Are your read counts down? Here's why


  • MichaelLimjoco
    MichaelLimjoco
    1 year ago

    So, despite being new to WattPad, I have noticed, as have many others, that read counts are down. Many have blamed the removal of SYS as the culprit.

    It's not true.

    Here's what my personal experience has been (I'm stating facts):

    1) I've been here exactly a month today. So far I've gotten 4,937 reads, and my story's landed #13 on Sci-Fi. If you look at my read, vote, and comment count, you won't be able to figure out WHY I'm #13. 2) I've posted on SYS exactly ONCE (during my first week). And it didn't do a thing for me. 3) Two weeks ago, RIGHT BEFORE Wattpad made their changes, I clocked 1,500 reads in JUST TWO days.

    So here's my big theory:

    After their big change, Wattpad is NO LONGER COUNTING READS FROM NON-REGISTERED MEMBERS.

    If you don't have a ton of loyal followers who are MEMBERS of Wattpad, your work isn't getting read. No matter how much you advertise on SYS, reads from the outside world are no longer being counted.

    I've approached WP about this and the last answer I received was that, well, there's nothing technical about it. There must be something else wrong with my work (essentially insinuating its my fault my reads are down). But if my work stinks, how come the read count dropped ALL OF A SUDDEN? And how come I'm NOT THE ONLY ONE with this problem?

    More alarmingly, if my work is so bad, HOW THE HECK IS IT #13 on the Sci-Fi List???

    So here's another theory: even though WP is no longer displaying the read counts from the outside, it is still playing a factor in the rankings. Which means all those outside reads are still there somehow.

    I'm a numbers guy. Numbers don't lie.

    Now there's one final, frustrating element to all this:

    You see those guys at the top with millions of reads? They got there on the original method. Now, I have nothing but respect for those folks. But WP's change now makes it MATHEMATICALLY IMPOSSIBLE for newbies me to get to their level.

    If you agree with this, please comment on here. Thanks!

  • _SuVR_
    _SuVR_
    1 year ago

    I agree with you, it's completely unfair for new writers not having all their reads counted and a bit discouraging.. And if what you're saying is right, and they're no longer counting non-member reads, I honestly believe Wattpad should inform all members about it. I think it's really unprofessional from them, to make changes and don't tell anyone (if this is really the case).

    But honestly, yesterday I experianced something that showed me that it may be a technical problem and not some change in the reading counting.. I had 6008 reads, and a few minutes later, I saw that someone had voted on 8 chapeters of my story, and when I went to see my reads, it still was 6008. So unless you can vote without read, (which i don't think it's the case), the reads counting is still messed up.

  • AbelweldStealthhole1
    AbelweldStealthhole1
    1 year ago

    I totally agree. I think some of the established writers / ambassadors got fed up with vote trading and reads for reads and somehow got to the Wattpad team but although its stopped the old practices like you say Michael its stumped all the better newbies whose books were just starting to take off. I think its totally out of order personally. But the powers that be obviously dont give a monkies. Somehow they must have worked out that not counting reads of the general public benefits all the members. Wierd! Just to clarify on the new thread. Just before the changes I had finally achieved 3000 reads a week. Now im lucky if I get 200. How about if wattpad scrub everyones reads including the established authors and start again from zero. I can tell you now there'll soon kick up a stink! Abel

  • MajaDiana
    MajaDiana
    1 year ago

    @MichaelLimjoco @_SuVR_

    It's a big site, personally I think that there might be a delay in the updating.

    For instance, have you ever noticed your total vote count? Even if you vote on your own work, (supposing you haven't already) it won't count it until some time later.

    I know this can be discouraging - truly I get it, but I wouldn't start getting upset about it.

    Wattpad is only six years old, and it's still developing a lot and sometimes they might make a rash decision, or make a mistake. - But trust me. They will only change for the greater good of all the members and their own vision with the site :)

    I'm also certain that Wattpad didn't mean to say your work sucked. If they said it could be something wrong with the work - then perhaps they meant the profile is bugged - My spare account was randomly shown as not existing earlier this year. It happened to many people all over :)

  • AbelweldStealthhole1
    AbelweldStealthhole1
    1 year ago

    @_SuVR_ Its been the case for some time that voters reads arent counted. Its also true that you can extort your own read figures at least once a day by checking each of your chapters for read numbers - effectively reading them yourself increases your reads which in itself is totally ridiculous. There are some serious IT issues here and I have a feeling that the reason Wattpad dont put out any general advisories is possibly because their IT dept dont know how to resolve them. I think if they knew what they were doing the problems would have been solved by now!

  • AbelweldStealthhole1
    AbelweldStealthhole1
    1 year ago

    @xxmajaine Hi. I notice you are very much on the side of Wattpad. Are you an ambassador by any chance? Not that I have anything against Ambassadors. They do a stirling job and give up lots of their personal time. But we should be wary of an us and them situation developing. I think its important not to just brush this issue aside I think we should keep posting about this grievance until it effects their reputation purely because on past experience nothing has been resolved through polite queries!

  • MajaDiana
    MajaDiana
    1 year ago

    @AbelweldStealthhole1

    I am an ambassador, yes. I also do spend a lot of free time to help out, yes. But I am no different than you - or any other regular user. I've just been active here for a long time and seen different changes being made and then re-done if they didn't work.

    Example, with the clubs (don't worry, I'm not changing subject. Just illustrating what I mean). Self promotion was everywhere. Flooding every club, so no real discussions could take place. A topic like this would be buried in the matter of seconds.

    So they made SYS - Poetry was being overlooked, they made SYP. A great idea. Except it was abused. Not by everyone, and for all the bad stuff going on there, there also was the occasional 'hey this works pretty well'. Not to mention that the more 'popular' genres dominated it wildly. I could go in there, and the first twenty discussions would be fan fiction/teen fiction/romance read for read. It wasn't optimal, so now they have changed it. If this doesn't work. Then they will change it again. It's all based on user experience, and how people provide valuable feedback.

    Another example is Undiscovered Gems club. It was meant for bringing attention to those authors which you personally love, those you want to support. Except it suddenly got flooded by people who made deals. Rather than helping out people they personally loved and wanted to recommend. They recommended people because they were part of a deal. - Great idea, but not exactly fair in terms of all those that couldn't participate in deals, due to busy lives. And also, it was widely dominated. So they deleted it.

    I don't know more than you in terms of what changes they make. But I've seen time and time again that Wattpad actually do address the issues and concerns about their users. - Do you use Facebook? Have you gotten the same response when you wrote them about something? Have you gotten any response? - I sure haven't.

  • MajaDiana
    MajaDiana
    1 year ago

    As for the read count. My theory (remember this is only a theory from me - nothing has been affirmed by Wattpad) goes on the fact that when they launched their new app - and the ability to sync between the site and the application they also made every new upload get an instant read when the app synced, simply because it was in the library.

    As to what I based my theory on? - I literally went in and uploaded every single one of my stories. The less popular as well as my popular one. And in the matter of a few hours, they all had a massive account of reads that even was higher than the part before them. - Which shouldn't be possible unless all these people started to read from the back.

    They might have changed that, so instead of not counting 'non-member' reads they are perhaps just waiting for people to actually click and read the work before they are counted. Meaning that the decrease in reads have less to do with wattpad's functionality or your own skills regarding writing and more to do with the fact that readers also have lives, and they might not be reading it right now.

    Also, I was not trying to stop this discussion. You're entitled to express your opinion. I was merely trying to express my own two cents in here :) There's nothing wrong with this discussion, if it was against the rules I would already have closed it. I just saw an opportunity to chime in :)

  • MichaelLimjoco
    MichaelLimjoco
    1 year ago

    @xxmajaine To be absolutely clear, I don't think anyone's upset. :)

    I think it has more to do with getting a transparent answer to the issue.

    This was the response I received from the Wattpad Team:

    "Everything relating to read counts is now working as it should on our end. If you are experiencing slower growth in reads for your stories well there may be some non-technical related issues to that. One thing that you can try is to look at how many of your readers will make it through an entire book by checking the reads on individual chapters."

    I think this response is caught in a catch 22. For one, WP is claiming everything is fixed. Second, they also claim they've made no other changes. So there's either a technical issue, or they did change something, but because they said they didn't do either one, they're sort of stuck don't you think? Both can't be true at the same time because it would mean the third variable, the reads would be the same.

    CONTINUED IN NEXT POST:

  • MichaelLimjoco
    MichaelLimjoco
    1 year ago

    I am going back to numbers. My reads prior to the change numbered in the hundreds per chapter. They have now dwindled to less than 50. If it's true that it has something to do with my work, then I should be the only one with the problem.

    Your theory on the reads counting for each page uploaded doesn't do it for me either, I'm afraid. For that to be valid, you'd have to have thousands of pages to achieve that result. Remember, I clocked 1500 reads in two days prior to the change, and I only had ten pages up. Also, if my work wasn't doing well, how did it manage to rank #13?

    Something doesn't "add up" in all of this. Again, numbers don't lie.

    I am completely on board with Wattpad's changes against vote trading and read for read. But this new method defeats many other things. For instance. WP clearly states in their FB and Twitter plugins: Want to get more reads? Share it on FB and Twitter. Well, guess what happens when you do that today? You get no reads, unfortunately :)

    Understand this: Whatever this change is, it's a game changer. It's understandable why there is an outcry.

    It is truly not my intention to turn this into a mutiny or flame war. It is more out of curiosity more than anything else. I hope I did not offend anyone on this, and do humbly apologize if I have.

  • AbelweldStealthhole1
    AbelweldStealthhole1
    1 year ago

    @xxmajaine Thanks for your reply. I don't really understand what you mean about the syncing of the app creating loads of reads every time a new chapter was uploaded as i'm not even vaguely a computer technician in any form. If that is the case it may go some way towards explaining the issue but not fully. It would explain the large amount of reads at the time the chapter was uploaded which I too experienced just before the changes but not the overall drop off in reads. I have to say I'm not totally convinced. I could moan all day on this discussion but it won't change anything. As you seem to be confirming yourself (or am I reading you wrongly) Wattpad seem to leave an awful lot to be desired in terms of keeping users informed. Perhaps they should have a discussion board updating technical issues on a daily basis or is there already one we don't know about! (If not perhaps you could use your Ambassador status to suggest it - you might have more success than we have had!

    Surely there is one obvious way of clarifying this issue.

    We know that reads from members are generally updated instantly (apart from when they accompany votes when they are non existant, as evidenced by the fact that when you read your own work it is counted immediately)

    All one would need to do would be to write down the read total of a chapter and then get five friends who are not members to read the chapter at the same time from five different ISP addresses. If nothing is registered we will know that non-members' reads are not being counted confirming that this site is no longer a useful tool for budding writers to get themselves noticed (which kind of defeats what Wattpad was surely originally set up to achieve). Abel

  • AbelweldStealthhole1
    AbelweldStealthhole1
    1 year ago

    @xxmajaine Also I completely understand how the vote trading and reads for reads was getting out of control but to turn Wattpad into an Elite club primarily for the guys who have already succeeded (which is what it will have become if it only concentrates purley on the members and their activity) will completely change the nature of the animal and I suspect that over time the site's usage will drop dramatically (if it hasn't already done so) Abel (anyway there's my two penneth - i'll shut up now and let someone else speak!)

    PS: I'm glad you didn't find anything in this thread to warrant shutting it down (Yet). Hopefully it can still be used as a sounding off board but done tactfully of course!

  • _MaudlinEuphoria
    _MaudlinEuphoria
    1 year ago

    I agree... :)

  • AbelweldStealthhole1
    AbelweldStealthhole1
    1 year ago

    @MichaelLimjoco Hi Michael. I think rather than create a mutiny you have done Wattpad a great service by creating this discussion. Hopefully if enough people contribute and more and more Ambassadors cast their beady eyes over it perhaps word might get back to the powers that be! (Oh hold on a minute - was that a pig I just saw flying by?)

  • MajaDiana
    MajaDiana
    1 year ago

    @MichaelLimjoco

    Oh, I am not offended don't worry. I do think you misunderstood what I meant with the app syncing. - This might be my fault though, I'm Danish and have had no education in English, so I'm winging it often lol.

    I'll try to illustrate it. :) (I will reference, but not put links to the works I mention. Don't wanna break the guidelines. He he ;D )

    For my on going series, I have on the latest updated chapter 14, which I updated monday, 30 reads.

    Chapter 13: 261 reads.

    Chapter 12: 259 reads.

    Chapter 11: 273 reads.

    Chapter 10: 259 reads.

    Chapter 9: 207 reads.

    Chapter 8: 155 reads.

    Chapter 7: 168 reads.

    Chapter 6: 166 reads.

    Chapter 5: 161 reads.

    Chapter 4: 171 reads.

    Chapter 3: 169 reads.

    Chapter 2: 342 reads.

    Chapter 1: 235 reads.

    Copyright notice: 308 reads.

    Now, that was horrible to go through, and I hope I never ever have to do that again. <.<

    It's easy to see where there is a remarkably change right? - Granted, I'll give you that there can be times where I have checked the comments, and there for making the reads irregular. However, that counts as one read pr. 24 hours which means that if you are never being read, you can on one work, in the term of a year (supposing you have filled out all 100 parts) give yourself 365 reads on each one. This is the same for everyone, so there really isn't much to banter about there.

    However, my idea was that around chapter 8, the syncing of libraries came into play. You say numbers don't lie. Then please do tell me what other explanation there could be for chapter eight to have 155 reads where as chapter nine have 207 reads. And then the chapters after continue to increase. Has all my readers blatantly skipped chapter eight? (I hope not, I like that one)

  • MajaDiana
    MajaDiana
    1 year ago

    @MichaelLimjoco

    continued:

    Let's say that for instant fifty people have my story on their phone. Sadly there's nowhere to check it, since 'libraries' are secret. But it's possible. This work is a sequel, and many people have simply added it to wait for it to become completed. (I'm terrible with uploads, so they refuse to read until I'm nearing the end =( ) - also, since I won the wattys for the first it's also realistic to think that at least fifty people have added it to their phone.

    So when I uploaded chapter nine, I got fifty instant reads, when the app sent a push up to the followers mobile. Then, as people read on, it would slowly increase by the 155 that the prior chapter had too, thus making it higher than the chapter previous.

    I'm not sure this was on purpose, and there was a lot of variables. WIFI could have been turned off for some, and since wattpad notifications have been sketchy too. But I checked it with a friend, and sure enough, when we both got it on our phones. The reads increased massively.

    That's the only explanations I have for the irregular reads, because I don't share the link to my facebook or anywhere that could cause people to only click that one.

    I hope this cleared it up. I can't say I understand the technicalities behind it, but it just makes sense to me when looking at the read counts. I also think that this has been changed again, due to the low reads on my latest chapter.

  • MajaDiana
    MajaDiana
    1 year ago

    @AbelweldStealthhole1

    I explained the syncing up there ^^ Well. as far as I know. <.< lol.

    As for Wattpad and them broadcasting changes. I posted this on another thread earlier (just going to copy paste it even though it might not fit directly in)

    "You are all aware that when you made an account you agreed to the terms of service, let me just highlight a crucial part for the people who think that Wattpad has no right to change anything.

    wattpad.com may, in its sole discretion, modify or revise these Terms of Service and policies at any time, and you agree to be bound by such modifications or revisions. "

    Furthermore it says, that they do try to broadcast once in a while. but that it's up to the users to check in. Here's the link in case you want to check yourself: http://www.wattpad.com/terms

    And yes, we might want to know more, this is a new thing. They broadcast things on their support page when servers are down, along with on their facebook and their blog. We have suggested a more user friendly way of checking in, and so far I think they are attempting to start one up right here in the clubs. You can see here: http://www.wattpad.com/club/21-wattpad-announcements

    It's not fully developed of what will be shared there. However, we can hope that they figure it out soon, right? Nothing is perfect and it will take a long time before things are even close to calming down. Right now, we are riding on a wave of a lot of glitches and server crashes, along with having changes to deal with. This happens to many other things, and sometimes a mistake is made.

    Do you have Windows XP? Well, they send out updates all the time even though they should be all figured out. My father still has it, and he updated and it went complete bonkers on him. A few days after there was a new update, and everything was dealt with. Same thing for the application.

  • MajaDiana
    MajaDiana
    1 year ago

    @AbelweldStealthhole1 continued:

    LOL. I just noticed how wide around I go when I attempt to explain something. <.< I apologize.

    Also, you can never be one hundred percent sure, because even if you made that experiment with five friends, there's still the possibility that at that time five members would read your work. So you can never know with 100% certainty.

    If people leave because of it, it's their own choice. It's sad yes, but personally I don't think they can find any site with the user face and friendly support anywhere else when it comes to writing. You get most exposure on here - even though it's hard at first. Just keep at it. :)

  • _delusivereality
    _delusivereality
    1 year ago

    There isn't really any reason to fret about this. True, what you've mentioned makes sense and probably does apply.

    I've been on here for about three years--and as far as I can tell, stuff like this happens.

    It's spring--and with spring, comes storms, ya-da-ya-da. They're a Canadian business, and just like America in the spring, they experience many, MANY storms.

    Usually the site is a bit messed up during the time.

    You've got to keep their location and what that location offers in check, too.

  • AbelweldStealthhole1
    AbelweldStealthhole1
    1 year ago

    Controversial Theory:

    While laying in the bath mulling over this reads issue I came up with a possible explanation (by the way I have no problem with Wattpad changing things after all it is their site - I'm only championing fairness for all.)

    Now - I keep tabs on a number of other writers which I use as benchmarks for my own progress who will remain nameless.

    There is one with a similar read count to me whose reads have decreased almost exactly the same as me over the period since the change.

    However another writer who was on around 90000 dried up at the same time and for a couple of weeks had around ten reads a day like me and the other guy.

    Then suddenly as she hit the 100000 mark her reads started increasing exponentially again at one to two hundred per day.

    So here's my controversial theory: The Wattpad team and the 'big read' writers and Ambassadors got together and discussed how they could weed out the wheat from the chaff. Quite rightly they wanted to weed out the votes for votes and comments for comments folk and also people with large social networks who were getting reads purely through the number of people they knew regardless of whether they had any talent.

    So - they decided on a 'breakpoint figure' of 100000, up to which only a percentage (say 10%) of your reads would be registered. If you then succeeded in hitting 100000 it would then theoretically prove you were a good writer and therefore your reads would then all be given to you. By that time all the 'not so serious writers' would have long lost heart and given up. Therefore it would become a quality site with genuine talent.

    I'm probably well off the mark but it is the only explanation that fits all scenarios.

    Anyway just a thought. Abel

  • MajaDiana
    MajaDiana
    1 year ago

    @AbelweldStealthhole1

    Heh. I love the conspiracy theory. However, I'd have to say that it's simply not true.

    My boyfriend is in the million reads class, (the big red as you call them) and he's had the same amount of irregularity in his read count as I did. To him it was more visible though, since he uploads quite rapidly.

    Also, Wattpad has no rules regarding grammar, if they had they would most like implement a grammar check, and if you had more than 80% mistakes, you simply couldn't upload your work. lol. - Also, that wouldn't work in favor of other countries since the majority is English, but they can't implement grammar check for every language that's uploaded here. Not to mention that dialogue rules differs from the rest.

    I think it's more a case of the site growing in numbers along with server crashes. It should be back to normal now. And there's really no way to check it to be honest. Not unless all your readers votes and that count is far off from your read count. :)

  • AbelweldStealthhole1
    AbelweldStealthhole1
    1 year ago

    @xxmajaine Thanks very much re the info on the notification links.

    Re my suggestion I don't think you would need to worry about other members reading your work at the same time as the five friends as reads are so few and far between nowadays it's highly unlikely the two activities would coincide!

  • AbelweldStealthhole1
    AbelweldStealthhole1
    1 year ago

    @xxmajaine My 'conspiracy theory' was more slanted towards writing ability than grammar and spelling. Also the reads irregularities are a different issue to the general fall off of reads. Still I appreciate your feedback. Abel

  • MajaDiana
    MajaDiana
    1 year ago

    @AbelweldStealthhole1

    But it still could happen, ;) especially since you now are active, I could be intrigued, Michael could be intrigued along with perhaps some of my followers that saw this in their news feed.

    To be honest, the only thing that works in terms of gaining reads is to be active. When you're not active, then write and upload and be active that way. Post on the site, anywhere. And you can post anything really.

    Every time you post anything, you gain exposure. You posting here, has already provided me with the link to your profile. All it takes is for you to gain my interest enough for me to click your name. And there I can see your work, just as well as any other advertising thread :)

    I had a mini project like that for a time, (still has it to an extend among my followers) where I came up with an idea to advertising, subtly. Everywhere. It's really not that hard. heh.

    And no worries. I merely saw it and wanted to share my opinion. :)

  • AbelweldStealthhole1
    AbelweldStealthhole1
    1 year ago

    @xxmajaine Yeah time and again it has been proven in all walks of life that subtle marketing is the best marketing.

    I definitely need to interact more with the Wattpad community. I seem to go through phases (tied directly into how much bus driving I have had to do that week! Yes its true Grey Aliens do drive buses!) I personally didn't worry unduly about the loss of the SYS club as I only used it periodically but felt for the people who relied on it.

    Hopefully at some point we will get to the bottom of the reads issue. In the meantime on with the novel! Abel

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