Volokh Conspiracy Citations in the Westlaw JLR Database:
By year: 2004, 14 citations. 2005, 22 citations. 2006, 69 citations. 2007, 43 citations. Note that the high number of citations in 2006 resulted in part from the publication of papers from conferences about law blogs, and that the number of citations for 2007 will likely increase in the future because not all journals have posted their final 2007 issues to the database. (Methodology: JLR database queries for "volokh conspiracy" limited to each year.)

  UPDATE: Eugene, commenter Larry the Librarian, and David Zaring all point out that my methodology may undercount cites slightly for various reasons.
my student piece has cites to a few other blogs. Maybe I will add a see also for you.
1.31.2008 1:59am
JLR results (not citations, just results) limited by year for "britney spears": 31 results, 2007; 31 results, 2006; 47 results, 2005; 38 results, 2004; 33 results, 2003; 28 results, 2002; 16 results, 2001; 11 results, 2000; 0 results, 1999 (the year ...Baby One More Time was released).

Apparently 2006 was the year legal academia officially started looking inward in its ongoing search for meaning and what, or rather who, is truly important.
1.31.2008 4:32am
Justin (mail):
The concern is that people are citing blogs to assert facts that aren't true, or weak legal arguments, that wouldn't get by most of the review processes of other typical sources. You guys run a great blog, and yet the commenters here are constantly pointing out alleged facts that are not true or arguments that are not only disputed but have no basis. There's a reason most journals (not legal) are peer reviewed, and even student journals are reviewed and challenged - hopefully citing to blogs isn't short-circuiting the limited review process law journals have.
1.31.2008 8:49am
The concern is that people are citing blogs to assert. . . weak legal arguments,

Is that really a concern? That one of us will make a legal argument so weak that it shouldn't be cited?
1.31.2008 10:02am
Justin (mail):
Yeah. I didn't mean to be insulting, but the amount of time one puts into certain blog posts are minimal (granted, others are highly thought out). It often is legal impressionism, not actual legal analysis. The concern could be that this impressionism gets piggybacked and makes it into the journal, because the student editors give it the credibility of one of the top law professors, even if the professor would not, after careful consideration, continue to accept his original impression.
1.31.2008 10:27am
I think the concern is that one of you will make a legal argument that's so misinformed that it will be cited only by someone who is otherwise toast. :-) Not all legal arguments are created equal; some of them lead to Rule 11 sanctions.
1.31.2008 10:34am
Larry the Librarian:

I think you're actually underreporting slightly. On a hunch, I searched for, and then a few other variations. In 2006, there were 10 citations to the blog that did not include the phrase "Volokh Conspiracy." There were also four mentions of the conspiracy that did not appear to be citations.

The searches:

da(2006) &( % "volokh conspiracy" -- 10 results

da(2006) &"volokh conspiracy" % ( -- 4 results
1.31.2008 12:10pm
Larry Fafarman (mail) (www):
Justin said,
You guys run a great blog, and yet the commenters here are constantly pointing out alleged facts that are not true or arguments that are not only disputed but have no basis.

Exactly! And that is the thing that makes blogs attractive as references! The comments present a variety of views and tend to make the blogs self-correcting on the facts.

Also, you folks fail to recognize that the biggest problem concerning authoritative citation of blogs is the arbitrary censorship of comments and commenters. Ironically, the comments that present the most persuasive dissenting arguments are the comments most likely to be arbitrarily censored! Blogs where visitors' comments are arbitrarily censored have no credibility.

There is absolutely no reason why a blog post and its comment section should look like a peer-reviewed paper in a scholarly journal. They are completely different media.

And if you think that this arbitrary censorship does not go on all the time, you are very naive. For example, the Law X.0 blog (formerly Law Blog Metrics), a member of the Law Professor Blogs Network, refuses to post any of my comments, even though my comment submissions there have always been on-topic, serious, and polite. That this kind of censorship is condoned in the law blogosphere is a reflection of the abysmal ethical standards of the law profession.

Larry Fafarman
Association of Non-Censoring Bloggers
2.3.2008 6:51am