September 5, 2007

Woohoo! I'm number 13!

I noticed yesterday on Walt's blog that The Online Education Database has compiled a list of the top 25 librarian blogs. By some miracle, CoaSL comes in at #13. Due to the appallingly poor methodology (browse around Technorati for reactions), OEDb has left a good chunk of the most prominent blogs out: Library Stuff, Information Wants to Be Free and Tame the Web to name just the ones that come immediately to mind. The main problem is that they used the DMOZ list of library bloggers, which is incredibly limited and out of date. Of course their other sources of data, such as Google page ranks and Technorati rankings, are suspect as well.

In reality:

  • I have no idea if I'm in the top 25 librarian blogs
  • There is probably no good way to define the reach/popularity/importance of a blog anyway
  • Even if you could, I imagine I might actually be in the 50-100 range
  • On the other hand, it's driving a ton of traffic here so I'm not going to complain (ok, a ton by my standards is a few dozen hits in the last couple of days)
  • It's also nice that some of us non A-listers get a moment in the sun, something that we should all enjoy.

So, to all of you here for the first time, welcome! My most famous posts so far have been the My Job in 10 Years series, some book reviews as well as my series of interviews with people in the scitech world.

Update 2007.09.07: Somehow this has ended up being a way bigger deal that I expected. Or maybe I should have expected, as the whole ranking thing seems to appeal to our pride and vanity, failings I'm certainly as susceptible to as anyone. For every unjustly happy there's an unjustly disappointed. I sympathize with the real #13, whoever that may be in a ideal world with a proper set of criteria. On the other hand, the OEDb has directed over 120 readers this way, many presumably for the first time, so perhaps we can think of it as a case when the real #13 is just sharing the love a little ;-)

As usual, Technorati has a bunch of links, Google Blog Search a bit of a different set. It was even a hot topic on Uncontrolled Vocabulary last night (great show, by the way, I try and catch it every week).

Walt's comment to this post reminds me that he did attempt some metrics in C&I the last couple of years: Investigating the Biblioblogosphere and Looking at Liblogs: The Great Middle. I should have linked to them in the post initially, but was too lazy to google up the links. He mentions some of his more recent efforts in that area here.


waltc said...

"There is probably no good way to define the reach/popularity/importance of a blog anyway"

Probably true. Probably even more true given that Google link: counts are known to be wrong, and that Yahoo's change in link: displays makes them essentially useless.

I'm using a "visibility" metric in my blogging analyses--but it's both very general and logarithmic, and I only really count six categories of results (invisible, slightly visible, visible, quite visible, highly visible, extremely visible)--and I'd never use "invisible" as a label.

The metric's easy enough: the log10 of the sum of Bloglines subscribers and Technorati count (number of posts, not the "Authority" number OEDb used), as reported by Does it mean much?

well, about as much or as little as any other metric: it's a very crude measure of visibility, which could be called reach or influence...but probably shouldn't.

CogSciLibrarian said...

Congratulations, John - and thanks to Walt!

-stephanie (#40)

Anonymous said...

"It's also nice that some of us non A-listers get a moment in the sun..."

i should probably do what you're doing and point to the other posts on my blog that people might find interesting. but nothing beats the fact that i can tell people we actually had lunch together! =)

von (#8)

Anonymous said...

Ah, you well deserve to bask in the glory of the biblioblogosphere A-list! Congrats!

John Dupuis said...

Thanks for the comments, everyone, including a couple on Facebook.

Von, we should have lunch again one of these days and create the secret cabal of Toronto Library Bloggers!

waltc said...

John, no reason you should have linked to my old studies. And you're right: This one does seem to have legs (I find roughly the same number of referrals as you do, over a few days).

Hey, Von, maybe some day...although I don't get to Toronto all that often. (Let's see: Once, for ALA/CLA, probably counts as "not too often.") But I've been reading your blog for a while...

Anonymous said...

john: "one of these days" will have to be in january at the earliest because i'm in manila until after christmas =) re "secret cabal," no one told you? =D

walt: maybe someday... you're still in california, right? it doesn't have to be toronto =)

John Dupuis said...

Von: Yeah, January. Best time of year to get back to Toronto ;-)

As for the Cabal, I guess I'm always the last to know...