We're all so smart - we know Alexa rankings are worthless and easily gamed - that's one of the most-told stories on tech blogs. But what if we're missing the point? We may know not to trust Alexa as an actual, useful metric - but dammit if Alexa rankings don't keep generating a free PR like the monthly Seattle Startup Index or this piece of *solid* analysis. Even if the wisdom of crowds is a crock - it's still what the crowd believes!
I say PR has a value, even if the underlying numbers are not to be trusted. And it's not like Compete or Quantcast really provide canonical traffic data across the web.
Give me the Alexa toolbar, the auto-refresh firefox extension, and a few Chinese teenagers, and I'll show you some value!