Monday, January 29, 2007

A-listers vs. the Long Tail: an underdog's life

In a world where link is ‘the’ main form of currency, bloggers and the long tail are finding out that they may be playing the roles of extras and character actors.

The A-listers and all who came before make it tough for new entrants to get noticed by Google and their peer bloggers. It is also true that the blogosphere is 90% rewriting and this makes even tougher for quality to reach out and prosper.

For your consideration, some recent developments:

1. Wikipedia's ‘NO FOLLOW’ attribute policy. What if other big portals decide to do the same – NYtimes, Washington Post and others?

2. Diggers ignore blogs 90% of the time, unless the blogger has dutifully digged stories submitted by at least 50 other Diggers. Desperate for attention, blogs in reply get heavy on link bait.

3. Techmeme and its group of A-listers: It is hard to break into that elite group. Often Techmeme links up to A-listers just rewriting major news versus a small blogger writing a great analytical piece.

4. The A-listers are squabbling among themselves over whom to link and whom not to. All this while, the ‘link hungry’ small-fry blogger slogs on, weaned by article upon article advising him/her to link to the big guys.

If you complain that how come only the A-listers have all the brains, ideas and story ideas, I am with you, my fellow bloggers. Let us sit around the fire, have some warm Indian tea and think how to deal with the A-lister's menace.


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