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The Network

Being Exclusive

When we announced the Round 4 list I knew there was going to be some excitement and disdain for the simple fact that it is a lot of sites. 115 (yes we added 4 more and could quite possibly sneak a couple more in) members added in one fell swoop is no laughing matter and almost double our current member base so it’s only right for some people to be concerned about us losing our exclusivity.

It would be nice to admit that there is a plan on how much more we would like to grow, but to be honest we are starting to reach new territories now. We are starting to see submissions every round where the quality gets better and better and that was the “problem” with Round 4. There were just too many damn good sites to say no to. When asked what number we are going to take every round, we always respond by saying we never want to put a cap on quality.

I can understand when you see such a large number you may think that we are growing too fast, but if you sit back and think about it, we have only had 4 rounds in over a year. We only add sites when we are ready to grow and in between each round we have updated our site to try and improve the experience for our Members and Readers. Changes will be made further to this site in the upcoming weeks (as has been mentioned before) that will make communities more like communities.

We have to solve the problem of keeping relevant content within each community. Our biggest issue is definitely that design content can show up in the science community as an example. Once that is solved, our community pages become even more relevant. There are of course other issues that need addressing as well and we are looking into those.

It’s no secret that we want all of our communities to become the go to places on the web for that topic. Our next site update will extend that vision further by truly making 9rules a community for both Members and Readers to participate in. This also includes adding the best sites in each community regardless of community size.

We accepted 115 sites out of 700. That’s only 16.4% of the overall total so depending on your definition of exclusivity maybe we should’ve let in less. Technorati tracks over 43 million sites and if we pretend that only half of those are blogs that means 9rules contains around 0.00012% of the blogosphere so I don’t think we will be hitting the mainstream any time soon.

I was going to post some screenies of the new stuff, but I need to talk to the team first to see if they are ready to show themselves naked (it’s 3am and they are all sleep).