Is SEO the new protection racket?

It’s beginning to seem that way. As soon as anyone says anyone negative about search engine optimizing, the SEO community (or, to be fair, one faction of it) jumps all over that person and tries to inflict punishment by driving down the offender’s pages in the SERPs.

First there was the unfortunate Kimberly Williams — a case more of scraping than SEO per se, but the response came from the SEOs when she tried to prevent her content from being scraped. Next came Ted Leonsis, whose mild comments about being his own SEO made him the object of an SEO contest with a $500 cash prize. Now Jason Calacanis is the latest to have offended the SEOs.

I find search engine optimization interesting. I subscribe to a number of SEO feeds, and several of the people in the industry are clever and creative. But some are starting to seem like bullies.

I think I might be rooting for Ted Leonsis to win the Ted Leonsis SEO contest.


Link: Wikipedia on protection rackets

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  1. I tend to agree. 🙂

  2. Glad to hear it, Aaron, and thanks for stopping by.

  3. No problem dude, do not be afraid to speak your mind, wish more people would do so cuz it is getting a little boring out here. I got you bookmarked, good usage of tags and I will come around to you at some point and mention you in my blog.



  4. Well, actually you have characterized the event and then commented on your characterization. That’s hardly fair. And of course throwing your own link love into the mix further eats away at your own credibility. I suspect you take your blog lightly, yet for some reason you don’t treat these other bloggers (those playing with the Ted Leonsis thing) equally lightly. According to you, they are bullies?

    In actuality, my initial post about Ted Leonsis responded to his casual reference to SEO, where he characterized his own blogging efforts as SEO (they were no more “SEO” than your own linking here was “SEO”). Ted also (reportedly, as stated) commented that his job was done when his AOL-based subdomain ranked for his name.

    When a guy as big as Ted Leonsis says something so …. stupid(?)… it deserves commentary even if only to help Ted cover his butt so as not to appear so… stupid(?)

    A handful of SEO people decided to use their casual blogs to comment on how ted Leonsis was mistaken about SEO, to highlight how modern SEO can be used for reputation management, and that led to a “contest” which, if you didn’t notice, is for $500 bucks which is nothing less than a lampoon of “SEO contests”. Sorry if you took that for real…. perhaps it was more of an insider thing that could have been better explained.

    Big deal.

  5. Thanks for your comment, John.

    I think maybe you take this a little too seriously.

  6. On your site I found hello yet interesting photos, a password is only pitiful which does not work you threw down. Whip off me the contacts of these girls on soap please.

    (Editor’s note. I found this piece of spam amusing — in a pathetic way — so I’m letting it run, having stripped out the porn links.)