Top 50 Edublogs? – Follow-up

Every time I make a list of the ‘top’ edublogs (as measured by Technorati ranking), it seems that I also end up writing a follow-up post. For example, I wrote Linked after my last list almost a year ago. Here are a few thoughts about the conversation that has ensued regarding this year’s list…

Academics’ brains are weird

As Sir Ken Robinson said, professors’ bodies are basically transportation for our heads [which is probably why my brain’s in a lot better shape than the rest of me].

I like to play with numbers and ideas. I don’t know why so many people get upset about a simple list. For me it’s about trying to wrap my head around the edublogosphere as a phenomenon. How does it work? If you want to spread an idea, what’s the best way to do so? What valuable contributions can it make? And so on. No harm or self-aggrandizement intended. I’m just thinking in public.

Different strokes for different folks

For every person that thinks the list is interesting, another thinks it’s ‘one of the more inconsequential things [he] had seen in a long time.’ That’s cool. Given my previous point, I don’t mind being ‘libeled.’ I understand what Dan Meyer meant and thought Darren Draper’s comment 3 was accurate too. I did think Bill Fitzgerald’s comment 4 was perhaps a little uncharitable but that’s okay. Each of us finds value in different things.

Imputing intent

Lots of people are more than willing to impute intent to others despite having never met them, spoken with them, or otherwise interacted with them other than maybe having read a few blog posts. This occurs across the blogosphere and, of course, in other expressive media as well. One of humanity’s less-admirable traits…

Thesis + antithesis = synthesis

I really liked Ben Wildeboer’s post on the recent disagreement between Dan Meyer and Darren Draper. Well said, Ben. Mindelei’s got it right too. One of the most useful skills taught in law school is how to disagree without taking it personally.

Subject-matter teacher blogs

As Alfred Thompson said, we need – or at least need to find/identify – more subject-matter teacher blogs. Over time I’d like to collect more subject-matter blogs at the Moving Forward wiki so that we can show educators how other teachers in THEIR field are using blogs productively. Over the past few months I’ve put out calls for good elementary classroom blogs and good special education blogs. It’s time to do another call…

Make your own list

As I said in my post, make your own list! Call it Blogs you should be reading or Blogs that will blow your mind or Great blogs no one knows about or whatever. One of the best things about making my list is the new blogs that I come across, either in the comments or from the links back to my blog. It’s great to come across new, interesting voices. Send me your list. I’d love to see it and, if you so desire, also would be happy to publicize it!

8 Responses to “Top 50 Edublogs? – Follow-up”

  1. I appreciate you noticing my post and noting it here. I’m not sure if you noticed the comment I threw on at the end of my post, but I gave you props for posting the list (even though I don’t totally agree with the methodology behind it). It has generated so much excellent discussion. As a relatively recent member of this blogging community (under 5 months), I find it interesting to see what people are willing to go to bat for and defend.

    I’ll put making my own list of excellent blogs I read in my queue of posts to do. Right now I have a project proposal to write…

  2. Thanks, Ben. I’d love to use something besides Technorati, but I’m still waiting for someone to identify a better solution. In the meantime, that’s what I’ve got to work with…

  3. I already have my very own “Top whatever” blogs list! It’s called a blogroll and many other people writing online have exactly the same thing.

    The ranking Scott assembled from the Technorati data is certainly interesting. However, the blogroll from a few sites written by people I trust is far more valuable to me as a source for new places to find quality thinking and information.

  4. Scott,

    I’d say that there are three blogs in particular that I find helpful and stimulating (and that post regularly):

    Sue Waters’ Mobile Technology in T.A.F.E.

    Marvin Marshall’s Discipline Without Stress

    Bill Ferriter’s The Tempered Radical


  5. @Tim: thanks for the comment (and for including DI on your blogroll!). The fun part of doing the Technorati rankings (and, no, it’s not being lambasted) is when folks like Larry or Ben make the case for their favorites. That’s good stuff!

    P.S. Thanks also for the post on your blog about the NY Times overlay to Google Earth. I’ll be showing that to some administrators this summer!

  6. Hello, Scott,

    RE: “I did think Bill Fitzgerald’s comment 4 was perhaps a little uncharitable” —

    Sorry about that — no offense intended. And I also see how my comment came across as uncharitable. However, I see the technorati ranking system as akin to the SAT: the rankings measure how well a particular blog fares on the Technorati “test” but it doesn’t necessarily measure “quality” —

    This is not to say that the blogs on your list aren’t good — they are, and I have read posts from all/most of them at some point. But, for me, some of the more valuable things I have learned/applied to education come from reading blogs about digital identity, design, and interoperability — some of the glue that, when used well, holds distributed learning systems together. And these blogs will not show up on any technorati ranking, at least not in the edtech space, because they are not specifically addressing educational issues.

    RE: “For me it’s about trying to wrap my head around the edublogosphere as a phenomenon. How does it work? If you want to spread an idea, what’s the best way to do so? What valuable contributions can it make?”

    I agree, this is a fascinating topic, particularly when blogs only make up a percentage of the blogosphere.

    Again, sorry if my comment came across as harsh or uncharitable — definitely not my intent.

  7. Thanks, Bill. That was kind of you.

    As I’ve said before (and in my post), the Technorati rankings are useful for some aspects of study, particularly identification of hubs/superhubs. They’re of absolutely no worth when it comes to more subjective matters. Like you, some of my very favorite blogs aren’t anywhere close to being on the list…

  8. You know, Scott—

    I’m glad that you’re making lists! They’re always a source of great new reads for me…and considering the fact that I write for myself and for personal reflection, I don’t really care if I end up on them or not.

    The learning will be just as good regardless of whether I’m ranked or not—and the salary won’t change either way!

    I noticed that Larry Ferlazzo pointed out my blog here in your comment section. We’d all do ourselves a favor by checking out In Practice—the group blog that he keeps with Alice Mercer, Brian Crosby and others.

    Talk about a one-stop shop for brilliant thinking from brilliant people.

    Rock on,

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