Objectivism Website Index – October 2010

The third installment of my index of Objectivist sites and those with sympathetic ideas is now available, with data from October 2010 from Compete.com.  You can check out the August 2010 and September 2010 lists as well.  I currently monitor traffic for 214 websites, and list everyone with 1000+ visitors here.

Now With Tracking for Hosted Blogs

For the first two lists, I was not able to provide traffic data for blogs that were hosted on WordPress, Blogspot, Livejournal or other subdomains.  Now, I have a paid account with Compete.com which gives me access to that data.  I’m excited to reveal several popular blogs that were previously excluded: Rule of Reason, EGO by Martin Lindeskog, and Bosch Fawstin.

New Additions to the List This Month

We have 10 new additions to the list this month: Objectivist Answers, John McCaskey, Bosch Fawstin, EGO by Martin Lindeskog, Principles of a Free SocietyObjectivism 101, The Prodos Blog, Rule of Reason, A Daily Dose of Reason with Dr.Hurd, and Capitalism by George Reisman

Also, I’d like to note that Rational Mind has been removed from the list because although it an Objectivist site and receives a lot of traffic, it is due to an awesome programming blog hosted by the author at a subdomain, unrelated to Objectivism.  Thank you to David for clearing this up.

October 2010 Index

October Rank Website Oct 2010 Visitors Last Month’s  Rank Change
1 Capitalism Magazine 30224 2 +1
2 Ayn Rand Institute 28725 3 +1
3 The Objective Standard 20032 16 +13
4 Noodle Food by Diana Hsieh 13322 5 +1
5 The Atlasphere 12846 9 +4
6 Ayn Rand Novels 10922 4 -2
7 The Atlas Society 8859 14 +7
8 Leonard Peikoff 8522 25 +17
9 Objectivist Living 7556 38 +29
10 Geek Press by Paul Hsieh 7160 6 -4
11 Noble Soul 7115 15 +4
12 Rebirth of Reason 6864 19 +7
13 Save the Humans 6864 18 +5
14 AtlasShrugged.com 6132 13 -1
15 Ayn Rand Education 6107 8 -7
16 The Intellectual Activist 4588 33 +17
17 Coalition for Secular Government 3719 17 0
18 Ayn Rand Lexicon 3702 7 -11
19 Objectivism Online 3496 12 -7
20 Objectivist Answers 3449 - NEW
21 John McCaskey 3182 - NEW
22 Free Colorado by Ari Armstrong 3112 20 -2
23 Ayn Rand Bookstore 2950 11 -12
24 Strong Brains 2910 26 +2
25 Sense of Life Objectivists 2764 10 -15
26 Bosch Fawstin 2741 - NEW
27 Andrew Bernstein 2572 31 +4
28 EGO by Martin Lindeskog 2437 - NEW
29 Lee Sandstead 2145 27 -2
30 Forum for Ayn Rand Fans 1977 24 -6
31 WhoIsJohnGalt.com 1930 30 -1
32 Danielle Morrill (this site) 1787 35 +3
33 Principles of a Free Society 1748 - NEW
34 Trey Givens 1662 - NEW
35 The Ayn Rand Center 1645 28 -7
36 Objectivism 101 1642 - NEW
37 Nathaniel Branden 1536 23 -14
38 The Prodos Blog 1471 - NEW
39 John Galt Gifts 1378 22 -17
40 Mudita Journal 1356 21 -19
41 Rule of Reason 1326 - NEW
42 A Daily Dose of Reason with Dr. Hurd 1157 - NEW
43 Ada Byron on Objectivism and Liberalism 1104 39 -4
44 Capitalism by George Reisman 1095 - NEW

Giving the List an Official Name

I’m not really satisfied with the “Objectivism Index” because it doesn’t really give it a name to match the purpose of the list.  I’m not deeply concerned with whether or not the people on this list are Objectivists.  Instead, I’m curious to see who is out there having an impact on cultural change in the direction we want to see.  This means that people advocating for capitalism, individualism, and other values are interesting to me… even if they’re not Objectivists.  I think a smaller list that focuses on the success of ARI affiliated sites and Objectivist intellectuals might also be an interesting project, but this is broader than that.

Criteria for Inclusion in the List

With Pamela rocketing to the #1 spot, I expect it will soon be necessary to have a conversation about how this list is put together and who makes the cut, since I’ve positioned it as being primarily about Objectivism and she is a Libertarian thought leader.  I’m curious to hear your thoughts in the comments, and I will be writing a separate post soon to further this topic and share my thought process.  Editor’s Note: I’ve removed Pamela’s blog from the list for now, since her connections to Objectivism are a lot less significant than I had originally thought.

Suggestions and Additions

I am still very actively looking for more sites to index and monitor.  There are over 200 websites that I am currently watching that do NOT make the cut for the monthly index.  If you would like to submit your site for inclusion next month, please feel free to leave a note in the comments or contact me using the info found on my contact page.

17 Oct 2010, 10:25pm


Objectivism Index – September 2010

In follow up to my original post Who’s Actually Getting Read in Objectivism (Online) I’ve created a new list based on the September 2010 Compete.com data about websites related to Objectivism.  As I’ve mentioned before, there are several shortcomings to Compete.com data and I realize these numbers may not be representative of actually unique visitors.  To learn about how they collect their data, I recommend reading the Compete.com Data Methodology.  One major downside of Compete.com is that it only captures US based traffic.

To summarize, both local records from the website owner’s server and Google Analytics have upsides and downsides when it comes to tracking unique visitors.  This image below from Compete.com summarizes to some extent.  I realize this is not ideal, and while I welcome data reports from publishers/editors I will not be using these to change rankings, only to annotate the list (for now).  It has been suggested that I should provide a snippet of Javascript which can be embedded into sites for those editors/publishers who wish to provide reliable data.

I present to you the list of individuals, organizations, blogs, and others who discuss, spread, and explore the ideas of Objectivism.  Please understand that I am not concerned with whether or not the authors are considered Objectivists or in support of the Ayn Rand Institute.  Instead, the focus here is on who is effective in making these ideas mainstream. For reference to previous rankings, please see the August 2010 list.

Objectivism Index – September 2010

Rank Website Unique Visitors (Compete.com) Last Month’s Rank
1 Rational Mind by David Veksler 56264
2 Capitalism Magazine 30460 2
3 Ayn Rand Institute 30268 1
4 Ayn Rand Novels 22200
5 Noodle Food by Diana Hsieh 15628 4
6 Geek Press by Paul Hsieh 14458 15
7 Ayn Rand Lexicon 10914 7
8 Ayn Rand Education 7395
9 The Atlasphere 7206 11
10 Sense of Life Objectivists 7029 5
11 Ayn Rand Bookstore 7017 10
12 Objectivism Online 6732 12
13 AtlasShrugged.com 6584
14 The Atlas Society 6381 8
15 Noble Soul 6335 6
16 The Objective Standard 6075 3
17 Coalition for Secular Government 5792
18 Save the Humans 4660
19 Rebirth of Reason 4625 9
20 Free Colorado by Ari Armstrong 4486 26
21 Mudita Journal 4376 16
22 John Galt Gifts 4274
23 Nathaniel Branden 4262 22
24 Forum for Ayn Rand Fans 3925 13
25 Leonard Peikoff 3818 14
26 Strong Brains 3639
27 Lee Sandstead 3415
28 The Ayn Rand Center 2947 19
29 Erosophia by Jason Stotts 2908 24
30 WhoIsJohnGalt.com 2093
31 Andrew Bernstein 1856
32 Ellen Kenner 1804
33 The Intellectual Activist 1788 27
34 ARI Watch 1450
35 Danielle Morrill (this site) 1305 29
36 Cordair Fine Art Galley 1289
37 VanDamme Academy 1286
38 Objectivist Living 1280 17
39 Ada Byron on Objectivism and Liberalism 1253
40 Robert Tracy 1063
41 Bryan Larsen 1010

Who’s Actually Getting Read in Objectivism (Online)

Editor’s Note: Thank you to those publications who’ve reached out with concerns about the accuracy of these numbers.  The source for this data is compete.com which is free and public, and while I think this offers reasonable relative positioning (who is getting more traffic than others), it doesn’t provide great absolute numbers.  I’m looking into better sources for a future list (Alexa, DoubleClick Ad Planner, Quantcast etc.).

If you would like to provide Google Analytics data on your unique traffic for August 2010, you can email [email protected]  I am adding changes as I get them.


Today I’m taking a look at publications containing content about Objectivism, to see just how much they’re being read online.  This idea of ranking websites by traffic comes from Marcelo Calbucci, the creator of Seattle 2.0 and the Seattle Startup Index, where I was Editor in Chief while in Seattle.

Some of these sites are about Objectivism with a capital “O”, endorsed and aligned with the Ayn Rand Institute, while others are not.  What I’m interested in here is finding out who is most effectively reaching the Objectivist audience, whether aligned with ARI or not.  Like them?  Hate them?  Take note, these are the facts — these are the people winning the hearts and minds of those who take interest in the philosophy of Ayn Rand and related ideas.

All stats below are provided by compete.com and are for the month of August 2010.  I did not include any site with less than 1,000 monthly uniques and were not able to get stats for blogs hosted on wordpress, blogspot, etc.

Popular Objectivism Related Websites

  1. Ayn Rand Institute – 48,886 uniques (this is down 43% from a year ago)
  2. Capitalism Magazine – 21,807 uniques
  3. The Objective Standard – 19,076 uniques *provided by author
  4. Diana Hsieh – 15,272 uniques
  5. Sense of Life Objectivists – 13,097 uniques *provided by author
  6. NobleSoul.com – 11,983 uniques
  7. Ayn Rand Lexicon – 9,691 uniques
  8. The Atlas Society (The Objectivist Center) – 8,800 uniques
  9. RebirthofReason.com – 7,937 uniques
  10. Ayn Rand Bookstore – 6,846 uniques
  11. The Atlasphere (the dating site) – 6,684
  12. ObjectivismOnline – 6,647 uniques
  13. Forum 4AynRandFans.com (Betsey Speicher)- 6,110 uniques
  14. Leonard Peikoff – 6,002 uniques
  15. Paul Hsieh – 5,344 uniques
  16. Mudita Journal – 4,954 uniques
  17. ObjectivistLiving.com – 4,708 uniques
  18. The Undercurrent – 4,040 uniques
  19. The Ayn Rand Center – 3,721 uniques
  20. Ayn Rand Center TV – 2,679 uniques
  21. The New Clarion – 2,471 uniques *provided by author
  22. Nathaniel Branden – 2,430 uniques
  23. Trey Givens – 1,815 uniques *provided in comments
  24. Erosophia by Jason Stotts – 1,584 uniques *provided by author
  25. Randex.org – 1,512 uniques *provided by author
  26. Free Colorado by Ari Armstrong – 1,440 uniques
  27. The Intellectual Activist – 1,424 uniques
  28. Capitalism.net (George Reisman) – 1,191 uniques
  29. Danielle Morrill (this site) – 1,081 uniques *provided by author

Interesting People/Sites who don’t make the cut (but we hope you will next time): HBList.comAndrewBerstein.net, Yaron Brook, The Center for the Advancement of Capitalism, Anthem Foundation, Amy Mossoff, John McCaskey, The Objectivist, ARI Watch, Ellen Kenner, Objectivist Answers

Some comparison sites (suggested by various people as having similar target audiences):

  • Huffington Post – 13,631,093 uniques
  • Daily KOS – 1,068,820 uniques
  • Heritage Foundation – 523,361 uniques
  • Michelle Malkin – 488,281
  • Von Mises Institute – 337,278 uniques
  • Cato Institute – 200,254 uniques
  • Ann Coulter – 190,400 uniques

Efficient Distribution of Ideas

I’ve talked a lot privately about my frustration with Objectivism’s lack of penetration into the mainstream, especially online where the barrier to entry is a lot lower than in traditional mainstream media.  My gut told me we could be doing more than a bunch of rarely updated blogs, websites that look like they were designed in the early 1990s, the press releases.  Where’s the discussion, the punditry, the passion?  I hadn’t actually looked at the numbers, but they bear out what I expected… the early adopters and core supporters of Objectivism are reading… but where is everyone else.  Assuming there is a lot of crossover in the readership of the sites I listed above, the total audience is probably less than 100,000 uniques a month.

It’s not like we’re reaching new heights either.  The Ayn Rand Institute has seen sufficient decline in traffic over the past year.

There are a lot of tactics available online to build awareness for ideas, start conversations, educate, spread content, etc. I hope you find this information interesting, and maybe see this as an opportunity to promote ideas yourself through popular channels like your own blog, Facebook, Twitter, etc.  If you know of any Objectivist oriented sites/blogs you like to read let me know, I’ll add them to the list.

Other Writing About Objectivism

Staying the Course: ARI 25 Years Later

Simple Tactics to Get Started with Activism

Tips for Asking Good Questions After a Lecture at OCON

What the Heck is This #OCON Thing