Monday, September 15, 2008

The 10 Most Influential Bloggers ... According to the Indy

The Independent's excellent media pages carries a feature by Nigel Morris today on the ten political blogs he considers are the most influential. Read it HERE. In case you are too lazy to click, they are

Er, this one
Liberal Conspiracy
Ben Brogan
Spectator Coffee House
LibDem Voice
Tom Watson MP

UPDATE: Meanwhile, those who are bored by Tim Ireland, look away now. The Guildford One is clearly upset at his non inclusion in this list. He also accuses Nigel Morris of misleading his readers about the number of readers this blog gets. I have a policy of never replying to his emails, and he is banned from commenting on this blog, but just this once, let me put him right. Nigel Morris emailed me asking how many readers I get. Here is the email exchange...

From: []
Sent: 10 September 2008 18:56
To: Iain Dale
Subject: 2 things

hi iain,
just writing a short piece on political blogs for the paper - when was IDD set up and how many hits do u typically get in a month?

From: Iain Dale []
Sent: 10 September 2008 19:00
To: Nigel Morris
Subject: 2 things
Started in March 2002, but in its present incarnation in December 2005. I took a 6 month break from blogging during the leadership election.
I get about 65000 absolute unique visitors a month (ie 65000 indidivuals), which amount to around 350,000 visits and 500,000 page views.

Now I suppose Ireland might pick a hole in me saying 65,000 individuals, when by strict definition it means 65,000 individual computers. But seeing as RSS feed readers are not included in this figure it's about as accurate as you're going to get. This will no doubt provoke yet another batch of emails from him, accusing me of fabricating the email exchange and worse. Bovvered.


Anonymous said...

Where's Tim Ireland on this list?

Anonymous said...

Politicalbetting regularly gets three hundred responses to a single post (although some people do several as a debate gets going).

Compare PB with Ben Brogan and Tom Watson. I don't know how many hits they get, but hardly anyone responds. They don't deseve to be on the list.

Craig said...

Where am I?

Anonymous said...

Hahaha, @anonymous, good question. Maybe if the question was "most irritating" instead...

Mostly reasonable list, apart from Tom Watson MP (huh?).

Anonymous said...

This blog is becoming a lot of boring lists.

Where is the influence in that?

Anonymous said...

Gut geMacht, Herr Iain

Keep up das Gute Werk

but warum does Mr Watson appear on such a List ???

Anonymous said...

I notice the Indy says you have a "Dayley/Dayly" top ten blogs which puzzled me a bit. Who's "Dayley" I asked myself?

Iain, as a cross-over issue between your two blogs, have you noticed the increasing correlation between sponsorship of Premiership Football Clubs and financial problems? Northern Rock (Newcastle United) and XL (West Ham) are today now followed by AIG (Manchester Utd), which apparently requires major US Govt financial support. Perhaps you can supply a handy list of all the other Premiership shirt sponsors so we can all liquide any exposures and/or start a book on which it will be next. It may be, as in much else, that Arsenal/the Emirates are better placed than most...

Anonymous said...

Anon: September 15, 2008 11:00 AM -

That websites problem is whilst the guy who runs it is sound, his connections to LD's prejudice it's independence: Any critism of LD's is not tolerated by other posters who moan and whine insesantly, bunch of babies!

Cyber space and Information Technology is a great leveller and gives *people power*. It is possible for a home operation to promote peripheral issues into the mainstream through posting on sites and indeed create momentum on new issues in themselves.

Whilst blog's have power in themselves it is *super user posters* who know how to exploit them and peddle their message who have the real power!

Anonymous said...

What about Dave Hill? He is easily setting the agenda on reporting about City Hall at the mo. I don't think Tom Watson't blog is influential at all. It's either about what he's planting in his garden or an attempt to bitch about some MP/Journalist he doesn't like. I find him bitter not influential.

Andrew Ian Dodge said...

Clearly someone need to him the difference between a blog and a website. ConHome & LabourHome are not blogs at all.

Anonymous said...

Enough of the ruddy lists Iain! I used to really enjoy reading your blog but am bored to tears with list after list after list after list after list after list after list!

Well.. you get the idea!

Matt Wardman said...

I'm going to be a bit of a grouch.

Top 10 is too easy; most of them select themselves as the most influential in areas that must be represented.

Let them do a top 25 or 30, so the writer has to do some thinking.

"Growing like topsy" is an interesting contrast to virtually all the current analysis by people who really know political blogs, including several people in the "Blog Guide".

I think Tom Watson comes close to justifying his inclusion at the moment on the basis of the Civil Service Online Code alone; even though it was some time ago.

I'd say this piece has a feel of "10 Blogs I read every day", but then most of these things do.

Anonymous said...

You can have too many lists you know.

Iain Dale said...

Hmm, so a national newspaper does a big feature on political blogging and some of you reckon I shouldnt bother mentioning it. Hmmm. Right.

Anonymous said...

Iain, the best thing about it is your Blog was mentioned at the top with you being the focus of the piece, from your point of view.

I suggest others may have sour grapes! (Maybe LD Babies again!)

Anonymous said...

Interesting that you should lead on this story about blogs today when two of the biggest US investment banks collapse.

does the blog have any views about the collapse of Lehman brothers and the buy out of Merryl lynch? is this another sign of the collapse of the US financial services industry - ? Does it augur badly for the Republicans?

We often see this interesting blog criticise NULAB for any news of economic or financial woes - but i have yet to read a cogent analysis by you of this financial crisis which will further entrench the credit crunch ? ? do the other tory blogs cover it? or is not part of the current tory narrative - which is essentially to support McCain/Palin and bash Obama/Brown etc. Please tell me with all honesty if this had happened to a UK investment bank it would not be your main story of the day and you would not be blaming Brown. Do you blame the Republicans?

Iain Dale said...

Daniel, when I want advice on how to run my blog from you, or what I should write about, please be sure I will ask for it.

Anonymous said...


You get 350,000 readers a month? (Taken from the article and photo caption)

If so, you're actually bigger than the Independent.

They should be reporting your list, not the other way round!

I think the lists are fine, and the annual blogging guide is a good way to highlight the growth of the blogosphere, so well done to you.

The only point I would make is that I get really frustrated with phased lists - it makes sense for the top 200 political blogs, but I don't think there's enough excitement in 'the top 50 Lib Dems' to justify five different installments.

All the best,


Anonymous said...

How is Liberal Conspiracy influential?

Newmania said...

I would not expect you to blog 'Coo my goodness', at the day`s front page Iain you tend to be a lot more interesting that that.

I would expect Lib Dem Voice to have something to say about the re-positioning of the Liberal Party though and thus far there is silence . Now that is a bit pathetic.

Anonymous said...

I am afraid that Daniel is right and you are wrong Ian. With all these lists and relatively little current affairs comment, particularly with politics so interesting at the moment, you are losing the plot.

Iain Dale said...

Pathetic. Look at yesterday. Or the day before. Or the day before. Need I go on?

Anonymous said...

Well done Iain and your picture is much nicer than that of your competitor Tim Montgomerie who looks miserable and very, very pompous on ConHom.

Anonymous said...

Well done Iain. Glad to know I'm in good company or similar.

That said, am wondering how long it will be before the Indy runs a 'Top Ten Top Tens'

Iain could choose the one representing blogging. Though obviously not his own. That would be a bit self-satisfied.

Events dear boy, events said...

It seems Iain I am not the only one who does not understand these lists you keep producing. Go back to producing a blog with real comment and news. after all the next few weeks could determine the direction of UK politics for some considerable time.

Anonymous said...

I agree with many of the posters, these lists are tedious, the only lists you haven't given us are Schindler's List & your shopping list.

Almost as tedious as hearing about your squabbles with Tim Ireland...from either side.

Iain Dale said...

Radders, presumably you have lost control of your Scroll button. If I find a post boring on someone's blog I scroll down to the next one. It's quite simple.

And I agree with you about Ireland, which is why I don't react very often to his daily rantings against me.

Anonymous said...


I posted at 12:25 about your list "issue".

You've gone on the defensive which is your right. However, if you want to know the impact these things have -

I used to view your site every day, sometimes more than once. Now I check it weekly as I can't be bothered to find out what the latest list is.

Appreciate you have a lot on your plate but for gods sake give us a break!

You've got a lot of loyal readers out there. Myself included. Don't drive us all away!

Anonymous said...

sorry, but especially since the Green Beret scam, EU referendum blog is a top team player. I know Dr North in his teacherly mode gets up your nose, but he is damn good and knows his stuff.

Iain Dale said...

Can we get some perspective on this? If we take out the Daley Dozen, over the last week, I have posted 60 blogposts. Precisely 4 of those have been lists.

yes, in the previous two weeks there was one, sometimes two a day, related to the blogging guide. I plead guilty to that.

................................. said...

I'm surprised they allow Tim Ireland internet access from secure accommodation. And how does he type with that straight jacket on?!

Anonymous said...


There is a button I use more & more when I see another list on your site.

It's at the top right hand corner & has an X on it.

When you're on song, you're good, even if I disagree with a lot of what you say. But these lists, it's a bit like tuning into Attenborough & finding he's telling you the names of all the frogs.

I'll forgive your sense of humour bypass.

Anonymous said...

Iain, why are you bothering to reply to these whining ninnies? Not only do they have a scroll bar; if they REALLY hate the blog so much, they can click on the little "X" and go and read a book, or watch a film, or take up snorkelling.

On an unrelated point, I am dismayed by the way that journalists nowadays seem unable to write e-mails without recourse to "txt-speak" and an improper tone of extreme familiarity.

Anonymous said...

In the face of much negative opinion ....

Embarrassed shuffling from left talon .... to the right talon .... and back again

At the expense of losing what little street cred this Eagle may have had .... I rather like your Daily Dozen List

and if I don't like anything, I do have a scroll-down mouse

Letters From A Tory said...

LabourHome? Influential? Give me a break.

Anonymous said...

Iain, why the hell are you taking the time to justify yourself to these tossers?

Whatever you write some people will get all whiney and think they have the right to criticise and tell you what you should have done differently.

How about they all naff off and clog up the intertubes with their own blogs?

There is nothing more irritating than reading a bunch of "I know best" whiners.

Grow up, morons.

Anonymous said...

Iain, I visit most days, and usually more than once a day, and would never presume to give you advice on what subjects to write about.

That said, however, I would have to agree that some of your critics on this particular post do have a point. I too like the Daley Dozen, and the Top 10 listing, but have to admit to an impression that things have seemed a trifle list-heavy lately.

I'm not really sure, and suspect that other regulars aren't sure either, that the identity of the top 50 LibDem influencers (er, isn't that an oxymoron anyway? - are there 50 at all?) is something we are all dying to know.

Lists apart, keep up the good work

The Grant Maker said...

I've been catching up on the history of Ireland's hectoring of you - somehow, it passed me by the first time around, even though I was a reader then.

He really is a knob.

Nich Starling said...

Does anyone read Liberal Conspiracy ?

It is not what is says on the tin in that it is not really liberal, although perhaps that is the conspitacy.