Global Voices Online
Sunday, May 24, 2009
In the Cyrillic sector of the LiveJournal universe, the number of readers - "friends" - subscribed to a blog is one of the factors that determines its popularity (or "authority"). Bloggers who have at least a thousand "friends" are called tysyachniki (from the Russian word tysyacha, "a thousand"), and, depending on the quality of the blog's content, this is a status that is cool in some cases and dubious in others, as there are numerous ways to inflate the quantity of "friends" artificially.
LiveJournal.com and Blogs.Yandex.ru offer blog ranking services that assess, among other factors, the number of sources linking to a particular blog, as well as the number of comments generated and the number of "friends." The results often differ: LJ drugoi, for example, is the highest-ranking blogger according to both rankings, but LiveJournal ascribes 32,682 readers to this blog, while Yandex currently lists 31,834. LJ user e_grishkovets (Russian writer Evgeny Grishkovets) ranks third in the LiveJournal ranking, but is #12 on Yandex, if you look at the number of readers; if, however, you search this ranking by blog "authority," LJ user e_grishkovets comes up 106th.
Complex quantitative analysis aside, popularity means different things to different people, in blogging as in real life. Below is a very short humorous take (RUS) on some of the implications of being a "popular" blogger, posted by LJ user burtin - who has 815 friends, but, for some reason, does not show up in either of the rankings mentioned above:
- You're a popular blogger, aren't you? - asks my friend [LJ user] dochka_rosy.
- Yes, I am, - I purr in reply, pleased.
- Then ask them [readers/"friends"]: is any of them selling [Beskid] skis ["heavy-duty Soviet tourist skis for mountain skiing manufactured in Mukacheve," Ukraine]?
So here I am, asking this.