish, Russian and Ukranian language communities. This is a pretty good sample but obviously limited as LiveJournal has a huge number of such communities. The numbers won’t be entirely accurate because Fan History is excluding any LiveJournal user who has decided to not allow bots to access their privacy settings. If an article with the same name as a person’s LiveJournal name already exists, the bot won’t create a separate article or edit the existing one. This means some people will be passed over.

These steps mean that many of members of LiveJournal’s fandom base will be excluded and our numbers won’t be 100% accurate. In the case of honoring your privacy though, this is something where we’re more than happy to not have the most accurate numbers ever.

If you have any questions not answered by this post or the LiveJournal bot user page, please feel free to ask them on our blog entry about the bot or by e-mailing support[@]fanhistory[.]com. We’ll be more than happy to answer them.

Announcement: Fan Fiction Stat Bot

September 13th, 2008

I’m in a really happy, excited mood! Fan History has accomplished one of our goals: To have data regarding fandom size and growth. We view this as an important step forward in telling the history of fandom, understanding fandom and being able to explain what the hell is going on by having some hard data to back it up.

How are we doing this and what exactly are we doing? The how is Fan Fiction Stat Bot. Fan Fiction Stat Bot has a list of fandoms, of spelling variants of those fandoms, and of urls for fandom directories on a handful of fan fiction archives. The bot accesses those directory pages, looks for the fandom name (or variant), finds how many stories are on the archive in that category, stores that information, does a simple math computation to determine how many stories were added or removed from the fandom and then puts that information into a table. Once every fandom is done, it calculates how which fandoms had the most stories added to them. It then adds this information the the appropriate articles. What we get is a daily list of fandoms that have the most stories added to them and a record of activity in different fandoms.

Did I mention I’m happy and excited? I am! The bot has only been running two days but we’ve got some data worth speculating about. I’ve seen some discussions regarding how big the Twilight fandom is and questions of if it will be bigger than the Harry Potter fandom. Our list of fandom movers and shakers has Harry Potter but there as the fandom with the second most additions for September 13. It was third for September 12. Twilight was third on September 13 and second on September 12. There isn’t enough data to draw a conclusion yet but we can see that the two fandoms are both comparable in amount of activity in the fan fiction community at the moment. Harry Potter does seem to have an edge in terms of amount of activity because the fandom has people uploading stories to multiple archives. Twilight lacks similar activity, with all the activity taking place on just FanFiction.Net. We really need more time and more data to draw a better conclusion, to get a better idea of what is happening, to better be able to compare these two fandoms… but we have a tool to help us to be able to do it. And that strikes me as awesome.

Twilight fandom

June 25th, 2008

Twilight fandom is mad insane. Relatively new fandom that is quickly becoming the most popular fandom on FanFiction.Net. Only eight fandoms on FanFiction.Net have more people who have written in them: Harry Potter, Naruto, Inuyasha, Lord of the Rings, Yu-Gi-Oh, Kingdom Hearts, Gundam Wing, and Dragon Ball Z. Since December 27, 2007, the fandom has added 14,506 stories. The first story wasn’t added until November 28, 2005, seven years after FanFiction.Net was created. The size and growth of the fandom just boggles. Since mid-May, over 250 new authors have joined FanFiction.Net to publish Twilight fan fiction.  That’s roughly one in eight out of every new active author on the site publishing Twilight fan fiction.

And it isn’t just FanFiction.Net that is experiencing massive growth for this fandom. FanLib is too. There were 33 stories on FanLib as of the same date. Now, the category has 637 stories. FanPop has also experienced growth in that same period. It went from 265 fans to 1,662 fans.  

That’s some seriously mad growth. If I was a marketer looking for a large group of passionate fans in fandom, that would be the group I’d be going after as it has the potential to look like Harry Potter with its explosive growth. Momentum should stay with the fandom at least until a good six months after the movie comes out.

Finding the right counter tool for your fansite

May 19th, 2008

Fan History traffic ranges between May 12 and May 18, 2008 I spend an inordinate amount of time examining Fan History’s traffic patterns. Outside of marketing Fan History, it is the task to which I devote probably my most of my time. What various trackers do is interesting I love awstats because it saves so much information, produces the best list of referrers that you can easily filter and it saves everything. I love StatCounter because the recent came from list is much better than a similar similar feature offered by my host. The list of ISPs for recent visitors is also fantastic. Google Analytics is the tool you have to have in order to be taken seriously. Quantcast gives pretty charts, updated rankings and demographic information. ActiveMeter I’ve used less. (Their free version only allows for the past 100 visitors, as opposed to StatCounter‘s past 500 visitors.) Still, it provides good data to help supplement other counters.

I’d almost recommend anyone running a fansite use all four, minus ActiveMeter. They offer a good cross picture of what is really going on traffic wise with your site. I wouldn’t use more than four because it can increase load time. (Fan History uses six. Plus ads. It can really slow down the site at times.)

I just can never get past the fact that these stat tools, while providing valuable information, rarely agree. When you’re talking a thousand unique visitor spread on a site getting between 1,000 and 2,500 unique visitors a day, there is some problem going on. It means you can’t really compare the effectiveness of an advertising campaign against counters but rather with the comparisons inside that counter. Ug.

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