Saturday, July 30, 2005

Blogging tech, etc.

I realized that I have to keep making this blog user friendly. Hence the list of posts on Alaska Report instead of the entire last post then the next to the last. That in itself, increased viewing time by about a minute and a half in the last week. (The software measures average views to the second. so it changes by the hour.) Viewing time, too, has increased, from a minute 27 seconds on about the 8th of July to 4:31 today.

The traffic prediction feature has thousands of you viewers coming to my blog in the next month. And for that I thank you. Although I'm doing it for you in the hopes that it helps you do better what you are doing: keep from making other people's mistakes again, navigate around the reefs, and in general try help make seafood development a little more like running up Chatham Straits than running up Wrangell Narrows.

I've been more than pleased at your response to this blog and in return will endeavour to make it easier to use, nicer to look at, and more to the point all the time. This didn't start out to be what it's becoming, but there seems to be a need for this kind of commentary. A lot of folks in the industry now don't have the benefit ofseeing the last fifty years of goings on the the industry from a front row seat.

A lot of good news items that are vital to the industry seem to be a flash in the pan and then you don't hear about them again for way too long. A lot of folks miss the choice items when they come out in the news or they don't make the news at all. I'll keep up the refrain on some of these that have the most potential to change things for the better.

Watching "Up Close and Personal" with Robert Redford and Michelle Pfieffer last night reminded me that it's not about the reporter, but about the story. The story deserves to be told straight: no spins and no errors, including errors of omission. And analyzing the correlations that news reporters, without the benefit of industry experience, miss.

Take for example the business of Alaska Commissioner of Commerce Blatchford taking another state job because he engaged in too many improprieties as Commissioner. Numerous people were quoted as for and against his being hired to run the Seattle office for ASMI. But notice who was incensed and who was complacent. The private sector vs the government sector. The issue is what makes state government think they canbe more effective in seafood marketing than the industry itself.

Government employees aren't accountable enough to satisfy the needs of industry. They also are more political, which is the anti-thesis of free enterprise. And free-enterprise is the pond the industry swims in. Thank goodness the industry has seafood development associations coming on line to pick up the ball that the state has dropped.

But back to blogging. Last week when I was blogging on cold storages, the time zones in Alaska finally caught up with the West Coast in readership. It'll be a challenge to keep the Alaskans interested. I think that I'll catch up on miscellaneous things on the weekends and keep the heavy stuff for the weekdays when readership is up.

And you can always download Opera, get a good wireless headset and listen to my blog while walking around doing other things, provided your computer has a wireless chip in it. That can be easily accomplished if you don't. My archives are filling up fast at the rate I'm writing so you might want to consider this. And if I had sales people running around, I'd have them read this blog to get a rounded education.

As a final note, I don't know how the dungie fishermen are doing in Alaska, but it was a record year down here. It'll be interesting to see how the numbers compare at the end of the seasons. The thing is, fishermen just have to go out when the season opens and give it what for, no matter what the projections are. It's for other folks to deal with the surplus or shortage of product. I've heard it said that the Willamette Valley in Oregon is the best "next year" place to farm. The point? There's no giving up on what you gotta do.


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