Posts Tagged ‘Blogging’

A Brit Talks Football has closed

Wednesday, December 21st, 2016 | News

Over the past four years, I have very much enjoyed blogging on A Brit Talks Football. The feedback was positive, especially around the live game blogs. However, all good things must come to an end, and it is time for me to move on. Therefore, the site has closed.

If you still want updates from me, then you may wish to follow this blog, which is my personal one. It is about family, restaurants, technology and of course, the NFL. You can use the form below to subscribe to weekly updates, or follow me on Twitter at @chrisworfolk.

When to Rob a Bank

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2016 | Books

When to Rob a Bank: A Rogue Economist’s Guide to the World is a book compiled from posts on the Freakonomics blog. Each post is written by either Steven Levitt Stephen Dubner.

They start off by telling an anecdote about how they had been writing the Freakonomics blog and presumed there was no way to monetise it. Then they saw a bottled water factory and realised that sometimes people were actually willing to pay for something that was free if it was put into nice packaging. So they wrapped their blog posts into a book and began selling it.

Some of the posts were interesting, but it literally was just a collection of them, sometimes arranged into a theme. There was no flow, no real overall structure, no main point or take-home message. To me, these are the additions that turn a collection of short anecdotes, good on their own, into an interesting book.


Like my blog, but too busy to check it?

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 | News

A lot of people tell me they enjoy reading my blog – but they are too busy to check it. That makes sense. We are all busy people. The stuff I post here might be fun to read, but it is not going to give you any essential skills or form part of your work life. Therefore, it seems very unlikely you will wake up every morning thinking “I must check Chris’s blog today”.

Unless you are my wife. And statistically most of you are not.

But never fear, I have come up with a solution. I now have a weekly newsletter that sends you all of the content from the previous week. Each Monday an email will go out with a list of all the posts in the last 7 days. If any take your fancy, you can click through to read the full post.

Here is what it looks like:


To sign up for it, use the sign up form at the bottom of every post. If you are on the homepage, just click through to an individual post to find it (it is below the comments section). Here is what the sign up form looks like:


Obviously this is my personal blog, so there is 100% no spam. We don’t do that kind of thing in Yorkshire. It is run via MailChimp, so you can unsubscribe at any time.

On a side note, I have moved the comments section up the page to make it easier to find. You will now find it directly below the related posts section.

Tenth anniversary

Friday, July 11th, 2014 | Life

Today is the tenth anniversary of my blog. That is a long time. If it was a child, it would soon be finishing primary school! For the fifth anniversary I had balloons. No such care has been taken for this one. Though I do hope you have been “overwhelmed by fun” as my first blog post declared as an aim.

I have not gone back and read a lot of my old posts. They’re probably horrible. My views have changed a lot over the past decade, especially during the past year. I was an idiot when I was 17. I am an idiot now, but at least I know enough to know that. By the time I reach my grandparent’s age, I might actually know something useful.


  • I have written 3,284 posts
  • That represents 6.3 posts per week
  • 1,444,814 spam comments have been posted
  • Last month 15,214 people visited my blog
  • The most popular month was June 2013 when 17,651 people visited
  • The most popular search term for reaching my blog is “charles darwin”

The Rise of Darwin is a new one. For years the most popular way for people to find my blog was searching for my food chain diagram.

Comments policy

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012 | Thoughts

One thing I have noticed more and more is that some blogs are publishing a comments moderation policy.

That’s fine, but I just don’t understand why.

Comments on my blog are moderated, if they are good comments (they don’t have to be positive, just not spam, or abusive – and even those I normally let through) I approve them, if not then I trash them. That isn’t a policy though, it’s just what I do. I don’t have to publish your comments, I don’t owe you any legal responsibility, so why would I have a policy on it? It would only seem to complicate matters when I can just deal with the comments without one.

This is perhaps why some people have become incensed over the recently flurry of harassment policies being introduced, especially at student groups where a student union wide one is already in place. You don’t need a second line of harassment policies, you just need to actually deal with the harassment.

A Brit Talks Football

Wednesday, August 15th, 2012 | Sport

American Football

As some of you know, I’ve been a huge fan of American football for days now. After deciding to really get on board with Norm’s annual Super Bowl party, I decided to support the 49ers, only to see them knocked out in the championship round by the New York Giants.

Since then, with the new NFL season having arrived, I’ve picked myself up an NFL GamePass to allow me to watch the games over here, and have decided to blog about my experiences on my new NFL football blog, entitled A Brit Talks Football.

You can also follow my updates on Twitter.

Best search terms

Saturday, June 4th, 2011 | Distractions

I recently took a quick glance at my stats to see, well I would say how many people read my blog, but what you really get is how many spam bots have hit your blog. In any case, it was interesting to see some of the search terms that people have used to reach my blog:

  • dogging
  • red light area in london
  • hamster birthday
  • chicken brain
  • osama bin laden death photo
  • sue my chin buff my pylon
  • dont buff my pylon
  • cottaging blog
  • daily star they ve stolen all our jobs
  • bejeweled illuminati
  • talk to dead ancestors
  • water way to have a good time

Dogging I can understand, though I imagine people will be quite disappointed in the content they find when they get here. Chicken brain comes from the time we went to Nando’s for my birthday and found a chicken brain in our food.

The buff my pylon stuff is a reference to Brass Eye while the last term is a reference to Alan Partridge, though the blog post itself is nothing to do with that.

The Daily Star reference refers to a headline they ran in 2008 claiming immigrants had taken every single unskilled job in the past few years.

Beyond that, I’m a little lost though. I don’t have any pictures of Osama Bin Laden’s dead body, I’ve never tried cottaging and I’m fairly sure that Bejeweled is not a product of the Illuminati designed to control our minds. And even if I did, I certainly haven’t expressed that opinion on my blog!

EDIT: Actually, while I didn’t say that, I did suggest PopCap might be the new Illuminati.

From one troll to another

Friday, June 3rd, 2011 | Thoughts

Last week, Emma posted a link on her Facebook stream, linking to a blog post by The Honest Courtesan. While it’s interesting to see Emma’s reading choices ;), the point of the blog post was to rebut a post by someone calling themselves Eve’s Daughter who made a post entitled “A Man is a Rape-Supporter If.”

In this list, Eve’s Daughter sets out a list of things which, if apply to you, make you a rape supporter. However, it’s written in a way in which every adult man falls into the category, making every man alive a rape supporter.

Now, I’ll be honest with you, once or twice in the past I have been known to troll a little. A was particularly pleased with my pre-election night throw away comment “oh no! I’ve lost my polling card, now I can’t vote :(“, as dozens of people rushed to tell me I could still vote 😀 .

So when I read the post by Eve’s Daughter, the first thought that went through my mind wasn’t, “what a load of nonsense this is”, it was simple one word – troll.

Of course, I could be wrong. There are a lot of radical extremist feminists out there and some of them probably do believe this. But here is why I believe it could well be a troll:

1. It’s clearly designed to get people really angry. It makes the bold claim that every man ever is a rape supporter in a bold and uncompromising way, stereotyping an entire gender. And it’s works. Check out The Amazing Atheist going mental on YouTube.

Strip out the WordPress header and insert a logo for The Daily Mail and it suddenly seems a lot more in context. To me, it almost seems like a job application for The Mail Online.

2. It is designed to draw in as many people as possible. Everyone checks boxes on this list so everyone who reads the list can’t help but been drawn in to the debate.

Again, it works really well. Not only are people commenting on the subject matter across the internet, but even I am here blogging about whether it is a troll or not.

3. It’s obviously not true, but is written in a way to make it almost plausible. The author could have just written “all men are rape supporters” and everyone would have ignored it as obviously nonsense. Instead the piece leads you through a series of leading questions to slowly heat your blood, without setting it straight to boil. That way, you don’t switch off straight away, you begin reading and get hooked before the fire is really stoked.

4. The author shows some signs of intelligence and satirical humour. On May 25th of this year, they made a post entitled “Life, the Universe, and Everything”. While this could be a coincidence, it is almost certainly a reference to Douglas Adams’ Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, a fantastically clever piece of fiction that people like myself and you, my well educated yet probably bitterly sarcastic audience, enjoy.

Of course, I could be reading far too much into this, but if you accept the premise that the author of this blog is a Douglas Adams fan, and then ask the question “if a Douglas Adams fan published such a piece, is it serious or satirical trolling” the last option is suddenly a very appealing one.

5. There is no author information on the blog. If you were seriously campaigning on these kind of issues, surely you would put your name to it? Meanwhile if you were just doing it to get a rise out of people, you might as well publish anonymously, especially if you were a troll and people knew the real you didn’t actually believe any of this.

There was some mention of death threats somewhere on the blog, which could be a reason to publish anonymously, but I don’t think this is the case because who would actually make them? Surely anyone smart enough to rebut such arguments isn’t the kind of person that makes death threats so who would be so angry about this kind of writing to do that? Not to mention that if you believe in a cause strongly enough, which we’re supposed to believe the author does, that kind of thing won’t stop you.

As I said however, I could well be wrong. One of my points was going to be that it is simply too OTT, that reading the comments showed that this was clearly a comically absurd character created by the author and that clearly it was impossible to create a worldview so shielded from reality that truth was so utterly unable to penetrate. But I’ve been working in atheism for five years now, and from my experience, I know that this just isn’t true.

Still, so many of the techniques used in the article just seem to ring a little bit too true of the tried and tested strategy for a good troll post.

A suitable home for blogging

Thursday, September 30th, 2010 | Friends

I don’t know where I was going with that title really, I just wanted to get the word suit in there in reference to suit day which is where the above picture is taken from. Anyway…

I was pleased to discover earlier today that my fellow co-director of Row One and joint chief of the Buzz social committee Jason Simpson (also of University of Leeds School of Computing fame as well) had also started blogging.

Having recently bought a house with his other partner Sarah, it makes for interesting tales of house renovation, pub trips and the kind of exciting tales you expect from a fellow DYG (Dynamic Young Go-Getter).

Have a gander at Jason Simpson’s blog. Particularly the post where he, a self-described fan of spicy food, adds some legitimacy to my claim that I genuinely had a really, really hot curry back in August and aren’t just a wuss (which is completely unrelated).

Going back to basics

Sunday, May 16th, 2010 | Thoughts

Back when I originally moved over from Nerd Federation to my own personal blog, one of the major reasons I quoted from getting a “fresh start” with the move to WordPress and a new policy of direct, to the point blogs, was that I just didn’t write much on Nerd Federation anymore because I had got myself into a pattern where I felt I needed to write a lot, and so didn’t, and so never blogged.

Of late I feel I have fallen into this trap once again. I’ve simply been too busy of late to write long, photographed blog posts and so I just haven’t been blogging. But there is a lot going on I would like to talk about and share and so it seems an appropriate time to try and start fresh with new, shorter blog posts – which also has the advantage that anyone reading my blog doesn’t have endlessly long posts to slog their way through.

I really have been busy recently – the last time I can remember having an evening at home relaxing, rather than working, was somewhere near the start of April. Still, everyone thinks they are busy, indeed every year I seem to look back and think “I thought I was so busy a year ago – but it’s nothing compared to now.” Makes me wonder how we will all feel next year when if the model holds, we’ll be even busier than we are now lol.