Barry Schwartz is one of the most respected journalists in the SEO industry and when he wrote this article called The Sadness In The Industry the other day I was a bit surprised.
When I wrote Why I dont Like 95% Of The SEO industry it seemed to upset a lot of people who thought it was a blanket statement about SEO. It was not at all. It was a statement about the PEOPLE in the industry. Pretty much every established SEO who has been around a bit that I know agreed with the post or atleast thought the points had some validity.
I had Danny Sullivan (the godfather of SEO) on my webmaster radio show and I felt it was a very good show. From the beginning it was pretty clear that we agreed knowing SEO obviously is a very powerful skill but the industry needs to be held to some standards. There was a lot more to the discussion but that is the just of it. After the show there was a huge backlash against Danny for not coming at me with guns blazing… I think that even opened Danny’s eyes a little more at what I was talking about in regards to all these people who call themselves SEO’s.
So the current state of SEO is no surprise to me. While I am not a professional SEO (I have never been paid to do SEO) we attend many internet marketing conferences and have become very good friends with the most accomplished SEO’s walking the planet.
You pretty much have 2 groups of “old school” SEO’s:
Those who have celebrity status for what they have written about – These people have become venomous… They hate the fact that new people have come along with their blogs and made them irrelevant. They are super jealous of anyone who is recognized more then they are. The occasionally make forum posts or blog posts outing other SEO’s tactics so that people remember they still exist.
Those who have celebrity status for what they have accomplished These guys have distanced themselves from the industry. They used to blog, be apart of forums, have radio shows but they have slowed way down. They never really cared about the spotlight in the first place and now that there is all this venom in the industry they would rather rack up contracts with companies for actually *DOING* SEO then writing or talking about it.
Honestly I think the SEO profession is a victim of its own success.
I love SEO… I love the way it works. I love optimizing sites for search engines. SEO is a important part of internet marketing. I still believe SEO will become less important as time goes on but that does not mean I do not respect the skill ATM.
I feel very insulted when I am labeled a SEO and have for a long time. Are you proud to labeled a SEO?