Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Lest we forget - the bloggers who are gone but not forgotten...

Whilst many are celebrating their success in the published top 75 Lib Dem blogs list in 'Total Politics', I am struck by the evident transience of the blogosphere. Given that the list has been extended from last year's fifty, it comes as something of a surprise to see that nineteen blogs, i.e. 38% of the 2008 list, have dropped so far as to be outside the top 75 this time. Indeed, five of the top twenty are gone, so these were blogs with quite a lot of support.

Here at 'Liberal Bureaucracy', we're not getting terribly excited at our thirty-fifth ranking. In 2006, this blog was thirtieth, rising to fourteenth in 2007 before disappearing altogether in 2008. Given that the selectorate is predominantly Conservative, one can only assume that it leans towards those of a libertarian bent, as opposed to social liberals. Now I don't intend to come over all 'Tim Ireland' at this point, demanding that Iain Dale publish all of the data - some of us have a life after all - but it would be interesting to see if the voters reflect public opinion. It would be difficult to provide wholly accurate data, so we'll probably never know.


UPDATE: I should know better than to rely on 'Total Politics' being 100% accurate. At least two of the blogs on this year's chart were also on last year's chart, although their position last year has been omitted.

6 comments:

Paul said...

My blog "dropped out" because I asked not to be considered/listed this year and my wish was respected by Iain Dale, I am pleased to say. (Last year, I also asked not to be considered/listed but my wish was not respected).

Jennie said...

Paul, that seems to have happened to Sara Bedford this year...

PowderRoomGraffiti said...

Where do opinionated women go on the web to discuss something other than parenting, fashion or celebrity crap? Certainly there is no point them looking at the political blogs - there are so few women on the list, if these lists are to be believed (I appreciate your cynicism over them though).

Mark Valladares said...

Dear PowderRoomGraffiti,

I certainly agree that women are underrepresented, particularly amongst political blogs. Perhaps it is a sign of a more balanced lifestyle, perhaps the rather aggressive culture of political blogging doesn't help.

From a liberal perspective, some of the collective sites, such as Liberal Democrat Voice, provide a forum for anyone to engage in, and aggregators like Lib Dem Blogs provide access to an audience for individual bloggers, some of whom can use it as a stepping stone towards a broader, larger audience.

But there appears to be a broader issue concerning the engagement of women in the political process. They are underrepresented at every level of government, within political parties and within the machinery of government itself. Some of that is linked to the availability of what I describe as 'me time'. And, of course, the testosterone, rutting stag style of debating tends to discourage calmer, more rational contribution.

I know that Labour have a collective blog for women, although I have no way of telling how successful it is, and that is another potential outlet - I don't know what your politics are - and the Conservatives might have something similar, although it hasn't been picked up by my radar to date.

Jennie said...

PRG: do what I did, shout long enough and loud enough and people will pay attention. There is a tendency among Lib Dems to just read Lib Dem blogs, (or Lib Dem Blogs plus Mrs Dale) but many of us don't. My reading list is about 40% Lib Dem and the rest are non-aligned, or Green, or Libertarian, and even a smattering of Labour and Tory.

My tips to you would be:

1, Write something interesting (and pay attention to SpAG)
2, Read lots of other blogs, and comment on them - people will then follow the backlink to find out who you are
3, Engage with people in the comments to your own blog - if people know they can have a conversation with you, they'll come back
4, Keep being interesting.

I would also suggest (although this is something of a heresy) that you not restrict yourself to one subject. Write whatever you feel like writing. Mark's blog, for example, since that is where we are conversing, is largely what it says on the tin, but the posts of his that I most like reading are the ones about his love of rail travel.

You've made a good start in catching our attention - I saw you on Lib Dem Voice earlier too - I'm now going to click through and see if you're interesting enough to subscribe to...

Jennie said...

... and, having looked...

I find the pictures of lipstick everywhere offputting, but the site design is slick. The concept is similar to the ancient LJ community The Ladies' Loos. It's not my style of thing, but I wish you luck.