Over the past several years, at least since we started placing a strong focus on the discussion board of ATS way back in 2003 with the acquisition of
our first dedicated server, there have been several "defining moments," most have been good, one or two perhaps not so good. But March of 2011 has
seen an extremely significant "defining moment"
for our domain and our members, one that has the potential to redefine the meaning of "ATS" as
As the graphic below shows, we received some incredibly significant traffic over the past ten days, most of which is directly related to topics
dealing with the horrific events in Japan. On it's own, double our normal daily traffic is a rather significant event, but... something totally
unexpected and highly serendipitous happened, two people from my "distant" past sought me out.
One was a former client from my advertising days who now works in the marketing department at a major news and information publishing company. She
related that people in her department (and down the hall in the "research" division) were following the events in Japan on this non-traditional
looking website. She finally asked someone what they were reading, they said, Above Top Secret,
and she immediately thought, "Isn't that Bill's
site?" When I was leaving the world of advertising, she thought I was crazy, and even tried somewhat hard to change my mind. But when the people in
the research department said, "This site is faster and more reliable than anything else we've seen regarding what's happening in Japan," she now
admits I made the right choice.
Sure enough, this big news and information publisher shows just over 4,000 visits to ATS in our Google Analytics reports in the past ten days. Other
big visitors in the media business during the past ten days are:
Fox News --- 3,787 visits
New York Times --- 2,814 visits
Newsweek --- 2,203 visits
Associated Press --- 2,016 visits
NewsCorp --- 2,004 visits
(among many others)
She had become friends with former executive of my old ad agency employer, who is now at a medium-sized independent agency in LA, and let him know
what she found out. It turned out people in his office were also on ATS, getting reliable non-mainstream information on the likelihood of radiation
fallout in California. He had forgotten that ATS is where I went after detoxing myself from the ad world, and was floored. I just spoke with him, and
his IT guy is a member and very impressed with our site performance with all the high traffic.
When I spoke with both people on the phone, their gushing praise was directed toward our members. They were stunned by the quality and quantity of
information you provided, as well as the incredible collaboration going on in cross-checking and verifying just about everything that was posted. They
also both went out of their way to give a glowing review of the civility of the conversation happening here, "unlike anything anywhere else," is
essentially their exact words.
I have to agree.
I've never been more proud of our members, or more astonished at what you can do when you collaborate. The high post-frequency threads on events in
Japan were simply amazing. You were analyzing important aspects of the events in Japan long before such topics entered the thought-process of
mainstream media. The running threads became a superlative cooperative exchange that showed incredible research, expertise, compassion, concern, and
cogent speculation on every one of hundreds of pages.
And the rest of the Internet seems to agree. During the peak of the activity, Quantcast reported our daily global traffic as exceeding that of
ABCnews.com and CBSnews.com. (And our 30-day average traffic still exceeds ABCnews.com)
The traffic spike illustrated below speaks volumes about what you were posting during this stressful time.
Normally, a very-good day (as shown on Monday, March 7) is around 200,000 total visits and close to 150,000 unique visitors (some people have more
than one session per day via different computers). During the peak, on March 15th, we saw an amazing 347,126 visits and 259,220 unique visitors. And
even our typically slow Saturdays were seeing stunning traffic.
The horror in north-east Japan is beyond the imagination of most of us. Combining the events in Japan with an already stressful world environment,
people are searching for more information that what is being fed to them by the mainstream. And there has never been a more clear indication that you,
our members of ATS, are now on the front-line of playing a major role in filling the gaps left by the mainstream.
This is your defining moment.
Well done my friends. Very well done.
edit on 21-3-2011 by SkepticOverlord because: (no reason given)