March 21, 2007
Forbes Called Me Today
I have been quoted many places since beginning my coverage on search, in fact I stopped keeping track - which is kind of a shame...
Today, I had two calls, one with a smaller publisher and one with Forbes. I spoke with both about twenty-minutes on different topics in search.
The Forbes call went something like this....
Reporter: Hi, can I ask you some questions on X, Y and Z?
Barry: Ummmm... Sure
Reporter: So Search Company X launched Product Y today, and I had questions on it. I saw you wrote about it at blog Z.
Barry: Ummmm.. Yea.
Reporter: Can you tell me what you think of their implementation of it?
Barry: Sure, well, since it is so new, I don't have full access to it yet, but as far as I know, it would work like this. I then explain how I envision it would work. I explain how it differs from others and where it can improve or change.
Reporter: Do you think people can take it this way? (Trying to get me to say something that goes against the product, even if I don't feel that way).
Barry: Well no. Since they launched it this way, it won't be used for that - at least not the way it works now. But technically, if it was implemented a different way, people can abuse it in the fashion you said. But not currently.
Reporter: But if they did implement it that way, would you say it can be used in a bad way?
Barry: Yes but they didn't implement it like that.
Reporter: Asks the same Q another way...
Barry: I give examples again of products that are similar and explain that this product was not launched in that fashion - so it won't be used in that way. If that changed, then yes, it can be used in that way....
Don't get me wrong... I love these calls. But it is funny. They call you with a story in mind and try to make the story by having you agree with them. I guess that is how it works... I really don't know.
Some calls are pure opinion and further explanation on the topic. Those are fine and dandy.
Do I get quoted and linked to? Not likely... I would say at best, 10% of the calls I get from these publishers (Forbes, Business Week, Wall Street Journal, NY Times, eWeek, and so on) end up quoting me. 90% of those do not, but they may use the ideas we talked about it. Is it a waste of my time? Never, I enjoy the calls and it is worth it for me to try to get that quote.
But what really upset me was a call from the smaller publisher. About two months ago, I answered about 30 minutes worth of questions, she sent me the report today. I reviewed it, and it didn't contain my name or any other names from her sources. I asked her about it and she said we do not cite names for privacy reasons. I am like, thanks for telling me. But that call was fun too. Would I do it again? Honestly, I probably would because I like helping people. Should I? I doubt I should. I would think if I spent that time writing a blog post at Search Engine Roundtable or Search Engine Land, it would help a lot more people than the case above with the smaller publisher.