Wednesday, April 02, 2008

I hear my name not being spoken

Yes, I took another of my unannounced blog breaks. This break was due to a succession of Holy Week, Spring Break, and the sad news of my grandfather's death. But I'm now ready to face the music, so to speak. First up, I hear that my rankings have (more) competition. I'm fine with that, though I feel that ACD should have paid the courtesy of linking to one of my previous rankings, or at least mentioning the prior art of my rankings. It certainly would be fitting, since he clearly critiques my methodology in his own description of his criteria. A link at that point would allow his readers to judge for themselves the differences in rankings between his system and my two systems.

I'm curious why he omits group blogs or institutional blogs. I can understand keeping out the "index blogs" since they don't contribute new content to discussions of classical music. I also understand omitting e-zines, since I do the same. E-zines are an electronic form of MSM, thus different from the gate-crashing blogs. But ionarts is a major player in classical music blogging, as is Sequenza21. [Edit: I now see that ionarts is included, even though it is clearly a group blog. Same with Dial 'M'. So what is a group blog, in ACD's definition?] They both generate and influence discussions throughout the blogosphere, which is presumably what ACD's counting of backlinks is measuring. So why cut out influential blogs, merely because they have more than one author?

Anywho, back to my taxes. I'll post my semi-annual top 50-ish in June, so start earning those links!

10 comments:

Tim Munro said...

eighth blackbird's blog, thirteen ways, also was left out, but I guess that could simply have been because the good Mr ACD doesn't know who the heck we are...

A.C. Douglas said...

Scott: I eliminated institutional and group blogs for eligibility because the S&F Top 50 ranks blogs written principally by a single individual. My rankings, my choice. Ionarts is included because Charles Downey contributes almost 90% of the posts even though it's technically a group blog. Dial M is included because, as in several cases, I've allowed blogs written by the same duo (Wellsung is another example) to be considered eligible for listing. Again, my rankings, my choice. As to why no acknowledgement of your rankings list, I’m sorry, but I saw no useful or valid purpose to be served by doing that, nor did I feel it an obligatory courtesy on my part.

Tim: Yep. That's the reason all right. I see, however, that you added your blog's name to the comments section of Eligible Blogs, and I'll check it out for possible listing for the next quarter as I will all other suggested blogs (I'll review all those suggestions about once every month).

ACD

A.C. Douglas said...

Scott: Thanks to your comment about Dial M it now occurs to me that I should have made it clear in the S&F Top 50 methodology that for the purpose of the S&F Top 50 ranking, blogs written by the same duo will be considered blogs written primarily by a single individual. I've accordingly edited the methodology text to make that clear.

ACD

A.C. Douglas said...

Scott: I see I neglected to answer your question as to why I omit group and institutional blogs from the S&F Top 50.

Institutional blogs are omitted because such blogs are subject to institutional oversight, and therefore are instantly suspect as regards the completely free personal expression and philosophical viewpoint of the individual writing the blog. Group blogs are omitted because they do not represent the personal expression and philosophical viewpoint of a single individual which in my view is what blogs are — and ought to be — all about. In the case of blogs written by the same duo of writers, I look on that case as if the duo were a perfectly matched married couple. Their opinions may at times differ, but their underlying philosophy of life and art are essentially a unity.

ACD

Scott said...

ACD, thanks for the explanations. But I must say that your understanding of courtesy, especially in regards to intellectual activity, is sorely lacking. If one mentions the existence of a previous ranking, as you did in an introductory post, proper blogging ettiquette is to link to that ranking, just as one links to an article or other post that is quoted or critiqued. Not to mention the intellectual honesty of citing where the idea of classical blog ranking originated. As it is, you have committed plagiarism. Congratulations.

A.C. Douglas said...

Scott: Did you read what I wrote in that opening graf of that introductory post (which post I confess I'd forgotten about completely)? I mean, really read it? Had I linked to your ranked list there it would have appeared I was intentionally savaging it in particular as opposed to savaging ranked lists based on Technorati's absurd "Authority" number in general which is precisely what I purposely tried to make it appear I was doing in that introductory post. In my book that's a genuine courtesy of the first water, not merely a bourgeois gesture of courtesy. As for making no mention of your ranked list when the S&F Top 50 itself was posted, I saw no useful purpose to be served by my doing that as I've already said, and the question of courtesy never entered my mind in that instance as to my way of thinking no courtesy was called for or required there.

As to your outrageous charge of plagiarism, do you imagine you're the first or only one to create a ranked list of blogs? It's a practice that goes back almost to the beginning of the blogosphere. As for your being the first to rank classical music blogs in particular, So what? Since I'm a classical music blogger, what other class of blog would I choose to create a ranked list of? Cat blogs?

I think you're really off-base and out of line — way out of line — with that charge, Scott.

ACD

Scott said...

I do not imagine I'm the first to make a ranking of blogs. In fact, I linked to a previous ranking of science fiction blogs to reveal that prior art in my first list. That is both good scholarship and good manners. Plus I make sure to acknowledge other classical music lists when I discover them, such as Chris Foley's. Not acknowledging his wouldn't be plagiarism, since mine came first. But it certainly is good manners to do so, and shows respect for my readers by giving them all the information they need to decide which rankings they like. As for the potentially negative impression made by a citation, an ethical blogger has two choices: 1) let the readers decide whether the savaging is reasonable, or 2) make clear in the writing that the cited list is only an example of a larger problem (using Technorati). By not choosing one of those intellectually ethical routes, you indeed deserve the charge of plagiarism.

A.C. Douglas said...

I'm sorry, Scott, but I find your reasoning on both counts a bit absurd, and your charge of plagiarism totally outrageous and unwarranted. To my way of thinking I did you a favor by not singling out your list in that introductory post wherein I savaged the basis of your rankings without mentioning you or your list, and I still see no valid or useful purpose to have made note of it when the S&F Top 50 itself was published.

But this is not the first time we've been at odds, Scott. In my view of things it's as if you're from another planet, and I'm sure you feel the same about me, so there's really no point in continuing with this. You're of course perfectly free to view this business in any way you choose just as I'm free to view it in my way. And with that, I think this thing is best left with no more words spoken about it between you and me as there'd be nothing to be gained by it.

ACD

Jason Heath said...

Wow--sorry that you're catching all this blog heat! I think that your lists in the past have been a cool thing. Sorry that there's all this hoopla coming your way. I always get mad when I get blasted by fellow bloggers (this has happened many times in the past for me).

Anyway, I really enjoy your blog and subscribe in Google Reader, and it's always a pleasure to see what new content you're putting out.

Scott said...

Jason, I don't mind criticism as long as it is transparent. But when I'm characterized as "some lists" that most classical bloggers knows damn well is my list, that just seems cowardly. I'd much prefer if ACD had said "I don't like Scott Spiegelberg's classical blog ranking, and here is why." That is criticism I can respect.