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Creek Running North
January 23, 2006
In the eleven hour-period that just elapsed, spammers attempted to make 4,400 trackback pings to entries on this blog for which trackbacks had been closed.
It's at the point where there is so much useless traffic for every actual reader that much of what's eating up the disk space I pay for is log files.
Another pair of statistics: 400 distinct IP addresses have downloaded the Irascible Gardener e-book. 370 of them did so without paying anything at all. Considering people could buy it for a dollar if they really wanted to, this is a little disheartening. I may have to rethink my strategy here.
Posted by Chris Clarke at January 23, 2006 07:52 AM
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c'mon folks, pay up! real horticultural info delivered literately and at times humorously. real stories. a bargain. a steal. oops, not a good description.
chris--i got an email confirmation of my pmt. and it showed up on my credit card statement. hope you got it.Posted by: dread pirate roberts at January 23, 2006 08:19 AM
You might have to resort to the old-fashioned method : you print it and after snail mail payment, ship it snail mail.Posted by: Rita Xavier at January 23, 2006 08:39 AM
That, to be trite about it, sucks.
C'mon, freeloaders, cough up!
Posted by: Rana at January 23, 2006 09:26 AM
Um, wait. I think I still owe you $1 for the dog battle. I'll get it in the mail this week.
DPR: Thanks. I get a summary of payments through Amazon, and if people check the "send notification" option when paying I get an email letting me know who they are.
Mom: That'd cost more than I'd make.Posted by: Chris Clarke at January 23, 2006 09:56 AM
Hi Chris - It's been a while since I commented, but I had to respond to this. I'm sure the free-loaders are not your loyal readers, but usurpers that are somehow related to the troll underworld that is spamming you into oblivion... However, we locals implore you not to let the terrorists win... I'm guessing your association with that noted evilutionist guru PZ might have something to do with it? If so, more power to you! I've kicked in a few more ducats, to cover the likelihood that I will share your book with friends, as I generally do with the paper variety. You may recall that I was one of those who was awarded a copy for an earlier contribution to the cause, so I assume that my download was counted among the legitimate few. Thanks for your generosity in sharing your writing with us. Also, I just purchased a copy of the Winter issue of Earth Island Journal that has your Mojave article, and I like the magazine - I hadn't looked at the publication for a long time. Because of that, and as I was in on the inception of the Institute (as a member of Dave Brower's Stanford class where he got the ball rolling), I think I'll become a subscriber/member - it will help maintain my subversive status here at the Forest Service. Keep up the good work - and do get back to hiking. I've been about as lax as you on that front, although I did get in some nice desert strolls, with some fascinating geology, during my holiday sojourn to Saline Valley. It's been a number of years since I counted my year's vertical feet in the multiple tens of thousands - getting back to that would be a nice goal. Have a blast in the Mojave, and I hope you find a measure of renewal/insight/inspiration there. Cheers, FredPosted by: Fred Levitan at January 23, 2006 10:15 AM
that's really discouraging. both things -- we all hate spam, but i had no idea blogs could be hit so hard.
dpr and rana said it -- this is a great book, and its readers should pay for value given! probably most of you are careful about tipping enough, even, and you wouldn't think of getting gasoline or meals by taking and running. lovely writing is another requirement of life.
i paid for my copy, and for copies for 4 friends. if you haven't gotten around to sending chris his due, now's a good time.Posted by: kathy a at January 23, 2006 10:28 AM
i am one of those freeloaders and i am a regular reader, too. gulp. on the other hand, i have decided that chris can spank me for my evilness until he is satisfied.
but i haven't read it yet, either.Posted by: GrrlScientist at January 23, 2006 11:50 AM
Grrlscientist, I fully expect that there will be people who really want to read it and who, like yourself, honestly can't afford even a token payment. I'm not begrudging my broke friends their copies.
I'm just thinking that category doesn't account for 92 percent of people downloading the thing, is all.Posted by: Chris Clarke at January 23, 2006 12:22 PM
i was hoping for a spanking.Posted by: GrrlScientist at January 23, 2006 02:36 PM
well, sorta. i actually don't like violence. but it sounded naughty, so i said it because i am trying to maintain my "99% evil" rating.
Posted by: GrrlScientist at January 23, 2006 02:37 PM
i was hoping for a spanking.
Ah, the life of a writer.Posted by: Chris Clarke at January 23, 2006 03:32 PM
You may recall that I was one of those who was awarded a copy for an earlier contribution to the cause, so I assume that my download was counted among the legitimate few.
It sure was, Fred, and there was a bit of fudge factor added in case I'd forgotten someone.
And tallying vertical distance hiked? Man, I'm gonna have to do that. Can I count downhill too?Posted by: Chris Clarke at January 23, 2006 03:36 PM
I have to offer a mea culpa on the IG download. I downloaded it, skimmed a few pages, thought it was (a) great, and (b) something I would never ever find the time to read given the backlog of professionally & politically necessary books I have to read + the backlog of the same I haven't bought yet. So, I deleted the file.
FWIW, I treated the download as a pay-on-honor system, and had I not deleted the file, I would have paid for it.
I apologize for the bandwith usage.Posted by: paperwight at January 23, 2006 04:20 PM
Sorry, Chris, it's total elevation gain to count... although, on some hikes, like Ventana Double Cone from Bottcher's Gap (Ventana Wilderness, Big Sur, circumnavigates the headwaters of the Little Sur River, a must-do), the amount of up-and-down makes the total vertical gained tough to figure out - my estimate was something like 7,000 feet gross for a 3,000 foot net gain in 30 miles round-trip - which I was insane enough to do in a day once - boy did my feet hurt at the end...Posted by: Fred Levitan at January 23, 2006 04:31 PM
Lemme get this straight, Fred. You're telling me that if I hike from Glacier Point to the top of El Capitan via the Ahwahnee Hotel, I only get to count it as +369'?
I Don't Think So.
paperwight: no mea culpa necessary. I figured there'd be a number of those.Posted by: Chris Clarke at January 23, 2006 04:39 PM
I am one of the distinct IPs :( . But it was unintentional! Because of not reading properly, for some reason I assumed the link went to a download page, where there were maybe a few sample paragraphs or chapters or something (which actually might be a better idea). I was appalled when it started actually downloading the book.
I didn't read it though, and it wasn't saved on my harddrive or anything, so I didn't feel quite as guilty as I would have. I would like to buy the book eventually (do you have a PO Box address?), just because of your writing (I'm the sort that kills even plastic plants, so it wouldn't be to get horticultural advice) but wasn't planning on buying it just yet.Posted by: Nanette at January 23, 2006 06:56 PM
I would imagine that NPR has the same problem. Maybe a pledge drive? :)Posted by: Rurality at January 23, 2006 07:56 PM
Oh, Chris, nobody's gonna pay if you give it up for free.
I like Nanette's idea. You have to tease them, make 'em want it bad, and THEN they'll pay for it.Posted by: nina at January 23, 2006 08:55 PM
I just downloaded it (and added an extra $1 for the dog battle).
If the poison oak chapter is anything to go by, I've just made an incredibly worthwhile purchase. (I love the bit about getting the "jizz" of poison oak; I've long found it odd that I can easily identify this variable plant far more than its ivy cousin. I guess growing up in the West with a highly allergic sibling will do that for you.)Posted by: Rana at January 24, 2006 08:32 AM
btw, the URL that shows up when you've gone through the Amazon system doesn't work - I had to go back to the original page to make the download happen.Posted by: Rana at January 24, 2006 08:33 AM
That's weird. It's the exact same address.Posted by: Chris Clarke at January 24, 2006 09:03 AM
Oh, I just figured it out. Never mind.Posted by: Chris Clarke at January 24, 2006 09:04 AM
chris, you got my $$? I got an auto reply from you from amazon.
If you got an auto reply, I got the $. I don't get personal notification unless you click the little box telling them to let me know, but I can get a list of "deposits" with no identifying info.Posted by: Chris Clarke at January 24, 2006 03:16 PM
(and thanks! to all of you!)Posted by: Chris Clarke at January 24, 2006 03:17 PM
Chris - Sorry if I misled you with less-than-clear prose - I've been doing too much NEPA writing, which is the opposite of clear exposition, no matter how hard we try... ALL THE VERTICAL COUNTS - just not the downhill - if you out-and-back rather than loop-hike, you get to count it all - so yeah, to paraphrase your example, Grand Canyon South Rim-to-North Rim gets you 6,000 feet, not just 1,100, and if you hike back, you get 11,000 total (not that I've done that...yet).Posted by: Fred Levitan at January 24, 2006 04:38 PM