From The Economist:
"Academic papers cited by bloggers are far more likely to be downloaded. Blogging economists are regarded more highly than non-bloggers with the same publishing record.
The back-and-forth between bloggers resembles the informal chats, in university hallways and coffee rooms, that have always stimulated economic research, argues Paul Krugman, a Nobel-prize winning economist who blogs at the New York Times. But moving the conversation online means that far more people can take part.
Despite the low barriers to entry, blogs do impose some intellectual standards. Errors of fact or logic are spotted, ridiculed and corrected. Areas of disagreement are highlighted and sometimes even narrowed."
Similar dynamics are in work on many medical blogs authored by physicians.
WIN-WIN, as the author of the blog "The Happy Hospitalist" likes to say.
Economics blogs. A less dismal debate. The Economist, 01/2011.