Muschamp Rd

Exit 2019, Enter 2020

December 31st, 2019
2019 Last FM Analytics

As another year comes to a close, I don’t have a lot of enthusiasm for blogging, but tradition dictates that you reflect on the previous year, and if you blog or use social media you must look back to see if the hours and hours and hours you devoted had any positive effect beyond a few “likes” and “favourites”. In 2019, I only managed five blog posts officially, but that number belies the unbelievable amount of effort I put into social media in 2020.

My efforts actually started in 2018 when I finally passed the third and final CFA® exam. After the exam was done and some celebrating with beer in Shanghai, I updated every single CFA Flashcard I’d ever typed out and hopefully improved the taxonomy of that blog. I had been trying to find a new job, I swear since before my MBA internship. I actually worked for a couple years at BOB, a while at CWT, and the company I worked the longest for was EF and still after passing all the CFA exams and completing a project management certification they would not give me an opportunity other than the same one they give anyone who clicks on one of their online ads.

The Focus of 2019

My goals in 2019 were several including finally finding a new job, which I did. But I’m not sure it was worth all the suffering and sacrifice. I had to move twice in 2019 and hope not to have to move or look for another new job for a while.

As part of my job search I completely overhauled this blog in an effort to leverage it as part of my job search. That is why five blog posts does not reflect the hundreds of hours that went into blogging and social media this year. Besides this blog and the CFA Flashcard blog, I also overhauled my oldest website, the one devoted to the Diseased Sons Chaos Space Marine Chapter. I even found time to paint some miniatures and update my miniature painting blog, but very few people read anything anymore. I myself spend too much time on Twitter in the era of Trump. I also waste time on Instagram and various news apps.

2019 Analytics

Analytics is part of my job again, but not web analytics or social media analytics, maybe in 2020 I’ll have to dust off those skills. Analytics is a lot more pervasive than ever before, you can see just how little ROI, Tweeting, blogging, and other online activities truly bring.


I seem to have messed up my TopNine this year. I cropped it myself and then I think Instagram cropped it again for me. Instagram is one of the simplest and most abused social media networks. You can buy followers though it is less easy than before and you can spam hashtags to get cheap auto-likes. I actually hardly post and I posted exactly one selfie in 2019. WeChat and my previous gyms was what got me posting selfies and back on the gram. If you really want to see my Top Nine here it is:

Do you even Tweet?

Yes I do, but mainly I like and leave snide comments. Twitter analytics keeps changing too. It seems to break things down into 28 day periods, but if I scroll back and take notes I can discover my most popular Tweet of 2019 or at least of the last six months. Not surprisingly it is related to U.S. politics, #MakeAmericaGreatAgain

Do you even Pin?

YouTube’s changes to their homepage may have gotten more press, but Pinterest has become unusable in my version of Safari and as mentioned above on my phone I am more likely to Tweet or veg out on the ‘Gram than use the Pinterest app. Pinterest has also changed their analytics. You can get a year’s worth of data, and yes my inability to Pin in the default browser as well as starting a new job and compulsively checking Twitter has definitely affected my popularity on Pinterest. I still managed over one million impressions, I think I benefit from being an early mover to this social media platform, but their algorithm like YouTube’s is definitely worse than it was.

Pinterest Impressions

In the last 90 days I can discover my most popular pin. I’m not sure I can embed it. Embedding pins has changed many times and the newest snazziest version of WordPress did not make it any easier at the end of last year, so we’ll see if things have improved in the last 12 months. I’m no longer running the latest WordPress because I need to upgrade PHP or get my webhost to upgrade PHP on the server, if possible.

Yes, if you use embed custom HTML you can embed a pin, definitely harder than embedding a Tweet or an image from Instagram. Pinterest and WordPress should really work on their integration.

What about Google?

Google got out of the social network game, though they still own YouTube which as alluded to above, made itself less useful in 2019 and I never post videos anyway. But Google Analytics is still the defecto standard but many people are more likely to obsess over Likes and other vanity metrics. There is a new way to integrate Google Analytics into WordPress, but I have not tried it. At some point I started tracking subdomains separately and honestly subdomains just make your life more complicated, so I don’t recommend them unless you have a lot of skill and time.

Google Analytics has a lot more data than most people need. You can look at the last calendar year and officially I got less than 10,000 visitors and my traffic seems to have gone off a cliff about Christmas time. Ever since I started following expert advice and despite spending 100s of hours to optimize my taxonomy I have just gotten less popular as the web has gotten bigger. There are just too many ways to waste time online and my rambling blog posts and old pictures can not compete. My most popular content I have not deleted is my web mashup codebase, which is years out of date…

My Google Analytics for 2019

Even more Analytics

Untappd was quick off the line with my year in beer. Hopefully I can find it again. I think I need to be a supporter or you need to be a member to see the interactive version, but I can download a summary image, so in 2020 I will try to drink less and exercise more and lose some weight.

Besides Untappd I still kinda use Tragically my vintage PowerMac can no longer completely connect to the iTunes Music Store so I bought an AppleTV which may not have a tracking app. That is right I let track me, because who knows I may write some PHP and update my webmashups in 2020, but in the meantime I can approximately see what I was listening to in the gym, or at home while painting. They too probably will give me more analytics if I give them money. Their website seems to also not get along with my vintage version of Safari.

I am approaching 100,000 lifetime scrobbles. My vinyl listening of course can not be tracked, but I prefer digital now, especially while painting or working out. It shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone who I am Facebook friends with, but by far my most listened to artist of 2019 was Murder By Death. But my top track, which I owe all to “Baby Driver”, is “Bellbottoms”. Let us see what I can find to embed on YouTube.

The takeaway from 2019, if you want to be more awesome add strings.

Finally on January 10th, Lastfm sent my year in music. I was not surprised to see how much my listening patterns corresponded to my studying for the CFA exam every year and then working a job with regular hours so I could get to the gym steadily. Also my return to miniature painting on Sundays resulted in that day being the day I listen to the most music.

Enter 2020

Some people are looking back over the entire last decade and their takeaways are pretty dire. Democracy seems to be dying or at least suffering around the world and greed particularly by Boomers seems to be destroying the planet. But no one reads my blog, and I doubt Trump or any other world leader is going to take action in 2020. I’m not terribly optimistic geo-politically in 2020. There could be war in the Middle East, the South China Sea, or even Eastern Europe. Governments could be overthrown either peacefully or not so peacefully and the never-ending bull market has to end someday. But selfishly I just want to no longer be a contract employee so I can make longer term plans.

There may have been another paragraph but it disappeared. This post was getting too depressing, and I want to try to be optimistic in 2020. I hope to go to the gym regularly, lose weight, and go on vacation. I might even go overseas, perhaps to the Philippines, but I’m in no hurry to take a long flight. Everything depends on my job. I’ll finally get a new laptop in 2020, that and a vacation will be my big expenditures. I also will probably order some special miniatures as I hope to stay motivated to paint near weekly. As a result my miniature painting blog, may get updated more regularly than this one. I just think it is safer to blog about hobbies rather than drinking beer and world politics.

If you have any predictions, plans or resolutions for 2020 you can leave them below. I want to wrap this post up and publish it before we lose power again in Deep Bay.

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