The Long Nag, Ctd

Mar 1 2013 @ 1:21pm

An updated chart of readers hitting various levels of readons:

Screen Shot 2013-03-01 at 12.27.33 PM

A reader quotes me:

“…around 5,000 subscribers have yet to log in. (What’s stopping them? We don’t know…)”  I am one of those subscribers. The reason for me is that I have four different devices to read the Dish on: PC at work, PC at home, phone, and a tablet. While I click “read on” fairly frequently, no single device has reached its limit. So I don’t need to sign in. I will keep funding the Dish, as it’s ethical and I want you to succeed. But that’s the only reason I haven’t logged in.

Subscribers can bypass the meter process altogether by clicking the red button in the top-right corner of the Dish. Another subscriber:

I would submit that the cause for some fraction of that 5k is Tinypass’ desire to use a cookie, which means that browsers see a 3rd party site wanting to play with my cookies, and Safari on the iPhone has only all/none/no-3rd-party settings, and I’m not accepting all cookies – eff that. This means that I can’t click your Login button and have it do anything. So what I do is go to dashboard.tinypass.com and login there, then click the “Dish” link in Purchases and that launches me a subscribed-and-logged-in Dish window, allowing me to close the tinypass bootstrap window. Tinypass has helpful paste-in lines for whitelisting them as a valid 3rd party cookie site, but I don’t know how to convince my iPhone of that without opening the cookie floodgates.  So my workaround suffices.

The most common response from readers:

I read your blog through RSS, specifically Google Reader. I rarely if ever visit your site, and have done so recently only to check out the new design (nice work, appreciate the minimalist approach!). I’m guessing that many of the other non-login subscribers come from this group, but perhaps your site analytics could shed light on this.

My feeling is that content consumption strictly through websites will die off as people move to simpler, more customizable mechanisms such as RSS feeds and mobile devices. One of my pet peeves with website feeds is truncated posts that force you to click to a website to read the full post/story. The primary reason I’ve created the feed is to minimize website visits, and the second I’m forced to do so the less likely I will continue to consume your content at all. Serve an ad in my reader, I don’t care, as long as it doesn’t bog down the limited time I have to read the posts I want to read. That is one of the reasons I subscribed to the Dish (besides the great quality of your blog) – as long as you continue to offer full posts in your feed, I will continue to subscribe.

One other note: your “nags” are beginning to feel more like NPR pledge drives – only a nickel a day for honest independent journalism! Not that it’s a bad thing; NPR is great and we all should contribute to the financial stability of the independent media we consume if we can afford it. And hey, I can’t wait for next year’s subscription to come with a free emergency radio or brain power CD.