Sunday, December 11, 2005
How Influential is the Discovery Institute?
They're good at manipulating the media, says Myers, but very few people read them.
We concur with Myers' observation, but we wondered if we could find any data to back up his hypothesis. Then we thought of Bloglines, the RSS feed we subscribe to. Bloglines reports the total number of subscribers in the header of each RSS feed. Here's the data for a number of blogs we follow on the evolution, intelligent design, creationism pseudocontroversy:
- The Loom 404
- Pharyngula 394
- Panda's Thumb 258
- Chris Mooney/The Intersection 161
- Evolutionblog 103
- National Center for Science Education 98
- Thoughts from Kansas 51
- Red State Rabble 49
- Uncommon Descent (Dembski) 20
- Post-Darwinist (Denyse "Buy My Book" O'Leary 17
- Evolution News and Views (Discovery Institute) 11
Naturally, these numbers have to be taken with a grain of salt. In our experience, only a tiny percentage of regular blog readers use an RSS service. Moreover, our Bloglines sample might not be representative. The numbers shouldn't be taken as conclusive evidence that what Myers' says about Discovery's influence is a fact, but they are suggestive, certainly.