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BS: How Many Mudcatters?

Ian Kirk (inactive) 17 Jan 99 - 11:19 AM
Roger in Baltimore 17 Jan 99 - 12:58 PM
Bill D 17 Jan 99 - 04:20 PM
Roger in Baltimore 17 Jan 99 - 04:51 PM
Bill D 17 Jan 99 - 11:48 PM
Joe Offer 19 Jan 99 - 02:59 PM
marlor, Canada 19 Jan 99 - 03:22 PM
Susan of DT 19 Jan 99 - 07:21 PM
Roger in Baltimore 19 Jan 99 - 09:20 PM
MudGuard 26 Jan 99 - 05:52 AM
McMusic 27 Jan 99 - 01:15 AM
Susan of DT 09 Feb 99 - 07:41 PM
Barbara 09 Feb 99 - 08:20 PM
Frank McGrath 09 Feb 99 - 08:52 PM
Alice 09 Feb 99 - 08:59 PM
Peter T. 15 Dec 99 - 04:11 PM
Bruce O. 15 Dec 99 - 11:43 PM
Bruce O. 16 Dec 99 - 02:26 AM
Peter T. 16 Dec 99 - 09:51 AM
Bruce O. 16 Dec 99 - 11:05 AM
dick greenhaus 16 Dec 99 - 01:30 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 16 Dec 99 - 02:10 PM
Max 16 Dec 99 - 02:44 PM
katlaughing 16 Dec 99 - 03:27 PM
IceWolf 16 Dec 99 - 03:50 PM
Bruce O. 16 Dec 99 - 04:01 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 16 Dec 99 - 07:31 PM
Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull 17 May 02 - 11:51 PM
Genie 18 May 02 - 12:32 AM
GUEST 18 May 02 - 01:02 AM
Snuffy 18 May 02 - 06:13 AM
Jon Freeman 18 May 02 - 06:55 AM
GUEST 18 May 02 - 08:13 AM
Celtic Soul 18 May 02 - 08:43 AM
Jon Freeman 18 May 02 - 08:45 AM
GUEST 18 May 02 - 09:13 AM
GUEST 18 May 02 - 09:34 AM
GUEST 18 May 02 - 09:40 AM
catspaw49 18 May 02 - 09:45 AM
GUEST 18 May 02 - 09:51 AM
Jon Freeman 18 May 02 - 09:59 AM
GUEST 18 May 02 - 10:31 AM
Jon Freeman 18 May 02 - 10:40 AM
Hrothgar 18 May 02 - 10:08 PM
GUEST 19 May 02 - 10:45 AM
Mr Red 19 May 02 - 11:28 AM
Wolfgang 21 May 02 - 04:08 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 07:46 AM
McGrath of Harlow 21 May 02 - 08:01 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 08:25 AM
Wolfgang 21 May 02 - 08:34 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 08:49 AM
Wolfgang 21 May 02 - 09:01 AM
McGrath of Harlow 21 May 02 - 09:17 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 09:26 AM
DMcG 21 May 02 - 09:49 AM
Wolfgang 21 May 02 - 09:51 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 10:03 AM
MMario 21 May 02 - 10:12 AM
Wolfgang 21 May 02 - 10:14 AM
DMcG 21 May 02 - 10:17 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 10:17 AM
Amos 21 May 02 - 10:19 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 10:21 AM
McGrath of Harlow 21 May 02 - 10:22 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 10:27 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 10:32 AM
MMario 21 May 02 - 10:34 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 10:40 AM
MMario 21 May 02 - 10:51 AM
GUEST 21 May 02 - 11:09 AM
Bill D 21 May 02 - 02:44 PM
Snuffy 21 May 02 - 07:31 PM
Jon Freeman 21 May 02 - 07:52 PM
michaelr 21 May 02 - 08:23 PM
Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull 21 May 02 - 09:02 PM
CarolC 21 May 02 - 11:24 PM
CarolC 21 May 02 - 11:36 PM
Mr Happy 22 May 02 - 03:16 AM

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Subject: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Ian Kirk (inactive)
Date: 17 Jan 99 - 11:19 AM

I was talking to a friend of mine about the Mudcat Cafe and it occurred to me I had no idea how many regular or sort of regularish contributors there are or have been. Does it run to many 100's or 1000's.

Has anybody got any idea?

Regards

Ian


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Roger in Baltimore
Date: 17 Jan 99 - 12:58 PM

Ian,

I'm sure Max has some numbers. If you look at the information threads (how old, where do they live, and what brand condoms, etc.) they number a little more than one hundred. That is probably a good guess at the number of regulars. Susan of the DT once said that there are many thousand hits each week, I forget how many. Of course, 500 of those were probably mine.

Roger in Baltimore


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Bill D
Date: 17 Jan 99 - 04:20 PM

well, when the 'survey' threads are started, we seem to get 75-100 'regulars' who answer the questions, but you can go to your personal page and look at the list of 'members' under email and personal message lists and count ...I am sure there are several hundred who have allowed Max to set a cookie and get access to the privileges...and probably hundreds more who just look for songs in the data base sometimes...

what really interests me is, why are there so few of us? I **KNOW** some people who have computers, know enormous amounts of stuff about music, and simply choose not to get involved..(and a couple who did, but stopped)...I guess for some, it is the fear of addiction and lost time...others (and I have heard this said) do not know how to 'talk' in a forum like this...they do not see screen names as 'real people'....
Of course, numbers here will gradually grow, and that can be both a positive and a negative..(lots more interesting chatters...but 2-3 times as many threads to try to follow)...I have my own opinions as to what will happen and what should happen, but, as they say, we shall see...


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Roger in Baltimore
Date: 17 Jan 99 - 04:51 PM

Bill D.,

What an interesting thread topic, "Mudcat's Future". Think I'll start a thread.

Roger in Baltimore


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Bill D
Date: 17 Jan 99 - 11:48 PM

sure messed up the underline HTML..*sigh*...It was just gonna be the one word...


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 19 Jan 99 - 02:59 PM

Oh, well, Bill, your underlining inspired another thread. Since Roger in Baltimore considered your underlining to be profound, I can't remove it, can I?
What you did is try to stop your underlining with </a> when it should have been terminated with </u>. But you knew that.....
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: marlor, Canada
Date: 19 Jan 99 - 03:22 PM

How many Mudcatters? Add one more to your numbers. Ther's a lot of info on this site. Need more time to chedk it out.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Susan of DT
Date: 19 Jan 99 - 07:21 PM

If someone is ambitious, they can count the number of member names on the send message part of the personal pages. And not everyone is a member.
The number that bogled Roger's mind too much to remember was a quote from Max concerning the total traffic to the site in, I think, December 1997 - ONE MILLION hits a month. Dick asked Max what it is now, but has not got an answer yet. I don't know how they count hits, but it is definately inpressive.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Roger in Baltimore
Date: 19 Jan 99 - 09:20 PM

Susan of DT,

I remain boggled. It helps me to understand why it is hard for Max's machines to keep up and to remember what a great love Max must have for this music to put in such labor. Thanks again, Max, I know you're out there.

Roger in Baltimore


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters? - 2810 members!
From: MudGuard
Date: 26 Jan 99 - 05:52 AM

I did not count the members in the "Send message to" field for personal messages, I let my editor do it. I viewed the source, cut out the option value lines, sorted them with eliminating duplicates (to remove all the empty lines) and came up with:

2810
But I don't know how many of them are still active...
cu,
Andreas


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: McMusic
Date: 27 Jan 99 - 01:15 AM

For a minute, I thought this thread was going to go something like: How many Mudcatters does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Glad I checked it out.

For the curious few: The answer is 22; I to screw it in, 1 to write the lyrics, and 20 to post threads about it

Pacem in terra.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Susan of DT
Date: 09 Feb 99 - 07:41 PM

We heard back from Max concerning the volume at this site: an UNBELIEVABLE 2.4 MILLION hits per MONTH. He thinks that may be a MERE 100,000 individuals visiting frequently.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Barbara
Date: 09 Feb 99 - 08:20 PM

Yeah, and I'm only responsible for about 200 of them.(grin)
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Frank McGrath
Date: 09 Feb 99 - 08:52 PM

Susan,
Those statistics are hard to believe.
The other 99,999 visitors must visit more than once.
This month alone I've already visited 2,299,999 times and...

Oh gosh! Now I can't visit again until March...

Sighs of relief all around the world..

Frank


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Alice
Date: 09 Feb 99 - 08:59 PM

oh, the lurkers are lurking, and the shirkers are shirking, and the folkies keep typing away


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Peter T.
Date: 15 Dec 99 - 04:11 PM

(Gee, kat, and it is only the middle of December. Between us we must have at least 2.4 million hits this month alone, and we have both been away for a week). Yours, Peter T.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Bruce O.
Date: 15 Dec 99 - 11:43 PM

Let me try to address a part of Bill D. question in his first post above. There is little to attract a professional folklorist here because we amateurs have little to offer.

What's the difference between a professional scholar and a good amateur? Periodcal academic journals. My estimate is that about 75% of new informations first apears in journal articles and about 25% in new books. The professional scholar typically has a list of 20 relevant journals that he scans as often as they come out, and sees good reviews of new books in many of these journals. The material in the journal articles often doesn't appear in any book for 2 to 20 years. If the professional's institution's library doesn't get these journals (and many are found only in big university libraries or large city central libraries, or specialist libraries - Huntington/Folger/Newberry) he/she subscribes to them, and they aren't cheap.

The amateur is really out of the running because of the great difficulty, time, and expense of obtaining this 'up to date' literature. There's just no way he can compete for the latest good information. Selected articles, yes, when he/she knows about them and goes to the trouble of obtaining a copy. But all of it? Just can't come close.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Bruce O.
Date: 16 Dec 99 - 02:26 AM

There are cases where we amateurs get to laugh at the pros. The click below takes you to a text and commentary of "Robin Hood and Maid Marian". The editors don't mention the S.S. at the end, which means it's by Samuel Smithson, and must be within a few years of 1660. Smithson had a subtle sense of humour, and wrote the ballad as a parody of all the recent Robin Hood ballads, probably a swipe directed at Thomas Robbins who wrote 3 of them. Literary scholars haven't tracked down Smithson and found out his style, and completely missed the boat on this one.

click


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Peter T.
Date: 16 Dec 99 - 09:51 AM

Just out of interest, Bruce O., what are the main journals that a pro scans in this field? Are any of them internet-based yet, or are you still getting monthly issues through the door? I would be intrigued to see if our Music Library (The University of Toronto, which has a huge classical music faculty) carries any of them -- and of course, even this big city library is cutting back on journals.
yours, Peter T.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Bruce O.
Date: 16 Dec 99 - 11:05 AM

I haven't compiled a list but a few are, FMJ, (formerly JEFDSS), JFS, Eigse Cheol Tire, MLA journal, JAMS, Musical Times, Musical Quarterly, JAF, Southern Folklore Quarterly, Western Folklore Quarterly, Huntington Library Quarterly (that may not be quite right, and I can't remember the Folger's journal title). There are some Canadian folklore journals (Murray on Saltspring is editor of one), 17th Century News. Find your libraries copy of current journal periodicals (exact title I can't remember) and wade through that


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 16 Dec 99 - 01:30 PM

A point to remember--the vast majority of Mudcat visitors come for lyrics, and often don't know (or care) about the Forum.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 16 Dec 99 - 02:10 PM

To Bruce O.'s list of titles I would add, for some purposes, the journal Early Music (not to be confused with the less-useful but more-available Early Music America, a much smaller magazine).

For convenience I'll expand Bruce O.s abbreviations (I hope I've got them right):

FMJ = Folk Music Journal
JEFDSS = Journal of the English Folk Dance and Song Society
JFS = Journal of Folklore Studies (?)
JAMS = Journal of the American Musicological Society
JAF = JAFL = Journal of American Folklore

T.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Max
Date: 16 Dec 99 - 02:44 PM

Hi all. At last check, we were at 3 million "hits" per month. Hits is a meaningless term really, so I hesitate to use it. User sessions is a far better stat and term, and that is what the 100,000 is all about. We have some great placements in certain search engines like Yahoo, and AskJeeves, so I am sure we get a lot of passerbys. Since we've been around so long we also have a lot of links from other sites.

As far as members go, we have 4836 in the database, while only 1381 come with any frequency. The mudcat log files reach 50MB in 2 or 3 days, so it is hard to accumulate a months worth to do any real analysis. Last time I checked, the average mudcatter checks the site 7 times a day, and stays about 15 minutes per visit (averages mind you).

Either we are growing or get more activity in the winter months (northern hemisphere winter) or both, because I have seen a steady increase lately. Here are how many postings we get a month:

May: 8,278
June: 8,018
July: 9,840
Aug: 8,995
Sept: 9,310
Oct: 10,635
Nov: 12,764
Dec: 7,406 (so far)

This is about 4 times more volume than last year at this time. Dec98 - 3864, Nov98 - 3467, Oct98 - 3497.

How's that for stats?


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: katlaughing
Date: 16 Dec 99 - 03:27 PM

WOW! MAX! Makes ya proud, do-nut!??


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: IceWolf
Date: 16 Dec 99 - 03:50 PM

Methinks I'm spiking the average, since I've been keeping a browser session open to MudCat all day since I discovered it. But I won't apologize.

--IceWolf


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Bruce O.
Date: 16 Dec 99 - 04:01 PM

I may have gotten JFS wrong; I meant that of The Folklore Society, London. That's not the same as EFDSS. Steve Roud, who have made the folksong and broadside indexes is Secretary of the Folkore Society, but is well acquainted with EFDSS also. I think there are also journals dealing with ethnomusicology, but I've never seen one.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 16 Dec 99 - 07:31 PM

I think the Folklore Society's journal used to be called Folklore, and still earlier in the century (and at the end of the 19th century) it was called Folk-Lore, with a hyphen. I think it's still called Folklore, but journals do change names sometimes.

T.


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull
Date: 17 May 02 - 11:51 PM


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Genie
Date: 18 May 02 - 12:32 AM

McMusic,
How many Mudcatters does it take to screw in a lightbulb?

One to put in the lightbulb,

Two to write the folk ballad about the event.

One to post a thread about it.

Spaw, Gargoyle, and two anonymous "guests" to make crude remarks about it.

Five other 'catters to defend the song and the post against the crude remarks.

Joe Offer and two Joe Clones to correct links posted with improper HTML language.

Two more 'catters to post links to related threads.

etc.
Genie


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Subject: RE: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 18 May 02 - 01:02 AM

Half as many as there were a year ago.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Snuffy
Date: 18 May 02 - 06:13 AM

And about 100 to grumble that it was better before the electric version.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 18 May 02 - 06:55 AM

Well it is interesting to note the steady increase in posts given by Max. Jim Dixon recently gave some figures here in terms of average messages per day over April 2001 to April 2002 and commented the forum had remained pretty consistant over that period (I agree BTW).

If I take the average of his figures, I get 690 posts per day or if I said there are 30 days in a month, we now average 20,700 posts per month.

So I presume we steadily rose in posts per month from Max's last figure of 12,764 for November 1999 and appear to have leveled off at around 20,700 at some point before April 2001.

Jon


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 18 May 02 - 08:13 AM

It would be interesting to find out is there was a way to fine tune the statistics to find out how the site is really being used, ie breakdowns by members and by guests, # hits by members to DT and # hits by guests, another breakdown for the forum.

Is there a way to at least breakdown # hits to DT? It would be interesting to find out how many of the hits were by members using the resource in conjunction with the forum, and how many guests using the resource (I'm guessing without ever accessing the forum, as there don't seem to be that many "occassional" guests coming into the forum with questions about info in or not in DT).

I agree with those who say the # of monthly hits doesn't tell us much about how the site it used--as Max said, the site is always at the top of the "hit" list in the most widely used search engines. However, I'd guess an awful lot of those hits were one-time, as is true for most sites which show up at the top of the hit list for searches in Yahoo, Google, etc. That has more to do with search engine results than it does Mudcat being an intended destination by searchers.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Celtic Soul
Date: 18 May 02 - 08:43 AM

We could "count off"...OK, I'll go first.

ONE!


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 18 May 02 - 08:45 AM

Guest, I would imagine the only person who could do that is Max from the server logs and from what he posted earlier, I would guess it would be a major task.

The only figures we all have on record to work with are the number of posts made and number of threads created but even that does not give an indication of how the forum is used in terms of hits - each thread will get many viewings...

I would guess that the dt is the major "recruiting ground" for Mudcat, with far more members joining and guests stopping by and posting as a result of visiting the site in search of lyrics than by actively seeking out a music forum or by refferral in other ways, e.g. links from other sites, word of mouth, etc. but that is sheer speculation on my part.

I noticed that Pat Cookey who joined in the last couple of days was showing as member 11,300. I know that figure includes duplicate members and probably failed attempts in joining but I wouldn't have thought we have many more (in fact my guess would be lower) members coming in with any frequency at any time than Max's 1381 above. An intersting statistic could be the average "life span" of a member here.

Jon


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 18 May 02 - 09:13 AM

Hmmmm, I wonder why it would be so difficult to distinguish between # hits to the forum, and number of hits to the DT, as well as # of hits by members, and # of hits by guests, and then #of hits by members to DT, and then # hits by guests to DT, etc.?

Pardon my complete ignorance of site management and statistic gathering, but in a business sense, I would want to have this information about my website regularly. In other words, I would want to know if it was a fairly static number of regular users accounting for the heaviest use, especially if I my business relied upon regularly attracting new users to the site. I'd also want to be able to track (if possible) the % of new users who use the site, how often they use it, and how long they stay with it.

I'm presuming from what people say about Max, that he isn't interested in the marketing statistics of Mudcat. But his primary business is a website business, so I kinda find it hard to believe that it would be difficult to gather this sort of basic data about one's own site.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 18 May 02 - 09:34 AM

Oh yeah--I'd also want to know where the traffic was coming from, ie from which search engines, links, etc. As Max has said in previous posts, he has the ability to gather a lot of information about the traffic here on the website.

Of course OTOH, there also seems to be a good deal of sensitivity about the data gathering issue in the forum, where there seems to be a presumption by members particularly, that Max doesn't/won't gather that sort of data about the traffic to DT and the forum.

Which to my way of thinking is a bit odd, considering what Max's business is, and how useful and effective that marketing data is for websites owners, trying to do business on the web. I wouldn't be offended if Max were gathering the data, especially when analysis of it could help improve the site.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 18 May 02 - 09:40 AM

For those of you who are curious about what Max actually does, this is a brief blurb from Onstage Media's website, describing their services:

Introducing Onstage Media!! We are a computer consulting and software development company concentrating on the following areas:

For Your Business:

Custom Internet Application Development including Web sites, E-Commerce sites and Business Intranets & Extranets

Development:

Custom Software Development including Client-Server applications, Database design and Multimedia applications

Training:

Technology Training in several popular languages and technologies including Web Mastering, Java, and C++ We augment these areas of work with our own in-house product development projects.

In addition to technology development, we also offer marketing, graphics design, data mining, and demographics tracking. So whether you have plans for an E-Commerce web site or a new business management tool, we have both the technological means and real-world experience to create an excellent solution.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: catspaw49
Date: 18 May 02 - 09:45 AM

And if you're even more curious, Max really isn't doing much of anything with Onstage anymore at all and has an outside job.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 18 May 02 - 09:51 AM

Thanks for the info Spaw, I didn't know that. I only knew that his time, energy and resources available to devote to this website has diminished considerably since he went on-line with Mudcat.

But the point I'm getting at is that we don't have the knowledge, expertise, software and resources to mine the data, but Max does. Or did when Onstage Media was still financially viable. And that he could easily have mined the data in the same way he could have for an ecommerce or website design client interested in marketing and demographic data.

No judgment being passed--I'm just pointing out Max has/had the capability to figure out how the site was being accessed and used.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 18 May 02 - 09:59 AM

Perphaps he does collect them Guest(?s) I was only going by what he said above and time has moved on along from then.

I've never had anything to do with stat collection although my site is supposed to have "Deep Matrix Live Stats". I looked a couple of times but couldn't get it working and couldn't be bothered enough to contact my ISPs support to find out how to work it.

I do have a server log which I almost never look at and nothing except a text editor to read it with. My server log does give me info such as date and time of a transaction, url of page, url of referrer, IP address, contents of cookie (to my site) if any, browser used, etc. So I guess a lot could be done with it...

Jon


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 18 May 02 - 10:31 AM

Right Jon, say you were trying to sell/distribute folk music online. You would want to research the folk music traffic already online to find out how to bring them to your site. You would want to know how to get your website to come up to the top of the first page of a Google or Yahoo search for "folk music vendors" or some such keyword search. In order to see that happen though, you do need to know about your competition, and know about your natural allies online. Competition being other ecommerce sites dealing in folk music sales, and allies being places on the web where people go most often to learn about and/or discuss the type of folk music you sell. You will want to study the sites which get the most traffic, but also the sites with the highest sales, even if they aren't also the sites with the highest traffic.

That sort of stuff.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 18 May 02 - 10:40 AM

Guest, there is no doubt that if I was a business I would be very interested all that sort of stuff.

Jon


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Hrothgar
Date: 18 May 02 - 10:08 PM

Does the number matter? Look at the superb quality!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 19 May 02 - 10:45 AM

Numbers do matter in certain contexts, even if they don't matter to you Hrothgar. For instance, if someone wanted to by the site from Max and Dick, the numbers would matter a great deal. Also, if grants and funding of that sort is being looked into (as is occassionally threatened by Max in threads here), the numbers matter too.

Just for comparison sake, I was reading an ad in a 2000 issue of Bon Appetit magazine last night, which showed one of my fave epicurean food websites gets 14 million hits a month, compared to the stats Max gave for the turn of the millenium (16 Dec 1999) of 3 million hits a month.

Oddly, I did a Google search yesterday using the keywords "American folk music" and Mudcat never even turned up.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Mr Red
Date: 19 May 02 - 11:28 AM

I have spoken to many UK folkies who know of the forum but do not contribute. My guess is 50% don't post much if at all. Not everyone sings in folk clubs - it is a personal style after all.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 21 May 02 - 04:08 AM

Oddly, I did a Google search yesterday using the keywords "American folk music" and Mudcat never even turned up

Simply not true as can be checked easily.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 07:46 AM

Wolfgang, I don't know how the search engine works where you are at, but these are the results I get when I use "American folk music" as the sole keywords in the Google search engine, in descending order:

Page 1: first hit is Folk Alliance. Second hit is the Contemplator site. Third hit, Smithsonian Folkways. Fourth hit, American Folklife site on the music of the 1930s. Fifth hit, a Doc Watson page. Sixth hit, guitar-primer.com's "American Folk Songs". Seventh hit, a folk music of the American revolution site. Eighth hit, Princeton Folk Music Society. Ninth hit, Folk Music Archives site.

Page 2: first hit, American Folklife Center. Second hit, an ethnomusicology site at washington.edu. Third hit, the Lomax site at American Folklife. Fourth hit, "Fortissimo Folk Music". Fifth hit, "Worldwide Internet Music Resources". Sixth hit, Folkway's "Anthology of American Folk Music" by Harry Smith. Seventh hit, americanfolk.com. Eighth, "English folk and traditional music on the Internet." And ninth, the Latin American Folk Institute.

Furthermore, after going through 10 pages of search results, there is not a single hit for Mudcat. Granted there are many pages left in the search results, but after 10 pages, they pretty much repeat the previous 10.

Perhaps you would like to share your results with us if they differ so substantially from mine?


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 May 02 - 08:01 AM

Well, the Mudcat isn't just about American Folk Music. Ask Google for "folk song" and the Cat is there for the first three entries.

"If someone wanted to buy the site from Max and Dick, the numbers would matter a great deal." And if this site went up for sale I think a lot of us would be unlikely to stick around too long, so the numbers wouldn't maybe be all that meaningful.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 08:25 AM

You are absolutely right McGrath. Mudcat isn't just about American folk music. The banner says "a magazine dedicated to blues and folk music."

Now, we all know that "folk" music is actually a trademark of the British folk. But I'm pretty sure the blues are still considered American. Doing a search with the keywords "American blues music" there are no hits for Mudcat in 10 pages.

In 10 pages of search results for "Blues Music" keyword search, you get only this result for Mudcat on p. 3:

Error Occurred While Processing Request. Error Diagnostic Information. WaitNamedPipe returned FALSE. Windows NT error number 121 occurred. Description: a magazine dedicated to blues and folk music; hosts Digital Tradition Folk Song Database Category: Arts > Music > Styles > Folk > Magazines and E-zines www.mudcat.org/ - 1k - 20 May 2002 - Cached - Similar pages

In a search using just the keywords "Folk Music" you get this on page 3 again:

... Help w/sound cards, PC recording, etc... 42, 12-Apr-02 - 03:12 AM. New Folk/Music club in Halesowen, 6, 12-Apr-02 - 03:01 AM. ... Description: A searchable collection of folk songs, many in English/Scots/Irish tradition; lyrics provided for... Category: Arts > Music > Styles > Folk > Resources www.mudcat.org/folksearch.html - 45k - Cached - Similar pages

[Doesn't sound like much American folk music would be found here according to the above description, which is perhaps why the site is perceived as British instead of American]

And then is followed by another error message:

Error Error Occurred While Processing Request. Error Diagnostic Information. WaitNamedPipe returned FALSE. Windows NT error number 121 occurred. Description: a magazine dedicated to blues and folk music; hosts Digital Tradition Folk Song Database Category: Arts > Music > Styles > Folk > Magazines and E-zines www.mudcat.org/ - 1k - 20 May 2002 - Cached - Similar pages

And this on page 10 under "Mudcat Discussion Forum":

... New Folk/Music club in Halesowen, 7, 12-Apr-02 - 04:24 PM. Eric Taylor/Guy Clark - underrated.... 4, 12-Apr-02 - 04:22 PM. ... www.deltablues.com/folksearch.html - 46k - Cached - Similar pages


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 21 May 02 - 08:34 AM

one instance: Folk and Traditional Music links

that comes up in a search for "American Folk Music" in Google and has Mudcat listed.

I found several dozen sites when searching for "American folk music" and "Mudcat" combined

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 08:49 AM

Wolfgang, I never said that there weren't hits to sites which included Mudcat via a link. What I said is the site itself, on it's own, didn't show up in the searches.

I stand by my original assertion, which wasn't meant to "prove" anything more than my surprise at Mudcat not showing up in the google search.

I am, OTOH, not the least bit surprised that Mudcat/DT comes up quickly in a search for lyrics/songs. It is my opinion (and I'm not claiming anything but opinion here) that the main use of this site is the DT lyric database, and that it likely accounts for the majority of hits. However, because none of us has the information about that and Max hasn't provided a breakdown, my opinion, like everyone else's, is pure conjecture.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 21 May 02 - 09:01 AM

This is one of the hits when I enter "American Folk Music" in Google. Close enough?

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 May 02 - 09:17 AM

"We all know that "folk" music is actually a trademark of the British folk."

I've certainly have never heard that, and would dispute whether it is true.

"blues and folk music" seems to come up with Mudcat at the top, but "folk music" doesn't and nor does "blues". All very strange. Still it strikes me enough of us find our way here to keep it interesting and that's what matters.

And hunting around in Google I turned up some interesting sites I hadn't come across before - such as Folk Music Archives, which is well worth visiting, with interviews and pictures of various American folk musicians.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 09:26 AM

Wolfgang, I am talking about the pages of the Google search results. The page you provide the link to isn't what I see when I type in "American folk music" in the blank line at the Google page.

The 1st blue clicky you provided takes us to a links page of another website, not Mudcat. As the list of hit results in my above post shows, there is also no result for the Mudcat page you give the blue clickie to (the Woody article) in your 9:01 a.m. post.

If your click on one of those hits takes a person directly to Mudcat, I'll stand corrected. Until then, I'm right, you're wrong.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: DMcG
Date: 21 May 02 - 09:49 AM

Can anyone join in? *G*

Google works by measuring how many links there are from other sites to (say) Mudcat and uses that to judge the sites importance. It is relatively difficult for Max to influence this, although that has been some recent accounts of people doing so. But search engines chnage the results they show constantly and what they show next week could be different.

HOWEVER, what does it matter? If Mudcat were a commercial site it might, but it isn't.

I would be more concerned actually, with people who have registered, posted actively for, say, six months and then dropped out, since this would show that Mudcat was failing them in some way. That's a very different group of people to those who have never heard of Mudcat and get directed into it as a result of a search.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 21 May 02 - 09:51 AM

OK, GUEST, here's how it goes:

I type "American folk music" in Google and roughly 15,000 hits. Instead of scanning all 15,000 (you also gave up after some pages) I am lazy and make a second search only among those 15,000 hits for "American Folk Music". I enter this time "Mudcat Cafe" and on the second page I get the link in my last post which by definition must have been among the 15,000 hits for "American folk music".

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:03 AM

Well duh Wolfgang. When you enter "Mudcat Cafe" it comes right up no matter when you enter it.

I stand by what I said. When the keywords "American folk music" are used in a Google search, Mudcat doesn't show up. Period. End of story.

You can continue to try and play the manipulation game Wolfgang, but I see what you're doing. And now, you can play with yourself all you want, because I'm done with it. It just ain't that big a deal.

As to the "what does it matter?" question--I'd disagree that non-profit status renders the question meaningless. If you are trying to provide a service, either at a non-proft site or a commercial one, you do want people to be able to find you and avail themselves of it.

I would suggest that people with an interest in American folk music, rather than British folk music, would conceivably use the words "American folk music" to do a keyword search at Google. As McGrath pointed out, many truly rich and wonderful sites come up as results. Mudcat isn't one of them, and I thought that was odd, given the sites popularity for lyric searches, and given the number of links Mudcat has from other sites I visit.

Perhaps it is just because the newer sites offer so much more, ie the Library of Congress American Folklife sites, the Contemplator site, North American Folk Alliance, etc. all have good sites for American folk music. This site remains pretty Brit-centric, and has little blues content compared to other blues sites, so it probably makes sense that Mudcat doesn't show up anymore in keyword searches for "American folk music" considering how little has been added to the non-DT part of the site over the years. I don't count the forum as a resource really. Too hard to search, and the information given is too often wrong, especially if you are doing academic research. If you had to choose between Mudcat and American Folklife, or even Mudcat and Contemplator to use as your sources, I think it is pretty obvious you wouldn't choose Mudcat.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: MMario
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:12 AM

guest - if you search on "American Folk Music" and then search within the results on "Mudcat cafe" - it only comes up if it existed in the previous search. since it does come up, then obviously a search on "American Folk Music" *does* indeed yield a link to the 'cat.

BTW if you search on "folk archive" it is the first link.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:14 AM

GUEST,

I guess a simple three word sentence like 'I stand corrected' or 'I have erred' or 'I was wrong' is beyond your abilities.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: DMcG
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:17 AM

I don't think of Mudcat as a service or a resource in that way. The resource is access to a large number of people who are prepared to take the time and trouble to answer - to the best of their admittedly fallable ability - questions on folk and blues largely based on their own current experience of performing that music. That is a different sort of resource to, say, the Vance Randolph or Child books, or to archive recordings. Yes, if you are interested in academic research formal libraries are what you need and sites that make these resources available to the world via the web are fantastic. But its not the same thing as people performing today. And the Mudcat resource, in my terms, is not one that search engines like Google are terribly good at finding. But they do find it if you are interested enough. Its how I got here!


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:17 AM

Mudcat only comes up as a link through other websites that come up in your search results. Like I said MMario, nice try but you are just as wrong as Wolfgang. Type in "American folk music" at google, and Mudcat doesn't come up on it's own in the results.

I am right. And here's a traditional American folk Brooklyn salute to you.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Amos
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:19 AM

This is totally specious; searching on "blues and folk music" turns up Mudcat three times on the first page; it's a quibble on the mechansims of Google's index and has little to do with the strength of the site itself in terms of numbers or quality.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:21 AM

Wolfgang, I'm not wrong, you are. I stand by what I said. Would someone like me to cut and paste 10 pages of google search results?


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:22 AM

Get sucked into this, and pretty soon there'll be the old "fish in a barrel" sneer. We all ought to know better, I suppose. The warning sign in when an argumentative quarrel begins to be worked up where there's no call on earth for anything like thta.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:27 AM

DMcG, I agree with you that the real value of the site is for contemporary performers, which is why I'm suggesting that the DT is the most valuable part of the site. I look at it the forum as chit-chat that is only sometimes a relevant, additional feature of the Digital Tradition.

But everyone will have their own ways of viewing the usefulness of the site. One is not more right than another.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:32 AM

Amos, I didn't do a search using "folk and blues" as my keywords. So you are right, your suggestion, along with Wolfgang's and MMario's, are totally specious. Thanks for pointing it out for everyone.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: MMario
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:34 AM

Do you understand what "search within results" means?

Granted, it is an additional step, but certainly easier then paging through 15000 plus reponses to the search "American Folk Music". 10 pages of google results at their maximum number of hits per page would mean you have ignored 14000 of the results. How can you know that a direct link to either the Digital Tradition of the MudCat Cafe is not present within those 14000 hits? When you get a response with such large numbers of hits it is recommended practice to narrow the search.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:40 AM

MMario, if you don't know you are looking for Mudcat, of what use is the idea that you can enter the keywords "Mudcat Cafe" when you don't even know it exists?

God, is this just too mentally challenging for you guys? My point is, not everyone on the internet with an interest in American folk music has ever heard of Mudcat. Doing a keyword search at google using the keywords "American folk music" isn't going to get you here. But it will get you to much better sites, like the American Folklife pages. Rounder Records. That sort of thing.

You can give it a rest any time now boys. You are just being contrary for the sake of being contrary. You just want to argue with me because of that blank from line.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: MMario
Date: 21 May 02 - 10:51 AM

No - actually I want to argue with you because your initial comments looked like you wanted an argument. Just trying to give you what you evidently want from the forum.

There are several combinations of "folk" and other keywords that bring the mudcat cafe up within the first page of google results. Almost ANY search on folksong titles or tunes will bring up a mudcat page - or a DT page. that "American Folk Music" does not (at the moment) (considering how many times it has appeared in this thread that will not remain true for long) is basically irrelevant. Many logical search patterns do not turn up web pages that exist with expected results.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: GUEST
Date: 21 May 02 - 11:09 AM

Bye bye.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Bill D
Date: 21 May 02 - 02:44 PM

wanna see a trick? type link:http://www.mudcat.org/ into Google or Altavista....it gives you lists of places that refer to Mudcat,,,,fascinating to see where we are noted...


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Snuffy
Date: 21 May 02 - 07:31 PM

If you type "american folk lyrics" then mudcat comes up second (after Lesley's Contemplator site).

Difference between lyrics and music - there ain't any GIFs or PDFs of the dots on Mudcat - mostly just words.

WassaiL! V


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 21 May 02 - 07:52 PM

This time I will bite... Guest said "I did a Google search yesterday using the keywords "American folk music" and Mudcat never even turned up." and was challenged.

Assuming Guest just worked through all the pages that Google yeilded; looking for a direct link to Mudcat (and ignoring the "similar results excluded bit Google gives), the fact of the matter is that Guest spoke the truth - or at least I tried the same search with the same results as Guest.

There are of course other issues here, probably best highlighted by Amos...

...but, the question in my mind is why do so many people need to leap in and make a row and "justify" Mudcat?...

Jon


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: michaelr
Date: 21 May 02 - 08:23 PM

It certainly hasn't escaped my notice in the six months or so I've been hanging `round here that a number of members are hyper-sensitive to perceived provocations (whether or not the post in question is meant to provoke), and especially so in the case of anonymous Guests.

I have been severely rebuked on more than one occasion by members who, to me, appeared to be overreacting considerably. And I remember several innocuous questions by unnamed Guests that got them flamed by a Mudcat Mob. Hey, I can handle it, and smile, but someone else who is new to this forum may not want to come back after being jumped like that.

Having said that, our Guest above certainly seems to be in an argumentative mood...

Cheers,
Michael


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Rt Revd Sir jOhn from Hull
Date: 21 May 02 - 09:02 PM

Is there a way to unrefresh threads? !!!


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Subject: American folk music
From: CarolC
Date: 21 May 02 - 11:24 PM

Test. This is only a test.


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: CarolC
Date: 21 May 02 - 11:36 PM

This is interesting. My little test didn't produce any results. That's probably not surprising. But what's interesting is that if I do a search on just the words "folk music" (with quotes), I find the Mudcat on the third page of links. I don't know or really care about what that might or might not mean. But I think those kinds of surprises are an interesting aspect of doing google searches.

http://www.google.com/search?q=%22folk+music%22&hl=en&lr=&start=20&sa=N


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Subject: RE: BS: How Many Mudcatters?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 22 May 02 - 03:16 AM

should this thread be renamed, 'silly squabbles'?


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This Thread Is Closed.


Mudcat time: 23 January 9:40 PM EST

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