Not surprisingly, the most popular science blogger by far is PZ Myers over at Pharyngula. He attributes his success to "tapping into the broader areas of liberal politics and atheism" and "resentment against the reactionary religious nature of American culture".
One of my favorite blogs that I don't read regularly, Real Climate, came in at #3. Blogger Gavin Schmidt asserts that their large readership is driven by "a hunger for raw but accessible information" that is more in-depth than the newspaper without being as technical as a peer-reviewed paper. Hey that's the reason that I read them when I get a chance.
In my humble opinion, being a popular science blogger takes a couple of ingredients:
- A conversational writing style that cuts through the jargon
- Posting regularly enough to generate consistent readership
- A science topic of general interest to the public (evolution, climate) or of avid interest to a specific group of amateurs (ornithology, anthropology, astronomy)
If you are curious, Nature also provides the Technorati rankings of the Top 50 science blogs (free access?). I am pleased to see many of my favorite bloggers among the list and I am honored to be among them (#41).
On a different note, it must make the Seed folks over at Scienceblogs pretty happy to claim two of the top 5 as their own. I wonder whether Seed overlooked the other top bloggers or whether the others were unwilling to give up their unique and easily findable domain names. I'd bet it was the latter.
Today's question: As regular readers of at least one science blog, what, in your opinion, makes a good science blog?