With the last beer of the 40b40 now finished, it's time for a few days of debriefing on what we've learned, what it all means, and where we go from here. First up, a note about our readers...
When I started this 40b40 blog a few months ago, I installed visitor tracking so I could follow how much interest the site was getting. In the past few months, the blog has had thousands of visits -- though not everyone has been to the donations page yet.
The data allow me to tell, up to a point, who’s been visiting. The tracking program captures the user’s internet service provider (ISP) domains, which are not only numbers but identifiable network locations, with names provided by the networks themselves.
Now, it’s not surprising that my colleagues at work have been following this blog, and given my circle of friends and professional contacts, it’s only to be expected that readers are logging in from media outlets like the Guardian, Reuters and the BBC. But some of the following were a bit more unexpected.
The top 15, then, in reverse order...
15) Commission Europeenne (Clearly these people have very little to do all day but look at a beer blog...)
14) International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (We are now taking bets on whether it was more Red Cross or Red Crescent...)
13) High Commissioner on National Minorities (I know who you are and where you live. And I know you are a national minority in your own street...)
12) Philadelphia Museum of Art (The 40b40 blog has become part of a new multimedia installation there.)
11) Korea Telecom (I’m assuming that’s South Korea, though I have heard Kim Jung Il is a big fan of Piraat and has 25 cases of it imported for his personal use in Pyongyang every month.)
10) Detroit Lakes Manufacturing (Who the fuck manufactures lakes? Are sentient time-travelling glaciers visiting the 40b40, perhaps?)
9) The Boeing Company (Obviously they are preparing to fill a wide-body jet with Belgian beer and fly it to Côte d’Ivoire for Seb, the 40b40’s Trappist and Regional Brewery Analyst, who is moving there tomorrow.)
8) Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (Seems they’re all just tired of Molsen and Labatts over in Canada...)
7) Fidelity Investments (Is the 40b40 about to receive start-up money to fund its 400b400 expansion project?)
6) Westminster College of Salt Lake City (Mormons love Belgian beer, too.)
5) Human Rights Watch (Sure, but are they watching people who haven’t donated?)
4) InBev (The mega-drinks company and brewers of Leffe, Hoegaarden and others has been using the 40b40 beer reviews to improve their recipes...)
3) Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (They’re drinking Belgian beers like fish over there, no doubt.)
2) Astrophysikalisches Institut Potsdam (And you thought beer drinking wasn’t rocket science...)
1) Network of the Ministery of Foreign Affairs of Belgium (sic. Someone really needs to tell them to get their spelling right.)