30 January

Having analyzed Album of the Year, we should discuss a similar site, Best Ever Albums. As stated on its 'How It Works' page: this site "aggregates over 7,900 different greatest albums charts to provide an easy way for visitors to look up and find out the greatest albums in history." My initial reaction was absolute shock at that number: 7,900--asking, "Music publications have made that many lists? Really?" But, of course, not really. Many lists have been published over the years, but this site only has 18 of them, as listed here:

NME 's 100 Best Albums Of All Time (2003) (New Music Express)

The Top 100 Albums (2001) (VH1)

Top 100 Greatest Music Albums (2005) (Channel 4)

Top 100 Greatest Music Albums (2000) (Melody Maker)

100 Greatest Albums of All Time (1995) (Mojo)

The Guardian 100 Best Albums Ever (1997) (The Guardian)

Top 100 Albums (2006) (ABC)

100 Greatest Albums Ever (2006) (Q)

100 Greatest Albums Ever (2003) (Q) 

Top 100 Greatest Music Albums (1997) (Q) 

The Definitive 200 (2007) (National Association of Recording Merchandisers) [only the first 100 provided at this site; go instead to: http://eil.com/features/Definitive_200.asp]

Greatest 100 Albums of All Time (2006) (The Guinness Book of British Hit Singles & Albums with NME)

The Top 50 Albums of All Time (2008) (Sound & Vision Magazine)

Virgin All-Time Top 1000 Albums (2000) (Virgin)

Top 100 Albums Ever (2010) (Consequence of Sound)

Top 500 Albums of All Time (2012) (Rolling Stone) [updated version of 2005 list with additions from list of albums released in the Aughts]

Top 500 Albums of All Time (2005) (Rolling Stone) [book version of 2003 list]

Top 500 Albums of All Time (2003) (Rolling Stone)
 
Where do the other 7,886 lists come from? Users. So that total is constantly changing, by the way. Granted, the site is quite transparent in its methods, unlike Album of the Year. You can even edit the 'Overall Chart' to create an aggregated list based just on 14 of those 18 charts (including only the most recent of the three lists each from Q and Rolling Stone). Nonetheless, this site has to be one of the strangest of all user-generated "2.0" sites out there. Submit your own list of the greatest albums of all time, see how your list compares to the overall average, perhaps get upset at the difference, create more user profiles so you can create many lists all somewhat similar so that you can alter the overall score. Why not?