Academic library blogs: Average post length

Another in a series of detailed metric summaries (oxymorons r us) on the 231 blogs in Academic Library Blogs: 231 Examples, which as far as I know is the only broad objective survey of academic library blogs.

I blathered on about the significance of average post length in the public library blog equivalent to this post. I won’t repeat that.

Once again, the average and median in each case is an “average average” and “median average” (or “average median?”)–that is, an average or median on a set of average lengths. You could determine an overall average post length by dividing all the words in all blogs by all the posts in all blogs, but that’s an unusually pointless exercise. (Right around 137 words per post, if you care.)

Overall, the average (mean) average length per post is 178 words. The median is 144 words.

Quintiles:

  • Q1: Longest posts (“essays”): 235 to 897 words per post.
    Average (mean): 370 words per post.
    Median: 323 words per post.
  • Q2: Longer posts: 164 to 235 words per post.
    Average: 194 words per post.
    Median: 190 words per post.
  • Q3: Average-length posts: 125 to 162 words per post.
    Average and median: 144 words per post.
  • Q4: Shorter posts: 94 to 125 words per post.
    Average and median: 109 words per post.
  • Q5: Shortest posts (“terse”): 11 to 93 words per post.
    Average: 73 words per post.
    Median: 80 words per post.

Compared to public library blogs? Q1 and Q5 are quite similar; for Q2-Q4, academic library posts tend to be a little shorter (e.g., the median point for Q3 is around 94% of the median point for the public-library Q3).

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