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July, 2008

5th Most Influential New Yorker??

Really? (Of course not is obviously the answer.)

According to this list on NowPublic (using TinyURL to offset the linkbaitishness of it) that purports to be "a detailed barometer of the most public news influencers of today’s digital world" I am the fifth most influential person in this fine city. As Brian and Rex have written it's quite simply link bait from a company who is otherwise known as that site who sends you those weird Flickr emails where they ask to use your photos and then ask you to become a member to let them (who does that?).

A couple things about the list: It's fun to be on these things but there is no real merit behind them. Interestingly enough, though, they seem to have exposed their formula for the rankings (it's about 3/4 of the way down the page) and includes basically how much stuff you do, not how much you actually influence anyone.

As a side note, this seems to be the major issue with any discussion about influence: It's not usually about influence and tends more towards things like reach and frequency. I made this same argument two years ago and not much has changed. Influence happens on a personal level and changes depending on topic. One person is more influential on computers and another on music. This is how the world works, which is one of the big flaws with all these attempts at calculating influence.

On top of all this, I'm kind of annoyed because rather than linking out to people's sites, they link to a member profile which they've created for each person on the list. While I've written and asked them to take control of my profile, I haven't heard anything back yet. This generally feels like really bad form.

With all that said, the idea of a personal influence list is kind of fun and I thought I'd go through the list (and off it), to think about some people that influence me:

First those on the list

  • 6. Anil Dash: Just about everything he writes is worth reading. He's really freaking smart.
  • 10. Loren Feldman: He's a little crazy (which I said to him last time we had drinks), but he makes me laugh and says a lot more really smart stuff than people give him credit for.
  • 15. Jason Kottke: How one man can read so much is beyond me. There's nobody better.
  • 16. Rex Sorgatz: I'm pretty sure he's the only person I follow on twitter that I've never met in person.
  • 18. Brian Morrissey: Brian's a good dude and writes about the ad industry.
  • 23. Kyle Bunch: Kyle and I have grandiose plans to take over the online sports universe as soon as we find an extra five minutes.
  • 40. Peter Rojas: He's a really smart dude and I like what he's up to at RCRD LBL.
  • 46. Allison Mooney: Me an Alli met awhile back at a random coffee morning when Russell Davies was in town. She's awesome and will be co-hosting a party with me this Friday (which I will write up tomorrow probably).

So, there you have it, the 8 people who influence me out of the 50 New Yorkers they chose (I mean, I'm sure I've been influenced by some of the other people, but these are the ones that stood out for me).

And now, five more New Yorkers that influence me on the internet who didn't make the list.

  • Rick Webb: Sure he has a tendency towards diatribes, but there aren't that many people who know how things work better than Rick. (And I don't just say that because I technically work for him. Also, while he doesn't actually live here, he spends enough time to count.)
  • Faris Yakob: Rule number 1, if someone has as much hair as Faris, make sure you listen to what they have to say.
  • Chet Gulland: Chet is a buddy of mine. He's got awesome taste in just about everything and he's super smart.
  • Colin Nagy: Colin keeps a low profile, but our at-least-weekly breakfasts (that's right, in person) are a constant source of stuff (music, news, ideas, etc.).
  • Aaron Rutledge: Aaron runs Poke NY (along with some other fine folks) and is always good for a link or some tech advice. Plus he cooks up a mean burger with bacon and cheese mixed in with the meat.

So I'm sure I've missed a ton of people, but I thought it was at least a worthy exercise. Lists are dumb.

July 21, 2008
Noah Brier | Thanks for reading. | Don't fake the funk on a nasty dunk.