Blogs, popularity, A-lists, and more

There's a nice article over at New York Metro on the so-called A-list of bloggers, people who make millions blogging, how the whole popularity seems "fixed" and the difficulty of the C-listers to get to the A-list. You know, the usual stuff.

The article also discusses on why advertisers love blogs, because they can reach to smaller, more focused niches through them - and this is what creates the value, and in my opinion also explains why AOL paid 25 million USD on Weblogs.inc. It's premiere web estate for advertising.

But having a popular blog seems to be really hard work. Here's a quote from John Battelle:

What’s more, a blog is like a shark: If it stops moving, it dies. Without fresh postings every day—hell, every few minutes—even the most well-linked blog will quickly lose its audience. The A-listers cannot rest on their laurels. Federated Media owner John Battelle recently published a book on Google, and while on the book tour, he neglected his own well-trafficked blog (No. 81 on Technorati’s rankings) for several days. “And suddenly I was getting all these e-mails going, ‘If you don’t get your shit together, I’m out of here,’ ” he recalls. He stayed up late that night frantically adding posts. “If you start sucking,” he says, “it’s through.”

Which brings me to the subject of newspapers and mainstream media: one thing that they have going for them is that they can rely on brand and their editorial machinery to keep running. A blogger needs to be able to produce good quality content on his own constantly to keep up in the race - a newspaper can draw on the collective of its staff to produce their content - if an individual screws up, then that's not too bad. If he screws up several times in a row, you can fire him - but a blogger's blog would just die.

The other thing that the article points out is that many of the top blogs are these days backed by corporations, and written for by professional writers. The same is visible here: Blogs from Helsingin Sanomat, the largest newspaper in Finland, are quite popular. I don't find it particularly surprising: well-connected, professional writers backed by a corporation, screened by an editor... Why wouldn't they be popular?

The power law says that being social means being inequal. Maybe the way to full equality is to become totally antisocial?

(Via Uberkuul. Read also this ZDNet article on the economic impact of blogs.)




Comments

Mutta kuka haluaa olla A-listaa jos voi olla cooleista cooleinta c-listaa? Modern Fabulosity kirjoittaa samasta jutusta http://modernfabulousity.blogspot.com/2006/02/my-blog-can-kick-your-blogs-ass.html:

It's an interesting article in some ways, exploring the development of the A-list, B-list, and C-list blog hierarchy. (In case you're wondering, you're reading a confirmed C-lister....which, according to the article, puts you among the cream of counterculture hipsters. You're even cooler than you thought you were!)

(PS. Janne, sun helppisi ei toimi ja kommenteissa ei toimi html. Mitä, mitä?)

--Jaakko, 20-Feb-2006


Kommenteissa ei ole tarkoituskaan toimia HTML... Helpin toimimattomuus on tunnettua.

--JanneJalkanen, 20-Feb-2006


So this explains why no posts and then three in five hours :-)

--Foster, 21-Feb-2006


It's that or cleaning...

--JanneJalkanen, 21-Feb-2006


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