80/20 And The Design Blogosphere

Oh how quickly the landscape of the Web changes in 17 months. On April 14, 2004, Cameron Moll wrote 80/20 and the design blogosphere that included a list of the 20 “influencers” so to speak in the design community. The list was:

  1. Jeffrey Zeldman
  2. Dan Cederholm
  3. Todd Dominey
  4. Dave Shea
  5. Jason Fried
  6. Douglas Bowman
  7. Mark Pilgrim
  8. John Gruber
  9. Greg Storey
  10. Andrei Herasimchuk & 19. Donna Driscoll
  11. Jeffrey Veen
  12. Eric Meyer
  13. Jon Hicks
  14. D. Keith Robinson
  15. Andy Budd
  16. Shaun Inman
  17. Jason Kottke
  18. Didier Hilhorst & 20. Dan Rubin

Why bring up this list? Well besides showing you that the top 20 of anything changes quickly on the Web I also like to see the fact that the 80/20 is becoming more and more like the 80/80 (which will soon be the 100/infinity…whoops it already is like that). The idea that the web is becoming flat with regards to how information is spread is not a new idea, but I think many people are still caught up in the top blogger notion. Yes some blogs receive a large amount of traffic over others, but that doesn’t mean the information comes from them was writtent there first.

In the list above how many of those blogs are still active? How many of them still produce relevent and timely content? How many of them would you put in your top 20 favorite sites or resources on the web?

Part of the 9rules Network philosophy was born from the fact that there is no longer an 80/20 rule on the web. Sure many will continue to create lists and quantify the web, but that’s because it makes them comfortable. We are not trying to create the next A-List. We are just trying to create chances.

Should we have gone after the 20 people in the list? That would have helped us greatly with regards to traffic and exposure, but would that have fit in with our philosophy of finding great content on the web? Are we creating superstars that will one day sit atop the A-List of people who make lists? Who knows, maybe, but that’s more up to the writers of the sites than us.

We are connectors. We connect writers to other writers, writers to readers and soon advertisers to writers (if they want us to of course). We do this because we know that rules are meant to be broken and that lists will always be changing.