The October Bump
If you look at the traffic graph on the lower right hand column of this blog, you'll see that the montly traffic to this blog peaked in October and has been in decline since.
I think I may turn the monthly decline around this month, but I doubt I'll reach the levels of traffic I got in October and November for another month or two.
Jackson talks about this in his recent blog post, called "where have all the comments gone".
I see this trend in the popular blogs as well. I believe this is the monthly traffic graph for Jeff Jarvis' Buzzmachine. At least I got it from his sitemeter tag on his page.
Before Jeff squawks too loudly, I should point out that if this is his traffic page, it doesn't count his largest form of traffic which is RSS and it is probably true that his overall traffic numbers have been rising, not falling.
But that also may be part of the answer to Ted's question.
I think the blogs got a huge boost from the political season and that brought a lot of people to the blog world that aren't bloggers themselves and aren't super technical.
Those readers may be gone, for now, and we may be back to the bloggers and geeks that have made up the blog world for the past five years.
If that's the case, then the percentage of overall traffic that comes from RSS will be higher now than it was in the fall. The traffic declines represent the loss of one form of audience, but other forms may still be rising. Commenting (which requires visiting the web page itself) may be in decline as well as a result.