Is the best post measured in the number of hits? Looking back over the last year Looting Matters receives on average 250-300 hits a day (excluding RSS feed viewing and email subscription). Yet some days there were 600-700 hits a day. (Note that due to other pressures it has not been possible to post on a daily basis.)
And what encourages 'hits'? It is clear that there are weeks when there are clusters of hits on a similar topic, e.g. 'The Getty kouros', and it looks as if there is a student essay deadline looming. Or LM can be used as a learning resource for research seminars.
There was a marked increase in visits when I was invited to collaborate with PR Newswire to write a blog post linked to a short press release.
Do blog posts lead to publications? LM is a research blog and ideas are worked into more formal printed publications. So for example, comments on the Princeton University Art Museum were turned into a longer essay. And ideas on the UK Portable Antiquities Scheme formed the basis of a forum piece for the Papers from the Institute of Archaeology.
Does LM have an impact? Commentary on "surfacing" antiquities have generated debate. One of the earliest, from the autumn of 2007, related to a piece of Lydian silver that was due to be offered at auction in London. The impact of LM on the proposed London sale of antiquities from an Australian "private collection" was also significant. LM's discussion of the Minneapolis krater drew attention to the unresolved nature of this piece.
Do I have a favourite? I suspect it is the case of advertising on London buses in the spring of 2009.
Do readers have a favourite LM post? Leave a comment and say why ...