Sunday, June 14, 2009

Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs"

I've been seeing posts on the "Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs" and apparently, bloggers basically just vote for whoever they think is an influential blog.

Basically, according to the proponent of the "Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs", all you have to do is write an blog entry that lists your choices for top ten influential blogs.

I think the project is laudable in its simplicity and directness. But sorry, I don't think you'd actually end up being true to the title of the contest.

I could just as easily ask Boojie Basilio, LPGD, Rain Barnido, Amiel Cabanlig, Patricio Mangubat, Trixie Cruz-Angeles, Rudy Q, POGB, and a few other big time bloggers (at least in my mind) to nominate me as one of their choices for Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs. Or I could ask Johnonymous to return a favor and nominate me too.

But would that mean that I am really an Influential Blogger? Or would it mean that I have plenty of friends in the blogging community whom I can persuade or ask to nominte my blog?

Perhaps you can argue that proof of one's influence is one's capacity to pull in favors or get people to do your bidding. Ergo, the more people you get to nominate your blog, the more influential you are. This is seems to be a crude way to go about it and I will tend to doubt the results.

I don't know if the proponent of ""Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs" is relying solely on its nomination process, but I would suggest that it doesn't.

Maybe a better way would be to distribute widgets that kept track of a blog's statistics and pair this up with an actual study of Filipino blogs/bloggers. It should, perhaps, take into consideration factors such as inbound links to a particular blog, page rank, visits, and other verifiable factors. It could also include an actual interview of the blogger to ascertain how they get their information and what they do with the information they get -- do they process the information and include their biases in it or do they virtually copy and past in toto?

I'd think an influential blogger would be one who gets information DIRECTLY from various sources, checks the information out, and forms their opinion or MANIFESTO, which in this case occurs in the form of a blog post. Perhaps proof of the blogger's influence would be how other bloggers (perhaps even non-bloggers) would react to it -- would they copy it, write their own manifesto for it or against it, or actually implement what they read in real life?

Actually, if you have an "Add this" button, you'll probably already be aware that it tracks the number of times that an article is shared (emailed, posted on social networking sites, etcetera) and this statistic would be a good indicator of how influential you are or how shareable you are.

Another thing to think about it this, as far as influencing opinions are concerned, the often quoted dictum is that once someoen forms an opinion it is very hard to change it. So, the race to becoming the most influential blogger will naturally lead to bloggers to trying to reach people who have no opinion about what they have written about. Chances of that happening are stacked against the blogger who must battle it out with websites that have a higher priority ranking from search engines and who have a reputation for credibility.

I think the "Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs" should have more science supporting it, otherwise, it'll just be a popularity contest.

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