Lois Ann Scheidt and Elijah Wright:
Common Visual Design Elements of Weblogs [DOC]
Conclusion: One pattern clearly emerging as a result of this research is that individual webloggers do not tend to make substantive structural changes to the layout of their sites. This confirms one of the predictions / observations leading to this study: that ‘significant’ customization among weblog users is in fact somewhat rare.
I have to say this appears to be a complete non-sense paper on weblog phenomenon with pointless statistics about marginal aspects (so a real academic paper).
It would be much more interesting if the study showed the relation between customization and the ease of use of different weblog applications. It could have made some fair points about issues with current implementations and suggest a number of general strategies for both users and vendors.