So how is this list compiled? At the end of each month I take a screenshot of the most popular articles according to my website analytics. This shows the unique views, or how many times the article was clicked on by one person, not some dumbass clicking on the same article over and over again (at least that’s the idea).
Without further ado, here they are:
#10 Front Lines
On November 13 I attended a Missoula Democrats meeting and a lot of people weren’t happy, for a variety of reasons. I wrote about it in Thoughts from the 2014 Montana Election Front Lines. Democrats are frustrated still, nearly two months after this meeting, and I feel that much of what I wrote about in this piece hasn’t been addressed. Since around 400 to 500 people viewed this article, I think that’s an issue.
#9 Passion Plea
I was very proud of A Serious Lack of Passion in Montana Democratic Politics. Like most articles, this one was off the cuff and spur of the moment and a reaction against a newspaper article, social media encounters, or just something I heard on the radio or watched on the evening news. Mainly, though, it comes from thinking about political issues on a constant basis and formulating opinions about them. I was happy this article got 250 views or so since December 3.
One article that was put together hastily in the melee that early-December excitement was Does Debby Barrett Have Any Sense? I like the piece, it’s funny, and it stopped that damn office from being moved. Oh, I’m sure some other newspaper pieces had an effect as well, but we all know they were about twenty times more boring (it’s alright – you can admit it, and with about 250 views in less than a month, I think it’s true).
#7 Two Legislators
Two interesting Legislators Serving in Helena proved to be quite a popular article. Lots of people were most likely outraged by the waste of money our State Department used to send these folks to Australia. I wish the government would give me a holiday, even one with some work involved. I was surprised this article got about 250 views, since it only went up on December 1. And remember, most of these articles are started and finished within an hour. But you probably knew that already, didn’t you?
Medical Marijuana in Montana: Facts and Figures was a post that did good each and every month after I put it up. I don’t really keep track of the stats if they’re below 300 to 400 hits, as they don’t show up on my radar as much. This post continually ranked in the Top 5 political articles each month, and one month 35 people got to this website by typing in “price of pot in Montana.” Anyways, it’s got some good info on what will be a booming legal business in a few years (it’s booming illegally now).
#5 Forward Montana
Amanda Curtis at Forward Montana’s Ten-Year Anniversary was a huge article that got about 400 views in just a few days (why didn’t I bring my camera)! I really should get an iPhone just for photos, if nothing more than to show the great dress she had on that day. It was a fun time, and this article got thousands of views in August and September before falling off.
I always like staying up and seeing election news come in, and this year I threw it up on my blog as it happened. Montana Election Reporting: 2014 Montana Election Results was a long post. It was a long night with a few surprises and I was happy to see this article getting up to 300 hits nearly 2 months after the fact.
#3 The Billboard
I always drive into Helena and see that damn billboard mocking Jon Tester, so one morning at my mom’s house I started writing about it, drove up and snapped some photos, and then drove back and finished the article. Bam, 2 hours of work, and Who Benefits from the Jon Tester Billboard West of Helena had gotten viewed at least 728 times since November 16. Maybe that’s a waste of time to some people, but I still think that billboard is a bad omen.
#2 Those Shady Mailers
On October 23 I put up Who Sent the Shady Montana Political Mailers and it got a lot of views very quickly. By the end of December it’d gotten up to 937 views, as far as I can tell, which makes it one of my more popular articles for the year. Of course at this point, it’s not worth much of anything, there’s no reshare value in it on social media, and it’s just a footnote to history. That’s why I’m disappointed my more factual articles dealing with consistent problems aren’t viewed as often.
Who is Montana’s Amanda Curtis was the most popular political article on this site for months, and it’s gotten 1,038 views since appearing on August 8…although not much since November. Actually, that’s not quite true – it still gets a steady stream of curious people. Like MT Cowgirl says in their yearly recap post, many people are excited by Curtis and she has a bright future in Montana politics. Don’t think for a second that Republicans aren’t waiting in the wings to muck it up.