May Be Unsuitable

It's almost July 1 -- a natural point for medical folk to take stock of things. The senior residents are working their final shifts with us, packing up for their new attending positions. The rising interns are getting trained in ACLS. And on the blogosphere, we're sizing up the new rankings.

This site, with its anemic posting frequency, and a layout that steadfastly proclaims its allegiance to 2003, was recently ranked in eDrugSearch's Top 100 healthcare blogs. Blogborygmi made the top 50, and Medgadget, for a brief period, was king of the hill.

Over on Medgadget, I wrote:

Let's just say we're not bowled over by the rigor of [eDrugSearch's] system -- too many important blogs are missing, some defunct blogs are included, and a closer look at individual numbers just makes us scratch our heads...

Nor do we think ranking blog influence is as useful or necessary as, say, ranking hospitals or colleges. The medical blogosphere is a growing community of vital, insightful voices. We have an opportunity to fundamentally change the way health information is communicated. Medical blogs should be surveyed, scrutinized, categorized... but not ranked.

But... If someone is going to rank them... We're glad we're at the top.

Shortly afterward, added to their list the incredible British EMS site, Random Acts of Reality, and we promptly became Number Two.

Alas. Perhaps more amusing than these rankings (which was ultimately a clever PR stunt for a site I initially suspected would install malware), was a movie-style ratings for blogs, that GruntDoc pointed out.

By counting certain keywords -- like 'pain' and 'sex' -- this service decides if you're PG-13 or rated R.

Blogborygmi, it turns out, is G-rated -- family fare. But I'm in good company: even HealthCareBS was rated G (and no, it doesn't stand for 'Bachelor of Science'). Mighty Medgadget, with our ongoing coverage of reproductive technology and plastic surgery, was only PG-13. If only we covered drugs (a ratings watchword) we'd be considered more adult: The pharmaceutical development blog, In the Pipeline, was slapped with an NC-17.

(An aside: It just occurred to me that Bachelors of Science would make a great blog name. But a quick search reveals, unfortunately, a band swept in and claimed it. Makes sense; almost all band names have been taken.)

Oh well. For years, other bloggers have set up hierarchies and categories based on traffic, links, votes, and other characteristics -- it's only natural, given the easily accessible technology, and our underlying touch of narcissism. Why should medical bloggers be any different? It's in our nature.