Jennifer from Tropical Fruit has been blogging about this in several posts yesterday. After reading her posts and then the reference she made to my previous post on this subject (see this link) I feel the need to clarify where I stand on the issue.
I've never made it a secret that I track the visitors to my blog. I use SiteMeter as well as Google Analytics. It started out as being a way that I could see how many hits I was getting just for fun. Plain and simple, end of story. I wasn't concerned with where people were from, what links they were clicking on my blog, or what search queries they were performing. Then, that all changed with November of last year. Some of you know what happened, some of you read the comments and subsequent posts that were a direct result of what was going on in real life, and some of you are probably completely clueless as to what I'm referring. Don't bother searching, I deleted all of it. You can, however, read My Last Post which is the only surviving post from the "Incident", lol.
Okay. That's the background of it. Now on to the meat.
Lurkers are people who read blogs, message boards, newsgroups, etc., but never or rarely post a comment. They're just people who are reading for fun, for knowledge, for whatever reasons. It's harmless and I don't mind them in the least. Welcome LURKERS!!
Internet stalkers and/or trolls are a whole other ball of wax. These people read the afore mentioned online mediums in order to glean information about someone or something for nefarious purposes. In my case, my stalkers were trying to get dirt about my husband in regards to his job. They can say that they weren't, but the search queries that they performed on my blog are proof. Nuff said there. Trolls post nasty, horrible, bitchy comments for the sole purpose of stirring up dirt, telling lies, and just plain being a nuisance.
I get anywhere from 1 to 6 hits a day (sometimes more, never less, lol) from Marion, OH. I know for sure that one of those hits is a certain person. The rest, I'm not so sure. They're all from my family though and it makes no difference to me that they don't comment. Whatever floats your boat. I'm not entirely sure how many individual, unique readers I have on a regular basis. I've gotten past the point of needing to know. I'm careful about what I say and am 100% aware of every word that I type. If it seems too personal, I meant for it to and if I seem too evasive or dramatic, I meant for that to come through as well. Basically, I'm saying that I don't care about the lurkers or stalkers that I have because there isn't anything on my blog that I'm afraid for them to see. Read away! However, I will admit that it stirs my curiosity a bit. Sometimes I have to hold back the urge to post, "Who are you??" when I get hits from interesting places. But, as you well know, I've never given in to the urge.
I hope I've been clear here. And I hope that I don't scare anyone away by letting them know they're being "watched" by my trackers. But it's not as if I get any personal information like names, addresses, bra size or anything like that. I posted links to the websites so that anyone can check out for themselves what they're all about.
One last thing, all definitions and opinions posted here are of my own creation. I didn't look up the official definition of lurkers, trolls, or stalkers. I based it all on my own experiences.
There. Happy reading.