Larry Ferlazzo blogged yesterday about PostRank’s list of the top education blogs as measured by “engagement.” I think PostRank has the potential to be a really useful tool but right now I have some serious questions about it. For example… [click on images for larger versions]
1. Why is edu.blogs.com on the list twice?
2. I don’t think www.ed.gov technically is a “blog.” And I don’t think its affiliated static web sites like Do[ing] What Works or African-American History [FREE] are either.
3. I confess that when I think of “education blogs,” neither EurekAlert! nor Common Craft nor OUPblog nor Clear Admit pop into my head. Ever.
4. Yesterday this blog was #78 – down from #30 the previous week – below Teacher Lingo. That was cool except my engagement numbers seemed significantly higher. So I figured maybe I didn’t understand the ranking system. But then this morning I find that this blog is #35 – down from #31 last week. Huh? What happened to me being #78 and #30? Now I don’t have any faith in its engagement numbers or its rankings.
PostRank clearly isn’t ready for prime time yet (but keep an eye on it!)…
Scott, thanks for the great feedback.
1) That’s a duplicate feed in our system, we’re working on resolving this issue. Good catch.
2) We are very lax in a definition of a ‘blog’. In fact, our system can process any website with an RSS feed. We’ve tried to tippy toe around the blog concept but then decided to go with it as there is no other clear description for RSS-enabled websites.
3) Out of curiosity which list were you looking at? One of the things we’re going to do in the near future is open up the editorial process of global lists (Education, etc), to our users. So you will be able to add other feeds and remove bad ones.
4)Good point on the top posts. Blogs are ranked by their week over week engagement. We’re still playing with the right interval: week over week may be a little too unstable, we might have to move to a longer timeframe.
Edu.blogs.com is in the PostRank system twice, because PostRank doesn’t appear to be handling trailing slashes. E.g. notice the first entry’s is http://edu.blogs.com/edublogs and the second entry’s URL is http://edu.blogs.com/edublogs/.
PostRank is almost certainly treating those as two separate URLs because of that trailing slash.
Does PostRank follow some sort of spider around the Net? Or is it based on people first entering in a feed as a suggestion to the PostRank site (like on Technorati or other places)?
Wow, I just signed up. It looks like the potential is there for this thing to be pretty powerful. I like that it tracks del.icio.us, Twitter, FriendFeed, Google Bookmarks, diigo, and no telling how many other social networking things.
No, Scott. I just think they liked my blog so much they put it in twice 😉 (The slash explanation sounds more likely, though 🙂
Hope you’re well.