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Reader Poll 2016
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I have been thinking about how to optimize my blogging and I would like to ask for your input with the following one page survey:

http://darussophile.polldaddy.com/s/june-2016-akarlin-reader-survey

In particular, I would like to hear from you on the following questions:

  1. What should I write more about?
  2. What should I write less about?
  3. What sorts of posts do you prefer (longer, shorter)?
  4. Do you want more reviews?
  5. Do you want me to resume open threads? (which I promised and then slowly discontinued)
  6. Your assessment of the quality of the posts, the comments, and the website.
  7. Do you follow me on social media?

Preliminary Thoughts

I don’t thrive on making short posts like Steve Sailer. You need a predictable schedule and a regular work ethic for that and I don’t really possess either. Also, the three “slots” I have on the Unz.com front page aren’t ideal for more frequent shorter posts. Moreover, one can make a more general point that it is the longer, more indepth material that tends to get noted and cited in the longterm. I am as big a fan of Sailer as anyone here, but in terms of name recognition, the father of HBD lags Nicholas Wade, Charles Murray, and probably even Greg Cochran and Henry Harpending, all of whom have published best-selling books on closely related topics. While progress on my own book has been nothing to write home about, I am seriously considering at least making a habit of writing longer, more indepth articles.

In general I think in the grand hierarchy social media < short posts < longreads < books. This is why the emergence of Twitter, Facebook, etc. are so overestimated. They amplify short-term noise, but in the overall scheme of things they contribute nothing to global progress and understanding (indeed by rewiring so many brains from deep analytical mode to dopamine-fueled reaction mode they might even have retarded it). Besides, both platforms are fast sinking into politicized censorship. Personally, for the past several years, I have mostly used social media just to advertise my own blog posts. But maybe I should put my money where my mouth is and put them into archive mode entirely except for the occasional big announcement. But first I want to find out exactly what percentage of readers here follow me on my social media accounts.

I am also considering introducing more stringent moderation. I am one of the few authors on this website who doesn’t premoderate, and my general comments policy is extremely lax. Perhaps too much so, since it seems to me that more and more commentators have been taking it as a licence to troll, spam, shitpost, and otherwise pursue their particular obsessions even when the post topic has nothing to do with them. This normally wouldn’t matter on modern commenting platforms such as Disqus, where these SIFs (Single Issue Fanatics) are typically downvoted into oblivion, but there is no such mechanism on linear commenting systems. So from now on I am considering becoming much more proactive about redacting stupid and off topic posts, and if necessary, banning repeat offenders. Then again, if most people are satisfied with the way things are, I will refrain from fixing something that isn’t broken. You tell me!

 
• Category: Miscellaneous • Tags: Administration, Opinion Poll 
23 Comments to "Reader Poll 2016"
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  1. Write about FSU and Russia. There is never enough of that. Write less about futurism, or keep that material separate elsewhere. Shorter is better for a blog.

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  2. I hardly ever comment so it doesn’t matter but I enjoy the anarchy of unmoderated comments. This place doesn’t need to become /pol/ but I always enjoy your comments much more than, say, Jayman’s.

    Do more Russia stuff, ya. I think you are strongest in that area…or at least I enjoy those the most.

    Do you have much interest in Russians in America? I always think its weird how much bigotry I notice towards them that you wouldn’t expect aimed at any other “minority” group. One of my coworkers went off on a rant recently about how much she hates Russians here in Oregon. She’s a total Goodwhite, so I couldn’t help but think she’d never say the same about, say, Somalis or Mexicans or something

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  3. I think your blog is generally fine, I enjoy reading it, and I agree you shouldn’t follow Sailer’s model of many fairly short posts. Open threads would be nice if they aren’t too much work for you. As to moderation policy, maybe you should become a little stricter…I’m not pc but some things (e.g. thread derailing by obsessive Holocaust deniers) are annoying and detract from comments sections that otherwise are fairly interesting.

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  4. Cagey Beast says: • Website

    I’m interested in the Russian stuff. I’m especially curious about the period after Stalin and before the stagnation that led to Gorbachev. I’m also curious about how the Jews in the Soviet Union went from riding high to being Refuseniks.

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  5. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    Brevity. Sometimes I’m overwhelmed by the amount of information and attention required in the long posts. Sailer will run with just one nugget and sometimes not even have commentary. Having just 3 slots is not a problem because I would guess Unz.com followers stop in several times per day– probably because Sailer posts new stuff all the time.

    The first reply mentioned Russia and futurism. Yes to both of these. I would like to suggest discussion of possible scenarios on how things might play out, how the average day-in-the-life will look, in 10 to 20 years. Pat Buchanan is the only I can think of who does this. Maybe discuss different stuff, like the possibility of whites from the West immigrating to Russia in the future. Talk show host Michael Savage (Michael Weiner) off-handedly mentioned that if things get any worse in the U.S. And West he doesn’t know where he can flee to and might have to return to Russia, from where his grandfather fled. This is the first time I heard someone (especially a New York Jew)mentioning white flight to Russia.

    Write about surf that affects people immediately. Sailer gets the most responses on stuff every one of us encounters each day and are not free to voice some un-PC opinions.

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  6. iffen says:

    I like your articles on Russia and Eastern Europe, you seem to be reliable and trustworthy, hopefully that turns out to be true.

    I would like for you to explore the intersection of racism, nationalism and fascism. I don’t see a lot of positive nationalism that does not degenerate into fascism and/or anti-Semitism or HBD race realism that does not degenerate into obnoxious racism. I may be stupid or myopic, but I don’t see why there can’t be a political faction at the grassroots and academic levels that is normal nationalist, cognizant of HBD, liberal democratic and pragmatic that leaves the clueless libertarians, the WNs, the anti-Semites, the misogynists and all of the prefixional conservatives on the sidelines.

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  7. More on Russia and its near abroad – economic and social developments and history. Stuff that isn’t well reported in the Anglo MSM and not from a party line Putinist perspective.

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  8. Mitleser says:

    I hope for another new article about demography in the post-Soviet space.

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  9. Marcus says:

    More about the culture and society of modern Russia and the impact of political censorship, economic fluctuations, immigration, etc.

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  10. International comparison of grip strength is an interesting subject!
    Also posts dealing with PISA data are interesting.
    The military strength index stuff is also very good.
    Actually all kinds of rankings are interesting.

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    • Replies: @Mitleser

    Actually all kinds of rankings are interesting.
     
    Seconded.
  11. Glossy says: • Website

    I would encourage you to work on the book. And as you do more research for it, you could post about it here, as you’ve done already to some extent.

    A large share of famous novels were published in installments in magazines. Many academic books sum up the authors’ articles in academic journals. People need an occasional quick reaction and gratification to continue. I think it’s rare for someone to work in the darkness for x years for a single payoff in the end – few people’s personalities are made for that. I know mine isn’t.

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  12. Mitleser says:
    @Erik Sieven
    International comparison of grip strength is an interesting subject!
    Also posts dealing with PISA data are interesting.
    The military strength index stuff is also very good.
    Actually all kinds of rankings are interesting.

    Actually all kinds of rankings are interesting.

    Seconded.

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  13. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    lol, this is kinda the problem with journalism, isn’t it.

    How about, like, having a spine and writing about what you’re passionate about and find deeply important? But I guess that would earn you less money, might cost you popularity, and would be un-American.

    Its hilarious that you can be so open about what you’re doing lol

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  14. Yevardian says:

    I would like to see more cultural reviews, and especially in-depth writing on environmental and social collapse as you used to focus on, and far less /pol/-tier posts and regular news updates, which are covered elsewhere on the site. Also less Trump. I hate to say it, but he’s increasingly looking like a meme-candidate and I’m tired of 24/7 election coverage.

    As for comments, all that’s really necessary is too delete single-sentence comments, ban Rehmat and other people who try and turn every thread into “the joos”!

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  15. Eee says:

    I don’t have a problem with you covering futurism. I, too, first became interested in your posts due to your posts about Russia, but I like it that you cover those other topics as well, especially as I’ve become convinced that they really ARE potentially very important. And it’s interesting to see you apply some of those topics to Russia as well – I’d say you’re the only person I’ve seen do that.

    There are a number of good commentators about Russia these days, but nobody except you has that particular combination of knowledge to approach it from those angles. (likewise, Saker’s the specialist I read for things about Russia and the more obscure philosophies of Eastern Orthodox religion)

    I also second hgregory: write what you’re passionate about, and the enthusiasm will probably carry over to the readers.

    And I prefer the longer/more-worked-on posts myself. They feel more worthy of my time.

    What is the futurists’ reply to the views of The Archdruid Report? I’ve been curious about that…

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  16. Ivy says:

    In addition to Russia stories, Ukraine and neighboring country observations help your US readers with more context on the political turmoil.

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  17. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    I enjoy your articles combining two of your strengths together: Analysis of geopolitics that takes into account differences in IQ between countries.

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  18. Blitzstat says:

    I’m a long time reader, since at least the SublimeOblivion days. I’d say Russia/geopolitics are my favourite topics. Futurism is cool, but I wouldn’t miss it if you stopped writing about it.

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  19. JL says:

    Firstly, as a long time follower, I’d like to thank you for introducing me to the Unz review, which has now become one of my favorite English language websites. I appreciate the diversity of the contributors, not to mention the intelligent and insightful comments. Rhemat-style freaks do get rather annoying, but one learns to just skip over them.

    I’d echo other sentiments here that you should write about whatever suits your fancy. Indeed, you have a flair in writing style that can generate interest in topics that might otherwise seem obscure or boring (with the possible exception of gaming, but that’s just me). I personally don’t care whether a post is short or long, although I tend to think the more the better. Yes on the open threads, yes I follow you on social media. It would be nice to see posts more often and more regularly, though I understand why your potential here is limited.

    As someone who spends only a couple of weeks a year in the States, I really appreciate your use of the vernacular. I’m not sure where else I could learn terms such as “neck beard” and “shit lord”. Let’s see, what else? Oh, yeah, I quite liked it when you came into the comments section and called someone a cucked faggot. You should do that type of thing more often.

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    • Replies: @Eee
    @JL: "I quite liked it when you came into the comments section and called someone a cucked faggot"

    Really? That's exactly the kind of thing that makes me reluctant to share some articles. It provides an easy mental excuse for people to put the writer into the category of people who are not worth consideration. Besides, when I see someone resorting to flaming and personal insults, I tend to interpret it as an admission that they've lost the argument.
  20. Eee says:
    @JL
    Firstly, as a long time follower, I'd like to thank you for introducing me to the Unz review, which has now become one of my favorite English language websites. I appreciate the diversity of the contributors, not to mention the intelligent and insightful comments. Rhemat-style freaks do get rather annoying, but one learns to just skip over them.

    I'd echo other sentiments here that you should write about whatever suits your fancy. Indeed, you have a flair in writing style that can generate interest in topics that might otherwise seem obscure or boring (with the possible exception of gaming, but that's just me). I personally don't care whether a post is short or long, although I tend to think the more the better. Yes on the open threads, yes I follow you on social media. It would be nice to see posts more often and more regularly, though I understand why your potential here is limited.

    As someone who spends only a couple of weeks a year in the States, I really appreciate your use of the vernacular. I'm not sure where else I could learn terms such as "neck beard" and "shit lord". Let's see, what else? Oh, yeah, I quite liked it when you came into the comments section and called someone a cucked faggot. You should do that type of thing more often.

    : “I quite liked it when you came into the comments section and called someone a cucked faggot”

    Really? That’s exactly the kind of thing that makes me reluctant to share some articles. It provides an easy mental excuse for people to put the writer into the category of people who are not worth consideration. Besides, when I see someone resorting to flaming and personal insults, I tend to interpret it as an admission that they’ve lost the argument.

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    • Replies: @JL
    @Eee

    No, not really, my comment was rather tongue-in-cheek about an incident where AK very uncharacteristically lost his cool. It's difficult to describe out of context, and there's no way I can find it now, but his words seemed appropriate at the time.
  21. JL says:
    @Eee
    @JL: "I quite liked it when you came into the comments section and called someone a cucked faggot"

    Really? That's exactly the kind of thing that makes me reluctant to share some articles. It provides an easy mental excuse for people to put the writer into the category of people who are not worth consideration. Besides, when I see someone resorting to flaming and personal insults, I tend to interpret it as an admission that they've lost the argument.

    No, not really, my comment was rather tongue-in-cheek about an incident where AK very uncharacteristically lost his cool. It’s difficult to describe out of context, and there’s no way I can find it now, but his words seemed appropriate at the time.

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  22. Anatoly, hope to see you here, whatever the social media situation. I use the Facebook for 5 minutes/week to look up what my kid and a couple of friends are up to, but it’s basically retarded, the entire thing. Twitter, not at all. Twitter and the rest of those are beyond retarded and you are correct, they are making us less than we could be, smarts-wise.

    May we continue to see your work (especially on Russia, who ARE our friends) at this particular salt mine. Kudos, salute, all that.

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