Lessons from the Most Talked About Topics of 2006

If you’ll look over in the right sidebar, you’ll see that I keep a running list of the most talked about posts on this site. This list ranks all of the posts that I’ve ever written by the number of comments that they’ve received — the current (and forevermore?) leader is: Dave Ramsey is Bad at Math. Since 2006 is now winding down, I thought it would be interesting to look back over just the past year and see where the action has been, so… Without further ado, I’m pleased to present the ten most talked about posts from 2006:

10. Carnival of Personal Finance #44
9. The World’s Most Affordable Alarm System
8. Money Poll #8: Tax Refunds
7. Money Poll #2: Coupons
6. Solving Customer Service Problems
5. Dish Network Customer Service SUCKS
4. Worst. Job. Ever.
3. Life’s Too Short to Drink Cheap Beer
2. Money Poll #3: Credit Cards
1. New Emigrant Direct Website, Access Code

A few comments on what can be learned from all of this…

First off, blog carnivals are big targets for trackback links. The fact that those are all lumped in with regular comments is what pushed #10 (Carnival of Personal Finance #44) onto the list.

Second, I introduced the Money Polls earlier this year in an attempt to spur interaction, and it seemed to have worked — three of the top ten posts are money polls and, aside from all the comments, there were a ton of votes registered for each. While I started out by doing a weekly poll, they since become far more irregular. I do, however, have a Money Poll about online Christmas shopping running right now.

Memes (or Group Writing Projects) can be an effective way of stimulating interaction, as is evidenced by #4 (Worst. Job. Ever.)

Finally, people like to talk about what’s troubling them… The #1 slot (New Emigrant Direct Website, Access Code) went to a post about an online savings bank (Emigrant Direct) that was changing it’s interface and upgrading it’s security… As anyone that has an Emigrant Direct account knows, this didn’t go well at all. The bank was effectively offline for the better part of a week, and the natives were getting restless. For whatever reason, a substantial number of people found their way here and used that post as a place to vent.

Similarly, the #5 slot went to my rant about receiving poor customer service from Dish Network, and an awful lot of people have chimed in to share their similarly negative experiences.

So there you have it… The FiveCentNickel most talked about topics of 2006.

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