Top Australian Blogs

Blogpond: Top 100 Australian Blogs Index, listing all the top ranking Australian blogs using this algorithm, which is basically:

R = (3 x A + X + T) / 5

R: Overall rank
A: Alexa Australia rank
X: Alexa rank
T: Technorati rank

Sounds fair to me, because this very blog is ranked number 17 on that list! I have no problem with the algorithm either. It is clearly putting more weight on the Australian visitors, but then again Alexa ranking is (1) never an accurate estimate (2) can be easily manipulated.

What I had issue with is, what makes a blog "Australian"? As I have commented on Duncan Riley's blog, it might not be that trivial to determine. Because it is hosted on servers in Australia? Because it has .au ccTLD? Because it is written by an Australian? Because it is targeting the Australian audiences? It is nice to have a clearly defined formula to calculate the ranks, but I think it would also be nice to have a clear defined guideline on how an "Australian blog" is defined.

For example, I have a few other blogs -- are they Australian blogs because they are written by an Aussie (and in one case, written for Australian audiences)? I have also written a small Python script to quickly calculate a blog's "Australian blog rank". After all, who is going to visit slow and ads-filled sites such as Alexa and Technorati just to copy and paste the numbers?

Here is the script, which is tested under Python 2.4. Do note that you need to have both Technorati API key (free access) and sign up to Amazon AWIS ($0.15 per 1,000 requests) to get the ranks. Here is an example when I run through my blogs:

$ python ozblogrank.py scott.yang.id.au fucoder.com hostingfu.com www.ozbargainblog.com
  43801: scott.yang.id.au
  27237: fucoder.com
  54284: hostingfu.com
  84713: www.ozbargainblog.com

Yes, from the result all of my blogs should have been made to top 100, and FuCoder.com would have an even better rank than this blog. Then again if all the Australian blogs are "discovered", maybe there will be so many at top that none of my blogs will make to the list.

Another interesting fact -- my Oz Bargain Blog seems to have the lowest rank at 84,713. However my server log shows it has the most unique visitors every single day. It also generates most of my online revenue (although it is not much). However it is because of the audiences it is targeting (shoppers and bargain hunters) that give it a low Alexa and Technorati rank, which usually grace technology-inclined group.

Anyway. The ranking system is flawed, but I am still happy to be part of it :)