For our purposes, I'll note that Rob Neyer's blog has gotten a long overdue face lift. The content has always been king there, but archives have been a problem. As of now you can easily navigate May and June, and I'm assuming at some point you'll be able to go back farther. Aesthetically it's nicer too, with all of that yellow and gray -- which often made me feel like I was entering a room with no windows -- being replaced by a cleaner, more modern look. And get this:
I'll close today with a note to any bloggers who might be reading ... Soon, or perhaps already, we're adding a blog roll to this page [note: It's up]. If you don't see your blog listed and you think it should be, I have one piece of advice: Wow me. Post often and extensively (but not too extensively, unless your last name is Posnanski). And most of all, be smart and write well. Oh, and if you do see your blog listed? Don't assume it will be forever. Nothing's more annoying than a link to a site that hasn't been updated since Opening Day.
I believe that blogrolls are necessary to keep the bloggy conversation going, but man, they're tough. Rob mentions the biggest reason for this, and that's in making sure that everyone in your blogroll is keeping current. There's no bigger drag than having to constantly go back and check that the people you link haven't gotten a life and given it up. Then there's the too-many-is-too-much problem, in that once you get over a couple dozen links, the power of those links becomes diluted. People know you're not reading all that stuff, and because of that, they don't see a blog's appearance in your blogroll as a true endorsement.
The final problem with blogrolls is knowing when to pull the plug. Many young blogs have made the mistake of overlinking at the outset simply because the linkees were nice enough to give them a random mention. And they probably should do that, because when you have 12 readers a day, any link is worth its weight in gold. But flash forward a year or two and the calculus changes. Oftentimes those original supporters are almost, but not entirely dormant, and the blogger has to ask themselves if and when to delete them from the roll. I'll admit that I'm not sure what the etiquette is in that case. I mean, if a blog is clearly dead, fine, strike them. But when they're limping along at two posts a month, even considering the subject makes you feel like Terry Schiavo's guardian or something. In light of all of that, it's probably a good idea for Rob to be instituting a strict post or die policy. It will save him a lot of time and hassle in the long run.
I know many of you hate blog-talk, so I'll stop there, but if you have Insider, you should definitely check out Rob's new look.