web analytics

Sunday conspiracy humour

Written By: - Date published: 8:04 pm, March 22nd, 2009 - 17 comments
Categories: humour - Tags: , , ,



Barnsley Bill* has discovered (updated to here**) that Alexa reckons 11% of our visits come from India. Apparently BB thinks this means we are paying someone in India to fake our stats.

This has ignited another round of hysteria among the rightwing nutters (commonly known as wingnuts) about The Standard. There has been a recurring theme from the wingnuts  of  ‘exposing’ this site and their technical incompetence at doing it – it has all of the symptoms of an addiction*. BB is probably getting distressed that his (and other wingnuts) confident predictions that The Standard would die when Labour vacated the 9th floor have proven to be bullshit. It is a pity that they are incapable of reading or believing the simple About that explains this site – it is just too mundane for their warped version of the the way the world works.

It looks like Barnsley Bill doesn’t read a reliable source of information on technical matters. I’d suggest The Standard where there was a post on this very subject in December.

That post showed that Alexa is a crappy readership stats counter that can easily be thrown out of whack by one person. It only counts visits from people with the Alexa toolbar and bugger all people have Alexa. A single regular reader of the site who lives in India and has the Alexa Sparky tool bar would be enough to throw it out. Alexa also looks at the IP and tries to reverse it to find the country of origin, which is a procedure that frequently gets false results.

Which is why Alexa is a joke. We use Google Analytics and WordPress Stats ourselves and it’s the Google Analytics numbers that we supply for the NZ blogosphere monthly stats at Tumeke. So I’ll say it slowly for the technical illiterates like Barnsley – we don’t fake our stats, we’re more than happy with them as they are. However perhaps you should look at some of the wingnut sites that have some very suspect stats and rankings.

Sorry to ruin the conspiracy theorists fun. This ‘evidence’ that we’re juking our stats is in the usual order of a Wishart ‘expose’ in Investigate or what Whaleoil thinks is conclusive proof. Anyone who isn’t a wingnut considers it to be crap. But I’ll give the conspiracy theorists something else to chew on instead.  Since The Standard began in August 2007 there have been 22 UFO sightings in New Zealand, that’s more than the total for the previous 6 years combined. Can anyone really believe that’s just a coincidence?

* I thought I’d share my favourite memory of Barnsley which is this sentence in a comment on the roughly the same topic (The Standard and who we are and how the site is run)

Tane said; ‘that’s hilarious OO. There are nine of us who do this voluntarily and on a casual basis. ‘

Bastard, I read this and laughed so hard I sprayed Johnnie Walker from both nostrils all over the keyboard.

It is always interesting having such a spirited and persistent conspiracy theorist doing posts and comments. Persistently incorrect.

** update – looks like BB decided to update his post. I wonder why? You may also think it is an idiot who takes 3 days to verify something as basic as what Kiwiblog’s Indian percentage is. He still hasn’t picked up on the evil Netherland SEO services in this comment on other blogs :twisted:.


17 comments on “Sunday conspiracy humour”

  1. Thanks for the post. I’d wondered about Alexa. Seems pretty useless. My own Google stats show my (year old) blog averages about 75 visits / day……sometimes more (300 on one day last week) and sometimes less (56 so far today – Sunday – including 2 from India reading about USB pen drives).

    Readership has more than doubled since I started using Twitter just over 2 months ago….including a fair number of hits from India looking at my posts on tech subjects – like Ubuntu Linux, pen drives (above), Adobe AIR, PCTV nano Stick and others. My more general political posts get NZ traffic and my ‘global’ political posts get global traffic. Just as one would expect. My posts about minor stuff that interests me tend to be read by me and my dogs….and maybe some guy in Romania. Trying to work that one out.

    Barnsley Bill and people like him are a toxic part of the Net. Don’t waste too much time or thought on them. (not that you do, anyway………just saying…)

  2. infused 2

    “Alexa also looks at the IP and tries to reverse it to find the country of origin, which is a procedure that frequently gets false results.”

    Wrong. Uses GeoIP which is %98 accurate.

    • lprent 2.1

      Yes and irrelevant – it is not 100%. Do you understand using statistics on small populations? Did you read my December post and understand the implications to the population size of Alexa users?

      In this case, between 1 and 2 people per hundred (it is apparently 98.7%) would have an incorrect country location on average in a large sample.

      All it takes is one address to be allocated to an incorrect country from the small population of users who use Alexa toolbar on our site to change the percentages. How big an effect would happen depends on the population size – ie how many people use Alexa.

      Based on the response of Alexa to my putting the toolbar on my browsers, I think that there are less than 20 people (and probably closer to 10) who do, out of the thousands who regularly read the site on a weekday. Otherwise my use wouldn’t have had such a marked effect. If I’m correct and about 10 people use Alexa Sparky, then there is a significant probability that GeoIP gave us a false country for one, and therefore we got a significant population.

      Given a small population of Alexa users it could be that one was reading from India from a internat cafe with alexa sparky installed that week.

      I’d add that last year and early this year for our site, I’ve seen large percentages from Poland, Netherlands, USA and few other places. The percentages for particular countries rise and falls rapidly over the weeks.

      In essence Alexa is crap because too few people use the toolbar. That is the real significance of BB’s observation. However instead of looking at it, for instance looking at a few other sites in alexa, he just jumped to a hypothesis that he’d prefer to believe. Sure isn’t smart thinking. If he’d been smart he’d have looked to see what was happening on other blogs..

      Right now for instance

      Kiwiblog.co.nz users come from these countries:
      New Zealand80.7%
      United States2.3%
      United Kingdom0.8%

      Thestandard.org.nz users come from these countries:
      New Zealand81.3%
      United States5.9%

      Publicaddress.net users come from these countries:
      New Zealand67.0%
      United Kingdom7.4%
      United States2.6%

      Whaleoil.co.nz users come from these countries:
      New Zealand87.0%
      Other countries5.6%

      etc.. Yeah Right – Notice any trends here ? Looks like the evil Netherland IT companies are at it as well….

    • ghostwhowalks 2.2

      I was trying to use a local web site which is restricted NZ IP addresses but it said I was outside the country.
      when I rang them and gave my IP address they said that was listed as Hawaii.
      Yes it seems Xtra is borrowing addresses. A quick disconnect of the telephone line for a few minutes meant I was moved back across the pacific

  3. I don’t understand why you would bother responding to this kind of rubbish – by doing so you’re just giving him the attention he so craves. Perhaps if the little V-wannabe had done his research he would know that if a site was faking it’s traffic the IP addresses would come from all over the place as the botnets employed in this are global.

    [Update – His post has been deleted. I think he owes the writers of The Standard an apology.]

    • lprent 3.1

      Because it is quite amusing to demonstrate that given a range of possible hypotheses, a wingnut will automatically jump to the one they prefer – the one with a conspiracy. It appears to be an inherent attribute of the wingnut view of the world.

      Whale does it, Wishart does it, No Munster does it, BB does it, etc

      BTW: I suspect that BB just looked at kiwiblog Indian percentage. He updated his post with the 3% odd that KB gets. Still hasn’t picked up on the terrible Netherland SEO’s that other blogs MUST be paying for

  4. Everyone, it’s the Ian Wishart school of truth coming into play, “I haven’t been sued for saying it, so it must be true!”

  5. My ears are burning..
    Have not updated the post or deleted it…
    No apologies being offered either.
    vero “corrupt 24” .

    • lol BB – I thought there were only nine of them 🙂

      No – must be 24 – my captcha was “confirming 24”

    • lprent 5.2

      Ummm never seen anyone snort whiskey out of there 🙂

      However your post is still technically incompetent. Were you being spiritual at the time?

  6. you simply failed to put the link in properly at the beginning of your post

  7. lukas 7

    ** update – looks like BB decided to update his post. I wonder why?

    Looks like LP forgot the l in the html at the end of the link.

  8. lprent 8

    Umm that is weird. You could be right. I was distracted with some code at the time. Worked when I first tested it. Guess the finger slipped when I edited. I’ll update the post when I get near a computer. There I’d no way I want to edit from an iPhone

  9. Phil 9

    This has ignited another round of hysteria

    Since when does a couple of blog posts count as ‘hysteria’?!

    Get over yourself Lynn, thestandard is not special

Recent Comments

Recent Posts


  • September benefit figures disappointing
    The Government is out of touch with the reality that fewer people are going off the benefit and into employment or study, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni.  “The quarterly benefit numbers for September are concerning. They show that ...
    3 days ago
  • MFAT officials refuse to back Prime Minister on Saudi sheep claims
    An Ombudsman’s interim decision released about the existence or otherwise of legal advice on the multimillion dollar Saudi sheep deal shows MFAT has failed to back up the Prime Minister’s claims on the matter, says Labour MP David Parker. “The ...
    3 days ago
  • Nats still planning to take Housing NZ dividend
    Housing New Zealand’s Statement of Performance Expectations shows that the National Government intends to pocket $237m from Housing New Zealand this year including a $54m “surplus distribution”, despite promises that dividends would stop, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “After ...
    4 days ago
  • Parliament must restore democracy for Ecan
    Parliament has a chance to return full democracy to Canterbury with the drawing of a member’s bill that would replace the Government’s appointed commissioners with democratically elected councillors, says Labour’s Canterbury Spokesperson Megan Woods. “In 2010, the Government stripped Cantabrians ...
    4 days ago
  • Police struggle to hold the line in Northland
    Labour’s promise of a thousand extra police will go a long way to calming the fears of people in the North, says the MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis.  “Police are talking about the Northland towns of Kaitaia and ...
    4 days ago
  • Urgent action on agriculture emissions needed
    Immediate action is required to curb agricultural emissions is the loud and clear message from Climate change & agriculture: Understanding the biological greenhouse gases report released today by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan ...
    5 days ago
  • Super Fund climate change approach a good start
    Labour Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson and Climate Change Spokesperson Dr Megan Woods have welcomed the adoption of a climate change investment strategy by the New Zealand Super Fund. “This is a good start. It is a welcome development that the Super ...
    5 days ago
  • Raising the age the right thing to do
    The announcement today that the Government will leave the door open for young people leaving state care still means there is a lot of work to do, says Labour's Spokesperson for Children, Jacinda Ardern "The Government indicated some time ago ...
    5 days ago
  • Coleman plays down the plight of junior doctors
    Junior doctors are crucial to our health services and the industrial action that continues tomorrow shows how desperately the Government has underfunded health, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “Jonathan Coleman’s claim that he has not seen objective evidence of ...
    6 days ago
  • Inflation piles pressure on National and Reserve Bank
    While many households will welcome the low inflation figures announced today, they highlight serious questions for both the National government and the Reserve Bank, Labour’s  Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson said.  "While low inflation will be welcomed by many, the ...
    6 days ago
  • Officials warned Nat’s $1b infrastructure fund ineffective and rushed
    Treasury papers show the Government rushed out an infrastructure announcement officials told them risked making no significant difference to housing supply, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “Like so much of National’s housing policy, this was another poll-driven PR initiative ...
    6 days ago
  • More cops needed to tackle P
    New Police statistics obtained in Written Questions show John Key is losing his War on P, highlighting the need for more Police, says Opposition Leader Andrew Little.  “New Zealanders expect serious action on P but today’s hodgepodge of half-measures won’t ...
    7 days ago
  • MBIE docs show country needs KiwiBuild, not Key’s pretend “building boom”
    John Key’s spin that New Zealand is in a building boom does not change the massive shortfall in building construction as new MBIE papers reveal, says Labour Party housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “We can fix the housing crisis, by the ...
    7 days ago
  • 1 in 7 Akl houses now going to big property speculators
    Speculators are running riot in the Auckland housing market making life tougher for first home buyers, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  Newly released data from Core Logic shows a 40 per cent increase in the share of house sales ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour mourns passing of Helen Kelly
    Helen Kelly was a passionate advocate for working New Zealanders and for a safe and decent working life, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says.  “Helen Kelly spent her adult life fighting for the right of every working person to ...
    1 week ago
  • Andrew Little: Speech to the Police Association Conference 2016
    Police Association delegates, Association life members and staff, representatives from overseas jurisdictions. Thank you for inviting me here today. The Police Association has become a strong and respected voice for Police officers and for policing in New Zealand. There is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 1,000 more police for safer communities
    Labour will fund an extra 1,000 Police in its first term to tackle the rising rate of crime, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “Labour will put more cops on the beat to keep our communities safe. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Call for all-party round table on homelessness
    Labour is calling on the Government to take part in a roundtable meeting to hammer out a cross-party agreement on ending homelessness.  Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford said the country wanted positive solutions to homelessness, and wanted the political parties ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Working people carrying the can for the Government
    Today’s announcement of a Government operating surplus is the result of the hard work of many Kiwi businesses and workers, who will be asking themselves if they are receiving their fair share of growth in the economy, Grant Robertson Labour ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Breast cancer drugs should be available
    Labour supports the Breast Cancer Aotearoa Coalition’s campaign for better access to cancer treatments as more patients are denied what is freely available in Australia, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “In the last three years, PHARMAC’s funding has been ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Community law centres get much needed support from banks
      New Zealand’s network of community law centres, who operate out of more than 140 locations across the country, have today received a much needed boost, says Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.  “After more than 8 years of static funding ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Just 18 affordable homes in Auckland SHAs – It’s time for KiwiBuild
    New data revealing just 18 affordable homes have been built and sold to first home buyers in Auckland’s Special Housing Areas show National’s flagship housing policy has failed and Labour’s comprehensive housing plan is needed, says Leader of the Opposition ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Pasifika wins big in Auckland elections
    The Labour Party’s Pacific Candidates who stood for local elections in Auckland came out on top with 14 winners, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio. “Our candidates have won seats on one ward, four local boards, two ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Seven7 hikoi to stop sexual violence
    2 weeks ago
  • Road toll passes 2013 total
    The road toll for the year to date has already passed the total for the whole of 2013, raising serious questions about the Government’s underfunding of road safety, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “According to the Ministry of Transport, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bay principals slam charter school decision
    A letter from Hawke’s Bay principals to the Education Minister slams the lack of consultation over the establishment of a charter school in the region and seriously calls into question the decision making going on under Hekia Parata’s watch, says ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government needs to act on voter turnout crisis
    With fewer than 40 per cent of eligible voters having their say in the 2016 local elections, the Government must get serious and come up with a plan to increase voter turnout, says Labour’s Local Government Spokesperson Meka Whaitiri. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Inquiry presents solutions to homelessness – Govt must act
    Labour, the Green Party and the Māori Party are calling on the Government to immediately adopt the 20 recommendations set out in today's Ending Homelessness in New Zealand report. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A good night for Labour’s local government candidates
    It has been a good night for Labour in the local government elections. In Wellington, Justin Lester became the first Labour mayor for 30 years, leading a council where three out of four Labour candidates were elected. Both of Labour’s ...
    2 weeks ago
  • More contenders for fight clubs
    Allegations of fight clubs spreading to other Serco-run prisons must be properly investigated says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister runs for cover on job losses
    Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell’s refusal to show leadership and provide assurances over the future of the Māori Land Court is disappointing, given he is spearheading contentious Maori land reforms which will impact on the functions of the Court, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Kiwisaver contribution holiday not the break workers were looking for
    The number of working New Zealanders needing to stop Kiwisaver payments is another sign that many people are not seeing benefit from growth in the economy, says Grant Robertson Labour’s Finance spokesperson. "There has been an increase of 14 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Fight Club failings
    The Corrections Minister must take full responsibility for the widespread management failings within Mt Eden prison, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Rethink welcomed
    The Labour Party is pleased that Craig Foss is reconsidering the return of New Zealand soldiers buried in Malaysia, says Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer. “For the families of those who lie there, this will a welcome move. The ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Disappointment over UN vote
    Helen Clark showed her characteristic drive and determination in her campaign to be UN Secretary General, and most New Zealanders will be disappointed she hasn't been selected, says the Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. "Helen Clark has been an ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Māori need answers on Land Court job losses
    Māori landowners, Māori employees and Treaty partners need answers after a Ministry of Justice consultation document has revealed dozens of roles will be disestablished at the Māori Land Court, says Ikaroa-Rāwhiti MP Meka Whaitiri. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Key’s ‘efficiencies’ = DHBs’ pain
          John Key’s talk of ‘efficiencies’ ignores the fact the Government is chronically underfunding health to the tune of $1.7 billion, says Labour’s Acting Health spokesperson Dr David Clark.       ...
    3 weeks ago
  • More than 1,300 schools to face budget cuts
    The latest Ministry of Education figures reveal thousands of schools will face cuts to funding under National’s new operations grant funding model, says Labour's Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Speculation fever spreads around country
    House prices in Wellington, Hamilton and Tauranga are going off as a result of uncontrolled property speculation spilling over from the Auckland market, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “Speculators who have been priced out of Auckland are now fanning ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand lags on aid targets
      The National Government needs to live up to its commitments and allocate 0.7 per cent of Gross National Income on development assistance, says Labour’s spokesperson on Pacific Climate Change Su’a William Sio.  “The second State of the Environment Report ...
    3 weeks ago
  • War on drugs needs more troops
    The Minister of Police must urgently address the number of officers investigating illegal drugs if she is serious about making a dent in the meth trade, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “Answers from written questions from the Minister show ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Doctors strike symptom of health cuts
    The notice of strike action issued by the junior doctors today is the result of years of National’s cuts to the health system, says Labour’s Associate Health spokesperson Dr David Clark. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Government starves RNZ into selling Auckland asset
    Just weeks after TVNZ opened its refurbished Auckland head office costing more than $60 million, RNZ (Radio New Zealand) has been forced to put its Auckland office on the market to keep itself afloat, says Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Clare Curran. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Government must be more than a bystander on the economy
    Despite what he might think John Key is not a political commentator, but actually a leader in a Government who needs to take responsibility for the conditions that mean a rise in interest rates, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “John ...
    3 weeks ago