Sunday, July 12, 2009

Blogging Future, Navel Gazing, Site Rankings

Count me as having my jaw to about knee level.
I've decided that part of my site ranking increase is the fact that it's summer and weird people like me don't know that, and weird people who read my blog regularly are like me in that regard. No sooner than I think I've topped out (again) but another round of site rankings reveal that I'm still on my way up. For those of you who want some substantive news, skip to the end of this post and I promise something self centered but newsworthy with regard to the Modern Pharisee will be revealed.

First of all, the self congratulatory site rankings post, along with some observations that might be worthwhile for the budding, mid level or semi serious blogger.

As of Today, Sunday July 12th, 2009 the Pharisee ranks 378,185th in the world as a site. That's not too bad really. More importantly my site rank in the United States is 68,639th. Some comparisons and blathering to hopefully make this interesting to the rest of you.

As a blogger, I am several things. In order of formative influences in life, I am a pastors grandson, a missionary kid, a bad student, flunked Greek and Latin, got "A's" in Calculus in Grad School and went on to be a Disc Jockey, a Car Salesman, a Bank Collector then a Loan officer, back to Cars as a "Finance Manager" (this is what I am now) with detours into Radio ad sales, though not necessarily in that particular order. I've read the Bible cover to cover more times than I can count, in excess of thirty times. To scoop all this together and make it into some sort of substantive impact however temporary in the "bloggosphere" impresses me in terms of how unlikely it all is. Mostly, I'm a "Car Guy" and that doesn't lend itself to the word "impressive" in most people's thinking.

So I look across the blogging world and compare myself to other bloggers and therein is the jaw dropping stuff.

, a blog I am very impressed with is ranked 71,791 in the United States. Me? Bigger than Grits? That's like saying I'm the next best thing since sliced bread. Scott is an impressive blogger and a better writer than I.

The Irreverent Bill Medvecky, chock full of hyperbole and fun loving vitriol (how can those two things be said together?) has been swapping FLDS centered blogging leadership with me over the last several months. Bill is at 66,006* in this country and 351,513th in the world. Clearly US rank has a lot to do with World Wide ranking, as we are the biggest consumer of internet services and publishing.

Comparing Bill and Scott and myself though, there are some interesting observations to make. One is about "on site" time. I'm at 8.6 minutes per unique visitor per day, Bill at 2.6 and Scott at 2.0. This brings up the subject of what I think might be called "spamming" a site.

Scott ranks 113,476th in the Philippines. Are people really interested in the goings on in Texas criminal law practices to that extent, in the Philippines? Let's look at another site, that of LaShawn Barber. Lashawn has appeared on national cable programs and;
"Barber is a native of South Carolina. An alcoholic in her younger years, Barber took a vow of sobriety and abstinence shortly before her thirtieth birthday. She later moved to Washington, D.C. to serve as a legislative correspondent for a Democratic senator. She eventually became a political conservative and a Christian.

Since Barber turned to writing, her articles, book reviews, columns and essays have been published in The Washington Times, The Washington Post, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, The Denver Post, the Baltimore Times Online, Today's Christian Woman and other publications. Her work has also appeared online at Jewish World Review, National Review Online, and other sites."
So she's a big deal. Credentialed and all that jazz. I outrank her nationally but not world wide. You'd have to figure that LaShawn is an important read in North American, and perhaps England but really, France and India? I'd say "spamming" is an issue with her site as well, with a cumulative unique visitor on site time of 1.4 minutes a day. This is not to say that LaShawn doesn't have legit readers, she certainly does, but it would seem that some sites have their numbers "massaged" to some degree.

Then there is my friend Rick Beckman who has a legitimate site rank of 60,464. Rick wrote a plug in for Wordpress bloggers and that accounts for the majority of hits on his site, he says. They have to go to "" to download it I guess, and there you go. Apparently it's a very handy plug in and Rick is profiting from that.

60's and 70's musical counter culture Icon Joni Mitchell? Yes, the Modern Pharisee draws more world wide. Weird to me, believe me, very weird. Bob Dylan? He kicks my hiney, trust me.

So it would seem that you can make a dent in public perception coming from about anywhere in the social spectrum. You can even pass your childhood music idols which has a truly disturbing quality to it. Some part of me never wants to be more popular than Joni Mitchell in any way shape or form, no matter how trivial.

All of this makes me wonder how someone ends up being on a "Bill O'Reilly" or "Sean Hannity" or "Anderson Cooper" or "Larry King" show. Certainly I have controversial enough views to rate. Clearly there's a bit of a machine and a selection process when it comes to allowing people into the corridors of powerful publicity. My friends tell me that having a book would do the trick or at least grease the skids towards that sort of appearance. That of course, will have to wait.

So the last part of the post on navel gazing site rankings and superstar comparisons and site news is this: I've settled a way of handling my religious obligations to my church who of course, disagree with me on a prominent blogging topic of the Modern Pharisee. I will for a time, if necessary, suspend the blogging on that topic for the duration of my debate with them, should they elect to compel me in that regard.

I strongly believe for good reason that I should submit to the governance of my church, even if I think they are wrong, and of course, even when I disagree with them. This has limits. They owe me edification. Assuming I am wrong simply telling me "you're wrong" and "shut up" only works in venues like the Catholic Church. In venues such as conservative reformed and Presbyterian denominations, you owe a man an explanation when he agrees with Luther but not the Westminster Confession of Faith. To that end I will archive all my advocacy regarding a certain marriage doctrine until that debate is over, should they agree to "edify" me in that way. Those of you who know me, know what I'm talking about. If there is to be a book it will be on the other end of this process. It might even end up to some degree being about that process.

On a completely different note I've been listening to Pandora Radio during the composing of this post. I've observed that as far as Pandora is concerned, my favorite song is "End of the Line" by "The Traveling Wilburys." There is some justification for this even though I am sometimes dubious. I never tire of hearing the song. The Wilburys consisted of George Harrison (The Beatles) and Roy Orbison when they were alive, and also the still living Bob Dylan, Tom Petty (Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers) and Jeff Lynne (Electric Light Orchestra). I like them all and no doubt Pandora figured that out and plays "End of the Line" in what I would call "Hot Rotation" on my personal Pandora Channel. There are days I just nod my head and say "They're right."

I do however have other tastes as reflected by the selection of songs like these:

"Something More Than This" - October Project from "Falling Farther In"
"The Flood at Lyons" - Renaissance from "Azure D'or"
"Polar Nettles" - Nico Case from "Middle Cyclone"
"Hold on, Hold on," also by Nico Case but from "Fox Confessor Brings The Flood"

I wish Pandora would realize how much I like Mary Fahl and her former band "October Project." "Something More Than This" shows the immense power of Fahl's voice in a way that brings tears to the eyes. Sadly there is no Mary Fahl and the "October Project" any longer, but for the music lover, that makes it easy on the budget since all that can be had under that band's banner is out there and is small enough a collection so as not to break the budget.

Enough rambling for the evening. Please put me on your prayer list. I'm really going to need it next Sunday. In other news, tomorrow is the Anniversary of my wife and I marrying on Flathead Lake in Montana. We have two other anniversaries of marriage. Yes, I know it's weird and I won't explain. Tomorrow is the one my wife likes best. It was our public ceremony and we composed our own vows. Their was no priest or minister in keeping with our marriage beliefs. It was on a lake, not in a church. I am a fortunate man indeed.

*as of July 15th, I moved slightly ahead of Bill. Again. Post something Bill!

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