Wednesday, 16 May 2007

E-searching for Nigella seeds

Last week, I wrote on this blog about Nigella seeds, a commodity that people on the reality TV show The Apprentice had to find as part of a challenge. The original entry was more because one of the contestants had been somewhat obnoxious about the Outer Hebrides. Thankfully, she's turned into some kind of national pantomine hate figure now.

A few minutes ago I had a look at the referrals for this blog, to find this for part of the previous hour:


This is part of the statistics and monitoring provided by the Wordpress slimstat module. Note the times are 1 hour out - you have to take an hour off.

Bizarre - till I remembered that that particular episode of The Apprentice had just been repeated on BBC2. Cue people around the country watching it, with laptops appropriately on laps, and either thinking:

  • "I wonder what Nigella seeds are?" tap tap tap. Or...

  • "You stupid fool - I can find Nigella seeds in no time. Sir Alan should hire me instead of you." tap tap tap.

Such is the immediacy of the net.

(Thought: An interesting experiment to do in conjunction with a high profile tv presenter. Set up a web site that makes many mentions of a simple, made-up word. Get it indexed on various search engines. Get him or her to say the word on tv, with no explanation, at a peak audience moment. Monitor and analyse traffic to website.)


  1. Hi John,Thanks for your comment on my blog. It seems it's a small world, my husband is from Worcester and is a computer programmer working in the computer games industry.Berneray looks like my idea of paradise - having spent many, many happy summers on the Isle of Mull, we both love Scotland. Your blog is really interesting - I'm off to have a bit more of a look now :)

  2. Reading the referrals lists to my blog is one of my hobbies as well. Finnish websites, not to mention my tiny blog in some distant corner of the net, probably don't get so much traffic, but I've seen the same kind of phenomenon here.The top peak in (frustrated) hits happened some time in February when the local tabloids told about some nude photos of a local swimmer(!) WAG. Unluckily (to the searcers so far) I had mentioned her name in my blog.I think the simple word naked (in a story about my immigrated friends going to sauna) creates 10% of the google hits to my blog.