Tuesday, January 29, 2008

What a Mango Did, or Why I Will Never Steal a Picture Again

So I have traffic tracking on my site because I'm vain and I like to know these kinds of things. In general, there's been an upward trend in my readership, even as my visits will plummet from one month to another then rocket back up. I've learned to treat my visit-o-meter like a bathroom scale: don't judge your vale by it.

I broke 400 visits for the first time this month, sometime last week -- bully for me. Then I noticed, suddenly, my visits for the month have cleared 500 (see below; note I added the tracking in May, hence the zero in April). Huh??

So I dug a little more: I've had over 160 visits in four days, almost ninety visitors between yesterday and today. This is utterly unheard of. My average is, as you can see, about a dozen, upwards of twenty on a good day. I don't even know who those dozen are. Probably people looking for Catholic churches in San Antonio, and Google brings the poor suckers here. I was blown away, and more than a little confused.

SiteMeter, bless 'em, also lets you track what links are referring folks to your site. Based on what I could decipher from that chart, about half my visitors are being brought here after a Google image search... for "mango".


You my recall, or have noticed, I started a tag called "...o mango" as a catch-all for the flotsam I throw about now and then. In the first "...o mango" post, I explained the origin of the term and included a picture of a mango that I found on (ready for the irony here?) Google images. Typically, when I steal pictures from someone else I save them to my hard drive and post them from there to avoid stealing bandwidth from the sites from which I have already stolen pictures. Except this time, apparently. So in some internet quirk, all the image hits that used to go to this site, from which I stole the mango picture, directed to me, flooding me with a tsunami of meaningless numbers that crested these last few days and scared the unknown/peepin'-tom-fearing bejezzus out of me.

So I deleted the mango picture.

And I will never steal a mango picture, or any other picture, or any other breed of intellectual property, ever again. Ever.

I promise.

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