Hype Machine, Blog Fresh Radio, Musebin, and imeem have teamed up to deliver the Music Blog Zeitgeist 2008, an assessment of the years best albums, artists, and songs as decided by music bloggers. The Zeitgeist didn’t poll bloggers directly but rather looked at the huge amount of data Hype Machine gathered over 2008 in regards to posting trends in the music blogosphere.
The Top 50 Artists of the year were decided “according to how frequently the blogs listed on The Hype Machine posted their songs”. The Top 50 Songs were decided “according to each month’s most loved songs by registered users”. The Top 50 Albums were decided by a combination therein.
The data used to make the lists is released under a CC BY-NC-SA license, allowing anyone to take the data and re-use it in any way they see fit as long as it is noncommercial in intent, shared under the same license, and properly attributed. The data set is huge and can be downloaded here. The Zeitgeist also features CC-licensed flickr photos through out the Top 50 Album list.