Writing a piece we know is good is not enough. It's also not enough for the editor to say, yes, it was good.
The game, both shame and glory, is now about Likes, Tweets and Google+ Shares. Call it the Nielsen ratings for writers.
You bet, we constantly check how we're doing in those categories. And, you bet, a lot of Likes for how I put together a certain article will dictate how I will put together the next few.
Gone are the old rules about what works in writing, at least for bylined pieces. Just like the folks overseeing television shows, we scribes "report" to the audience. They determine style, content and messaging.
Have I become a better writer because of this very public type of performance review? Ha-ha-ha. There is no "better" or "worse." There is only getting it what readers want and delivering on that. And maybe that's what "it's" all about. After all, Shakespeare, unlike the classical writers of his time, focused on the audience, not the rules of rhetoric and drama. He did okay.