Blog Anniversary
Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 10:24AM
Bill Barclay

Last week was the 3rd anniversary of the commencement of this blog. The three posts in the first week  related to Wastewater, TUGPRA and Fluoride - nothing much has changed! Go down to the weekly archive in the index if you are interested in what was taking place back in 2010/11.

The numbers reading the blog have not changed greatly - average daily hits remain around 100 -150, but when particularly sensitive issues are raised, it can go as high as 500 - not a great number when compared with the national blogs, but significant when the size of the market is taken into account. The weekly average is around 900, of which 300 are unique - in other words 600 are repeat views, but the multiple is unknown. 

Naturally, I often wonder whether it is worth the effort, but I am inspired by the numbers who consistently use the blog as their principle means of obtaining information about what is going on within Council and the District as a whole. The audience is I believe mainly Thames, but I am often surprised at just how widely it is read by people who obviously have an interest in the District.

The disgraceful coverage of local affairs provided by the regular news media - both print and radio, with the one notable exception of Big Valley Radio remains the principal incentive to keep it going. The manner which print and radio pump out TCDC PR material, and otherwise provide an unchallenged voice for our Mayor in particular is an insult to our intelligence.

Support prior to and after the last election for the status quo was instrumental in keeping bad news under wraps, and providing succour and comfort to incumbents. The withdrawal of print and radio from critical coverage of local affairs is now almost universal in towns of this size, though there are exceptions. But it seems to have reached an abysmal level as exemplified by our Hauraki Herald and Coromandel FM - though the editor of the former would probably prefer to characterize it as simply a pragmatic, economic response. The management of the latter would no doubt simply justify it as mates helping out mates.

It is this that gives emphasis to the irony contained in the comments of Judge Blaikie as reported in my recent "Blogging....!" post. Without blogs, the level of understanding within the body politic would be abysmal, and the regular commentariat and their employers know this full well - it is the reason for the sudden panic and self -examination that is becoming a daily feature in their columns.

Meanwhile Judge Blaikie is having to come to terms with the almost universal condemnation of his ridiculous decision.




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