Blogging’s A-list – Off with their heads?

Cross-posted from the Online Community Report.

A cry for revolution was heard over the July 4th holiday this week, for the era of the A list bloggers to come to an end.

It all started (i think) with Kent Newsome’s pretty hilarious spoof on the Declaration of Independence, the Declaration of Blogging Independence, where he takes aim squarely at the Technorati Top 100.

When in the Course of online events it becomes necessary for alienated and isolated bloggers to dissolve the existing blogging hierarchy and exclusionary behavior which have disconnected them from the A-List and made them feel even more nerdy, and to assume among the multitude of powers they wish they had, the equally unattainable station to which the Laws of It Ain’t Fair entitle them, a decent respect for The Onion and Al Gore requires that they should write yet another post no one will ever read to declare the many real and imagined causes which impel them to the third party affected and now ironically embraced separation.

Others quickly joined the revolution:

Joe Duck, from his The Blogging Revolution has begun! (?) post, says:

I’m tired of reading the same old people who in some cases are too busy chasing dollars to blog nearly as creatively as they did in the old days (ie a year ago). The more ominous case is the new trend in blogging that has “A listers” effectively (even if not literally) shilling for big corporations under the provocative guise called “conversational marketing”.

And in a subsequent post actually talks about removing Alisters from his feed list.

Hugh Macleod chimes in here.

In the past, say, from the late ‘nineties until the last six-twelve months or so, Bloggers’ readership grew IN PROPORTION to the social networks that were built up around them. Hence the phenomenon of the “A-List”.

But if we’re honest, looking back, it was always these circumventing social networks that were the really interesting part of the equation. The actual blogger in question, less so. Even if in our celebrity-worshiping culture, we sometimes forgot that.

It’s interesting that some of the backlash was based on the personal accessibility of the blogger, and sometimes the overexposure of a particular blogger, either via the media or at conferences. The reality is, one persons time and attention is only so scalable.

One a personal note, I do think my habits have changed a bit over the last 6 months in that I cast a wider net than just the A-List. For me, this is mostly a byproduct of meeting several hundred new people passionate about online communities and social media because of the Forum One evens I now help run. I am exposed, face to face, to a lot more “b &c” list bloggers that have interesting and insightful things to talk about. They are actually in the trenches doing the work (managing communities, building social networks, developing new marketing techniques), as opposed to just commenting on the industry.

A very specific example of a changed habit: I read Scoble’s shared links almost daily, but I almost never read his actual blog’s feed. I’m more interested in what he is reading and what he is paying attention to.

What do you think? Are your content consumption habits changing because of social networks?

4 responses to “Blogging’s A-list – Off with their heads?”

  1. That’s cool. I like my link blog a lot more than my own blog too, truth be told. It’s a lot easier to have a smart blog when you pull the best out of 4,000 people’s feeds.

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