Kevin Lim is one of 20 bloggers up for a $10,000 annual blogging scholarship. Many of the other blogs are also quite good, but Kevin–who is a former student of mine–has the best one, and deserves to win. If you’ve been reading this blog for any amount of time, you know that I’m a regular reader of Kevin’s blog, and often find interesting stuff there that I wouldn’t otherwise find.
Unfortunately, it looks like they are deciding who to award it to based on the inherently flawed internet poll. Not only is the willingness to vote a bad indicator of real popularity (if popularity, rather than quality, is their major criterion), let alone quality, but there is far too much opportunity for fraud. Not that I am impugning any of the finalists, only indicating that it’s a bad way to judge things. Right now, for example, the number of votes cast for each blog has no relationship to the Technorati ranking or PageRank, which suggests something is fishy. Moreover, it’s clear that more popular topics are going to win out over more academic topics in broad popularity.
But, who am I to complain, since I encourage my students to court an audience. Good luck to Kevin, and to the other entrants. And bravo to Collegescholarships.org for offering money to student bloggers. Yes, it’s a commercial for them, but this is marketing I can get behind.