Remember Alexa rankings? Wow, them things were the cat’s pajamas. If you don’t remember that far back, Alexa rankings were generated by a piece of software that users downloaded, and thus supposedly measured the real-life popularity of websites. Certain movementarians encouraged everyone in sight to download the thing and so thus increase their Alexa ranking, presumably increasing the number of people converted to the libertarian cause. Sign up now! No money down! Libertopia awaits!
Problem was that pretty much the only people who bothered to download it were libertarian movement types. Hilarity ensued as the Alexa rankings became the victims of movementarian hyperinflation and the movementarians themselves started overdosing on their own Kool-Aid: More popular than the Washington Times? I saw it on the Internet, so it must be true!
The Alexa rankings disappeared into embarassed obscurity, but our never-flagging movementeers have a brand new promotional scheme: Digg. Digg promotes articles and links based on other Digg users’ recommendations – so totally not like Alexa rankings!
Can you guess who’s recommending that their readers all sign up and recommend articles? And can you guess what that sort of gamesmanship will do to Digg’s wonderful, “democratic” recommendation system? That’s right. More readers than the New York Times! Doubling in users every two months! I saw it on the Internet, so it must be true!