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Showing posts from September, 2011

Do Science Bloggers Exercise Free Will?

That's the question--as I stare at the census data in search of a juicy trend--that would seem the most sensational and draw the most readers.  A trend...that challenges the notion that you decide how often you post and how much time you invest in each post.  To find it, having already decided it's there, I broke my brain a couple of times combining three census data sets: (1) Years Blogging; (2) Blogging Frequency; and (3) Time Investment Per Blog Post.  Below are the fruits of my labors.  Did I find the trend I was looking for?  A trend that suggests the longer you blog, the more likely it will be that you will spend 1 to 2 hours writing about one post per week?  Judge for yourself.
My feeling is I didn't find a trend. My kung fu is not yet strong enough. Nevertheless, if you're wondering how your blogging habits compare with your peers, now you know. Maybe they know something you don't, like a substantial time investment per post does pay off in the long run--you…

Are Female Science Bloggers More Likely To Blog Anonymously Than Male Science Bloggers?

Google+'s real name policy sparked a lively debate in the science blogosphere. On the side of anonymity it was observed that women risk more than men when they use their real names.

We know that women experience 25 TIMES the amount of harassment online that men do.I light of this blanket disparity in risk you might expect to find--or even assume--that the percentage of women in science blogging anonymously is greater than that of their male counterparts. Sifting through the Census of Science Bloggers data I realized I had a sample with which to test this assumption.

But to get there I first had to answer another burning question: I wonder what the overall gender ratio is among science bloggers?  The answer, based on the census data, is approximately 2 male science bloggers for every 1 female science blogger.


Again, based on the census sample, 15% of all science bloggers post anonymously.


Now does that percentage change when you divvy the sample up into male and female? Do women, c…

Where Should Science Bloggers Look For Traffic?

The Census of Science Bloggers 2011 asked, Excluding search engines, what is your primary traffic driver? After eliminating for single instances and some standardization, the breakdown is as follows:

Twitter (70)
Facebook (59)
Links from Other Blogs (45)
Reddit (14)
ResearchBlogging (13)
Feed Subscriptions (10)
Google+ (8)
Commenting on Other Blogs (7)
Science Blog Network (7)
Return/Direct (4)
StumbleUpon (4)
Tumblr (3)
FriendFeed (2)
LinkedIn (2)
MetaFilter (2)
Gee. Twitter and Facebook top the list. What a surprise. Well yes, confirming what we already know isn't that useful (unless you're not already syndicating your content to Twitter and Facebook). But keep in mind that this is a list of primary traffic drivers, which means that each site on the list has the potential to send you more traffic than any other source. The trick is knowing how to tap that potential.


What are we really talking about then? Because there are trade-offs in time and energy, and if you're like …

The Science Blogosphere's Advice to Science Bloggers

Have faith in your audience. Kill them with kindness. Those are my golden rules for blogging, and how I answer The Census of Science Bloggers 2011 question: In a sentence, your best science blogging advice for fellow science bloggers.

Over 190 science bloggers (a majority of census participants) also answered the call for advice. Their collected response adds up to 2,492 words of wisdom.
Be social. Love it, have fun, and think about your audience. Just do it and be yourself. Science is a foreign language for some; strive to be an effective translator. Have fun. Try everything, and don't be afraid to fail often. Write on what you are passionate and ignore the rest. Just do it. Don't think too much about the pros and cons. Don't do it unless it provides value for yourself as well as for whatever audience you might acquire. Keep on keepin' on. Follow up on the things you're curious about. Have fun, but remember that having fun doesn't mean you have to sacrifice …