I have recently passed a compelling numerical threshold in blog readership. I crossed over the line of 50,000 pageviews. That is, 50,000 visits to my blog. Because we are all herded around like cattle on the Internet we are perhaps more accustomed to tales and sites where there have been millions and millions of visitors, but I feel very content with 50,000 views. I think I could find a humble sort of happiness with 50,000 views. I would like to try. Unfortunately, pageviews are not pageviews on the Internet. They are more like a salary. They are like if you made $50,000 dollars a year and thought, gosh, a person could do okay on 50,000 dollars a year, but then started deducting for taxes and transportation and lunch and so on until one felt quite poor, until one found themselves returning home with not $50,000, but rather with 73 dollars and change and a bag of corn. Yes, sadly, this is the woeful tale of my first 50,000 page views. This is my pageview budget.
We start with 50,000 pageviews. A very lovely and encouraging start.
We deduct an astonishing 33,000 right off the top for completely mysterious, pointlessly nefarious bots like "vampirestats" that for some reason Google is not even slightly fooled by when it comes to ranking the popularity of ones site (and thus making you rise to the top of keyword searches), but is completely fooled by when it comes to telling you how many (entirely pointless) visits you are getting. These are robot visits. No "mind" of any kind is doing any reading here.
We deduct 3,100 for random people who arrive at my site and lose interest by the fourth word of the first sentence. It is my own fault for starting all my posts with "Um, so, anyway,"
We deduct 200 for people who may legitimately visit my site at other times (or they may not), but who accidentally clicked something leading to my site when they didn't mean to and cry out "No! NOOO! Back button, back button!" as they hit the back button as quickly as possible.
We deduct 500 to moderate the number of my own repeat visits to my own blog. I visit my blog a lot because it is my favorite blog, but I feel only some of these visits should legitimately count, say, the ones where I reread the actual page, as opposed to the ones where I just gaze adoringly at it.
We deduct 2,400 for people who arrive at my blog through clickbait, recommendations, chicanery, and idle curiosity, read a whole post, and either plain dislike it or don't like it enough to ever read another post. While this 2,400 would be a legitimate count of readers, I don't want them. I DON'T WANT THEM!
We deduct 200 to discount for people reading my blog furtively, perhaps at work, who close down their viewing window in a panic and have to go back to my site later to finish reading the post.
But, finally, we get to add back in 2,300 for people who get my blog automatically emailed to them. These show up nowhere in any statistics!
And with that we come up with 12,900 pageviews. Well, it's not so bad. No, it's not 50,000, but, in four years it could be, if we keep adding. And I can get there even quicker if really apply myself. I'm sure I could read my blog quite a bit more than I do.