DailyKos's community blogging

· Migration

DailyKos is a hugely popular left-leaning political weblog with a very active comment section. It originally ran on Movable Type but developed growing pains as the readership (and commentariat) expanded. A few months ago, Kos transitioned to Scoop, the open source codebase that underlies kuro5hin, is designed for community participation and collaborative filtering of content – essentially the group weblog model most often associated with Slashdot.
Readers have to set up a (free) account and log in with their username to comment. This creates a persistent identity and helps foster longer-term relationships emerging among the readers and writers. The diary feature enables readers to post their own thoughts and assemble their own scrapbooks of memorable information. Readers can vote a diary entry up to the front page (I believe). It’s not a bad way to start blogging with a built-in community and little expense overhead.
I’ve been reading Kos for a while, so I made sure to grab the “xian” login when he switched over to the Scoop format. Recently, though, I noticed that one’s diary is a custom URL (for example, my diary‘s address over there is xian.dailykos.com), which seemed pretty cool, so I went to my (empty) diary page there and thought it looked kind of sad.
I was reading this World o’ Crap thing on Woodruff and Dean and it made me so happy that instead of posting something to Edgewise or Oakland for Dean, I went over and posted it on the diary.
Now the funny thing is that I checked back a little while later while my diary entry was still featured in the recent sidebar on the Kos homepage, and I couldn’t help noticing that 17 people had commented on my entry. I doubt 17 people a day read my political screeds over at Edgewise.
So, I was curious about my link to WO’C. I went and looked at her referrer traffic and (as of this writing) she has 29 hits coming from that little diary entry of mine. Yes, I realize that it was a drop in the bucket for her, but it was still in the top ten of her referrers that day (currently today, 12/12). Yes, I realize she has more political writing and comedic writing talent in her little pinkie than I’ve got in my whole two thumbs, but still, I’m just saying, it’s interesting.
I think anyone contemplating starting a new blog (of the liberal persuasion) might do well to consider starting it as a diary at Kos. You’d be able to garner an audience more quickly than in many other contexts, and you could always relocate later, or shill a different site for “in-depth analysis” or whatever else yo do. You could do that here among Salon Bloggers too, though it would be nice to have some of the mechanisms of crosstalk and self-moderation built into these community weblog, collaborative media, newsfilter type things.