David McNett (Nugget) (nugget) wrote in suggestions,
David McNett (Nugget)

Google Analytics integration

Holy Cow! - It only took them four years, but this is finally implemented. Announced on 16 April 2010, Google Analytics support has been added to LiveJournal. I never thought this would happen!

Google Analytics integration

Short, concise description of the idea
Allow users to set a Google Analytics ID in their userinfo which would cause pages in their journal to emit the Google Analytics javascript block with their ID included. This would allow users to track accesses to their journal (with referer information, etc) using their Google Analytics account.

Full description of the idea
Quite understandably, LiveJournal currently blocks embedded content and Javascript content in journals and in S1/S2 styles. While this neatly prevents all sorts of abuse and malicious acts it also prevents users from being able to integrate their LiveJournal-hosted blog into web tracking software. This is a particularly frustrating limitation for users who make use of journal embedding or domain aliasing.

A nice compromise would be to allow users to provide a Google Analytics ID for integration with that specific web logging service. User-supplied data would be in a tidy, easy to verify form which would require no hygiene for security concerns. The necessary tracking code is static and could be emitted by LiveJournal if that user has entered a valid analytics ID.

An ordered list of benefits
  • Users gain the ability to incorporate their LiveJournal content into existing web logging and statistics and referer tracking.
  • It will reduce the incidence of 1x1 invisible pixel IMG bugs and other subversive techniques which people currently use in order to vill the logging void.
  • There is the possibility to increase revenues derived from existing Google AdSense features which LiveJournal has recently implemented.
  • It will make nugget tremendously happy.

An ordered list of problems/issues involved
  • Some users may appreciate LiveJournal's lack of logging and will consider this an infringement of their privacy.
  • LiveJournal may be uncomfortable appearing to endorse Google Analytics. Since LiveJournal has already embraced Google AdSense
  • Adding Google Analytics support may be viewed by users as an obligation on LiveJournal's part to support all variety of other web logging services, if such exist.

An organized list, or a few short paragraphs detailing suggestions for implementation
  • Implementation seems fairly straightoforward to me. The userinfo data would need a new field added to store the Google Analytics account code.
  • Following that, page-generation code (either at header or footer) would need to be extended to emit the Google Analytics block for pages which correspond to a user or community account which has an account code set. This html block is static with the exception of the account code itself.
Tags: external services, statistics, § implemented

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