What A list?

Nick Douglas at Blogebrity said it:

What is “sucking up to the A-list“? What game does Lisa Stone of the BlogHer conference think bloggers have to play? Why do people bitch and moan about lists of popular bloggers, then grumble “but you have to do what they say”?

What’s to suck up? Technorati’s top blog, Boing Boing, permanently links to one blog: Fark, hidden in a text link below a stack of ads. You can only earn temporary links from BB, by sending them something cool. Just find something they might like, and fill in “Your Website” on the suggestion form. Sometimes they’ll come around and find you; most likely if you’re also a coolhunter or techie or both. And if you’re not, why do you want Boing Boing readers anyway?…

Building a reputation in blogdom isn’t about sucking up to an A-list. It’s about sharing tidbits with other bloggers, blog readers, forum members, and chatters who might enjoy them….

You won’t build long-lasting fame and influence with a few blogroll links and a lucky meme find. You’ll build it with interesting, relevant discussion. And, as always, by writing something worth reading.

The irony of complaining about “the A list” is that it gives that list value it doesn’t deserve. That is the point of this world:

There is no A list. There is only your list.

Sure, I’m glad to be on the Technorati top 100 — well, topo 50, by the skin of my teeth, actually, but who’s counting? Well, I am. Not that I’m bragging, though I am…

But seriously, folks: It’s not the list that makes me happy. It’s the links. And though I’ll eagerly gobble up an Instalanche, it’s more rewarding to find someone new linking to me with something interesting to say or vice versa.

It’s not about lists. It’s about links.

And who made Technorati’s list the A list but the people who complain about it? Dave Sifry, who did indeed create the list based on his link data, emphasizes that by far the most links and traffic and conversation happen off of it.

Nick started Blogebrity, remember, to poke fun at the list lust in blogs. He made up lists out of thin air and then watched people debate them as he sat, smirking. He did it to make a point.

The worst thing about old media is that it is a closed club. We shouldn’t be making this new world into a collection of clubhouses.

: Correction: Nick did not start Blogebrity. But he supped of the Kool-Aid.

: LATER: Halley Suitt, who copresented the keynote Nick wrote about, scolds me for not linking to her about this. Well, I was reacting to Nick’s point. And besides, she did not even post about her own keynote until after she scolded me. Jeesh. Can’t win. All she said was this: “This thing just so rocks and is so fun. I am not gonna come close to describing it.” Rah Rah. Well, now that she did put up her notes, here is the link.