5,000 posts — here are the top 5

5,000 posts.

That’s a remarkable milestone, considering that most of the posts are stories that take days, even months, to research and write.

Here are the five most popular posts that have appeared on this site since it launched in 1996.

1. Southwest Airlines pilot holds plane for murder victim’s family

2. Best and worst car rental companies

3. Passenger forced to stand for a seven-hour airline flight

4. “What kind of pie is that?” the TSA agent demanded

5. Yes, the name on your airline ticket can be changed! (Thanks, Expedia)

Thanks for a great run. Here’s to the next 5,000.

Christopher Elliott

Christopher Elliott is an author, journalist and consumer advocate. You can read more about him on his personal website or check out his adventures on his family adventure travel site. Contact him at chris@elliott.org. Read more of Christopher's articles here.

  • Jeanne_in_NE

    What determined the ranking? I didn’t recognize one of the stories (name change, #5), clicked on it and found only 19 comments. Other stories have hundreds of comments. Maybe the older comment system didn’t translate into Disqus? What criterion did you use?
    Congrats on 5000 posts and I really am looking forward to the next 5000. Now if only you can deliver them without the pop-ups and pop-unders. Clicking on this story brings up a Publisher’s Clearing House pop-under. Slightly more classy than LowerMyBills, I guess.
    Or is this all a nefarious scheme? Just become a paid subscriber and all the ads and pop-ups/unders go away! But wait, there’s more – free tin foil hat with every subscription! ;-)

  • Stephen0118

    Congrats on the 5000 posts

  • I just reread the Southwest story again, and it still gave me chills. *shiver* Such a touching story.

    Also, even bigger a milestone than 5,000 post is SIXTEEN YEARS. Dude! You’re practically vintage in the blogosphere! Many congrats.

  • Traffic stats only go back as far as 2004. I didn’t start using comments until 2006, when I migrated to WordPress.

    Re: the pop-ups. Is there anyone with some tech know-how who can figure out who is serving those ads? I have asked every one of the companies who serve ads if it’s them. The only ones who have gone into radio silence are Travora. (Federated Media denies it, and Adsense isn’t doing it.) Help!

  • Congrats on 5,000. That’s an amazing accomplishment. Don’t know how you manage to stay so disciplined. I have trouble generating two blog posts a week and recently went 2 months without posting anything. What’s your secret?

  • Raven_Altosk

    I’ll try to grab a screen shot of it.

  • Jeanne_in_NE

    Thanks, Raven. Of course, it didn’t do it this morning – so far.

    This happens using either IE9 or Chrome, under Windows XP (different computer than this one) and Windows 7, McAfee or Norton antivirus. I clean cookies pretty regularly using CCleaner. Hope this additional info helps.

  • Michael__K

    The pop-unders (like the LowerMyBills and Publisher’s Clearning House ads) generally from come from http://optmd.com

    Added: Here are those ads BTW–


  • Thanks. I know they are coming from Optmd.com. I just don’t know who is serving them. Ads are being served from Google Adsense, Federated Media (Lijit) and Travora. One of them is responsible. But who?

  • Carrie Charney

    “Here’s to the next 5,000.”

    I’ll drink to that!! (Well, maybe later in the day…) Keep it comin’!

  • TonyA_says

    Will all due respect, forget who is responsible and simply tell your users how to BLOCK it.

    I don’t have the problem in Firefox because I use AdBlock and NoScript.

    I had the problem with Chrome, but after I installed AdBlock the problem went away.
    If you use Chrome just install AdBlock:

    I don’t use IE for anything except my GDS application.

    I have no need for Opera so maybe someone else can share how to block it for IE and Opera.

  • You can also go to Optmd.com and block it from there. I use Chrome and when I disable my adblock extension, I see the pop-unders — but not every time. Believe me, I’m working on this. I apologize for the problem.

  • TonyA_says

    If you go to their site and elect to OPT OUT, you must have their cookie stay on your browser (since that is the way their “program” knows you opted out). I tried opting out but it did not work. Why? Since I clean out cookies after every browsing session, then that would not work for me.

    I also use NoScript for Firefox and NotScript for Chrome. But that might be overkill for those who don’t care to decide which sites will be allowed to run scripts while browsing.

  • Jeanne_in_NE

    Thanks for the link in Chrome. Virtual freshly baked banana bread (no nuts) for you!
    The only reason I keep harping on this is the pop-unders are a recent phenomenon. I think that they reduce Elliott.org’s credibility as a trusted site. Long-time readers may not care, but if I were a newcomer to the site, I’d wonder and be a little concerned and might not return.
    Then again, I do own a complete set of the “X-Files” (see Sunday’s post for reference).

  • TonyA_says

    You are welcome!
    If you install AdBlock you can test its “potency”.
    Simply click the 2 links Michael_K listed above.
    Note that AdBlock will “block” the ads from showing up in your browser.
    Well done AdBlock. Maybe they should make one for web servers so they don’t allow syndication sites from destroying the world.

  • Good news! I reached someone at Optmd.com. They say it is Travora serving the ads. If Optmd can’t fix this, I will have to reconsider the Travora ads. Thank you for your help, everyone.

  • I reached someone at Optmd.com just now. The ads should be gone within the hour.

  • Jeanne_in_NE

    Woo hoo! I just finished making some raspberry bars and some pecan bars, so TWO virtual sets of goodies for you! No calories, so even Kari should approve. :)

  • TonyA_says

    Great. So they (Travora Media) are traveladvertising.com

    They also have an opt out (cookie style).


  • I’m troubled by the way these pop-unders were simply added to the site without my consent. I will have words with them.

  • It is a great success of a blog and blogger too. It is very hard to reach this milestone of 5000 posts because one blog post needs more than 1 day to complete. So congratulation from my heart.

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