I’m trying to put aside the Ecosystem stuff for a day or two, but Meryl makes a good point that I do want to respond to. She says:
“Da Bear has a new system for rating bloggers, something to do with links. And when I saw it, the first thing that hit me was guilt (I needed to update my links page), then ego (hey! I want to be a mortal human!). But now I’ve thought it over, and Bear, you’re doing it backwards. We should be promoting the less-linked blogs, not the most-linked blogs. The big guys should be on the bottom, and the little guys on the top. That’s partly why on my links page, Instapundit, Lileks, Den Beste, and a few others are at the bottom of the page. They don’t need the link-love. But people like Da Bear and File13 do.”
Meryl has a great point (leaving aside the nice compliment she tosses my way). But I would turn it on its head. The list can be used for exactly the purpose she proposes: to help promote the lesser known bloggers. The list on my page itself won’t, because even if I flip it upside down a new blog being listed in the the sea of “microbes” isn’t going to get them much attention.
But I do hope that the more widely read bloggers will scan the bottom of the list, and see “Oh! Blogger X is doing great stuff, but isn’t getting any links. I should remember to link to him more often.” Or, as Meryl alludes to: it can serve as a reminder to update your permalinks to those blogs you genuinely do think are great.
The list is meant to be a map of reality. But that doesn’t mean reality has to be static: it can be also be used as a guide to which spots in the blogosphere aren’t getting the attention they deserve. My hope is that it will be: because after all, the ego trip is fun for everybody, but a more noteworthy accomplishment would be improving what the blogosphere does best — filter — by encouraging folks to pay attention to their links, and ensure they truly represent their opinions on who and what is worth reading.