In an earlier post I wondered if the editors of the — otherwise interesting and increasingly successful — Advances in History of Psychology blog were really happy with the use of the word ‘advance’ in the blog title (because of the pretty antiquated philosophy of history connotations associated with ‘advance’)
In a recent post, editor Jeremy Burman explains his choice of name for the AHP blog. He is aware, of course, that ‘advance’ is problematic as a historiographical category. But in this case, Jeremy says, it just means that he wants to help further the history of psychology “by bringing together efforts from the various allied disciplines and collecting them into one place, from which further investigations can be launched”.
That’s fine with me. But then Jeremy adds: “More pragmatically, I also wanted an ‘a-name’ so the site would appear at the top of other sites’ blogrolls”.
Read again! I must admit that I’ve never thought about this blogroll position manipulation method before. And I wonder how common it is. I’ve quickly browsed my favourite science/medicine/tech blogs and nowhere have I found a bias towards the first letters in the alphabet.
I guess most blogs stay away from this practice, because it runs against the self-imposed and delicate gift-giving rules of the blogroll listing. But then again, I may be naïve. So I wonder: How common is this? And does it work as intended?
If Jeremy is really serious about this, he should perhaps change the title of the blog to Aadvances in History of Psychology to make sure that he gets ahead of the possibly forthcoming Absolute Psychology 🙂