Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Blog History or Hall of Fame?

Blog History or Hall of Fame?

...which do you think we need more?

What would be more useful, or more interesting to you?

(1) what the authors of various types of successful, high traffic blogs (political, personal, business, marketing, science, religion, art, etc.) think are the best bloggers.


(2) a comprehensive history of blogs, from Tim Berners-Lee's "What's New" page, through Evan Williams/Blogger, up to the current scene.

Would you like to see both a hall of fame that honored important innovators AND an authoritative history of blogging?

I refer to the history of blogs that is at Meatball Wiki as a good chronology from 1992 up to 2003/Evan Williams/Blogger. Now we need a continuation to bring it up to date.

Steve Rubel, back in the summer of 2004, posed the question of a Blogger Hall of Fame. The comments he received on his post at his blog, Micro Persuasion, were not very complimentary. I got the feeling that there is a backlash going on against the hegemony of so-called "A-list" bloggers.

Many people seem to feel that there's an elite circle of bloggers who huddle together and try to defend their turf against newcomers. I don't really see this happening, but there is always a danger of it. Perhaps there is a "clinking" problem.

"Clinking" = clique linking, linking to and promoting only certain blogs that do the same for you.

New bloggers sometimes complain that nobody visits or comments at their blogs. "Why do the big blogs get all the traffic?" they ask.

"Because they have good content, entertaining formats, valuable information, engaging style of writing, unique perspectives, and correct netiquette" is a partial answer to this question.

Also, top bloggers tend to post comments at other blogs and to promote other blogs by writing posts about them and linking to them.

Do something remarkable for a long time, and the top bloggers will probably notice you, and blog readers may spread word of mouth about how great your blog is. Be sure to post as frequently as you can, at least once or twice a week.

I admire Steve Rubel, and I follow his lead on many aspects of blogging. If Steve Rubel is doing something on his blog, it's a good idea to figure out why.

For example, I was using Bloglet email subscriptions for my blog updates, because Steve Rubel was doing it. Now he has switched to another service, FeedBlitz, which I will check out.

I don't believe in mindless imitation, but I do believe in mentors and role models to learn from and be guided by. I hope a few people see my blogs as reliable guides to blogging practices.

Here's the interesting post that Steve Rubel published.


Why We Need a Blogger Hall of Fame


Blogging is growing. And let's face facts. As a result there are some webloggers who have been at it a long time and are truly outstanding.

They write better than the rest of us. They break the news. They define what blogging is and then smash the rules. These bloggers deserve special recognition. They have graduated from the ranks and are superstars. They're Hall of Famers.

So who are these folks?

Ask 100 people and you'll get 100 different answers. We need to institutionalize a way to publicly recognize the cream of the blogging crop.

We need a Blogger Hall of Fame to help us define the Joe Dimaggios and Ty Cobbs of the blogging world, just as the Baseball Hall of Fame has defined the true greats of America’s Pastime.

I propose that professional journalists who cover media/technology are in the best position to nominate/elect members to the Blogging Hall of Fame, just as they do in the sports world. If enough bloggers and others feel this is a worthwhile idea, I would like to recruit some volunteers to help me draft this.

Specifically we need…

* A Blogger Hall of Fame weblog

* A wiki where the community can discuss/determine the specific criteria required to become a member of the Blogging Hall of Fame

* A committee of respected folks who will over see the Hall of Fame and help shape its direction

Any volunteers? Any suggestions?


Does this sound self-serving?

Is it really necessary?

How would it benefit others...or is it just a way to honor "superstar" bloggers?

Is the Core Value of the Blogosphere opposed to such a "Hall of Fame"?

Blogs represent, to a large degree, a "level playing field" where every voice is theoretically equal.

Yet there are qualitative differences in blogs, in terms of ethics, personality, aesthetics, posting frequency, linking policy, comments enabling, practical value, scholarship, and professionalism.

Now, what do YOU think about all of this?

Post a comment or email me. Thanks.

[signed] Steven Streight aka Vaspers the Grate


1 comment:

carrie said...

i think there are so many blogs and if you make a blogger hall-of-fame there will inevitably be new blogs that will be overlooked or little niche blogs that are fantastic will be ignored for the high traffic flashy blogs. i think there are just too many blogs to be fair about choosing which are truly the best and i also think that if "everyone" likes a blog that is a good reason to try not to like that blog. but if you keep trying not to like it and still end up liking it, then... eventually you will have to ease up. that's what i think.