The Top 10
1. Annoyed Librarian
2. Librarian in Black
3. Information Wants to be Free
5. Tame the Web
6. Free Range Librarian
7. Library Stuff
8. Caveat Lector
9. Walt at Random
10. The Shifted Librarian
(for the rest of the results, see just below the commentary)
What can we learn from this? That no top ___ librar* blogs list is going to be definitive? That it doesn’t matter all that much as long as you enjoy what you’re doing as a blogger? How about all of the above?
As I had predicted, the top 10 list is a good bit different from the top 10 list on the OEDB site. The three blogs with the most Bloglines subscribers (librarian.net, The Shifted Librarian and Library Stuff) are not the top 3 favorite blogs, though they are not surprisingly in the top 10. Some of blogs did better and some did worse. It seems like any measure you use, you will get different results. And, so, what does any of it mean?
What else can we learn? Well, seeing which blog is #1 (and that it wasn’t even all that close) tells me that a cynical view of the profession speaks to a lot of people. Nearly 1/4 of all participants in the survey voted for the Annoyed Librarian. Or maybe it tells us that people who read my blog like it and like the other blogs on this list. Hard to know. With only 218 participants, this can by no means be considered a representative sample. But I think think we can still learn things from these results.
I found a lot of blogs on this list below that I’ve never read and many that I plan on looking up afterwards. Being one of someone’s three favorite blogs is a pretty good endorsement, and I hope this will bring a lot of little known but well-written blogs to people’s attention.
However, what does it mean not to be on this list? Not much. A blog might not be a “favorite” but might be one of those key useful blogs that just about everyone subscribes to. There are a lot of blogs that didn’t make the list that have quite a lot of subscribers (Blog Without a Library is a great example; maybe if Amanda posted more *hint! hint!*). Similarly, a blog may have a small passionate and loyal following, but not have the same number of subscribers as the “A-list bloggers.” Clearly, neither is better. Just because your blog is listed as a favorite doesn’t mean that your blog is the best. And just because your blog isn’t listed as a favorite doesn’t mean that your blog is any less great. A lot of my favorite blogs aren’t on the list, but I still enjoy them as do dozens or hundreds of other people. For example, The Goblin in the Library, Library Man and BlogJunction are among my favorites. When forced to pick only three favorites, though, we pick the ones that mean the most to us at that particular time. Maybe that person is posting a lot. Or they’re posting things that we’re thinking about at the same time. I know my three
favorites (the current group are not in the top 10) have changed over time and will continue to change. It’s all about what connects with me on a personal level and offers me what I’m looking for. It’s all about making that connection.
Really, if you enjoy blogging, if you’re meeting your goals, or if you’re connecting with the folks you want to connect with, then you should be happy. I know people might say “it’s easy for her to say,” but honestly, who is in it for the numbers? When I started blogging, no one knew my name. I wrote about the things I cared about and people read it. Even in what is now a really saturated market, new bloggers can make a name for themselves. The Annoyed Librarian has been around for a little over a year and a half. David Rothman (who had a great showing) has been around since last summer. Time can help you build a blog audience, but interesting posts can do it more quickly.
I’m not going to say exactly how many votes anyone got, but you can see the ranges below.
7 to 10 votes (in no particular order)
Tales from the “Liberry”
Lorcan Dempsey’s weblog
A Wandering Eyre
A Librarian’s Guide to Etiquette
3 to 6 votes (in no particular order)
Library Marketing: Thinking Outside the Book
The Kept-Up Academic Librarian
Peter Suber’s Open Access News
What I Learned Today
Off the Mark
The Other Librarian
Confessions of a Science Librarian
The Krafty Librarian
The Society for Librrians* Who Say “Motherf___er”
David Lee King
Pop goes the library
1 or 2 votes (in no particular order)
Library Science and the World Around Us
ALA TechSource Blog
Enquiring Minds Want to Know
Lit Picks and Tech Tips
The Itinerant Poetry Librarian
Madison Area Technical College
Ask Sassy Systems
The Well Dressed Librarian
One Big Library
Jenica P. Rogers-Urbanek
Designing Better Libraries
library link of the day
A Library Writer’s Blog
The ABC Book Reviews – Blog & podcast – Twinsburg PL
Love the Liberry
Library 2.0: An Academic’s Perspective
The Scattered Librarian
Peter Scott’s Library Blog
Bookshelves of Doom
Un Petit Cabanon
Out of the Jungle
Circ and Serve
A Fuse #8 Production
The Big Steve RSS Feed (aggregates a bunch of feeds from Steve Matthews)
025.431: The Dewey blog
Librarian’s Internet Index
Joyce Valenza’s Neverending Search
Concerned Librarians of BC
The PlanetEsme Plan: The Best New Children’s Books from Esme’s Shelf
The “M” Word
It’s All Good
Pop Culture Librarian
Roy Tennant Digital Libraries
Hunger and Homelessness and Poverty Task Force
Free Government Information
Fresh + New
Blue Skunk Blog
A Taste of Twinsburg -A Collection of Recipes from the Twinsburg Public Library Staff and Patrons
Atlanta Fulton Public Library Watch
Tom Roper’s Weblog
Science Resources (URL?)
The SurRural librarian
omg tuna is kewl
Tour de Toile du BBF
Issues in Scholarly Communication (not sure which one)
Obnoxious Librarian from Hades
McMaster University Library blog
Chronicles of Bean
PCC Library Technology Blog
If I Ran the Universe…
Wendt Library Blog
The Prelinger Library
SLIS Independent Student Blog
Library Blog Buzz
Bates Tip of the Month
library of congress blog
Days & Nights of the Lipstick Librarian
The Information Literacy Land of Confusion
Life as I know It
Science Library Pad
Reader’s Advisor Online Blog
A Librarian Told Me So
Progressive Librarians (URL?)
The Youth Librarian’s Report
The Medium is the Message
The Good Library Blog
Blog on the Side
typo of the day
Dr. Web’s Domain
Shelved in the W’s
Christina’s LIS Rant
Library Web Chic
Tinfoil + Raccoon
Law Librarian Blog
The OPLIN 4cast
Lauren’s Library Blog
Gather No Dust
Librarians as knowledge managers
*sniff* no one loves me
I love you Jessica! 😉
I am feeling a little unloved too, Meredith. BTW, the blog kinda migrated to SLJ–http://www.schoollibraryjournal.com/blog/1340000334.html
Hi Joyce, I fixed the URL (sorry about that, I had a lot of blog URLs to find and wouldn’t be surprised if others are wrong). As I said in the post, this isn’t exactly a representative sample because the survey was not very widely publicized and the sample size was so small that I don’t think much can be inferred from it. I’d suspect that if you’d created the same survey, blogs like Infomancy, Blue Skunk Blog, etc. would be on top. Sadly, many people scan a rather narrow horizon (i.e. stuff in their specific area) when it comes to blog reading.
Well, I’ll take being “among Meredith Farkas’ favorites” over landing in any general top whatever list any day of the week. Thanks!
Oh, and you know I love ya, Jessica!
Ok, it’s time you come clean and admit that you’re the Annoyed Librarian! I know you’ll deny it but I’ve connected the dots.
Lol! I was talking to a colleague and said that with all the pro-AL posts I’ve been writing, people might start to think I’m her! There are two key differences between us that I can see: 1) she likes martinis and I hate them, and 2) I’m just not that funny. I WISH I could write such clever posts. 😉
jessica, I would ignore any list that includes my page… but what? only 1 or 2 votes for me; that’s an outrage!!! …see, we all want to be noticed, even those of us who deplore notoriety (unless it comes with a check)…
The URL for Science Resources is http://liblogs.albany.edu/science_resources/.
I think the problem with this kind of a poll is that the results can be skewed by a campaign. Sometimes people advertise these “vote for us” campaigns without even showing a sense that it distorts what it an attempt to find out something that approximates truth, simply taking it for granted that the way things are (in postmodern society) it’s all a matter of appearances and there is nothing underneath. So for that reason I put more faith in measures that aren’t quite as vulnerable, like bloglines subscriptions (which of course skew results to the tastes of bloglines users, whatever that might be) or Technorati authority ratings.
Okay; that’s it–I’m taking off my alligator patterned Christian Louboutin Mary Janes and going home!
Uh, somebody can have my place if they want it…
Sad to be overlooked, especially as a Vermont librarian…
Come on, you didn’t even move me to the #22 spot, even though you coulda. 🙂
Again, it’s a great list. A good mix of varied interests.
I’m glad I had 3-6 votes! Yay!
Well, Ryan, you could interpret (since it wasn’t ordered beyond 10) that you are in the 22 spot still. 🙂
I’ll add a further comment…. I think it would be interesting to go through the blogs on the full list and check them to see whether they linked to the poll, and then see if that linking statistically affected their position on the list. I would bet money that it did.
I see a long tail!
Rory, you should do that. Let me know if you post the results, as I will definitely link to it here.
Interesting results, Meredith. I’d like to draw your attention to another website that just debuted today that exists specifically to rank library blogs, it’s called The Library Shelf. It’s worth a look since everyone seems to be raking everyone else these days…
Oh, I’m going to have fun with this list! Also, hint noted. I’m posting toNIGHT! 😉
Rory sounds so sensitive. Those grapes taste so sour, baby! But yes, please check to see whether linking “statistically affected their position on the list.” I didn’t link to the poll, and of course I’m #1! Woo hoo!
Sarah, you’re one of my faves, but you knew that already and, um, I didn’t vote. I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. If I were conducting a poll, I’d have asked the question a little differently: If you could only subscribe to three library-related blogs, which would they be?
Of course, identifying favorite blogs and essential blogs are two different undertakings. I think that you would have seen most of the top ten still there, but in a different order. My votes would likely have been LISNews, Resourceshelf and librarian.net. But I’m not sure any of these would constitute “favorites.” Maybe jessamyn.
Either way, I’m pleased that people finally have the common sense not to be interested in my abandoned blog. Amazing how many new blogrolls seem to include it anyway. Why? When was the last time I wrote about anything LIS-related?
Rory, AL: I did not link to the poll, though I have linked to the results. I did vote in it, and most certainly did not vote for my own blog.
This is such a great way to find new blogs. The other list didn’t really bring anyone knew or anyone I hadn’t heard of. This really brings a huge list of active library bloggers. Much better than some of the wiki lists that may have dark blogs on them. More fun for my reader. Thank you for doing this.
“anyone I didn’t know or I hadn’t heard of” (wish I could edit my own comments, sorry)
lol! I’ve totally done that before Jeff. I’m sure everyone got your meaning 🙂
There are a ton of blogs here that I’ve never heard of too, and it’s always nice to find new ones to replace the ones in my aggregator that have gotten stale. I’ve promised myself to keep the feeds below 200 and I’m hovering at 190 now, so I have to be careful.
There is one dead blog on there (Library Cog); someone must really want Art Rhyno back in action!
Cool post. And hey, since I missed the voting somehow, is it too late to vote for my blog? 🙂
wow, good thing I blog for myself.
my blog might not mean the most to folks choosing three at one given time, but they sure do find ideas, tags, phrases, words, at jennimi.
Thanks for this very interesting survey. I am glad I am on the list, at least as a participant. Maybe by the next time someone tries this I will have a larger audience. 😛
Jen, your blog has definitely means a great deal more to me than most of the blogs I’ve read and it is one of the ones I get most excited about when I see there’s new content. While I know you write about library science topics, I think of your blog as being so personal that I put it more in the category of blogs that touch my heart than blogs I read professionally. There aren’t too many blogs that I can say have made me teary.
Fascinating…I see our blog did not make the list…and since we do have almost 600 subscribers, it makes me wonder…”Do people see our blog as a LIBRARIAN BLOG or as A BLOG WRITTEN BY LIBRARIANS or as something else entirely?”
That’s a great question, Laurie. I think we all define the blogs we read differently. I categorize mine in google reader, and I have blogs by librarians that I don’t characterize under library blogs, but under “education” or “social software” or “cool tools”, etc. Infodoodads is definitely one I put in the “cool tools” area (along with TechCrunch and a few others), so I can see why people might not consider it a “librarian blog” per se.
Any meaning we can take from these results is rather minimal given the very small sample size. I think the best thing we can get out of this is that there are some neat blogs out there that many of us have never heard of and now we have. 🙂
I am stunned! How did I get on this list???
And all this time I thought people were ending up at my blog by accident. Or the catchy name…;)
I hadn’t thought about it, but just checked: Nope, I never linked to the survey. Or if I did, I sure can’t find the post.
I’m certainly not aware of any campaigning to be favorited, and would almost swear that no such campaigning happened. Not everything’s political (and I’m as fond of citing the “echo chamber effect” as anyone).
I loved this one because (as others have said) it reveals some possibly-interesting blogs that I hadn’t heard about. Haven’t gotten around to checking them yet (I need to do some pruning, as I’d like to stay under the 400 liblog mark), but certainly will.
Well, if I had feathers, they’d be ruffled. I thought that my blog might be worthy of a mention. I am moostified at this omission.
I’m wondering exactly what “Issues in Scholarly Communication” means…
Walt — I think if someone wanted to bother criticizing this survey (and really why?) they would say that the major flaw is that the survey was promoted largely from here.
I don’t see this as a political thing, just a structural flaw. The sample selected is “some derivative of Meredith Farkas’ readers.” (Derivative because those of us who read Meredith *and* blog, may have chosen to link — you didn’t and I didn’t, but that doesn’t mean others did not). If you are a reader of Meredith Farkas, you are probably also aware of Dorothea Salo, Walt Crawford, Ryan Deschamps and others.
The context could have played a role as well. I don’t know about others, but knowing that Meredith and Steve Cohen were snubbed in the OEDB survey was at top of mind when I voted for them. 🙂
What a fun way to find new library blogs! I linked to this from Out of the Jungle, ‘cos it’s a great list of blogs I want to start following! Thanks! (and thanks for listing our little blog!) I’m glad to meet y’all!
I just found this list and it’s really helpful for library-related topics. Thanks so much!! Also, I’m wondering if Rory Litwin found evidence of campaigning within the blogs themselves that skewed the votes.
Hrmm, I might at out of date fellow. Cos I just come out from Army (some National Service duties) camp and back to civilisation life.
Thank for listing out my site in one of your favourite lists ! Cool, I didn’t know that my work reach America. Cos, job offers just keep flooding my mailbox.
For the library communities, I share some tipsy that what librarians can ride on. More on http://hazmanaziz.com.
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