I got an interesting (and unnecessary) apology from my friend, for my last blog entry. She was very generous and memed me in a link-exchange, hoping to increase some of my readership. The meme she participated in, as well as I, sparked a debate at one of the FuelMyBlog forums. (Might I add--FuelMyBlog is a really great site if you want to find like-minded bloggers to exchange ideas, find interesting sites, and meet new friends.) The forum discussed the ethics of the meme, discussing if it was putting those on the top end of the list at a higher advantage regarding linking-- and linking to other sites unethically inflating some of their blog ratings.
The whole deal got me off my my lazy arse and started figuring out some of this high-tootin' fenangled goo-gaa stuff about ratings, technorati, and all that is tossed around the 'net like a sack of hot cow-pucky. The below is my humble unscientific analysis about the whole subject:
(1) Technorati's rating system are pretty controversial. I read an interesting analysis at Sacred Cow Dung. Those with low ratings to begin with, well--It's like using a sprat to catch a mackerel(A fellow blogger's assessment wasn't far off the mark). Whenever even one other site links up to a sprat like me, my ratings jump up. That's because I distinguished myself from all the other ghostly blogs out there abandoned by their creators.
(2) The higher you climb with technorati, the harder it is to maintain your status, and the more sites you need to have linked to yours--because it take a lot more links to have your rating rise by even one rank. As far as getting even to the top 100, or even top 10,000--you have to be a friggin' giant--like Google, or MSN, etc. to achieve such status. No matter how many sites link to yours, a search engine, or monster media service will always win out. (P.S. Google--I think you're swell for hosting blogger for hostile little upstart cowgirls like me . . . if I do offend.)
(3) This leads to an inverse curve--a big red flag in statistical analysis--in finding any significance in the data (or so I'm told). In other words, relative to the giants--whose rating might have some significance--we are all lumped in the same statistical pile. In other words, technorati's ratings don't mean a hill of beans. My "authority" jumped up with the meme, but I'm still in the same league as those who have a lower rating and less "authority" along with those who have higher "authority" than myself. It's a shame how people really get fired up (and market researchers, etc.) about technorati's ratings and authority distinguishing a "scientific" basis for the value of a site.
(4) In my humble opinion, It's all about content, content, and content! (But it's a bit too subjective and not easy to assess for market analysts.) There are a ton of folks out there who have damn good blogs with ratings next to nothing alongside with high-quality blogs with ratings that reflect their work.
My conclusion: I can see how both sides of the debate can justify their reaction--my response is the whole business really isn't reflective of anything. If participating in a link exchange is the worst thing I do in the world, well--I'm still golden. I also didn't take in a stray kitty, pissed off a shitload of kiddos, caseworkers, and foster parents, etc, etc.--all in a day's work. Will I participate in one again? Probably not. I don't want to feel like I should even participate in the technorati gravy train. For those who are serious bloggers who do, have at it. But from what I found out--technorati isn't able to rank the importance of a personal blog. It really doesn't matter. Unfortunately, a lot of advertisers look at technorati ratings.
I'm really glad other great bloggers helped me get off my arse and find out for myself about the whole hulabaloo. Statistically speaking, the whole schpeel about site ratings is much ado about nothing. Unfortunately, a lot of folks out there hang their hat on the value of a rating--and that's the scary part, because so many other blogs with lower ratings go unnoticed.
If anyone asks why I removed the Bang!! Bang!! You're memed!! blog below, I decided not to bother with it. It's fine for folks to participate in this blog in my book--heck, I did it too. But I really don't want to rock the boat for those who fight for their ratings, and I don't want others to think my blog has more "authority"than others without reading it for themselves. I also took myself off the master list to be fair to those who are participating.
Aw, shoot. I'm tuckered! To take care of myself, I will watch The Man With the Golden Gun, and eat something with a condiment. I imagine I'll get a field of comments regarding my little diatribe. That's all good. I'll cowgirl up and keep my ears open. I might learn some more about the vastness that is the internet and rating whatnot before it is all done ; )