The Problem with Link Blogs (Plus Five Link Blogs That Rock)

Post from April 6, 2007 (↻ June 12, 2021), filed under (feed).

Link blogs suck because they don’t provide any content. Link blogs suck because they just jump on the back of people who actually create content, with few exceptions. Link blogs nonetheless play an important role in the hypertext ecosystem by mixing and working up entire informations spaces, bringing good stuff (back) to the surface. And thus, every content provider’s also happy about link blogs, as must be search engines for obtaining more votes for relevant documents.

Link Blog Schizophrenia

So what am I talking about (while entirely ignoring spam link blogs)? I merely want to point out two things, as described above:

Improving Link Blogs

One thing that helps improving a link blog is to increase the post text to link ratio, meaning that there must be more “transfer,” more input from the author. This works.

Exceptions Prove the Rule…

…so here are at least five blogs that long proved to be valuable:

What’s your opinion? What are your favorite link blogs?

Toot or tweet about this?

About Me

Jens Oliver Meiert, on September 30, 2021.

I’m Jens, and I’m an engineering lead and author. I’ve worked as a technical lead for Google, I’m close to W3C and WHATWG, and I write and review books for O’Reilly. I love trying things, sometimes including philosophy, art, and adventure. Here on I share some of my views and experiences.

If you have a question or suggestion about what I write, please leave a comment (if available) or a message. Thank you!

Comments (Closed)

  1. On April 6, 2007, 16:49 CEST, Jens Grochtdreis said:

    Sorry, but this rant is pure [edited]. Linkblogs are as good and bad as blogs with long or short postings. As there are many really good blogs on this planet it is nearly impossible to catch all good postings all by yourself. How should you know? So I am happy to see postings with links to good readings. Maybe someday there’ll be a link to your blog, too.

    Linkblogs - as you call them - do something very important: they reduce the complexity of the blogosphere and they don’t claim to have the smartest ideas themselves but they link to good postings.

    After reading this rant I don’t understand your point. You hate linkblogs but on the other hand name exceptions that provide quite a huge amount of links. So what’s the beef? Were you just in a bad mood?

    Well, I prefer good linkblogs over such rants.

  2. On April 6, 2007, 19:20 CEST, Jens Oliver Meiert said:


    I think I made it clear that there are also great link blogs. I also expressed that link blogs are valuable, too, no question indeed. But (and that’s a big but, right), there are so many link blogs pointing all to the same resources without adding value that it hurts. Doesn’t matter how people mean it.

    And there’s news: Link blogs don’t by any means “reduce complexity of the blogosphere”—quite the contrary, they clutter it. (Saying this without judging it, the entire problem’s interesting, too.)

  3. On April 8, 2007, 9:55 CEST, Keegan said:

    Understand your point. Almost agreed. Link blogs as you call them might be useful but rather become bothering. Fair enough.

  4. On April 9, 2007, 9:05 CEST, james kingsted said:

    I see you point link blogs aren’t really that helpful, their is the exception to the rule but most of these blogs aren’t useful! I do agree with you that it would help if they did increase their post text to link ratio. I mean come on would it hurt them to just say something. but if they point to good resources then I guess I can forgive them a little. maybe just a little!

  5. On March 18, 2009, 10:20 CET, Jens Oliver Meiert said:

    Feeling reminded of this post when reading Rand Fishkin on the “Linkerati.”