10,000 posts

Written By: - Date published: 10:22 am, May 22nd, 2012 - 38 comments
Categories: The Standard - Tags:

1,376 days ago a handful of us, led by Lynn*, got together to set up The Standard. There was an idea for a strong left-blog to counter the dominance of the Right in the blogosphere.

I reckon we’ve succeeded. We’ve had 413,000 comments and over 13 million pageviews. We’ve had 40 authors over the 3.5 years – 3 of us are left from the start – and 528 guest posts. The community, and the readership, keeps on growing massively.

* lprent: Actually I was dragged kicking and screaming into the project to do the tech side. My other roles arose after that, but they’re still largely about implementation (like moderation and paying the server bills). But it is those 10k posts that keep pulling people into the site. I only write a very few of those – and those are usually rants because I only seem to write when I’m irritated.

But the growth is pretty amazing. This year we have (in google analytics) consistently been running about 25% higher than we were last year before the election period in page views and visitor numbers. And readers are staying longer and reading more pages. Our authors and commentators are obviously talking about what the readers (and themselves) want to know about.

38 comments on “10,000 posts”

  1. And what a ride it’s been. Congratulations to you all and I hope I can continue to contribute with many controversial debate triggering comments although I have noticed that many more people here now have embraced the thought that we are being conspired against by our political elite. LOL!

    • lprent 1.1

      I’m just worried about the massive drop in diversity amongst the conspiracy advocates. They seem to be converging to a remarkably similar set of beliefs. Perhaps the mere presence of the internet is causing the reduction in diversity in the conspiracy community? If everyone in those ‘sceptical’ areas of the wider communities starts to have the same beliefs then we will lose a vital part of the diversity that makes them strong…

      Something to think about 😈

      • travellerev 1.1.1

        ROFL! Or the chaff is being separated from the wheat as we diligently research everything on offer now that we can communicate so effortlessly via the WWW! Maybe it is not a belief but provable fact we all are finding.

      • ad 1.1.2

        Yes the threads on “Immunisation” and “contraception” recently were something to behold in the scale of (quite fun) diversion.

        Some humble and tiny sugegstions.

        It couldn’t hurt to link more to The Guardian, MelbourneAge, Monde, and some of the remaining progressive thinktanks, just to pull our eyes up more to progressive debates elsewhere.

        Also, if volunteers were available, more short snips from activist events. There are some, but the invitation could go out there a little broader.

        • Jackal

          Thanks for the heads up ad. I particularly liked this article in The Guardian about austerity:

          This magical thinking comes from one of the world’s biggest money brokers, Tullett Prebon. It argued last week that Britain’s austerity is “mendacious” spin, and a “con” and, in case you hadn’t got the message and been bathed in sufficient spittle, “bare-faced deception”.

          …and this one on The Age about Moken gypsies:

          THEY live in stilted shacks built on a mud flat above piles of oyster shells, broken glass and rubbish, their nomadic days on the seas of South-east Asia gone forever.

          This story about a French company committing offenses through the provision of the Gaddafi regime is also interesting. We’ll probably start seeing an increase in such stories:

          A judicial inquiry was opened in Paris for complicity in torture in Libya for the company Amesys Bull subsidiary, announced Monday, May 21 the International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH) and the League of Human Rights (LDH).

          Always nice to read about important things that aren’t always reported in New Zealand MSM.

  2. Raa 2

    Impressive, but as John Key would point out (if he covertly follows The Standard) – it is still
    a long way to the election.

    “There’s many a slip twixt cup and lip”, as an english playwright once wrote ..

    • lprent 2.1

      Your point is?

      We aren’t particularly election focused or even that focused on a particular political party (even David Shearer has been known to slag us off). We have been through two elections now. The first one caused a massive rise in our readership and a equally massive slump that persisted well into the following year. That last one has left our readership substantially above where it was for most of last year.

      Apparently John Key has been following us for quite a while. At least since 2008 from some comments he made then.

      • David H 2.1.1

        Well i found this place about a year before the last election, I find that its great for the sanity when you are tearing your hair out, at least you can find like minded people well most of the time. And you even have trained trolls and shills to play with too. Most considerate. Keep up the good work.

  3. Mark 3

    Of course it’s growing. It is by far the funniest blog in NZ.

  4. ad 4

    I love this site.

    • Anne 4.1


      It’s educational, stimulating, funny, entertaining, grumpy (no not you grumpy 🙂 ) happy, but above all it’s a chance to talk with like-minded people. One thing it never is: is boring.

      • prism 4.1.1

        Anne ditto+
        It’s always interesting and a great place to hear (read) ideas from people who keep thoughts pinging round their heads and are interested in new ones, about important things like maintaining good or improving the old systems, something that is not commonly found amongst the general public who can’t see beyond status quo.

  5. Congrats LPrent et al.
    Without the Standard I would be wealthier as my billables would be way up but I would be so much more ignorant …

  6. muzza 6

    Hopefully this site sparks conversation and actions into the real word, as it would be interesting to see the correllation between virtual world involvement and real world involvement..

    If I had to speculate, I would say that the amount of energy spent by those who blog, is signifigantly more than their energy input to the real world.

    This is a good site, the discussion points interesting and relevant….


    • ad 6.1

      This is the real world.

      Analogue space is for … those without a life.

    • Anne 6.2

      I would say that the amount of energy spent by those who blog, is signifigantly more than their energy input to the real world.

      I don’t think I agree muzza. Sure, there will be some like that, but the majority of people who are active in mind are active in body too. That is, they take their thoughts and beliefs out into the big, wide world and try to make a difference.

      • r0b 6.2.1

        I would say that the amount of energy spent by those who blog, is signifigantly more than their energy input to the real world.

        Certainly the case in the ego blogs of the Right (Kiwiblog, Whale). The beauty of the collective that is The Standard is that the load is shared. Writing here takes a small portion of my energy, compared to what goes in to family, paid work, and other volunteer work.

        • lprent

          Same with me. Under normal circumstances I’m fitting the blog in between everything else with some good alert systems to warn of issues like new commentators, servers playing up, and the like.

          When it gets busy at work (like now), it gets fitted in whatever time I have and others tend to take up the slack. My output of posts is related to both irritation levels and also when I see the other posters flagging. When that happens these days I notice that the number of guest posts submitted increases 🙂

    • ropata 6.3

      “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he”
      in other words for humans, the ‘real world’ is a world of thought.

      • Tiger Mountain 6.3.1

        Congrats to all the Standard crew past and present for reaching this landmark.

        “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he”
        Philosophical thin ice imo ropata.

  7. Tim 7

    Would be nice to see a re-design though. Times New Roman size 12 had it’s place, and that was 1992.

    • lprent 7.1

      I argued that and lost it in 2010 on the basis that we were looking like a newspaper. How many newspapers do you find with a sans-serif font?

      I have become accustomed to serif fonts since then. The resolution of your screen and how well your operating system handles the font does make a hell of a difference though

    • just saying 7.2

      If you want larger print, go to the view menu and hit the zoom-in function as many times as it takes. It will save the increased size for the site. This site is narrow compared to the screen size, so you can enlarge it quite a lot without losing any of the page.

      And congrats everyone.

    • felix 7.3

      Also, if you’re using a browser that supports user stylesheets (like firefox) you can have the standard in any font and size you like.

  8. captain hook 8

    a wop bop a loo bop a lop bam boom!

  9. dd 9

    Good stuff. I very much enjoy following this site.

    I would like to see a design update. That would be my only complaint.

    A more slick presentation would do wonders for credibility. Obviously it’d be a big task and take a long time. Perhaps run a fundraiser to pay someone to do it or simply take donations and see how it goes.

    • Tim 9.1

      It’s a wordpress blog. There are thousands of wordpress themes out there; some are free, some are paid. The paid ones are generally pretty cheap (ie. less then $100).

      • dd 9.1.1

        It is a wordpress blog but a lot of customization would have gone down and there’s a whole heap of content. So I’d imagine simply changing the theme would result in a lot of work….

        Anyway, i’d still like to see a change. I think the content is great but the aesthetic look could be improved.

        • lprent

          Nope. It really isn’t that hard. The only operational issue is simply finding the free week in which to do it.

          The actual issues are more questions of the utility of the screen real estate and operations rather than the aesthetics. Quite a lot of the site is designed around making it easy to read and write comments.

          Many of the sites around that I have seen that look ‘better’ are actual dogs in terms of the operations. And then there are a lot of sites like Huffington that looks a damn sight worse and people go to them anyway because they have the content.

          And of course there is the issue of simple bandwidth. This site already pushes out hundreds of gigabytes of data per month mostly around NZ. Even trivial changes make a hell of a difference to both CPU usage and bandwidth..

          So remind me again? What do you want to change and why?

  10. Tazirev 10

    A pleasant place to reflect on human nature, unlike some some other sewer like blogs

  11. David Cunliffe 11

    Take a bow, LPrent and co.

  12. acting up 12

    Well done all. My favourite blog. I enjoy the cut and thrust of debate, and read just about everything.

    Reading a left-wing perspective is refreshening and informative, and the ability to read thoughts from people who battle the neo-libs is great. I am lucky – I work for a trade union, and get to do what I really enjoy while getting paid! The Standard helps to keep me going when things get tough.

  13. felix 13

    Congrats all. Onwards and upwards, up and out!

  14. Hateatea 14

    Well done, The Standard. I am glad that I found this site. I don’t agree with everyone here (wouldn’t it be boring if I did) and some of the commenters are bad for my blood pressure, but I learn something new most days and I see people who are passionate about things that matter to them, which in itself is inspiring.
    Well done LPrent, Eddie, r0b et al. You make a difference. Keep it up

  15. Kotahi Tane Huna 15

    “Unpaid Lefty Rabble More Popular Than Jesus!”

    John Lenin.

  16. Quasimodo 16

    Eddie, how do your numbers –

    “We’ve had 413,000 comments and over 13 million pageviews. We’ve had 40 authors over the 3.5 years – 3 of us are left from the start – and 528 guest posts.”

    – stack up against those of the Right in the blogosphere ?

    Indeed, what would constitute a legitimate and fair statistical comparison ?

    I think this is an essential – and apolitical – question to ask.

    • Pascal's bookie 16.1

      What an odd thing to consider essential.

      You must be hilarious at birthday parties.

      “But how old are your siblings and sports opponents? I really must know this before determining any potential salutary stance”

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