So I was in the Scoring Room today and discovered that one of the juniors on campus who reads this blog felt very duped when I posted clickbait titles or something of the sort on twitter, or even marketed the fact that I had uploaded something new – but in reality, wrote only 10-15 words. I chuckled quite hard when I found out, for a variety of reasons. First, it felt good to know that I had become someone who had the ability to dupe people: albeit at a very small scale, and all the while being behind a computer. (As I typed this, I daydreamed a court scene where I was charged for fraud and the prosecutor attempted to use my previous sentence as evidence against me – so I’d like to make it unambiguously clear, this is humour.)
Second, I laughed because it was heartening to see that people stuck with this blog – from it’s very inception, I’ve seen that a few people read and talk to me about what I post. Considering that a majority of my viewership comes from my family, I don’t pay much attention to the stats for this blog. It’s just a thing I do. But to know someone is consistently reading is a delight: even though I might be duping them.
Third, it’s funny that people actually click on clickbait. It’s weird, but I’m wondering how people get attracted toward something that looks like a click-baity title. I’m a victim of the same process, and I find myself reading articles with catchy headings but with mediocre content. While I know that’s a skill, and several people do earn money for helping with marketing and clickbait, the science/psychoanalysis behind it amazes me. SSRN has a great collection of papers that are worth reading on this topic, so if you’re interested, you’ve got a starting point.
But to the junior and the people who I have duped by writing 10 words and making you click on a post to read 10 words. I shall write more, I promise. And if I dupe you in the future successfully, please accept a thousand apologies.