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Tracking the Reaction to IE 7

The latest Beta version of Internet 7 was released a few days ago and the reaction of the blogosphere has been mixed. Based on what I’ve read, my guess would be that the the reviews are probably 20% positive, 60% middling and 30% negative. You know what though, it doesn’t matter all that much.

The blogosphere isn’t fair, and it certainly isn’t representative of typical consumers. Bloggers tend to own Macs and use alternative browsers like Firefox at much higher percentages than typical Internet users. And I’d speculate that the people who have downloaded IE 7 and written reviews at this early date are mostly Internet professionals who use Firefox and other alternative browsers more heavily than even bloggers. IE 7 is playing to an extremely tough crowd at this point. The browser is being judged by some of IE’s harshest critics.

So how do you track the reaction of the blogosphere to the release? I’d avoid the kind of good/bad approach I took in the opening paragraph. As mentioned, it just doesn’t matter that much. In this case, the conclusion a reviewer reaches is far less important than the details of what they have to say (what specifically do the like and not like). It’s sort of like playing for a coach like Bobby Knight. The fact that he calls you stupid and lazy doesn’t matter – he’s always going to call you are stupid and lazy. What’s important is what you did in this particular instance to make him reach that conclusion.

Mainstream Media Vs. Digg

I have a bit of an Alexa problem. I spend a bit more time than is healthy analyzing the reach of website A compared to website B. The result is cheap posts, but I’m going to do one more before I swear off the practice. So here we go:

(1) Of newspaper websites, the New York Times is by far the most popular, despite being only the third most popular paper in terms of print circulation. The Washington Post is the second most popular newspaper website (it’s fifth in terms of print circuation).