On The Post Containing Commentary

So the numbers are back.

This just in, people might not be honest!

No, you say? Unpossible you say?

49 votes were recorded in the poll. 36 people, or 74% of those responding said they follow the OSR for content. 13 people, or 26% of those responding said that they follow the OSR for commentary.

One person said they wouldn't comment because it was 'a loaded poll' Tom slurred drunkenly.

That was of course the point - it was designed as an Ipsative comparison.

The poll result was interesting and ultimately useless because posts with commentary draw more traffic and comments then content posts. What conclusion can we draw from the above? People willing to take polls are more content driven? My sample size (49 people) is what? 5% of the daily OSR reader base on a good day? I am willing to concede we have discovered nothing from my poll.

I've been following some of the discussion on this topic this past week, and one interesting point is that was brought up was a comment about the cult of personality as a driving force behind the lack of comment on blogs. I have not found this to be the case in a threefold fashion. I post my big releases on forums, and often correct and alter the document as I receive early feedback. (that's one). I'm responsive to criticism on my own blog - glad to make things more functional for the people who use them; this extends to the point where I explicitly ask for such feedback and have yet to receive it. (that's two). And finally, I certainly have no qualms about speaking my mind out on posts or on other work that I borrow, use, or download, for good or bad. (that's three). I learned long ago to not count myself as any sort of norm for behavior though, so this also teaches us nothing.

Does the fact that Alexis over at the Tao of D&D will delete your comment if it doesn't meet his inscrutable criteria for value keep anyone from commenting?

Is not the blogosphere a free realm, where anyone may speak their mind?

Do we not all participate in various forums and other communities, regardless of what happens in the blogosphere?

Three final thoughts:

First, I've noticed that these blogs come and sadly go in waves. As  pack of us coming up together I feel that I'm in good company. This is a shout out to my partners in my zone, Greg Gorgonmilk at Gorgonmilk and Beedo at Dreams in the Lich house. At first I wanted to hate them because they were the competition, but then I saw my own output increase just to keep pace with both of them. Also, they are frustratingly astute and erudite bloggers. Like I said before, good company.

Second, what this really comes down to is "What makes a blog popular?" Well, do you know? Do ya, punk? Cyclopeatron says that it's quality of posts. And I thought this for a while and found out, nooo, that's not it. Then, thanks to Johnathan Bingham, I was enlightened. What makes a blog popular? I have the answer you seek right here.

This picture is clearly about illumination,
not young thighs. . .
Breasts, lots of breasts; and oh! attractive elves; Maybe if you're the nefarious kind of Dungeon Master, pictures of the thighs of young women who are bent over, but most importantly more important than any other thing that can make your blog popular. . .

pictures of breakfast pastries.

How else to explain how The Happy Whisk has 200 followers? (Just kidding Ivy.)

Third and most importantly, things are fractured now. It doesn't matter how popular this post is or how many followers someone has, because if popularity were my goal I'd be writing about American Idol, or Twilight, or some other fashionable topic. If I weren't doing this, well, I'd be doing this, except probably not sharing it online. I'd be gaming or working on stuff for gaming. I don't do this for fame or fortune or money, I do it because I think it is awesome, so there. And so should you. In the immortal words of daffy duck. . .


Enjoy the show.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. @Anthony: In Zak's defense, he does put up a lot of content, and I think that if he had chosen to keep the lid on his professional life he'd still have a decent number of readers. Grognardia does well based on the strength of James M's writing and knowledge of the hobby. It's a nice blend of nostalgia and esoterica.

    There's definitely still room for growth in terms of both readership and new people who take an interest in the Old School gaming community. My current game group is composed of about six people who hitherto had minimal exposure to OS games. Now they're fans and are definitely poking around the blogosphere.

    And I was totally lured by that lamp's creamy thighs! Thanks for the kind words.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. well, other than the fact that he produces prodigious amounts of high quality art, films a television show about people playing our hobby (an old school version no less), provides free resources to our community (such as a place to sell your blog on his popular blog), is amiable to reasonable discourse for anyone willing to talk to him and, wait for it

    his day job is having sex for money.

    he clearly is just a chic hipster art critic.

    (Is it chic to play nerdly games? Hipster to work in the pron industry? Art criticism to create and post about art when that's what your degree is in from an ivy league college? Jelly much?)

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  6. Good morning, -C. I haven't been online as much as normal this last week or so but saw I was getting activity from your end. Thought I'd come see what that was about.

    All I have to say is, by gosh, please don't write about Twilight. No offense to you Twilight fans but I'm sorry, moody vampire teenagers. Ack.


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