STEVE VERDON notices something I hadn’t — my traffic for this month has already surpassed its previous monthly high. This will no doubt disappoint some, who seemed to be hoping that InstaPundit had passed its peak.
Of course, traffic here won’t keep growing forever, and I wouldn’t be terribly surprised (or, for that matter, all that disappointed) to see it level off or even decline as the blogosphere grows. This is the Internet, and nothing is forever. (Which isn’t to say that I don’t enjoy disappointing those folks this time; I’m only human.)
It’s especially interesting, though, in light of this figure from this OJR piece, showing big-media traffic trends. What’s interesting is that they look a lot like mine, only with a few more zeros. I wouldn’t have guessed that.
I think there are several plausible explanations for the increase in traffic:
1.) More and more, internet access and use is becoming commonplace, and as people become more familiar (Glenn frequently notes the assimilation of mainstream writers into the blogworld) wit the internet and internet news sources, they become more frequent consumers. Four years ago, my father did not have a computer. Now we can not get him offline. This is not an isolated incident.
2.) The growth of the blogosphere as a source of opinion and in many cases a convenient portal for here-to-fore difficult to find information has whetted people’s appetites for news. It really is an addiction. Combined with the exhilaration of not having to rely on being spoon fed from traditional news sources, and this could explain part of the increase.
3.) These are uncertain and rocky times. The highest turn-outs in elections are when there is a contentious election of great importance or a pressing issue. Right now, with the perception of a horrible economy, the war on terrorism, and the unpleasantness in Iraq, it only makes sense that people would be looking to inform themselves. It only makes sense that people would engage in more information-seeking behaviors. That is one great benefit of an educated public.
There are other reasons, including the wider availability of internet access in the workplace (thus allowing for more time to be wasted surfing- always a better alternative to work), but those are the main ones. Sound off below if you have other ideas.