Sunday, September 14, 2014

The View Count For the Series So Far

We're now in the seventh month of producing the Half-Hour Hegel video series -- with 24 videos released so far -- and we're getting near to the end of the very first portion of the lectures, that is, finishing up with Hegel's Preface to the Phenomenology.  There's about another 6-8 more yet to come, and then we'll move into the considerably shorter (paragraphs 73-89) Introduction.

YouTube allows one to create groups of videos, so that one can get the "analytics," or rather measurements, for just certain types, or in my case series, of videos, and today I decided to check what those numbers were for the Half-Hour Hegel lectures.

It's quite gratifying -- and a bit surprising -- to see them.  Since February 27 to today, the videos have been viewed about 28,000 times.  The very first one has garnered over 8,000 views, and as one can expect, the numbers scale downwards for the later ones -- they've not been out as long, so they've been viewed less. 

I also look at the "average view duration," which is around 10-15 minutes per video.  What this reflects is that there's some people who watch a video in its entirety, there's some who watch just a part of it, and there's many others who click on for a moment, and then leave (which includes me, when I'm posting the videos in social media!).  Given this average view duration, I think that it makes sense to interpret that raw 28,000 views number as really signifying something more like around 8,000-9,000 views that do indeed watch the whole lecture through.  One might conservatively estimate that perhaps 200-250 people have watched the entire sequence so far, with others dropping out along the way, or just popping in for a video here and there.

The sheer number of time people have spent either watching or listening is pretty staggering to think about -- over 300,000 minutes, roughly 208 full days!  That's a lot of time for people to be engaging the work of a difficult German thinker from two centuries past.  I'm not really sure at this point what to make of this information, I have to admit. . . .

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