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Thursday, February 14th, 2008...4:40 pm

BlogHighEd.org – One Week Review

We are now well into our 2nd week of being live at www.bloghighed.org, and things are going great. We have both seen an increase and traffic on our blogs, and hope our members are seeing the same benefits. We want to say a huge thanks to all of you who have sent us comments and suggestions. We have already begun implementing several suggestions that were emailed to us. As we look forward, We see that there will be a need to implement a way to categorize posts so that readers will continue to be able to find the information they want.

As far as applications, we currently plan to add 1 new member to the blogroll each month of 2008. This will allow us to continue to develop the site without hitting a point of information overload, and also allow us to continue enhancing the site as we go along. We have decided that new members will be chosen by a vote of current BHE members, which will again enforce the community aspect of this site.

You might have noticed a new feature today: the 10 most popular posts of the day, based off of the RSS feed. Let us know what you think. See below for some first week stats. Thanks again!

Visits: 1,699 (988 unique visitors)
Page Views: 3,584 (2.11 pages/visit)
Time on Site: 3mins, 45 secs
Viewer Profile: Windows (68.1%), Firefox (66.8%), T1 (51.1%), 1280×1024 (28.6%)
Countries: 21

RSS Subscribers: 127 (and rising!)
Twitter Followers: 26
Facebook Fans: 33
# of BHE Applications: 14

Top Ten Referrers:
highered.prblogs.org (106)
higheredmarketingblog.wordpress.com (93)
cuwebd.ning.com (59)
squaredpeg.com (54)
doteduguru.com (46)
mattherzberger.com (40)
markgr.com (39)
edustyle.net (28)
fjgaylor.blogspot.com (27)
collegewebeditor.com (23)

10 Comments

  • I’m the top referrer? Sweet! I’m going to blog about this. I love to be No. 1 in anything. And this, my friends, is SOMETHING.

  • Congrats on making it this far! There was some doubt. 😉

    I’ve definitely benefited from this, both in having more people reading and commenting on my blogs and in being exposed to so much incredible information in other people’s blogs.

    I’ve learned so much in the past two weeks, and really expanded my perception of what a university Web site is and can be. I’m almost in information overload, and slowly trying to process everything I’ve been exposed to. It’ll take a while.

    I want to thank all the members of this group – and you guys as well – for your efforts. Keep it up!

  • I am not sure what the advantage will be if you only add one a month. The problem faced by folks on uwebd has historically been aggregating everyone’s blogs not finding ‘the best’ ones. If you want ‘the great’ posts just run the site through AideRSS:

    http://www.aiderss.com/great/bloghighed.org

    A place to find everyone is more valuable that an exclusive place to find some people. I think what you have done is great… It’s just ‘judging’ who can be members and only having a few sites rubs me the wrong way.

  • Thanks for the comments, guys! What do you all see as acceptable growth without watering down the site’s content? I’d be interested to hear.

    I would strongly disagree with the use of AideRSS, their algorithm is not very well suited for a site like this, in my belief. I think implementing something like that would make it more like Digg, where it becomes a popularity contest and your only goal is to get people to comment and bookmark your posts so that you can rise to the top. We aren’t trying to put a weight on any certain post, and that allows us to touch such a wide range of topics. I would think that implementing a ‘great posts only’ function would just draw people to comment-share, and there would be no real value.

  • If you have improvements to their algorithm I am sure Kevin would love to hear them 😉 Use AideRSS as it is intended, not *the* tool but *a* tool that can help. Isn’t all of this a popularity contest (yes tongue is in cheek)?

    As for opening it up. I would find more value in one RSS feed of all of uwebd type folks than an exclusive list. The most valuable information is often found in the most obscure places. Higher ed is about opening things up and making more sources available.

    The focus on this site would not be the blog roll but instead in having feature summaries section that pull out some valuable signal from the noise.

    My 0.02.

  • I think the idea is that, we look for signal in the fact that we aren’t accepting fly by nighters, bloggers that are only going to be around for a month or two. We are looking to filter so that people dont come to us the day they launch and we are their launching platform. We want sustained people. As you may have noticed, on the sidebar there is now a “hot stories” section that pulls the things that are getting the most hits. It uses the Feedburner awareness api.

    On college web editor, Karine has the same stance on adding people to her blogroll.

    “After I read your posts for 6 to 8 weeks (many would-be bloggers stop after 2 months), I will be happy to add to this list any blog that deals with web, marketing, PR, new media, emerging technologies, admission, institutional advancement in higher education.”

    I guess the threshold we are trying to keep from is useful vs info overload.

    I encourage others to chime in with their thoughts.

  • To follow up on Matt’s thoughts, and going back to the original post, we still have a lot of coding to do to get the site at a point where we can more efficiently separate/organize posts. At this point, if we were at 100 people posting to the site, it would be absolute overload. I personally would find no value in the site at that point, and I doubt others would as well.

    We will certainly get to a point where we are adding more people to the mix, but with that pesky thing called work that keeps getting in the way, along with night classes and friends/family, we can’t just bang the code out as fast as we’d like to.

  • Let me say what I *don’t* want. I don’t want so much information that I give up trying to keep up with it.

    There has to be a balance of quantity vs. quality. Right now, I’m able to keep up (mostly because I’m waiting for our WCMS to show up and have cleared my plate for that), and am getting incredible value out of what I’ve read.

    I know from experience that when things like this get too big, I just give up on them altogether and the value I get out of will drop to zero.

    So I’m in favor of keeping it smaller and focusing more on quality than quantity.

    I do think that eventually having a way to categorize blogs would be useful. Or even better, a way to personalize our own feed from this site that only includes the blogs you’ve chosen to follow.

    My two cents.

  • I’m a little late coming in but to me your site is pretty amazing. My traffic has risen and hopefully I’ll continue to be relevant enough to keep my readers. I think BlogHighEd has a good mix of material, subjects and voices. I’m not sure it should get much larger. I scan the posts and go to those that look like something I should check.
    And I’m honored to be the number 2 referrer right after Andrew. Gives me a goal to work toward.

  • […] I see the higheredmarketing blog is the number 2 referrer on BlogHiEd right below highered.prblogs Thanks to all of you for following my thoughts, experiments and […]

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