PubSub‘s first series of Community Lists is live now at www.pubsub.com/lists/ and includes The PR List, The Law List (edited by Kevin O’Keefe), The Librarian List, and The Fashion List. The lists are conceived as “miniature roadmaps” of these blogging communities, and as a way of determining what blogs are “hot” -or not- in a given day.
Here’s the recipe:
- Take an edited version of my directory of PR and communications weblogs (The PR Blogs List).
- Add the PubSub’s LinkRank of each source, calculated on a daily basis.
- Publish everything on a single page as an ordered list that shows each blog’s current LinkRank, its changes since the previous day, and which blogs have the biggest rank gain.
- Plus: offer links to each weblog’s homepage and stats.
Please note that this is very much a work in progress; and that we’re asking for your feedback and ideas in order to make this list better and more valuable. Also, don’t panick if your blog doesn’t have a LinkRank yet, or if it has the same (low) LinkRanks as other — this is either due to a lack of posting or to the fact that PubSub just begun indexing your feeds for the list.
If you have questions about the list, please read the following answers first; if they’re not what you’re looking for, please leave a comment or send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What weblogs/websites are included in the list? The list includes most of the sources listed in the list of PR and communications weblogs, as well as other relevant sources that are publishing RSS feeds, i.e.:
- personal blogs
- CEO and corporate blogs
- educational blogs
- group blogs
- corporate publications with RSS feeds
- news portals with RSS feeds
- news from professional associations
- podcasts and corporate podcasts
- book blogs
- event blogs.
Not included in the list are the weblogs maintained by business blog consultants, as well as a number of weblogs that were not updated in the last couple of months (I will continue to watch them, and if they become active again, I’ll add them in the list).
Where’s my blog? Or: why is my blog in this list?
If your weblog -or a PR blog you know- is not in the list already, please don’t take it as a personal offense. Just drop me an e-mail at email@example.com and I’ll add it. The same goes if you want to take your blog out of the list.
What’s a PR blog, anyway?
“PR blogs” is a nickname for weblogs that are mainly about public relations and communication in an organizational context. (This definition excludes weblogs focused on advertising, branding, marketing, and SEO.) We’re using this nickname because it will be too complicated -and inconvenient- to say, each and every time, “weblogs focused on public relations, communications, speechwriting, PR education, PR professional associations – and PR and communications news portals.” Of course, there is no universally recognized and “objective” set of criteria for determining if a weblog is -or is not- a PR blog; this is determined by the blog’s author and by its readers.
Is there a way to subscribe to the blogs included in the list?
- If you want to subscribe to a small number of weblogs, it’s better to go to their homepages and find their RSS feeds.
- If you want to subscribe to the entire list of PR blogs, or to a larger subset, you can use the list’s OPML file (save it as somename.opml, then import the file in your newsreader; your newsreader might give you the option of selecting which feeds do you want to import).
How are LinkRanks calculated?
“PubSub monitors over 16 million web feeds daily. Each day’s LinkRanks are based on a careful algorithmic analysis of the 16 million links that are found in those feeds on an average day. Individual links are given different values based on the LinkRank of their source, the age of the links, and the number of links created by any one site on a day. Once all the sites that are linked to on a given day have been ranked in numerical order, they are also divided into percentages. Thus, it is easy to see if a site is in the ‘Top 1%’ or in the ‘Top 75%’. Not all sites will have a LinkRank. If a site hasn’t published in the last 30 days or its feed isn’t read by PubSub, it won’t be considered during the LinkRank calculation.” (source: PubSub)
What does it mean that PubSub LinkRanks measures “the strength, persistence, and vitality of links”?
- Strength: How many links come into the weblog, and from whom did they come?
- Persistence: Is linking a continuous and regular process or is it one-time or “bursty?” (i.e. do people link to the site every day or is it like one of the “Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction” sites that only got a burst of links and then faded away)
- Vitality: The variability in LinkRank over time. Is this a weblog with “stable” numbers? Or, does it jump up and down over time?
What should I do if I think that my blog’s rank is inaccurate?
Please contact PubSub at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What will happen with the PR Blogs List?
The PR Blogs List will continue to index PR blogs by country and type. New weblogs will be added to both the PR Blogs List and the PubSub’s PR Community List.
What the list isn’t
Please note that the list doesn’t provide “the top PR blogs” or my “top picks of PR blogs“; what I provide is a directory of weblogs, and I try to make it as comprehensive as possible. I’m not ranking the weblogs; PubSub’s algorithm is doing the rankings – and they can change daily.
I’m not a fan of rankings, especially when it comes to the blogosphere, and when ranking is seen as the equal of influence. Blogging is about individual voices, different ways of thinking, personality, personal experience, and more; if we’re reducing all this variety and wealth to a simple number, we’re missing the core of blogging. Blogging is not athletics; we can have more than one “winner”.
Moreover, the relationship between ranking and influence it’s not simple; top blogs are, of course, influential – but for whom? And how? (I read Z-listers that are, for me, more influential than the A-listers — because each one of us has a personal A-list).
What this mean is that I’m inviting you to use the PubSub’s PR Community List in a way that will serve you well: be aware of the “top blogs”, but please try to discover new voices. Appreciate the top 1%, but also pay attention to the blogs that have the biggest LinkRank gain; you have an excellent chance to find ideas that you’re going to miss otherwise. Pay attention to the top influencers, but don’t make the mistake of thinking that only those at the top of the list have this quality. Finally, use the rankings wisely; they’re important, but they’re just a part of a bigger picture. My opinion, of course.
- An extended and better structured list of PR blogs, March 15, 2005
- Pubsub’s LinkRanks Measures Blog, RSS Feed Movement and Popularity , September 26, 2005 (press release)
- About PubSub’s LinkRank: http://www.pubsub.com/linkranks_about.php.