Copyright (c) 1998, Herb Drake.
This work may be freely reproduced and distributed provided that no changes are made, no revenues are collected beyond the nominal cost of media, and credit is given to the author and House Church Central. Any other use requires the written permission of the author. Citing this material on other Internet sites is encouraged, but is to be done only by providing a hypertext reference to this file on this server.
House Church Central appeared in cyberspace in January, 1997, with about a dozen pages of information. Since that time it has increased in size to well over 500 files of one sort or another. It appeared to be a good time for an audit of the site's content, and what better way to do that than to consider the interest shown by its visitors in each of the various components?
Recent access to a powerful new web statistics tool made the time right for such a study. And the because a fair amount of effort was required to reduce the massive amounts of data that emerged, it seemed like a good idea to make it available on the web site itself in the hope that viewers might get an idea of the interests of others in the house church community.
Where does all this information come from? No, there is no "big brother" program sleuthing the web. But each server does maintain "usage logs" that keep a time-stamped record of transactions and those data are often made available to client web site hosts. If there is a problem with these logs, it is their huge size. But special software that runs on the server can read the logs and provide some helpful information. Most commerical web sites regard their usage studies as highly sensitive, competitive information. That, of course, is not a consideration here at House Church Central--if there are other house church sites that can benefit from this information, they are welcome to do so.
The study comprises 98 days of activity from June 26 - Oct 2, 1998. It is not completely accurate, of course, because some material has been added or removed between those dates.
For those with no interest in examining the statistical results that appear below, here is a very brief list of observations:
The details of the survey are below.
|Top Level Pages||62.8%|
|HCC Cork Board||5.5%|
|The Vernard Eller Articles||2.2%|
|The HCC Magazine||2.0%|
|Number of hits:||131280|
|Number of megabytes transferred:||654.8|
|Number of pages viewed:||62164|
|Number of estimated visits:||14710|
|Number of unique hosts:||6035|
|Number of unique pages:||462|
|Number of pages viewed per day:||628|
|Number of pages viewed per visit:||4|
|Length of visit:||3 min, 30 sec|
|Number of visits per day:||149|
|Number of visits per week:||1040|
|Number of visits per month:||4553|
As the above summary indicates, 62164 pages were downloaded during the period of study. With that number representing 100%, here is a ranked breakdown of viewing frequency.
These pages are the main entry points of the site, ranked in decreasing order.
|Page Title||Viewing Time||Times viewed|
(% of all pages)
|(Frameset, etc.)||15 sec||24098 (38.8%)|
|(Main Page)||25 sec||4568 (7.3%)|
|Enter House Church Directory||1 min, 12 sec||2560 (4.1%)|
|Enter HCC Cork Board||45 sec||1394 (2.2%)|
|Links page||1 min, 7 sec||1039 (1.7%)|
|Enter House Church Theology||1 min, 20 sec||1038 (1.7%)|
|Resource Page||1 min, 11 sec||1005 (1.6%)|
|Enter HCC Magazine||59 sec||889 (1.4%)|
|Enter The Vernard Eller Collection||1 min, 14 sec||753 (1.2%)|
|So you have a House Church?||1 min, 44 sec||574 (0.8%)|
|Search Page*||53 sec||363 (0.5%)|
|The HCC Survey**||1 min, 51 sec||259 (0.4%)|
|What's New?||1 min||234 (0.3%)|
|About House Church Central||1 min, 17 sec||193 (0.3%)|
|Site Map||1 min, 2 sec||159 (0.3%)|
|Giving to HCC||1 min, 12 sec||119 (0.2%)|
* 153 actual searches attempted during the period.
** 35 survey submittals attempted during the period.
The theological content of House Church Central may be divided into three distinct categories:
|Description||Approx. Avg. Viewing Time||Views|
|15 "Green Key" essays. Each such essay is an excursus that is activated by a small green rectangle along the right-hand edge of the text.||2 min||2632 (4.2%)|
|7 doctrine pages||2 min||1588 (2.6%)|
|Answering Exam Questions||30 sec||1683 (2.7%)|
Books comprise an interesting category because many of them require a large number of views to obtain the entire content. A total of 304 books were downloaded during the period of study (about 3 per day), accounting for 3289 file downloads. The relatively short duration of each view suggests that the books are being printed, rather than read online.
Of those who did not download a complete book, many viewed the first page (containing the table of contents and introduction). A few others viewed occasional pages within various books.
The books are ranked by decreasing order of complete downloads. All Eller books are, of course part of the Vernard Eller Collection.
|Complete Downloads||Individual Views||Total Views|
|The Simple Life (Eller)||5||39||195||130||120||529 (.9%)|
|The Simple Life* (Eller)||6||14||84|
|The Anabaptist Story (Nelson)||6||14||84||114||34||428 (.7%)|
|The Anabaptist Story* (Nelson)||7||28||196|
|The Book of Romans: A House Church Manifesto (Drake)||13||9||117||106||201||732 (1.2%)|
|The Book of Romans: A House Church Manifesto* (Drake)||14||22||308|
|Proclaim Good Tidings (Eller)||5||33||165||58||9||232 (.4%)|
|The Most Revealing Book (Eller)||15||20||300||157||117||574 (.9%)|
|The Outward Bound (Eller)||10||13||130||66||49||322 (.5%)|
|The Outward Bound* (Eller)||11||7||77|
|The Beloved Disciple (Eller)||6||20||120||45||26||191 (.3%)|
|Could the Church Have it All Wrong? (Eller)||10||18||180||91||83||354 (.6%)|
|Kierkegaard & Rad. Discp. (Eller)||31||11||341||148||530||1547 (2.5%)|
|Kierkegaard & Rad. Discp.* (Eller)||66||8||528|
|The Blumhardt Reader (Eller)||6||18||108||70||33||211 (.3%)|
|Language of Canaan, Grammar of Feminism (Eller)||3||16||48||33||2||83 (.1%)|
|A Pearl of Christian Counsel (Eller)||22||14||308||28||29||365 (.6%)|
*These book downloads included the note views. Not all books have separate notes.
The Eller Collection also has a number of articles, a ranked listing of which follows:
|Covenental Sex & Marriage||1 min, 5 sec||208 (0.3%)|
|The Nude Morality||23 sec||178 (0.3%)|
|Risks & Dangers of Worship||2 min, 32 sec||87 (0.1%)|
|Protestant Radicalism||40 sec||77 (0.1%)|
|Baptism/Rebaptism||1 min, 1 sec||77 (0.1%)|
|Sex, Power, & the Revolution||20 sec||73 (0.1%)|
|Brothers in Ebullience||14 sec||61 (0.1%)|
|Ellul and the Bible||1 min, 1 sec||52 (0.1%)|
|Peace Not as the World Gives||31 sec||52 (0.1%)|
|Depravity or Sin?||21 sec||52 (0.1%)|
|Who are the Blumhardts?||40 sec||50 (0.1%)|
|So You See Yourself a Prophet?||2 min, 2 sec||50 (0.1%)|
|A Theology of Nonresistance||28 sec||50 (0.1%)|
|Jesus and the Farmworkers||5 sec||47 (0.1%)|
|The Mad (Magazine) Morality||39 sec||45 (0.1%)|
|Why the First Commandment||52 sec||44 (0.1%)|
|COCU: Self Defeating?||1 min, 55 sec||40 (0.1%)|
|Theo. of Promise/Hope||1 min, 37 sec||32 (0.1%)|
|Christmas: Luke Theo. of Hope||10 sec||27 (0.0%)|
|The Ethics of Promise||43 sec||25 (0.0%)|
|Worship||30 sec||18 (0.0%)|
In addition to the 2560 viewings of the Directory page listed above (859 of which came from HCDL and bypassed the HCC top pages), 4223 views (6.8%) were directory searches. There were an additional 266 maintenance accesses (adds, deletes, modifications), for a total of 4489 (7.2%).
A total of 1254 visits ended with a view of search results from the directory, however it is not known how many of those followed a link from there.
In addition to the 1394 visits already accounted for above (the message list), the Cork Board generated the following responses:
|View messages||44 sec||3218 (5.2%)|
|Add a message||1 min, 5 sec||128 (0.2%)|
|Administration||33 sec||46 (0.1%)|
|FAQ||1 min, 14 sec||41 (0.1%)|
The most popular Cork Board messages fell into these categories:
|Looking for a House Church||433|
|Announcing a House Church||372|
|Offering Services to House Churches||102|
|How do I start a House Church?||76|
|Home Church vs. Inst. Church||221|
|Home Church vs. Cell Church||37|
|Legal battles with Neighbors||138|
|Children & the House Church||68|
|Not clear from title*||200|
|Deleted by time of report||1064|
*It is evident that Cork Board performance is highest when topics are well chosen. Quite a few people viewed pages with poor titles, and it is likely that they did not find what they were looking for.
|The "Submission of Wives" Passage||2 min, 42 sec||148 (0.2%)|
|Cell Church? Home Church? The HCC Position.||1 min, 35 sec||113 (0.2%)|
|Paul and Sexual Sin: What's the big deal?||2 min, 4 sec||84 (0.1%)|
|A Lament on Music.||45 sec||84 (0.1%)|
|Inclusive Language Bibles--the NIV Controversy||2 min, 35 sec||79 (0.1%)|
|HCC after Four Months: A Self Assessment||1 min, 36 sec||77 (0.1%)|
|The Pain of Being Biblical.||3 min, 19 sec||72 (0.1%)|
|What New Paradigm?||1 min, 28 sec||49 (0.1%)|
|A House Church vs. Modern Church Parable (John Lepera)||1 min, 42 sec||48 (0.1%)|
|The Troeltschian Trap||50 sec||47 (0.1%)|
|Children and the House Church||1 min, 27 sec||36 (0.1%)|
|Humanity's Referendum on GOD||42 sec||25 (0.0%)|
|Other (since deleted)||56 sec||19 (0.0%)|
|House Church Music (Jim Schultz)|
|The House Church Anthem||1 min, 7 sec||73 (0.1%)|
|Building Buildings||2 min, 12 sec||41 (0.1%)|
|Biblical Archaeology (Ken Eakins)|
|Part 1||52 sec||48 (0.1%)|
|Part 2||56 sec||53 (0.1%)|
|Part 3||1 min, 27 sec||40 (0.1%)|
|Genesis for Today (Herb Drake)|
|Genesis 1||57 sec||42 (0.1%)|
|Genesis 2||59 sec||29 (0.0%)|
|Genesis 3||42 sec||31 (0.0%)|
|Genesis 4-6||47 sec||32 (0.1%)|
|Less than 1 minute||18.8%|
|1 - 2 minutes||6.7%|
|2 - 3 minutes||3.7%|
|3 - 5 minutes||4.9%|
|5 - 7 minutes||3.1%|
|7 - 10 minutes||3.4%|
|10 - 15 minutes||3.6%|
|15 - 20 minutes||2.4%|
|20 - 30 minutes||2.7%|
|30 - 40 minutes||1.1%|
|40 - 50 minutes||0.6%|
|50 - 60 minutes||0.2%|
|1 - 2 hours||0.3%|
|More than 2 hours||0.1%|
The average visit duration was 3 minutes, 30 seconds.
Fortunately, House Church Central is not the sole Internet resource for home and cell churches, but is a member of a growing community of such sites. For that reason it has a full page dedicated to links to other sites so that individuals interested in house church can be exposed to a number of different points of view.
|Cob-Net (Church of the Brethren)||67|
|Dogpile search engine||45|
|The Early Church||12|