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Monday, 27 November 2006


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Done. I have no clue how this ping thing works, though. You might want to explain it in a li'l more detail.



And in my LJ as well, but I'd prefer not to reveal that username in clear.


A ping! from a typical bottom-feeding Z-list blargh whose owner can't be bothered to craft an actual sentence just now


Hmmm... Presumably you don't really want people who otherwise never post memes on their blogs to post a link to this one. Otherwise it won't reflect the speed and pathway of a real meme, but rather the speed and pathways linking academic bloggers who think research is cool.

Or are you not bothered about that?


good luck.


Think carefully about why a meme spreads: there are two major factors. One is how good/fun the meme is and the other is how many readers read the original blog and how many readers they have in their own networks. You are not controlling for either of these factors. Furthermore, your meme is the blog equivalent of a chain letter, which is annoying as hell. It differs from an actual blog meme in the very important respect that instead of spreading itself via its entertainment value, it spreads itself via an attempt at ethical coercion: "Beg them. Relate sob stories about poor graduate students in desperate circumstances." You're down on the level of a "Microsoft will donate one cent to kids with cancer for every copy of this e-mail it receives" hoax, except hopefully yours won't be successful. Sorry for the flame (not usually prone to those) but I feel strongly that people in the scholarly world should set a good example of clear thinking!! If we can't think, how can we expect our politicians to? This "experiment" is marvel of fuzzy thinking. :P



Z, it seems to me that what really separates this from a chain letter is the passive nature of it. For all the begging SEK, you, or I might do, it's still within our own little worlds. And not by emailing 100 of our closest friends.

I have no idea where the data will lead on this one -- I would have thought it might be useful to know where a linker first saw notice of this, but then the machine might be tallying that automatically. I also note that I didn't follow the instructions exactly -- I'm not going to check, but I wouldn't be surprised if non-compliance of that, or other flavors, is common. Does it screw up the experiment? Well, I don't know, and don't care enough to go back and re-write my linking post.


Hope I help you out. Good luck at MLA.


I would just add that you've got a methodological problem of a different sort: one of your fellow panelists is the defition of a high-traffic blog writer. So instead of starting with low-traffic posts, and waiting for the idea to be "caught," you're starting right at the top.

You should have asked Dr. Bitch to wait a while before posting her link.

Maybe identify two or three ideas that got serious play on big blogs but started on smaller blogs (I have no immediate idea what those would be) and then use Technorati to get incomplete but useful data on the speed of transmission in the past? I bet you're already doing that....


Definition. Definition of a high-traffic blog writer.

Another Damned Medievalist

Done. I don't know whether Technorati will pick me up, though, because I don't have my blogspot settings way out in the open. wrt this meme moving at different rates compared to 'fun' memes -- I suggest you do both. Then you'll have a comparison between 'natural' movement and friend-assisted movement.

G. Tingey

I'm going to try this, but I'm not sure it wil work .... AAAAArrrg h h .......


I'm an extremely low traffic blog, but I did have an effect on a meme which sorta allowed me to see (one leg of probably not many more of) where it traveled. Could you try that to see how fast it goes around? for example, contact every fifth member of your blogroll & ask them to change it somehow when they get it not-from-you?


good luck!


Thought I'd add a ping from a NO traffic blog, mine, which I have ignored for months. Good luck!


This has been done

Jon Moulton

You are linked in my blog:


i added it! poor thing.. hope your circumstances improve :P


Adding mine now. I would have done the meme on Monday, but I teach for basically twelve hours straight so didn't have time.

A White Bear

Yeah, I wonder how accurately this can be measured. Memes are funny things. People link to them because they are entertained by them, but then, after a time, although everyone's still looking at the thing, no one links to it anymore because it's "been done." I don't link to memes because everyone who reads my blog reads higher-traffic people who stay on top of stuff better than I do. Would all of us who are linking to Scott have done so if he had provided some memey content, blisteringly entertaining or not? I would assume most of my readers already read Acephalous, so I wouldn't. I'll be interested to hear your analysis at MLA, Scott.

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