Network news

With his customary cheery aplomb, Problogger provides "34 reasons why people unsubscribe from your blog". Many of us would be happy with 34 readers, let alone 34 reasons why they might not like you, but the first two reasons (overwhelmingly the most popular) are "too many posts" (37 votes) and "too few posts" (29).  Other top reasons for unsubscribing include "partial excerpts" in rss feeds, blog changes focus (too much off-topic posting), too many posts that I see elsewhere (recycled content) and "uninteresting content". We can all learn from this. The frequent/infrequent posting issue seems to indicate that a few posts a day (or even one) is better than many, but that no posts is a bit of a killer also. The Problogger post delves into the reasons a bit more, as well as providing a depressingly vast list of reasons why people unsubscribe from blogs.

Oh well, let me try to find some more upbeat tecchy news. Here is Nature Network, a sort of MySpace for scientists. You can blog, look for jobs, see what meetings are going on, and network with others in all kinds of ways. (I work at Nature but have not been involved in this project.)

And "Second Life becomes more like the first one": the vastly popular (not with me) site is being upgraded so people can interact using microphones and headsets rather than, as now, keyboards.

A funny thing happened on the way to the bus stop

Science_1  From the Charkin blog:

"I think this photo wins the futile advertising of the month award. The bus stop is round the corner from Nature‘s Kings Cross, London offices in Caledonian Road. Apart from the Nature team (who already subscribe to Science) there can be no potential readers of this excellent but very high-level journal at this bus stop. The poster is there (at significant expense) presumably simply to irritate the Nature team (I can think of no other explanation). What it does suggest is that ‘not-for-profit’ publishers (Science is owned by the learned society, AAAS) can be more liberal with their subscribers’ money than privately-owned ones."

Disclaimer: I work for Nature, and Richard Charkin is CEO of Macmillan publishers, owners of Nature.