« on: September 09, 2009, 05:19:04 PM »
Well, I was curious about "how much" LSD's activity has declined over the years and when this decline started to occur. I noticed an interesting set of statistics - number of new topics created during a month/year. One would think that the number of topics started during a month should be a fairly good indicator of activity. After all, a constant number of active new users and old users should produce a rather constant number of new topics during a specific month (i.e. December 2007, December 2008). However, as the number of active new users declines, one should expect a decline in the number of new topics started since it seems that old stalwarts are more likely to respond in a thread rather than start a new one. I think by viewing new posts opposed to threads could be more idiosyncratic by representing a couple of new viral threads such as Exile. This is what those statistics demonstrate:
Month/Year: new topics/new members
July 2009: 424 / 381
July 2008: 1143 / 557
July 2007: 1389 / 541
July 2006: 1802 / 486
January 2009: 626 / 443
January 2008: 1683 / 541
January 2007: 2169 / 507
January 2006: 2921 / 589
I think that one can point to two things:
1) The number of new users has remained rather constant, however new topics have diminished possibly reflecting the fact that as TLS grew, new users were more likely to check out both websites and some - since TLS grew - decided to post over there.
2) However, the amount of new users signing has only begun to decrease this year. I think that one can infer that the problems related to the LSD homepage (big error messages) are signaling to people that this website is down or that there may be possible security issues - and thus one shouldn't submit their e-mail and personal information. That said, I think one can confidently conclude that people are less likely now to even test out LSD or to even lurk/browse before posting/registering.
Thoughts? Critiques? Alternative hypotheses?