Housekeeping March 14, 2011

Dear readers, thanks for your ongoing interest in my writing here on the blog.  Today, a non-descript Monday in a liminal part of the year, seemed like a good time for me to do a little housekeeping here on the blog.  Here are some notes and answers to a few questions that seem to linger out there among readers and commenters:

Dissertation: My committee has approved my dissertation for a public defense on April 25 at 4pm on the Princeton Theological Seminary campus.  It’s open, so you’re all invited.  That committee has also suggested many more revisions, which I’m now in the process of making.  I need to have two hard copies of the revised dissertation to campus two weeks before the defense, so that it can be read by those attending my defense.  At the defense, I’ll be encouraged to make more changes, and that version will be due at Princeton the first week of May.  Then PTS will send it to a dissertation editor who will check all the formatting and tell me what changes to make.  Then, sometime this summer, I’ll mail three copies of the final-final-final version — on linen paper no less — to Princeton for binding and placement in the library.

Rob Bell: My post on Monday, February 28 on the Rob Bell-John Piper tête à tête amoureux was the most-read post in the history of my blog.  By a long shot.  I attribute that to two things: 1) Sarah Bailey added a paragraph from my post to her much-read online article about the controversy; 2) lots of people were retweeting my post with comments like, “This is the best thing I’ve read on the #robbell controversy.”

Invesp Rankings: They’re a load of crap.  Sometime you see the Invesp ranking flame on the sidebar of someone’s blog.  I used to have one, which ranked me among the Christian bloggers.  But I started to get suspicious when I noticed that I was always ranked either #28 or #43.  Never anything else.  As my traffic has risen over the past couple months, my Invesp rank has dropped.  Here’s how wrong they are: today Invesp reports that I have 68 subscribers to my RSS feed, but Google Feedburner tells me I have 1,721.  So ignore those Invesp rankings.  Technorati, which gives this blog an authority score of 464, is much more reliable.

Ecclesileaks: You didn’t like it.  I heard you loud and clear.  I meant it to be a combo of serious and fun.  I’m no Julian Assange.  I’ve given it over to another guy who wants to run with it.  So if you think it’s a good idea to expose the foibles of the church, you can email him at  And don’t say I never listen.

Michael Hyatt: He’s a great blogger, to be sure.  But his post last week was shocking to me.  He wrote that he spends more that $1,000 per month on his blog.  That’s crazytalk.

Just wanted to get that stuff off my chest.  Have a great Monday.

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  • $1k month on his blog? Dang. Maybe I should inquire about being his blog guy. I’d do it for $899/mo. 🙂

  • Congrats on the dissertation defense.

    I still think that the ecclesialinks idea is good. I disagree with all the unity talk. If transparency hurts unity, then I question whether it was unity in the first place. It was probably just passive aggressive practices by people who are conflict averse. Yet, as I said before, I think it should include emergent and evangelicals. I think that book contracts, speaker fees and off the books ministry expenses would be much more interesting than exposing the kafkaesque world of the mainline church.

  • Bryan C. McWhite

    I don’t think you actually listened, though (about ecclesileaks). Most of the people in the comments weren’t saying that you shouldn’t do, they were saying that you shouldn’t do it. If it was a bad idea, why encourage someone else to run with your bad idea?

  • Rebecca

    I am glad about ecclesileaks. I thought it a bit distasteful somehow…

  • Ircel Harrison

    Re: Dissertation. I admire your commitment and I know the final product will be great, but doesn’t this whole process reek of obsolescence?

  • @Bryan C McWhite – I don’t think Tony is encouraging someone to run with it. He said he has given it to someone who was interested in it. Quite a bit different.

  • nathan

    hope you’re formulating a post on the recent UrL post…

  • Dave Nash

    You diss committee should require you to push an acorn around the boundary of PTS with your nose, upon the completion of which , they would give you a Ph. D. It doesn’t work like this, but sometimes I wonder …

  • Rob

    Hi Tony, 🙂
    big congrats on the dissertation and all the best with the revisions and the upcoming public defense.

    Just on your Rob Bell post – I just listened to the live online event in NY a couple of hours ago where he was interviewed re the book. If you listen to the last 5 mins or so, his very last answer where he talks about why he does what he does, I think you’ll find it insightful and moving. You can listen to the recording here

    Love your blog

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