Blogging a Linkbait | Home | Jakob Nielson on Blog Usability

October 13, 2005

What Makes a Blog Important?

Only the Top Blogs Matter?

“Blogging is the fastest growing form of content on the Web,” said Jim Lanzone, senior vice president of search at AskJeeves, a unit of IAC/InterActiveCorp (IACI.O: Quote, Profile, Research) and a major Web search site. “But the number of sites that really matter is narrow.”

“The rest of the sites are like a tree falling in the forest,” he said.

Wait a week and you will be hearing about the long tail of blogging.

As I stated before, I don’t think the number of subscribers is a relevant measure of a blog’s power. Why?

  • Some people prefer to actually visit the sites because of the rich content they contain in the comments.
  • In niche fields there are going to be a limited number of potential subscribers.

The real measure of a blog is it’s attention & influence. The number of sources and link volume are a far better proxy of that than the number of subscribers, but to be honest, so long as your blog is above the fold – or seen by at least one or two well known bloggers who like you or comment on what you write, if they feel your story has merit it will spread. And stuff changes quickly. I got sued out of nowhere and had about 40,000 new visitors appear on one of my sites.

Syndicated sites that “really matter” — classified as sites that have at least 20 other sites linking to them — number 36,930, according to September data from Bloglines.

I don’t think this is true. Even my narcissistic personal rant / whinge blog has 5 subscribers, and that site is not intended for human consumption

Sites “that matter” — defined as having at least one link from another site — number nearly 1.4 million sites.

It’s so easy to get one rubbish link.

I think placing things in a box to count them has little value, other than marketing the counting product. Why do you think pedometer’s want you to walk 10,000 steps a day instead of jogging for a half hour?

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