January 31, 2004

Since beginning this blog on January 14th, I have dropped a lot of names. Whatever names I dropped, I dropped because I was thinking about the person already or because I saw them in a news article or on TV and they appealed to me personally in some way that made me want to take note of them here. I was not at all considering that people put names into Google and will therefore come visit your blog if you've dropped the name that they've gone searching for. I figured out how to use Sitemeter to get a list of "referral" pages, to see where my visitors come from. That means I can see what the Google search was if people come here from Google.

I have dropped a lot of names in my seventeen days of blogging--movie stars, artists, political figures. But there is one name that leaves them all in the dust, that leaves Tom Cruise and Andy Warhol and John Kerry behind. There is one name that caused the visitation rate here to spike in the last two days. I am writing about law and politics and culture and a wide range of topics that I would be happy to think people are enjoying reading about. But I must face the strange reality that most people are coming here because they want to read about one person.

That person is William Hung.

Here's Pop Life on the subject:
My students have seen him around campus at Berkeley since he's an engineering student here. I'm sure a William Hung Fan Club is just moments away from being created with people wearing T-shirts that read "He Bangs!: I Hang With Hung."
So William, if you're out there, Googling your own name and arriving here, you should know, you've got a lot of fans. You're the Frenchie Davis of American Idol 3, but you've outdone Frenchie, because you've done it without having to go to the trouble of being a good singer. You've accomplished it all with one magnificant, comic performance, and the world loves you!

UPDATE: I see from Metafilter that there is now a William Hung website. The Metafilter discussion includes a comment by someone who knows someone who knows him and who says Hung was deliberately doing a comic performance and some back and forth about whether knowing it was an act makes us like him more or less than if we thought he was clueless.

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