Sunday, November 29, 2009

But Still They Blog now available

But Still They Blog
But Still They Blog: The Liblog Landscape 2007-2009 is now available--at a special early-bird price through the end of the ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting (January 19, 2010 or thereabouts).

This 319-page trade paperback provides a sweeping look at liblogs (blogs created by library people but, generally, not blogs that are official library publications), with trends, facts, figures, graphs, and profiles for each of 521 liblogs.

What's Here

The liblogs included here (you'll find the whole list in the sidebar) appear because:

  • They're in English.

  • They began in December 2008 or earlier.

  • They have at least some relevance to libraries and librarianship, although that point gets stretched in a few cases.

  • They had at least three posts during March-May 2007, March-May 2008, or March-May 2009.

  • They were available on the web in the summer of 2009 (even if they'd ceased).

  • They were known to me--either because they were listed in the LISWiki list of blogs or the LISZen list of blogs or because they showed up in one of a hundred or so blogrolls that I checked.

  • They were "visible"--in this case, having a Google Page Rank of at least 4 in either early fall 2008 or early summer 2009.

That final criterion was used deliberately to narrow this study's focus slightly from the 2007-2008 study (which continues to be available, The Liblog Landscape 2007-2008: A Lateral Look.). I'd hoped to get down to 400-450 blogs, making analysis easier and the book shorter. I didn't manage to do quite that well, although the list of 607 blogs from the earlier study did come down to 480 (there are 41 new blogs).
If you're wondering: Only 50 liblogs were eliminated because of their low visibility. The others were either non-English [19], defunct (that is, no longer viewable in August 2009 and with no clear trail to a new URL or blogname) [15, plus three that now require passwords], or didn't have at least three posts in March-May 2007 or March-May 2008 [37]...or, in three cases, really didn't have any posts that had anything at all to do with libraries.

What's Discussed

I'll be doing a series of posts and articles over the next few (many?) months noting some of the metrics and offering some of the content, but here's the gist:

  • The first chapter discusses the age of liblogs, blogging platform used, and currency as of September 30, 2009 (how long it had been since the most recent post).

  • The second and third chapters discuss posting frequency and changes in frequency.

  • Chapter 4 considers the length of blogs--and, more interesting, the average length of posts in blogs (and the changes in both of those metrics).

  • Chapter 5 deals with conversations: Number of comments per blog and per post and changes in conversational intensity (number of comments per post).

  • Chapter 6 considers standouts and standards--blogs that score consistently across multiple metrics or multiple years.

  • Chapters 7 and 8 consider patterns of change across three key metrics (frequency, average post length, average comments per post) for 2007-2008 and 2008-2009 respectively.

  • Chapter 9 considers correlations and averages, including averages for a very large subset of the liblog universe that might be considered "typical."

  • Chapter 10 considers why people blog and how blogs change.

  • Chapter 11 discusses stopping and pausing.

  • Unlike last year's study, this book distributes blog profiles throughout the chapters, typically including a profile when the blog shows up as noteworthy in one particular dimension. The final chapter includes profiles for "the rest of the liblogs"--50-odd blogs, some of which are indeed noteworthy for content but don't happen to stand out in metrics.

  • There's an index of blogs (with all mentions) and bloggers (only when they're actually named). The page on which the blog is profiled appears in boldface in the index.

Special Pricing

From now until the end of the ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting (roughly January 19, 2010), But Still They Blog: The Liblog Landscape 2007-2009 will be available for a special introductory price:

  • The 6x9 trade paperback costs $29.50. (Lulu Media Mail shipping is now a flat $3.99 for all paperbacks, at least in the U.S.)

  • The book is also available as a downloadable PDF for $20.00

Those prices will go up $5.50 and $5 respectively after Midwinter.

Reduced Prices on C&I Books

Prices on all other Cites & Insights Books have also been reduced, effective immediately:

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Cites & Insights 9 available as trade paperback

Cites & Insights 9 (2009) is now available as a 434-page, 8.5x11, trade paperback, exclusively from Lulu.

The volume includes all 13 issues, exactly as published (typos and all), except that the two book covers in the January issue are in grayscale, not color.

It also includes a contents list showing the articles and pages in each issue, and a volume index.

The price is $50, for either the paperback or a PDF download; a portion of that price goes to support the ongoing publication of Cites & Insights.

The book is printed on bright-white 50lb. paper (my copy looks great!).

As to the cover (a wraparound color photo--you're only seeing the front part here):
Taken by my wife on Molokai, years ago, on the Kaluakakoi golf course running alongside our room at what was then, I believe, a Sheraton at the Ke Nani Kai resort on Molokai's isolated west coast. (The hotel's been closed for some time...tourism on Molokai is an iffy thing.) The only manipulation done to the picture (scanned from a 3x4 print) was to flip it horizontally, so most of the tree would be on the front cover rather than the back. Crappy type position is entirely my responsibility.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Cites & Insights volume 9 indexes now available

The indexes and title sheet for Cites & Insights volume 9 (2009) is now available.

The 16-page PDF consists of a title sheet, a three-page index of articles and blog posts quoted, and an 11-page general index.

This completes Volume 9.

A paperback version of Cites & Insights 9: 2009 will be available some time in the next few weeks. (I need to choose a photograph, prepare a cover and prepare the book for print-on-demand publication, and a few other things have higher priority.) It will cost $50 and be available exclusively through Lulu, as with each of the previous three paperback volumes.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Cites & Insights 9:13 now available

Cites & Insights 9:13 (December 2009) is now available.

The 32-page issue (PDF as usual, but HTML separates are available--see the links below, and also the caveat about the second item) includes:

Bibs & Blather
It's the end of a volume (except for the index, later in November) and the end of an era--YBP's five-year sponsorship. I'm looking for a new sponsor. Also, But Still They Blog: The Liblog Landscape 2007-2009 should be out some time this year...

Making it Work: Purpose, Values and All That Jazz
Commentaries on library values and purpose, including some upbeat commentaries. What's not here: any commentaries on Taiga, Darien or 101. Caveat: The HTML version is provided for online reading--but if you print it out, it will almost certainly be longer than the PDF of the entire issue. Save paper: If you want this printed, do the whole issue.

Offtopic Perspective: 50 Movie Comedy Classics, Part 2
From "comedy in the classical sense" (that is, most characters survive throughout the film) to little-known but quite funny British films and two versions of a Ben Hecht play, with different genders playing the same lead.

Reminder: This isn't quite the end of Volume 9. Some time later, probably in November, I'll publish the index and title page--but for those who want a bound set of Volume 9, there's a better route: Some time after that, I'll publish the whole volume (by far the longest to date, and that was not intentional) on Lulu, for the same $50 as volumes 6, 7 and 8.