Good news from a walk Progress report on Samuel’s Persiflage #2

The blogroll dilemma

January 11th, 2006 at 10:36pm

I received an email from somebody going by the name of “pintail” today, unfortunately they used the contact form with a bogus email address so I am unable to reply to some of the things they wrote, but there was one point which interested me, and might interest you.

why dont u link to blogs when they link to u, u are selfish

As you can probably tell “pintail” wasn’t very impressed with me for one reason or another, but they have made an interesting point here, so I will do my best to explain.

As I’m sure you’re aware, many blogs contain a “blogroll” or similar, linking to many other blogs which the author thinks make good reading, this is their choice, and I appreciate the links when I notice them, however I see no reason why I should have to give them a return link. If they have linked to this site in an interesting article, I might decide to link back to that article in one of my posts, of course there are also times when I won’t link back for whatever reason.

I do, however, recognise links on a monthly basis as part of my blog view stats, I generally link to the top three referring sites for the month, although this may grow to the top five. I think this is a fair way of linking back to sites which deliver readers, whilst retaining my own editorial control over who gets a special mention.

I will make a mildly unbalanced comparison here to Slashdot. For those of you who are unaware, Slashdot is an IT news/blog site with a bit of an emphasis on Open Source Software. Due to the large readership of Slashdot, a link from there has been known to overload webservers, this is known as the Slashdot Effect. Slashdot is a fairly respected site, and as such, is linked to an awful lot, imagine if Slashdot maintained a blogroll, according to Google, this would require approximately 210,000 blogroll links. There are already enough complaints and conspiracy theories surrounding the selection of stories on Slashdot, imagine how bad it would get if they had to list these 210,000 links in some order…which site goes on top? Which site on the bottom? Perhaps they could have a random link similar to my random quotes…far too hard to be bothered with.

I wouldn’t have to deal with 210,000 links on this site, but it would still be a hassle, and then what do I do if a site which I don’t like links to my site? I’m happy with my system for now, but what do you think? Is “pintail” right? Should I continue with my system? Or do you have a better suggestion? Let me know, I would love to know what you think about this.


Entry Filed under: Blog News,Samuel's Editorials

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  • 1. Sal  |  January 12th, 2006 at 11:54 am

    it’s your blog mate, do what you like with it, if u don’t wanna put links on there, don’t!

  • 2. Kooky_Pound_Puppy  |  January 12th, 2006 at 5:22 pm

    Its your blog your rules your choices is all i can say, with linking i think it will lose its induviduality

  • 3. heatseeker  |  January 12th, 2006 at 5:55 pm

    I think you should at least link to Needs to be Glassed and The Spin Starts Here after all the great publicity they gave you … although I must say I find those two blogs way too negative, an their implied violence sickens me.

  • 4. mark  |  January 14th, 2006 at 9:42 am

    I am opposed to the blogroll. I link to blogs I think people really need to know about, and aim to give those emphasis by not indiscriminately linking to swathes of blogs. I do have a link to a list of my RSS subscriptions if people really want to know what I read. I also have a technorati link so people can see at a click who links to me.

    It seems to me that wot pintail really wants is trackback anyway, not a blogroll. I don’t believe anyone really cares about trackback though, which is why I don’t use it.

    I have a policy of not giving publicity to TSSH.


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