I just watched the Mary Forney interview of Seth Merrow of Equidaily. According to his figures, Equidaily gets about 5,000 to 6,000 hits a day, which is on par with Ray Paulick’s Paulick Report. Which news aggregator is better?
To start with, both have similar layout styles, and both are difficult to read because each of their home pages is marked by lines under every news heading. After a while, that’s all you see — lines and lines and lines and lines for miles and miles and miles. The Paulick Report does space the news links with more air, which helps, but neither has the stylistic panache, for example, of the raceday 360 wire, which Jessica Chapel oversees. (Ms. Chapel’s blog, Jessica Chapel / Railbird v2, is one of the stylistically cleanest blogs around, a minimalistic and modernist interpretation of the medium.)
For sheer news content, Mr. Merrow’s Equidaily blows away the Paulick Report, but Ray’s site has better editorial selections of content. Both sites, after all, are dependent on the content of others for their existence, whether they are news sources or blog posts. Ray’s site is significantly better in its original editorial matter, which Ray writes at a prolific rate. You’d expect that from the former editor of The Blood-Horse, which, by the way, has suffered content-wise versus the two aggregators. They can use the best of Blood-Horse content — see a recent blog by Dede Biles that Ray has on his “Best of the Blogs” section — as well as interesting and timely pieces from other sources, whereas Blood-Horse is an originator of most of its content (I say that loosely, because some of that also includes press-release postings).
In terms of advertising, the Paulick Report wins hands down. In fact, it’s amazing that Mr. Merrow plies away — he says anywhere from two to four hours a day — with little obvious financial return from his site — commendable, certainly.
Both sites appear to have their favorite writers and bloggers. One of Ray’s is Glenn Craven’s entertaining Fugue for Tinhorns, which is as ubiquitous on the Paulick Report as Teresa Genaro’s excellent Brooklyn Backstretch is not. Maybe that’s because Mr. Merrow features her material?
Conspicuously absent from Ray’s site is the aforementioned Railbird v2 blog.
Which is better? I give the nod to Paulick Report, although in this day and age of shrinking coverage we’re fortunate to have both sources. Which do you like? You can email me if you’re worried about alienating one or the other on here.