The New Gatekeepers

Seth Finkelstein posits that the A-Listers are the new gatekeepers [via Scobelizer: Microsoft Geek Blogger]. I think that he’s just off the mark. Search engines remain the internet gatekeepers. The power of the A-List is an artifact of page rank.

A-Listers are prolific bloggers with wide-ranging interests. I doubt that anyone can reliably recall on which blog they read what after a few days. So limiting your search to a specific blog is a bad strategy unless you’re looking for something in their specialty, such as RSS at Scripting News or Microsoft happenings at Microsoft Geek Aggregator.

I’ve changed my mind about the integration of RSS and email. I value my email archives for their history, while I value weblogs for freshness. There’s a mismatch between the two. I no longer archive A-List blog posts - I go straight to a search engine.

So while I agree that it’s going to take special circumstances before we see a new A-Lister, I’m not really concerned. The A-Listers may rule the general interest categories, but I believe that specialized topics are still up for grabs - for someone with the smarts, drive and persistence. I’m confident that search engines will provide a way to find you as long as you’re worth finding.