Where to find blogs to read? May 12, 2002 7:48 AM   Subscribe

Besides Google and Eatonweb, any suggestions for weblog directories sorted by category/popularity? How do people narrow down what weblogs to actually read (rather than scan) regularly. Any helpful discussion/suggestions for readers, instead of writers ? Many thanks.
posted by Voyageman to General Weblog-Related at 7:48 AM (12 comments total)

Umberto Eco in the Guardian wrote about "Why short forms of modern communication can be simply irresistible" and had an intriguing observation - "Brevity can produce addiction". Is that one reason why some weblogs are so enticing ?
posted by Voyageman at 8:12 AM on May 12, 2002

That, and easy access to the creator, Voyageman. While I may enjoy watching Homicide reruns, it's highly doubtful that me and Barry Levinson will ever get together and chew the fat over a cup of coffee. In the weblog world, making connections is fairly easy and more often than not bloggers will be freindly and treat you as a peer. The whole reason I'm an active MeFi poster now(which led to my becoming s blogger),after a 2 year break is cos I sent a fan e-mail to a prominent MeFite-he answered me quickly and was very freindly so I decided to join the party. It's all about communication, folks.
posted by jonmc at 8:23 AM on May 12, 2002

The long-running Diarist Registry is a good place to start - though not concentrating on weblogs per se (and most weblogs have become journals, anyway), it's a vast resource, sorted by location, age, etc.

Additionally, Diary Lists provides you with all the known 'Burbs, groups diarists self-categorize into (cat-lovers, mac-lovers, people who build their sites without the WYSIWIG crutch).
posted by gsh at 8:53 AM on May 12, 2002

One technique is to find a link that's somewhat obscure, but exactly the sort of thing you're interested in. Search for the link URL at Blogdex, and check out the other blogs which have linked to it.

(In essence, you're using the principle of "strange attractors" - like attracts like. I'm finding that tracing back links and asking people for tips is producing much more interesting and original results than keyword searching. People are able to provide thematic access to information in a way that keywords can't.)
posted by sheauga at 10:15 AM on May 12, 2002

I have my weblog portal arranged by (my own fairly ideosyncratic) categories, though only a very tiny slice of the weblog universe is represented there.
posted by rebeccablood at 12:10 PM on May 12, 2002

There are a bunch of different weblog lists that you can find. Probably the most used is weblogs.com which has a list of the recently updated and its own directory.

Then there is blo.gs another weblogs.com site which has a recently updated list.

Finally the last one that I run is The Weblog Review. Again, it is my site which I run. People submit their site to it, and in turn get a review of their site. Nothing more to it.
posted by thebwit at 1:37 PM on May 12, 2002

This is pretty obvious, but hit up the list of links on any site you like (the proverbial 'blogroll'). I find that the best way of discovering a ton of new weblogs. That, and the magic of referrer logs, but that's not going to help you any.
posted by D at 1:56 PM on May 12, 2002

My favorite thing to do is start on any weblog, then click through to one other weblog from its links list (rather than command-clicking all of them one by one) until I reach a dead site. So far the average is about five weblogs. A weblogs list of my own that was made of only active weblogs has turned out, in the last three months, turned into about 20 percent dead weblogs. And that was a list I'd carefully whittled down to because its members showed promise. Sigh.
posted by Mo Nickels at 7:06 PM on May 12, 2002

Besides Google and Eatonweb, any suggestions for weblog directories sorted by category/popularity?

Part of the problem is that for much of the blog world, specialization is a rare phenomenon. There are simply too many blogs that defy categorization, because they reflect the author's interests more than the author's areas of expertise. The former tend to be more broad than the latter.

As a result, many of the proposed solutions - the ones I've seen, at least - have had to do with increased search and sort capabilities for *specific blog content* rather than specific blogs - i.e., BlogML. If BlogML ever gets to be a reality and metadata on blog content is readily available, (and content categories are fairly well standardized,) finding blogs by category might be more feasible, even for those that are broad in scope. I'm imagining a search engine that would pull up my blog, for example, and tell the user that the content is 10% Technology, 25% Finance, 20% Politics, 5% Literature and 40% Personal Bullshit.

I don't know. Would anyone find that sort of thing useful?
posted by lizs at 9:06 PM on May 12, 2002

How do people narrow down what weblogs to actually read (rather than scan) regularly?

Find a few people whose interests and tastes seem to line up with yours, and whose writing style you like (and who don't appear to be flagrant ego-blogrollers), and check out the people they link to.

Then check out the people those people link to.

If you're not left with at least a dozen new and fascinating folks whose words you're keen to read regularly (at least for a while), you're a Bad Person, and you deserve swift death.

Of course you might be left with way too many to read regularly, in which case this advice is worthless for narrowing down the list you already have. The (happy) problem is that there are too damn many people out there whose words are worth reading, and no amount of technological gizmo-fication is going to change that.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:58 PM on May 12, 2002

The Poultry Prodigy describes the best method: find one log you like, then check that person's links. No review site can match it.

He also mentions the great problem of reading everything you like. I now have to print the longer ones and read them elsewhere. If you can't print but you can't stay online too long (connection costs or whatever), save them to your hard drive and read them offline.
posted by pracowity at 1:00 AM on May 13, 2002

I want to add a new category for weblog directories and in my searches I haven't much other than what is already listed. Now if I could only come up with a better name than cliques. Blech.
posted by jaden at 7:02 AM on May 13, 2002

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