Visualizing the Science Blogosphere (and Open-Sourcing It)

Posted by: in Healthcare Insights, Social Media Insights & Trends on September 16, 2010

[UPDATE, Sept. 30: I've done another batch of additions. As a commenter from Field of Science noted, there is still a lot of work to be done, but it's not clear that I'll get to it immediately. In the near-term, if you want the visualization for a presentation, post or whatnot, you can get a high-resolution JPG here or a PDF copy here. There are also lower-resolution versions archived on our Flickr site. And, as always, this is a public document: anyone can make additions, subtractions or edits at Google Docs, where the original version lives.]

Last week, I celebrated the emergence of a vibrant science blogosphere, but I may have been a week early in my analysis. Since that post went live, another network of incredible bloggers has emerged – this time from Wired — adding to what was already a rich and increasingly well-supported community.

The expansion of all of these networks prompted Scientific American’s Robin Lloyd to wonder, on Twitter, if anyone had ever diagrammed out the science blogosphere. That request was quickly seconded by NPR’s Scott Hensley, and I decided to take on the challenge.

The result is below (click for details). I built it around the ScienceBlogs.com diaspora, so there is a bias toward networks with a ScienceBlogs expat; in the name of comprehensiveness, this could (and should) certainly be expanded.

But even with those limitations, a number of things are clear. For starters, the community is really, really substantial. There are more than six dozen names on the list now, and I’ve only scratched the surface. Secondly, regardless of your opinion on ScienceBlogs.com and the Cola Wars, it’s clear that network played a central role in building the stable of online science writers. ScienceBlogs vets are at the core of a number of the existing networks. And, finally, this trend doesn’t seem to be at risk of abating, with new bloggers joining new networks at a rapid pace.

But to really chart all of that, this diagram needs to be improved, so I’m open-sourcing it. The chart was created with Google Drawing, and I’m making the link to the document open to all. Please, go in an add bloggers, fix mistakes and add to the history. I wish that I could claim the authoritative knowledge of a BoraZ, but I can’t. Instead, I’d like to lean on the wisdom of the crowd.

Have at it.

(Some technical notes: where possible, I’ve listed bylines, not blog titles. I tried to keep this to individual blogs, not group efforts, and focus on bloggers whose primary duty is blogging. And I’m aware of the bigger omissions: there are a lot more Scientopia blogs to add, the Nature Network and SciAm need to go up there, etc. These are by no means guidelines, and if you want to change any of this, go right ahead.)

By: Brian Reid

Brian Reid is a director at WCG in the product group, where he specializes in media. He is a former journalist who believes content really is king.

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4 Responses

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  1. Either my Google-Doc-fu is weak, or it’s not set up for editing.

    (Those who can edit it, take note: Scicurious needs to be added to the Scientopia circle.)

  2. Dude, where are we in the diagram? We’ve been around longer than a bunch of those sites.

  3. But nice diagram.

Continuing the Discussion

  1. Quick Links | A Blog Around The Clock linked to this post on September 27, 2010

    [...] Visualizing the Science Blogosphere (and Open-Sourcing It) [...]

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