• Member Since 4th May, 2013
  • offline last seen 1 hour ago

Estee


On the Sliding Scale Of Idealism Vs. Cynicism, I like to think of myself as being idyllically cynical. (Patreon page.)

More Blog Posts950

Mar
11th
2018

Your dearly departed: the archaeology of the Followers list. · 1:48pm Mar 11th, 2018

I'm going to be blunt about this: I thought Nemryn was dead.

Nemryn was -- I can now change that back to 'is' -- the tenth person to follow me. I could usually count on getting at least one comment for the majority of stories, and know that story was about to be added into a library. And when someone's that consistent... you can start to see them as something approaching a constant. This new chapter's been up for six hours: there's going to be a Nemryn comment. The sun rises, the moon sets, and certain people just show up.

And then Nemryn was gone.

It starts to register as a wary tingle along the top of the spine: I haven't seen a comment in a while. But that's okay: people take vacations, have connection problems, find Real Life getting in the way. But then that new status maintains. Weeks become months, months meld into a year, and...

I thought Nemryn was dead. And I knew there was absolutely nothing I could do to confirm or deny it. You just watch the Last Seen date as it recedes further into the past.

So when the latest comment appeared, it wasn't so much a return as a resurrection. I... reacted accordingly.

But other voices have gone silent, and remain so.


I joined the site on May 4th, 2013. (Yes, I've got the wood anniversary coming up.) That's a significant amount of time -- enough for things to have changed.

Last night, I went into my Follower list and looked at the accounts of the first ten people to ever follow me. Here's the Last Seen status for each of them, as of this writing.

GroaningGreyAgony: six hours.
TheStratovarian: twenty-four minutes.
Swirls: January 16th, 2014.
Oberon: May 11th, 2015.
FourierSeries: February 10th, 2018.
FlareF: August 12th, 2017.
Firespacer: February 24th, 2018.
Nuramor: last Friday.
Enthalpy: last Monday.
Nemryn: twenty-five minutes.

Look at those dates. Some are still roaming the site, but do so in silence: there are followers whom I've never heard from, not when it comes to comments or anything else in the way of direct exchange. Two of those people -- the first two -- check in fairly regularly. The tenth has just returned. And the third... has been gone for years. I haven't seen Swirls in a very long time. Another formerly-active commenter who could have just dropped out of the fandom, or -- died.

I've been told that when the site confirms a death, the account is banned. It may seem like an extreme move, but my guess is that it's to keep people from tampering with it. (I was also told that one parent posts on the userpage of her child every year, on the anniversary of the death.) But such confirmation requires someone to tell the moderators what happened. There are places on the Internet which exist simply to register and notify of deaths -- but even so, telling the entire electric world that an electronic footprint is now a fading outline can be just about impossible.

People lose interest. People decide the show's current form no longer suits them. People move on to other fandoms. Departures are natural.

But you usually don't know what happened. And you probably never will.


After looking at my First Ten, I glanced through the rest of my Followers list. I didn't try to take a complete statistical count: here's the number who were here yesterday, last week, last month, last autumn, last year. There's a lot to get through and even with just making check marks, I'd probably mess up the math eventually. I also can't seem to find any way to simply sort by site visit dates.

But I did look for a few things. The first was banned followers. Surprisingly, I only have two. The first, IncinerateChicken, was someone who was always pushing his luck in Comments sections: his userpage feed suggests he eventually reached the edge of the cliff. The second has the classic trollface for a user icon, which makes it easy to guess what might have happened there.

(I have one follower whom I dearly wish was banned: someone who genuinely tracked me just for the chance to hate in real time. But the account hasn't been active in several years.)

Meme followers? Those people who create mostly-fake accounts based on whatever the joke-of-the-picosecond is? I'm not sure I have any, but that's mostly because I didn't go through the list with the finest of combs and I'm often late to memes anyway. I can chorus "Is this memes?" with the best of them, although my British accent mostly svcks: the exception is when I've been hanging around actual Brits for ten minutes and can get the proper cadence back.

Duplicate accounts? Alts? How am I supposed to tell?

But for the most part, I was looking for activity. Last Seen dates. Proof of site life.

I didn't always find it.


Going through a Followers list, starting from the earliest and moving forward, is a strange experience. It brings back a lot of memories. This is when FOME first appeared. This is when Canterlot Guardian went quiet. Names who never did anything except follow. A blaze of commentary. People who basically added the entire catalog to their library in the course of a week.

You remember specific days. Weeks. Times when a given story was active and a fresh half-dozen might stumble in, blinking heavily as they tried to figure out how much they were going to regret their decision.

Some names stand out for their popularity. Others for trouble caused. Many for silence.

I've had outright departures, ones which have seen my Followers number go down. I don't always know exactly who's left -- and now know the count doesn't change for a ban: it's just outright walk-outs. But I often get some hint for the why. Writing The Bounce Test really did bring me a near-instant minus: some people just hate Flash that much. I've watched a few walk away because they realized my politics weren't theirs and decided they couldn't be around me: they're largely missed.

Just glancing, without trying to do a statistical breakdown -- it gives off the appearance of a group where the majority may still be active on the site. I may be lucky there.

But when I look at the full list, even briefly, and spot Last Seen dates ending in 2016, 2015, 2014...


If you've come this far in the blog, I'd appreciate it if you would consider doing three things.

First, for those who have followers, look at your original ten. See when they were last on the site. (If you just follow others, look over that list. Or for those with the option, you could try both. It's really up to you.) Post the results if you like: here, in your own blog, both...

After that, just go through the rest of the list with as much speed or lack thereof as you like. Glance at names. See what it brings back.

And lastly... check in. Post a comment below. Let everyone know you still read now and again. Because if you don't...

...then none of us know what happened to you.

We probably never will.

Report Estee · 1,742 views ·
Join our Patreon to remove these adverts!
Comments ( 104 )

Thoughtful post. I enjoy the wit you employ in your writing and the humanity you show in your posts. For me, it's a slow fight of attrition against job burnout and the jadedness that come from the line of work I'm in. Ponies help, though.

Well i was pretty late to join this party so all of my followers are active except a couple who's been offline for a 2-3 months. My second follower is that bad dragon who goes around greeting every new user and group... i don't remember if i ever thanked him, he posted a video on my page about fimfiction features, i'd have missed some things without it, i wouldn't have known you can check and uncheck read chapters... but im rambling.

I've been reading non stop since mid 2016 and i don't plan to stop any time soon, there are so many greats fics on this site, i hope i never run out, jeez this medications are making me trippy, anyway dis iz yo boy signing out, peace!

Well this was not the blog post I expected to wake up to.

I wonder about it, though, if something happened to some of the names on my followers list. I try to check up on some of the names now and again, just to see if they're okay.

I never feel like it's enough. I wonder if people would do the same for me if I vanished from the site.

Hmm. Even if you hadn't asked, you've made me curious enough to look. Let's see...

Speven Dillberg: 2 hours ago
Roadpony the Loud: March 4th, 2015*
Allornone: February 25th, 2018
The Magister: September 9th, 2014
SciGuy: Last Tuesday
krahe: September 23rd, 2016
Chaosglory626: November 14th, 2015
Dusty the Royal Janitor: 5 hours ago
green oni: 7 hours ago
ManlyDerp: 9 hours ago
*Roadpony's a special case. He's a friend in real life and real life is precisely why he hasn't shown up in years.

So, that's six who've been on in 2018, half who I recall ever commenting on my stuff, and incomplete intersection between the two.

Though, looking back through the earliest pages... A lot of my early but not as early followers still seem to be kicking. A significant portion aren't, but the majority seem to be. That said, some familiar names have years prior to this one next to "FOLLOWS YOU." And there are some active people who I'd honestly forgotten were following me.

Also found seven banned accounts in the first three hundred or so followers, one of which literally asking for it.

Thanks for the prompt to walk down Memory Lane.

Yeah, I know the feeling.

I actually do have followers (and handful), so I'll do that (though I suspect about half of them and probably the majority of my first ten are my local ponythread poster current and former).

I find it more for me that is authors who seem to have disappeared - the Descendant in particular. who was about the first person I followed. He seemed to just sort of drift away and just stopped posting, stopped logging in. Is he alive? Did he just give up, so apathetic that he couldn't bring himself to say farewell? We may never know. And I, for one, feel that a great loss to the fandom (let alone if it is something more serious).

It does bother me a bit, this sort of thing, and the thought that if the impossible were to happen and I kicked the bucket permentantly (and assuming there was enough of the rest of the universe left afterwards) that people might not know.

Because it does happen.

There was this one really good Naruto story I was reading once; I'd commented a couple of times, but it wasn't until I finished reading to last posted chapter and went to look at their user page, I learned that they'd committed suicide a few weeks before I'd found the story. Tragic. I can only commend the family member for taking the time to let his followers know.



Edit: I have 32 followers apparently (more than I thought, I thought it was about a dozen when last paid attention), so enough to give them all the once-over; two bans (one of which who had a stated intention of following everyone on FimFic), a couple stopped in 2015/2016, a couple last around in 2017, but the majority are active within the last 24 hours.

There's always Patreon, for your hardcore fans. Since money is something People Care About, you can at least be pretty sure we were alive a month ago.

Also, giving money for "please continue to make more of this" is much easier than formulating a heartfelt comment in a foreign language about precisely how the latest chapter was emotionally impacting.

4814269
He answered on DeviantArt when prodded a couple of months after he stopped showing up here, so he probably just drifted away. Doesn't lessen the blow of the loss of good Spike stories, but at least I can hope he is making others happy somewhere else.

I'm not sure that I really have any followers to speak of, despite having joined with the intention of writing... I just never did, I got nervous and my only attempt remains deep in a file folder. I've done similar checks elsewhere, though.

I check my Steam friends occasionally. A couple of them haven't been seen in months, I worry and wonder about them, but I recently saw one who's last seen date bordered on a year. I recalled bad health he'd spoken of for years and his late middling age, recalled he'd been working hard on a group, and I clicked him.

I hadn't spoken to him in over two years due to internet issues on my hand, but the "RIP" comments hit hard. One of his closer friends had his cell number. They'd been trying for a response for... well, nearly a year.

I also check my followers on art websites. I have a modest following, very small, but I check. One website puts a little infinity symbol on the deceased's account, rather than a tilde.

I was once contacted, a few years ago, by the friend of a follower. I'd drawn the girl something early on, in my teenage years and when I had the drive to do freebies often, and the friend was thanking me for being so kind to her. The character meant a lot to the girl and her friend was thanking every artist who'd drawn for her.
She'd taken her life.

I remember the character. I remember the drawing. I remembered the girl, which was the important thing.

It's why I've actually got notes in place. Instructions on logging into emails and websites hidden in a physical journal, a file on my computer of messages to be copied and pasted to my stomping grounds. My closest friends know about them and they have their own instructions to act on in regards. I don't want people to wonder.

4814272

Ah. Thanks. That's good to know, I can at least set my mind to rest that he's likely still around and kicking.

I'm still here. Probably more than is strictly healthy to be honest.

March 3rd- a week ago.
January 31st- but I know them irl.
March 15th, 2017... No blog posts, three followers. One incomplete story with six upvotes, four downvotes, and three comments all from them, last updated on the last day they were here. I read that story. :ajsleepy:

...And that's it for those last online more than a week ago. I only have 57 followers, so it's not hard to go through one by one. I've only had an account since summer 2016, so I can't be following anyone who's been gone for that long... but still. Only one who hasn't been on in 2018, and it looks like they might have had other reasons to leave. I've got another whom I saw a blog post from last summer (or was it earlier?) saying they weren't feeling pony much any more, but lo and behold, last seen six days ago. I remember them because they have one of my stories on their user page... and it was both amateur and unnoticed enough that I'm willing to bet the number of people who really enjoyed it could be counted on one hand. But my original follower has the pesky habit of frequently changing their name so it's hard to recognize them, and I really have no clue why they're following me. Overall, I count myself lucky.

Sort of. I've been on the other end of this, too. I used to be very active on a forum for a particular game that was tight-enough knit where you either knew someone or they were a noob. I contributed insane amounts to a communal knowledge/strategy base, spent huge amounts of time, effort and patience answering questions for people so uninformed they could well have been taken for trolls (usually, they weren't), and eventually left about two years ago. Over that entire time, I got exactly one PM from someone- a regular- thanking me for all the effort and work I put in and telling me it was appreciated. About a year after I left, I decided to check the place out to see if it was still standing, and it was. Lots of familiar faces. People posting topics and chatting and still using builds I had made. I left a few posts, answered a few questions for old times' sake, hung around for a day or two after and just watched those threads... and not one person reacted to my presence (or lack of it) whatsoever. If I had died, nobody would have cared, nobody would have known, nobody would have noticed.

Needless to say, I don't really feel like going back there any more. Though I do still have the PM notification setting connected to an email I monitor, so if anyone does remember me, even if they just want a bit of the still-considerable knowledge I still have... Nah, it'll never happen. But it sure would be cool.

This is why I started writing, though. It's part of why I write a story that updates each and every day, no exceptions: I hate it when people go dark, when the fandom gets quieter, and wanted to do my part to make as much noise as possible to say someone was still here, not just behind my account but all of ponydom. But it would be nice to be remembered if I ever have to leave and return, too.

4814268

I glanced at your Followers list and noticed someone was calling themselves Account Inactive.

As it turns out, there's something of a theme.

4814265

And what blog post were you expecting to wake up to? Because there's still time to take a nap.

4814273

Been here, done this. *sigh* I know it's not much to say, and it doesn't bring comfort, but... you're not the only one who's tried to track, or learned about a death in the end. I basically left one site because the best friend I had there died and once he was gone, there was no other reason to stay. I've also been online-present for a suicide attempt (stopped: we all worked out the address and sent police) and -- the one which still makes my hands clench -- the roleplayer who decided to play the parts of siblings, then killed off one of them just to watch everyone mourn. Ugly words came out when that was discovered, and my only regret is that I didn't get to say any of them: I had computer issues for a full week and missed the entire reveal.

You're not the only one. I know that doesn't help. But as statements go, it may not hurt too badly.

What's worse: not knowing -- or finding out? There are times when I'm honestly not sure.

I can say this (although it's accelerating my heartbeat to do so): there is one person in my offline life who knows about this site and is aware I post here. If something happened to me, there would be a final notice.

But until now, I hadn't thought about recording passwords et. all for -- well, final logoff. I'm internally debating it. On the one hand, it's writing down passwords. But on the other...

I'm not in all that many places, not as an active, speaking participant. Relatively few, I think, and less than I once was. But even so... maybe I should seal an envelope.

I'm relatively new to the fandom, and I actually still havent finished season seven. I am far more invested in the fandom than the show itself, and I believe things will stay that way for many years. Especially if I continue to find authors of skill and passion even approaching your own. I certainly have no followers here, but I believe I understand your feelings regarding this post. I know I've had friends disappear from the internet, and I dearly hope it was merely a change of interests. I know for a fact, however, that I will be spending quite a lot of time on this site in the years to come. I'm certain it will be quite the adventure.

4814280
I just want to say that it's criminal that you don't have more followers! "The Olden World" is a fantastic story that deserves way more attention.

I was really happy to see Nemryn come back, too. I was used to seeing him comment on things, and then sorta noticed I hadn't seen him in a while, and of course there was nothing on his userpage saying where he'd gone. . . .

People lose interest and move on, and I get that. But if you are planning to leave, maybe leave a note behind.

But until now, I hadn't thought about recording passwords et. all for -- well, final logoff. I'm internally debating it. On the one hand, it's writing down passwords. But on the other...

I've thought about that, too. At least on this site. I do know some users in person (including a mod), so I would hope that if something should happen, they'd get the word out.

Anyhow, on to my list:
Diamond Sparkle: Last Friday
DJPsychOH: Oct 22, 2014
TheExhaustedBrony: 9 hours ago
ChangelingLumin: June 2, 2017
alamais: 2 hours ago
Nocturne Hurakan: Last Friday
PH_Brony130: Nov. 9, 2017
bin4rym4ge: Last Monday
Abecedarian: Feb. 25
StudyingTwilight: Aug 12, 2013

Oh geez, talking about old names, dead people...
Oh man, I've got a few names, some real good memories.

I also don't understand why most of the people who follow me actually follow me.

Finally, I actually joined this site about a half year before you. LMAO.

Now for the list:
epicdonus1123 BOT (banned): Dec 29, 2012
CanterlotGuardian: Apr 25, 2017
RustyKat: Feb 8, 2018
monsterlord18: 8 hours ago
Caniville: Apr 12, 2016
Bonified_Ponified_Tracer: 1 hour ago
sarahdash: July 7, 2017
WildFlame: Feb 28, 2018
Haloboy11721: Last Friday
Mythic Hex: 5 hours ago

Huh.

I do this sort of inventory of my following list periodically. It's always bittersweet. In some cases (Obselescence, John Perry, ) the folks I was following left some kind of word regarding their departure from FIMfic. But there are plenty of others (Pandora Prancypants, Donnys Boy, The Descendant) who just vanished into the ether. And, as you say, one never really knows why. I always hope its just other things took their interest away but, since I know of at least a few who've dropped out due to real life stress and/or illness, I often fear the worst.

(Also, I apparently have twenty-one followers. Even though I've never written a story or blogged regularly. Weird.)

4814295
Same, though I guess a few of them make sense, seeing as how I'm their editor.

Present!

4814272
I for one am really glad to hear he's still around, even if not here on FIMfiction. :twilightsmile:

I have 9 followers. 2 were last seen in 2015; 1 back in February this year,and the rest within the last 48 hours. I'm also wondering how I got Chatoyance as a follower. For that matter, how did I even end up with 9 followers in the first place - I haven't even posted more than 50 things total on this site.

Not knowing and wondering what if's, not for a too pleasant activity make.
Surprised I have followers. One banned, and the others active to within this year cept for one.
Those I following counting either from the last added to the first, pretty much all currently active. One or two not seen since 2017 or 2015.

"First, for those who have followers, look at your original ten."
Alright, let's see, only have twenty-one, so...
deli73 Nov 26th, 2017
Chatoyance 4 hours ago
itpony Last Friday
A Follower Apr 6th, 2015
bobbananaville 6 days ago
staryoshi06 February 4th
DE_K Online
StrangeReasoning Jun 2nd, 2017
Valikdu Dec 16th, 2017
KelloggsKookieKrisp Sep 24th, 2017
A Follower appears to be banned, so counting only non-banned followers, next would be:
Winston 7 hours ago

This is something I fear, yeah. Happening to myself or others, and that latter I've experienced, people who just... weren't there. Sometimes they've come back, sometimes I've never heard from or of them again, sometimes there are signs that they're still alive and out there somewhere, but I don't know where, or what they're doing, or why they haven't said anything. A few times I've looked up obituaries for faraway places that I'm not even sure are the right locations; I've not found anyone I was looking for and hoping not to find there yet, at least. But... yeah.

...On a lighter note, I had a bit of a wow moment when I checked and realized that I'd actually been on FIMFiction longer than you. And am in fact approaching six years, which is kind of boggling me somewhat.


4814273
"It's why I've actually got notes in place. Instructions on logging into emails and websites hidden in a physical journal, a file on my computer of messages to be copied and pasted to my stomping grounds. My closest friends know about them and they have their own instructions to act on in regards. I don't want people to wonder."
I keep meaning to get something like that put together, too. Haven't figured out the best way to go about it, though, and I kind of don't want to bring up with friends "So, hey, let's talk about what I'd like you to do if I suddenly die!"...

4814292
"I've thought about that, too. At least on this site. I do know some users in person (including a mod), so I would hope that if something should happen, they'd get the word out."
Ah. Yeah... I think I know enough people here that the word would have a chance of getting out, at least... and FIMFiction is kind of a hub, so anyone else I'd like to know online could potentially find out from here. It's not that good a measure, but at least it's something.

4814295
"Also, I apparently have twenty-one followers. Even though I've never written a story or blogged regularly. Weird."
...Huh. And in a somewhat similar situation, I also have twenty-one.

I was very happy to see Nemryn back--we seem to so to a lot of the same places, and I've thought their comments often tended to be some of the better ones.

As for me:
RoboRed: 10 hours
PresentPerfect: 32 minutes
jp523: February 24
Aemetta: 11 hours
Reese: online
Bad Horse: online
Summerset Banjo: yesterday
Singularity Dream: yesterday
Treble_Sketch: February 24
Pika53: last Friday

For me at least, seems everyone's pretty active--nobody offline more than two weeks and change, and that includes the more recent eight followers too. I suspect it's a biased sample, since these are people who decided to follow someone with no stories and some blogs. (Actually, only 17 show up in the list against 18 stated followers, so I think one is a fully deleted/banned account.)

4814280
What game? I had a similar experience with the game QONQR (it’s where I got my Super Trampoline user name.)

I know a lot of my followers aren't paying me much attention anymore, here or not. I can tell because after the year or so when I was gone, when I came back there was a steep drop off in the reaction to my posting something new. But checking in on the first ten seems like a fun idea. These are from the early days, since I joined the site in 2011.

Dusk_Runner84: Sept. 27, 2017
shivalwolf: January 21st
Jordanis: Yesterday (I know this one is alive in any case, since he's lying in my bed right now...)
Shutterfly: May 6th, 2013
Samusbot: 5 hours ago
schpeelah: 2 hours ago
Kirishala: Last Friday
Zone804: August 10, 2017
Pinkieflyguy: March 20, 2012
Rabenstein: February 22

Huh. That's way more active than I would have thought. Only two outright anciently abandoned accounts, and two maybe abandoned but not long ago ones. Everybody else seems to still be checking in now and again, and four seem fairly active.

I occasionally wonder what happened to Sapidus3 of Equestria's Twilight.

Having never posted a story or blog entry, I have a grand total of 1 follower, who I don't know how I got.

4814314 The Fire Emblem series, though I mostly frequented the Awakening section (serenesforest.net, if you're curious).

There are a number of users I've liked and respected that have largely vanished from the site. Fortunately, I generally know what became of them.

For my own list:

Shadow of the Night: 3 hours.
Flyerton: Feb 27th
KelloggsKookieKrisp: Sept 24th, 2017
ThunderRoll92: March 4th
Somerset Cider: 4 hours
Orbiting Kettle: 51 minutes
Captain Wuzz: July 24th, 2017
Shocks: February 19th
Liberty Prime: Online
Captain Snark: 13 hours

Of these, over half have never interacted with me beyond following. The remainder, however, are fairly regular commentators on my blog posts.

Followers:
TwilightSkeenSparkle: Nov 22nd, 2015
Cascadia: January 5th
Squeaky Toy: Yesterday
Appledash13: Jul 9th, 2015
Matdat: 13 minutes ago
appledash2011: Nov 12th, 2017
BrokenFibula: 1 hour ago
Discidium: Oct 2nd, 2014
Jarkes: 1 hour ago
superpony55: Aug 28th, 2017

Following:
Aegis Shield: online
Obselescence: Jun 19th, 2017
Albinocorn: 5 hours ago
DragonShadow: Last Thursday
And you!

Jarkes is vaguely familiar to me because we've directly conversed before, years ago, and I think he offered, or tried, to help me with writing stuff. I'm not sure what he's up to now, but at least I now know he's still around.

superpony55 has dogs. They're cute dogs.

I remember Aegis quite well: I loved his Nightmare Moon story (though I stopped reading the sequel for some reason). Not sure what he's doing now, though: either I've missed notifications of his activity, or there haven't been notifications to miss.

Obselescence... the guy who did reviews, right? Did he make a blog saying he would be stopping or saying he'd be leaving Fimfiction?

Albinocorn: I love this author, ever since Long Road to Friendship! I have yet to read any of their other works (besides Spectacular Seven) though: I keep procrastinating on that.

And once again, you. I'm currently going through something of a minor obsession over your works (for what "minor" means for me and obsession).

Honestly, I'm not sure who most of my followers are, and I'm even less sure of why they're following me: I don't do anything. My best guess is a Kindness Follow (or, assuming worse, a Pity Follow). I know at least one of them followed me because we're friends, and I still question that decision because, as stated, I don't do anything (at least I don't annoy them with frivolous notifications).

This blog post has... affected me. Genuinely. One of the things I love about you, Estee, is your... well, I could say it's your verbose nature, but it's more than that, because anyone can be verbose but they usually fail to say much. You say a lot, because you have a lot to say. You're clearly a thinker, and a very empathetic one at that: you see the world, you actively look at it, for it, and think about everything you see and hear and feel, whereas most people would simply brush off 90% of the experience, perhaps because they figure that other people see the world the same way they themselves do, and so don't bother discussing the (seemingly) obvious.

We miss out on a lot because of that, and I'm glad you're one of those people who takes the time to detail what the world looks like through your eyes. Doing so gives others the chance to experience something amazing in what they might otherwise dismiss, or never even know.

You've done it again, today: you've brought to my attention that I've been both ignorant and neglectful of. Or rather, someone. Several someones. People I don't know, most of whom I'll be too shy to contact (because why would they care about me?), and the rest I'll probably never be able to converse with, and I'll never truly know why.

It's also... made me think. About myself. About how little I've done, both on this site and in my own life. I mean, I still have plenty of time to do something with my life, but this site's gonna peter out eventually. I want to accomplish something here before it does, and part of it is because, yes, I want a taste of horsefame (and I want to prove to myself that I can accomplish something before time and trends leave me behind), but the greater reason is because I want to reach people with vivid, inspiring, heartfelt experiences of fantastical nature.

I don't want to be forgotten. That's actually the reason I comment 80% of the time, because I don't want people to forget I'm here. I don't really care what happens to me after I'm dead, because what does it matter to a corpse? But until then, I don't want to be forgotten, because if you're forgotten while you're still alive, you're alone.

How many people are alone?

I don't know if the people I've forgotten are alone, and I also don't know how to reach out to them or if any attempts would simply peter out because we're not compatible. And frankly, I don't want to reach out, because pity friendship is insulting. I'm... honestly kind of at a loss.

It's so strange how isolated people can be in a world of 8 billion.

Thank you, Estee.

Well, my followers list only has one joke entry because i don't create content. My following list has 23 entries, 18 online this year, 3 online last year, and 2 many years ago (i miss you, device heretic). But i rarely follow anyone.
I get this nostalgia hammer when i check my favourites list from time to time and see all the (unfinished) stories. Although i have cleaned out some , there's still plenty left where the author just disappeared, and the readers are left wondering what happened.

Estee this made it all the way to my feed you're like a superhero for sadness I swear to god.

Most of mine left like idk an example but i do know one that died her name was candy than most just left like they had blogs leaving saying not interested in the fandom i had a lot of those their were friends i never really had friends so you can imagine how i feel when they leave and well your my friend also I don’t like being forgotten I don’t want to I’m afraid people don’t post comments on my blogs not like they used to and the one story i had people hated it I don’t even know how i got to 100 itself maybe its out of pitty

Hey, I'm still here. Um... Not sure if that's a positive for everybody or not. :pinkiehappy:

Toafan: (My first follower since I started July 2012) Mar 3, 2018 :heart:
Numamor: (#3) Last Friday
Cloudranger: (#4) Dec 4, 2017
lines n stuff: (#5) Feb 20, 2018
PhysicalSound: (#7) 7 hours ago
Bad Horse: (#8) 36 minutes ago <- one of the greatest people to assist my MLP career
Abecedarian: (#9) Feb. 25
Thorax: (#10) Last Friday
Windfox: (#11) Yesterday
wallacethe5: (#12) Yesterday
usenglish: (#14) 5 hours ago
ForlanceAbice: (#18) Last Tuesday
Aelan: (#19) 14 minutes ago
nemryn: (#20) 5 hours ago


Quick Stats: Out of the 20 people listed first in my follower list, 13 of them have logged into FimFiction this year.

My list, first follower to tenth:

Meta Knight: 48 minutes ago
Quintus: Dec 13, 2013
Rocket: last Friday
Feefers: Feb 16 this year
GotFalconPawnch: Sep 19, 2012
Hironolind: Mar 13, 2013
The Drifting Bard: Feb 17 this year
Follower: May 23, 2014
hawthornbunny: 10 minutes ago
EatingDeezPinkPies: Jul 26, 2017

I've met one of these people (hawthornbunny) in person, and had reasonably extensive online chats (ie not just about ponies) at some point with three others (Quintus, Rocket and Feefers). With the exception of Meta Knight, I'm not sure I could say much about who most of the others are/were, though.

4814324
I was at a meet with Somerset Cider just yesterday. Funny how these things interconnect sometimes.

I actually joined this site because of fanfic recommendations from tvtropes. Now i have 98 phone tabs open and i'm watching 30 people.

send help

Wanderer D
Moderator

Well, first of all... I thought I was already following you. I mean... I've known who you are here for years now. Oddly enough, it seems my follow either got undone or never happened because I just assumed.

But this is interesting because I've talked to other authors about something related, recently. Although the discussion was mostly about how quantity of comments has decreased in the last few years. I had a more positive outlook on that than the other author, but anyway, I'm blabbering now.

Anyway, I've been here since... 10th Jul, 2011 dayum.

And my first ten followers are people that I haven't really seen much of for the most part, although oddly enough, the moment I see their avatars I remember them. Although I still see Mekran and Orpheus around often enough. They don't drop comments as they did... but I still see the occasional "Mekran added [insertnameofstory] to favorites"

Bladecutter - Dec 31st, 2013
oblivion2k - Jun 3rd, 2017
Ltwinters - May 27th, 2012
Sciura87 - Oct 22nd, 2017
Imagewicked - Jul 22nd, 2013
Mach and Gracie - Apr 13th, 2016
TheLunarArmy - Oct 3rd, 2012
PTR-RainbowDash - Feb 8th, 2016
Orpheus - Last Tuesday
Mekran - Yesterday

[Still-alive ping]

I feel more obligated to comment on stories now, even if it’s just something simple... I’ll be sure to do that in the future.

I don't have anything thoughtful to add to the actual topic, nor followers to poke through but I do have some data for you.

Here's a scrape of Estee's follower data. The person MIA the longest is Infidellia at nearly five years, and the average delta is 3 months. Interestingly, though, the vast, vast majority of people on the list have logged in super recently (within the last month or so). We're apparently a rather tenacious lot.

Here's the source of the junky python script I threw together to scrape the data if anyone wants to turn it on your own follower list.

Eight of my first ten followers still dwell on the site, some with pauses in the past years. One, I suppose a troll account (with a name like Your Face there's not much room for doubt) has been away for a while.

Still reading you (never stopped) even if I don't comment much.

4814281

But until now, I hadn't thought about recording passwords et. all for -- well, final logoff. I'm internally debating it. On the one hand, it's writing down passwords. But on the other...

You need a password manager. Everyone needs a password manager. Then you only have one password to remember, and all the others can be unique and contain as much entropy as a site will permit. My personal choice was 1Password, which has multiple browser plugins for auto-login and sync with the phone. None of its data is store in the cloud.

As to followers, I still remember the first one. I was astonished somebody gave a damn, and then within two or three months, they were MIA. They had a bunch more followers than I ever had and a story that was far more successful. Whatever happened to them to make them leave, I hope it was good. Sadly, my second follower went the same route, just taking a bit longer, perhaps half a year.

I have a whole host of people who stopped writing. Coincidentally a bunch of them were from the CGotG days.

I've been told that when the site confirms a death, the account is banned. It may seem like an extreme move, but my guess is that it's to keep people from tampering with it. (I was also told that one parent posts on the userpage of her child every year, on the anniversary of the death.)

This rule was introduced in the wake of a shitstorm caused by someone called TgTfProductions who gathered a lot of followers after saying that he was dying of cancer. This alone wasn't worthy of a ban, but then he came back from the grave and Jesus issued a C&D against knighty or something.

And yes, DaemoN67's mother is on fimfiction, posting on his birthday or death anniversary.

As for my first ten followers:
- kirbydoesmlp: May 13th, 2015
- RustyKat: February 9th
- Queuefka Palazzo: 1 hour ago. I'm pretty sure the guy had many names since he followed me.
- moonview: Online.
- CanterlotGuardian: April 25th, 2017. I vaguely recall this guy.
- silverstar92: October 3rd, 2015. The guy managed to gather 43 followers despite having no stories or blogs (him following over 500 people may have something to do with that).
- Lilith911: February 26th. I thought it'd be earlier since I haven't heard from them for a while. They had a goal to follow everyone, ended up on roughly 2700 users)
- TheOverlord: 12 hours ago
- KiltedKey: yesterday. He wrote comedy fics, but apparently the last of his stories came out in 2013.
- Pony-Berserker: February 17th. I met him online under a different name long before MLP, funnily enough (we're both Polish). His fimfic presence isn't very big, but he's a well-known artist.

Also, I recall talking a lot with my follower #12, TheSheepMaster, but he was last online on January 1st, 2017. Not to mention that I have some bizarre luck for banned followers: 6 of them, including Julia, formerly Eris H. Discordia or something.

I wasn't following you before, but that's only because I always forget to hit the follow button, like the moron I am. I've since corrected that issue. And just FYI, I will indeed be reading you again... even if I have no idea how long it'll take me to get to The Hypocrisy of Tolerance. I've often wondered about the many people following me and how many are actively doing so. Considering my review blogs average only 200 or so viewers within the first week of publication, I can't imagine it's a lot. So...

#1) AbsurdistScribbler: Last seen active May 18, 2016
#2) Skeeter The Lurker: Last seen active March 1, 2018.
#3) Th3 Torx: Last seen active March 5, 2018.
#4) bigmacattack82: Last seen active November 20, 2017.
#5) Tramper: Last seen active March 7, 2018.
#6) Trials: Last seen active January 12, 2015.
#7) Meta Knight: Last seen active March 11, 2018.
#8) EppalJeck: Last seen active March 11, 2018
#9) Holo: Last seen active August 10, 2015.
#10) Bronyanonymous: Last seen active August 16, 2014.

Huh, half of mine are fairly active. It kinda surprises me to realize that Skeeter's the second person to have ever followed me. But the one that really gets to me is Holo. I had a lot of conversation with that guy back in the day. He even asked me to take over one of his projects when he quit the fandom years ago, a Silver Spoon x Diamond Tiara friendship. I'm sad to say I never got around to it. But that leaves two people who I don't think ever commented and six I honestly forgot all about.

Much shame.

Well, you know what, why not do this. I... actually talk to 5 of these 11 fairly regularly.
#1. 7th Outpost - 3 hours ago
#2. Georg - Online now (waves)
#3. CoffeeBean - 8 minutes ago
#4. princeps - Yesterday
#5. horizon - 54 minutes ago
#6. Singularity Dream - Yesterday
#7. Viking ZX - 22 minutes ago
#8. Orbiting Kettle - 11 minutes ago
#9. Kitcat36 - Last friday
#10. Moonlit Path (Calming Moon) - February 14th
*extends it slightly to:
#11. 4814377 - 51 minutes ago

4814373
Oh, hush you... of course, it's a positive.

Well, since you asked. Because I’m one of those people who, when asked “How are you doing,” start explaining, imagining you actually wanted to know.

I am pretty sure that the first person who followed me got banned. Since they followed me without ever talking to me, I expect it was one of those schemes to rack up followers relying on the people’s instinct to follow back, which I don’t have. The next one was the Descendant, who is absent for known reasons.

I never actually talked to at least half of the remaining early ten:

  • Boxx – absent since March 2017. A silent lurker, to me.
  • RedScarWolf – is around somewhere, last seen in February. Commented once or twice, but did not turn up again.
  • Dandereshy – is around, a silent lurker.
  • Masterweaver – still quite active, though we rarely actually converse.
  • Acarcion – Online. I can’t remember much of anything about them.
  • GhostOfHeraclitus – Ghost is very talented in actually being around, somewhere, but ridiculously difficult to get hold of. Ghosts are generally fickle.
  • Questionable – I often observe them in comments on other people’s posts, but not mine.
  • Recon777 – Still around, but after the initial burst of interaction, has largely vanished from my ∆-vicinity.

Frankly, followers are not people I remember. There’s a short list of people who comment on my posts and hang out in the Pony Canon Research Society discord server, and they are easy to keep track of.

For that matter, why would anyone actually care if I disappeared? Hardly anybody ever starts a conversation with me.

Anywhere.

4814437

If it's any consolation, I'd care if you disappeared. You do excellent work with your blogs on MLP canon.

Also, I would be concerned for your well-being. Can't forget that bit.

Hang on -- this nemryn? If so, they entered (and in fact won) a small contest of mine a couple of months ago. Another bit of interconnectedness.

The first place I saw this was when Present Perfect posted it. Now I see Georg has, and I realise it's a thing that's happening.

I felt a lot the same way. Most of my original 10 are still active, but I don't ever hear from them or I just see them trolling around on Discord with nothing to do with me (AppleTank).

Others were people I'd almost considered friends, and have long since left. There were a few that were banned or got themselves banned and I largely know why (A Follower, Jake The Dog).

Here's a revised list of the first ten of mine, rather than cherrypicking which I did under Present's blog:

atomicbrony45 -- January 26th
snintendog -- Nov 8th, 2017
bookplayer -- online
SolidFire -- yesterday
Brony2893 -- 9 hours ago
Dusty the Royal Janitor -- 9 hours ago
Fonypan - 1 hour ago
Lorthalis of Crows -- Last Friday
AppleTank -- 40 minutes ago
TBS AlexDK -- Last Friday

Special mentions (if you're on this list, you left an impression. Congrats):
sniggles -- Dec 17th, 2016 (miss ya, man </3)
Julia -- Sep 6th, 2015
A Follower -- Apr 6th, 2015
Stiggerzz -- Last Monday
Chaotic Note -- 8 hours ago

Ps. +1

Login or register to comment
Join our Patreon to remove these adverts!