Forbes just put out another of those crazy lists where it proposes to identify the top Web celebrities--following a recent spate of other lists of top Tweeters and talkers and Web-famous types. And while we don't dispute the attractiveness of doing stupid lists to get people to look at your content (see: CNET Top 5), it could be said that the Web 2.0 elite is getting, well, nauseatingly self-congratulatory.
So, Tom Merritt and I decided to make our own list of influential people on the Web. These are some, but only some, of the top CNET TV fans who have, over the past few years, helped build our podcasts and videos from lonely little broadcasts to full-fledged, incredible communities--families, even. Without them, we've got nothing. Which is to say, these are most definitively the top 25 most influential people on the Web.
Alex: This one's for all the Alexes, be they from Miami Beach, Romania, or iPhone app makers.
Alex Brewer: He immortalized the words "Well, actually" and made it a thing. Well, actually...he did.ChanBot: All #cnetfans IRC chat visitors know it's a pleasure to be kicked buy ChanBot. Try it. IN ALL CAPS!
Chris the podcaster: His evil plans for tricking us into promoting his podcast Amateur Traveler...have worked again!
DanielinHell: One of the few folks out there who had his nicknamed changed by us (but let's be honest--we've changed a lot of people's names over the years, right PaulNotRon?). And he has a great accent. What's not to love?
Dave the Psychologist: We always know that when we screw up the statistical significance of a study about the effects of gaming, he'll be there to catch us.
Dylan from Scotland: When he doesn't call CNET Live, we feel empty inside. And we fill that emptiness with Scotch.
Engnr_chik: If you've ever lived any significant period of your life without structural engineering insight, you have wasted that period of your life. Get in your time machine, go back and make friends with engnr_chik.
Fordo: Future roommate of Molly Wood, Netflix date, pajama-wearing No. 1 fan--Fordo speaks for herself. A lot.
Frank L: He's patently informative.
GKnee: There is no smooth-running #cnetfans chat room without GKnee, and no one gets properly welcomed when she's not there. It's just a simple fact.
Hollyhock: Twitter friend, chat-room regular, Gadgettes agenda-filler extraordinaire.
Dr. Karl: We like to think we helped him through medical school, because that means he might put us in his rich doctor will.
MissM: Chat-room regular, defender of the South, and one of the family.
NicNetter: Suspiciously in on all of Phatemokid's private jokes, they keep the chat-room rolling (and wondering.)
PB30: There is no Watchbol.com without PB30. Literally. He made it. Himself.
Peterjon Smith: From the earliest days of CNET podcasting, Peterjon has filled the lineups of BOL and Gadgettes with helpful e-mail and calls.
Phatemokid: Mug! (You'll have to listen to Buzz Out Loud to understand that one.)
Rafa: Our Brazilian correspondent and the fastest-speaking non-native English speaker you will ever hear.
Remy: Hey, this is you on our list. The geekiest postman on earth.
RogueTess: Won our hearts with her amazing relation of sewing patterns to music copyright law. Pwned!
Shalin: One must always know a rocket scientist. Just in case. Shalin: our conscience and our guide to outer space.
Tales: In every live podcast chat, sending e-mail to Mailbag, coming up with show titles, and correcting us when we're wrong. Invaluable!
Tom Merritt the doppelganger: The dude's name is Tom Merritt! Poor guy! But we should put him on a podcast! (We do! Fairly often!)
Xadacka: If there's a hack we need to know about, we officially did not hear about it from Xadacka.