As I’ve explained in earlier pieces, I periodically post “most popular” lists of websites (and books) that I think educators might find useful. Of course, there are a number of ways to gauge “popularity.” I just view these lists as opportunities to check-out some new sites and resources, and find it interesting to see which ones might be particularly “popular.”

Related to all this, I have just read a memo from the head of the “Gawker” web media “empire” where he tells his staff what makes something popular on the Web. It’s of limited educational value (though it might be useful in my Theory of Knowledge class and I might refer to it when I teach writing in other classes), but it is interesting.

It got me wondering about what a similar list might look like for the education blogosphere. What makes something popular in our “neck of the woods”? Share your thoughts in the comments section by September 1st,and I’ll put everybody’s ideas into a post. I figured it would be a mildly interesting question to raise in the remaining weeks of our summer vacation. Obviously, that’s not the primary reason why we write, but it might be useful to know. I think most of us would like as many people as possible to read what we write, and if we can channel the essence what we want to communicate more into what people would like to see, it’s a win-win situation.

Here are Gawker’s main criteria:

* Explanation — “There’s too much news on the web; and way too little explanation.”

* “Readers enjoy strong opinion”

* “They like photographs”

* “video”

* “great yarns”

* “stories featuring teenagers”

* “female trumps male”

* “Youth also trumps age”

Do any of these carryover into the education blogosphere? What are your ideas?