Favorite blog posts of 2009

This year, I think, is finally the year we can stop talking about whether blogging is as good as “real” journalism. At its best, it’s as good as anything out there. And, with blogging’s ability to micro-segment, you can find in a few search engine clicks an expert on the overheated mortgage market or music industry royalties who is far more informed and authoritative than anyone writing for a newspaper. The tipping point has been reached.

Here are the best blog posts I read this year:

1. Doc Searls, “Advertising in Reverse,” Project VRM Blog, and Scott Adams, “Hunter Becomes The Prey,” The Scott Adams Blog. [Related posts.] One of the most amazing results of blogging is one post inspiring and strengthening another. In this case, two ideas, separately conceived, merged in these paired posts and created a new concept, Broadcast Shopping, which combined each idea and was superior to either.

2. Cynthia Kurtz, “Eight Observations – 4th – Telling,” Story-Colored Glasses. Is the best way to tell a story not, in fact, to tell the story, but to communicate it in some other way?

3. Andrew McAfee, “When Information is NOT the Answer,” The Business Impact of IT. The author of “Enterprise 2.0″ is an excellent blogger; in this case, he takes on the presumption that, when making decisions, the more data the better.

4. Bob Sutton, “Wal-Mart and Girl Scout Cookies: Thin-Minty Gate,” Work Matters. Sutton, author of “The No Asshole Rule,” has a great blog that tweaks large corporations and their management practices. Wal-Mart’s ill-advised decision to sell a knockoff of Girl Scout cookies provided a notable story to underpin his thesis that overly-disciplined adherence to corporate strategies can cause dysfunctional decisionmaking.

5. Fred Wilson, “Hacking Education – Continued,” A VC. Fred’s blog has, hands down, the best comment section of any blog I’ve read. You shouldn’t read a post without taking in all the comments below it.

6. Felix Salmon, “How to Succeed In Customer Service,” Felix Salmon: Sailing the Rough Rude Sea. One of the most amazing bloggers in cyberspace takes up one of my favorite topics. Magic.

7. David Pogue, “Take Back the Beep,” Pogue’s Posts. Imagine a blog post so timely, on-target and well-written that it causes the FCC to take action? This one did.

8. Terry Miller, “Low Tech and On the Ground,” Cognitive Edge Guest Blog. A well-reasoned explanation for why in certain circumstances stories and low-tech interventions are far more suitable than data mining and large-scale initiatives.

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