For better or worse MyBlogLog is the de facto standard when it comes to connecting with other bloggers. They have the most traction within the blogging community and they are backed by the juggernaut that is Yahoo.
However there are some alternatives out there.
Spicypage ranks blogs and other sites by user vote. They have a widget that you can put on your site that allows visitors to vote for your blog and will also display your recent voters or visitors. They’ve also just added a feature where you can submit articles from your blog.
According to their site, Explode is a go-anywhere global networking system. It allows anyone to include a distributed friends widget on their site, send these friends comments and keep connected.
Blog Woods is just like MyBlogLog, but with user voting. It’s visual design is even more ghetto than MyBlogLog, but I’ve seen alot of familiar faces on there, so people are signing up. With a visual makeover they would make more of an impact. They also have a widget you can put on your site.
In their own words MillionDollarAvatar is a tool to promote your site and introduce users to new sites online. Their profile pages have a nice design but the name makes me cringe, not that I should talk. Their front page displays 100 random avatars and is reset every 24 hours.
Others Online is an interesting one. When you create a profile you include keywords/tags for your site. These tags are then used to match your site with ones with similar interests as your own. If those sites have the Others Online widget installed your site will be displayed to visitors. They also have a browser toolbar which works in a similar way displaying sites that are relevant to the one you are browsing.
Blog Catalog started off as just another boring blog directory, but has recently morphed into a fully fledged competitor to MyBlogLog. The design of Blog Catalog addresses many of the issues I have with MyBlogLog.
- Navigation is intuitive.
- You can browse by category, country, or language.
- Recent posts are given good real estate.
- The visual design is easy on the eyes.
Blog Catalog may have a tough time competing with MyBlogLog but they are off to a good start. I’ve already started to notice quite a few blogs displaying the Blog Catalog widget.
Final Word:The only one of these services I haven’t signed up for yet is Others Online but I’ll be doing so over the next few days, and I should have a writeup on them some time in the near future.
The two I would recommend trying out are Blog Catalog and Others Online. They seem to be the ones offering the most interesting and polished service. Personally I won’t be adding any other widgets to my sidebar. Too many widgets will slow down page loading times and visually it’s a bit of an eyesoar when a sidebar becomes overpopulated. You may feel differently however.