Scoble Sucks

Whoa, the hate mail has been flowing fast and furious tonight.

Pat Phelan, founder of MaxRoam, says that today my shine came off.

Loic Le Meur, founder of Seesmic, says that it’s easy to knock startups when I’ve never started one. I’ve never been the top dog, but the store I helped manage in the 1980s was a startup. Fawcette Technical Publications was only eight when I was hired and grew to about 200. Winnov was a startup when I joined in the mid 90s. UserLand was small and launched a new product while I was there. PodTech was a startup and I saw close up how startups work (or don’t work). And I’ve interviewed hundreds of startups.

Timothy Ritchey, who works for RedRomeLogic, said on Twitter “I guess scoble missed that big f’n orange “Watch Demo Now” button on our home page. ass.”

UPDATE: YCombinator has even more “Scoble Sucks” kinds of comments.

Marshall Kirkpatrick (who works for Demo partner Read/Write Web) said on Twitter: “My take: scoble is being an unfair jerk in saying the DEMO companies suck but is right in his critiques of their marketing.”

Dan Hau, who works for TicketStumbler, said on Twitter: “I love how people think Robert Scoble is famous. He’s not – he’s just a talentless, fat, annoying, douche bag.”

Conner McCall said on Twitter: “Reminded me once again why I quit following anything related to Scoble.”

Mel Webster said on Twitter: “Honestly, the best thing that could ever happen was if everyone ignored @scoble. He would quietly go away!”

Finally, Chris Shipley, who now runs the Demo Conference, wrote a very long post saying basically that I suck. I’ll answer that in a future post.

And this is only some of the “Scoble Sucks” kind of stuff I’ve seen tonight. More later…

Comments

  1. Gee, I’m surprised you aren’t devastated by the biting repartee. Help me understand: no one disagreed with you, they just attacked you for expressing your opinion in a public forum. Hmmmm. You must have been right.

  2. Robert
    Thats not what I said, I said you had lost that shine to me
    We (entrepreneurs) always had you down as our guy, I think that changed today and it makes me desperately sad.
    You have been brilliant to me even when I had a POS website, whats changed bud
    C’mon seriously
    Whats changed?

  3. Gee, I’m surprised you aren’t devastated by the biting repartee. Help me understand: no one disagreed with you, they just attacked you for expressing your opinion in a public forum. Hmmmm. You must have been right.

  4. Robert
    Thats not what I said, I said you had lost that shine to me
    We (entrepreneurs) always had you down as our guy, I think that changed today and it makes me desperately sad.
    You have been brilliant to me even when I had a POS website, whats changed bud
    C’mon seriously
    Whats changed?

  5. Pat: I still AM your guy. That’s what you don’t get. The quality of these sites is WAY lower than when I saw you launch your company. Keep in mind, these are people’s first impressions. I want startups that actually deserve our attention and that are worthy of telling our friends about. I can’t send my friends to most of these web sites. They are that bad. Sorry.

  6. hmmmmm if conner and Mel aren’t following you then why would they know to complain about something you say?

    Me thinks they doth protest too much.

  7. Wow, it seems like that post got you a lot of attention. Personally I think you could have done the same thing with anonymous screen shots, but that probably wouldn’t have been as controversial.

  8. Pat: I still AM your guy. That’s what you don’t get. The quality of these sites is WAY lower than when I saw you launch your company. Keep in mind, these are people’s first impressions. I want startups that actually deserve our attention and that are worthy of telling our friends about. I can’t send my friends to most of these web sites. They are that bad. Sorry.

  9. hmmmmm if conner and Mel aren’t following you then why would they know to complain about something you say?

    Me thinks they doth protest too much.

  10. Wow, it seems like that post got you a lot of attention. Personally I think you could have done the same thing with anonymous screen shots, but that probably wouldn’t have been as controversial.

  11. I can’t say I watch your streams, so I don’t know what your style is. I *did* however, read your post about the sucky startup sites. I don’t necessarily agree on the way you wrote your review, which felt condescending, but surely someone with a startup (or any site worth reading for that matter) that certain guidelines apply. A site without a purpose on the front page, or a way to capture the audience might as well not exist.

  12. I can’t say I watch your streams, so I don’t know what your style is. I *did* however, read your post about the sucky startup sites. I don’t necessarily agree on the way you wrote your review, which felt condescending, but surely someone with a startup (or any site worth reading for that matter) that certain guidelines apply. A site without a purpose on the front page, or a way to capture the audience might as well not exist.

  13. I love reading your stuff. I have followed this blog for years and oftne you dive deeper into the life of startups then I really care for but of course people will get annoyed if you are not completely aggreeing with them

    Oh, and you are not fat and annoying

  14. I love reading your stuff. I have followed this blog for years and oftne you dive deeper into the life of startups then I really care for but of course people will get annoyed if you are not completely aggreeing with them

    Oh, and you are not fat and annoying

  15. I agree with most of the comments made about you regarding this issue Robert, your comments were inconsiderate and arrogant. you still make valid points about their sites, it is the way you say it that makes me feel robert is smart and all those people behind those startups are not.

  16. I agree with most of the comments made about you regarding this issue Robert, your comments were inconsiderate and arrogant. you still make valid points about their sites, it is the way you say it that makes me feel robert is smart and all those people behind those startups are not.

  17. @Scoble you’ve been struggling for a bit and this stunt might just make you irrelevant.

    Your points might be spot on but because you’ve forgetting how to be human, communicate your views effectively, show some respect, you are now just another dick in the valley.

  18. @Scoble you’ve been struggling for a bit and this stunt might just make you irrelevant.

    Your points might be spot on but because you’ve forgetting how to be human, communicate your views effectively, show some respect, you are now just another dick in the valley.

  19. Nir: OK, fair enough, I often am arrogant and inconsiderate. But that’s not my job here when I see something in the industry going south. If I were here to make friends I’d invite you over for a beer.

  20. Nir: OK, fair enough, I often am arrogant and inconsiderate. But that’s not my job here when I see something in the industry going south. If I were here to make friends I’d invite you over for a beer.

  21. Jeez, ok – fair call. I forgot that DEMO was an advertiser for RWW, I’m on one side of the wall between advertising and editorial so I honestly couldn’t tell you who all the advertisers this or any month even are – but a disclosure would have been fair on my part.

  22. Jeez, ok – fair call. I forgot that DEMO was an advertiser for RWW, I’m on one side of the wall between advertising and editorial so I honestly couldn’t tell you who all the advertisers this or any month even are – but a disclosure would have been fair on my part.

  23. Robert, with all the experience and network you have I think it’s time for you to start a business and make it even better than any other tech blogs we’ve seen so far. You’ve been at the other end of the spectrum for too long now.

    People are listening to you and your opinions spark debate like no one else. What are you waiting on ?

  24. Robert, with all the experience and network you have I think it’s time for you to start a business and make it even better than any other tech blogs we’ve seen so far. You’ve been at the other end of the spectrum for too long now.

    People are listening to you and your opinions spark debate like no one else. What are you waiting on ?

  25. Also, Robert – that Tweet wasn’t hate mail, it was a dissenting 140 characters with some really soft critical language.

  26. Also, Robert – that Tweet wasn’t hate mail, it was a dissenting 140 characters with some really soft critical language.

  27. There are a lot of trash startup ideas out there right now. A lot consist of marginal improvements to old ideas. Scoble points out how the disappointment is compounded by even more useless web sites supposed to promote those trash ideas.

  28. There are a lot of trash startup ideas out there right now. A lot consist of marginal improvements to old ideas. Scoble points out how the disappointment is compounded by even more useless web sites supposed to promote those trash ideas.

  29. I think when Pat Phelan wrote, “Let’s get the old Scoble back” is the most interesting post of them all. Why? Scoble didn’t go anywhere. It just sounds like the message wasn’t in the execution, nor part of who he regularly is…

    If Scoble did “suck” and wasn’t important anymore, then Chris Shipley wouldn’t be writing a “long post” response. The fact is that this kind of communication, from Scoble, is outside of his “brand image” and that he is really making a “call to action.”

    Sorry for all of the quotes, but I really think so many words are wasted online these days, and there are hardly enough people like Robert Scoble or Tim O’Reilly, for that matter, who are really saying something worth reading. Tim O’Reilly recently wrote, and this is not a direct quote, that Web 2.0 tech should be made to better use in science, than focused on consumer appeal. Isn’t that better to hear, than how long your friend has been sitting in a train station? Or, skimming through your iPhone apps to find a better restaurant locater?

    Good for Scoble for shaking up the apple cart. Maybe some of the apples will shine brighter next time around.

  30. I think when Pat Phelan wrote, “Let’s get the old Scoble back” is the most interesting post of them all. Why? Scoble didn’t go anywhere. It just sounds like the message wasn’t in the execution, nor part of who he regularly is…

    If Scoble did “suck” and wasn’t important anymore, then Chris Shipley wouldn’t be writing a “long post” response. The fact is that this kind of communication, from Scoble, is outside of his “brand image” and that he is really making a “call to action.”

    Sorry for all of the quotes, but I really think so many words are wasted online these days, and there are hardly enough people like Robert Scoble or Tim O’Reilly, for that matter, who are really saying something worth reading. Tim O’Reilly recently wrote, and this is not a direct quote, that Web 2.0 tech should be made to better use in science, than focused on consumer appeal. Isn’t that better to hear, than how long your friend has been sitting in a train station? Or, skimming through your iPhone apps to find a better restaurant locater?

    Good for Scoble for shaking up the apple cart. Maybe some of the apples will shine brighter next time around.

  31. I don’t agree with your post for the following reasons which I thought you’d understand:

    1. You’re looking at pre DEMO sites where the creators of the sites might be scrambling to get things together and working.
    2. With all the work required in getting things running sometimes PR is pushed back for technology or infrastructure.
    3. Video doesn’t work for everyone. They can be long and boring. For websites a pictoral display of a site might be much better then video. Video also takes time to edit and produce. Time that might need to be spent on programming or infrastructure for the actual product.

    Regardless I do find there is something to learn with the way you handle backlash by reposting all the comments made about you. As a blogger/Journalist you’re a success online because you stir conversation even when it’s harsh to you. And that’s pretty cool. Thanks for the PR lesson.

    What would be interesting is if the companies that you bashed reply on their company blogs addressing the issues. I know to do that now if a blogger takes a shot at my startup.

  32. I don’t agree with your post for the following reasons which I thought you’d understand:

    1. You’re looking at pre DEMO sites where the creators of the sites might be scrambling to get things together and working.
    2. With all the work required in getting things running sometimes PR is pushed back for technology or infrastructure.
    3. Video doesn’t work for everyone. They can be long and boring. For websites a pictoral display of a site might be much better then video. Video also takes time to edit and produce. Time that might need to be spent on programming or infrastructure for the actual product.

    Regardless I do find there is something to learn with the way you handle backlash by reposting all the comments made about you. As a blogger/Journalist you’re a success online because you stir conversation even when it’s harsh to you. And that’s pretty cool. Thanks for the PR lesson.

    What would be interesting is if the companies that you bashed reply on their company blogs addressing the issues. I know to do that now if a blogger takes a shot at my startup.

  33. Unfortunate events, looking forward to your next post on this. Even an investigation in the topic could be done as it’d disseminate facts from the parties as it seems the situation is somewhat doing a ricochet by bringing up old stories, I think that storyline will effectively be settled in a definite and decisive way. To the best thinker -Zu

  34. Unfortunate events, looking forward to your next post on this. Even an investigation in the topic could be done as it’d disseminate facts from the parties as it seems the situation is somewhat doing a ricochet by bringing up old stories, I think that storyline will effectively be settled in a definite and decisive way. To the best thinker -Zu

  35. Honestly, I agree with Robert. My company’s site looks absolutely horrible, I acknowledge that, but we’re working with some really skilled designers to try and rectify that. Another thing that immediately sprung into my mind was “How did some of these projects get funded?” It sort of makes me feel more at ease when it comes to seeking funding for my company’s yet-unannounced big project. If some of these projects can get funded, surely we can.

    P.S. Robert, your comment form breaks for me when I’m actually logged into my wordpress.com account. It errors with “enter required fields (name, email)”.

  36. Honestly, I agree with Robert. My company’s site looks absolutely horrible, I acknowledge that, but we’re working with some really skilled designers to try and rectify that. Another thing that immediately sprung into my mind was “How did some of these projects get funded?” It sort of makes me feel more at ease when it comes to seeking funding for my company’s yet-unannounced big project. If some of these projects can get funded, surely we can.

    P.S. Robert, your comment form breaks for me when I’m actually logged into my wordpress.com account. It errors with “enter required fields (name, email)”.

  37. You know, you and I don’t always agree on everything Robert – but you always make me think, analyze, and learn… so you won’t hear any “Scoble Sucks” posts from me – even if I ever got a “GeekMommy Sucks” post/twitter/whathaveyou from you.

    That said, even if you didn’t hit the nail on the head 100% with that post? You stirred up the anthill and got people talking… and that’s *huge*. Getting people talking is the best way to get them thinking and fixing what is wrong or pointing out what is right.

  38. You know, you and I don’t always agree on everything Robert – but you always make me think, analyze, and learn… so you won’t hear any “Scoble Sucks” posts from me – even if I ever got a “GeekMommy Sucks” post/twitter/whathaveyou from you.

    That said, even if you didn’t hit the nail on the head 100% with that post? You stirred up the anthill and got people talking… and that’s *huge*. Getting people talking is the best way to get them thinking and fixing what is wrong or pointing out what is right.

  39. Mo: fair enough. I’ll redo my look at the Websites later this week after they get to turn on their new websites. Personally that is a problem with the Demo Conference. They should have held their list until all the startups were ready to unveil their new stuff.

  40. Mo: fair enough. I’ll redo my look at the Websites later this week after they get to turn on their new websites. Personally that is a problem with the Demo Conference. They should have held their list until all the startups were ready to unveil their new stuff.

  41. My issue is that you wrote that with this assumed ‘don’t they learn anything from garyvee’s site?’ (like it’s assumed everyone knows who that is) and didn’t illustrate key areas why you believe his site to be good. I’m always on the lookout for exact causes of echo behavior and this is it.

    I’ve noticed also how much the geek set is locked-on to design aesthetic… look at all the random comments about why the Android HTC sucks… because it doesn’t look like an iPhone. Damn, we’ve become quite superficial… and to think we were geeks once.

  42. My issue is that you wrote that with this assumed ‘don’t they learn anything from garyvee’s site?’ (like it’s assumed everyone knows who that is) and didn’t illustrate key areas why you believe his site to be good. I’m always on the lookout for exact causes of echo behavior and this is it.

    I’ve noticed also how much the geek set is locked-on to design aesthetic… look at all the random comments about why the Android HTC sucks… because it doesn’t look like an iPhone. Damn, we’ve become quite superficial… and to think we were geeks once.

  43. Eric: I like Gary’s site because it has personality and isn’t written in marketese. But I’ll get you some other great examples. Many of which were actually launched at Demo over the past few years.

  44. Eric: I like Gary’s site because it has personality and isn’t written in marketese. But I’ll get you some other great examples. Many of which were actually launched at Demo over the past few years.

  45. Your job is to be a critic. Not an entrepreneur. A food critic isn’t a cook. A movie critic isn’t a producer or director. You’re to represent customers, not vendors. What’s your value to me if you’re only writing fluff pieces and kissing up to all vendors. If these guys want an infomercial, they should pay for one.

    Maybe you might want to give companies two chances (every n months?) First time you see them and they don’t impress, you tell them, and no one else. If they’d like, they could have you back for a second impression. Then you publish.

  46. Your job is to be a critic. Not an entrepreneur. A food critic isn’t a cook. A movie critic isn’t a producer or director. You’re to represent customers, not vendors. What’s your value to me if you’re only writing fluff pieces and kissing up to all vendors. If these guys want an infomercial, they should pay for one.

    Maybe you might want to give companies two chances (every n months?) First time you see them and they don’t impress, you tell them, and no one else. If they’d like, they could have you back for a second impression. Then you publish.

  47. I think this is all blown out of proportion. Look at what these guys write, it’s linkbait, I mean come on, I agree Robert would be better of if he lived a healthier life but what has that got to do with anything.

    Robert gave us a list, he invested time in it.
    That’s not what most of you guys did.

    He then told us his opinion about those company websites.
    That too got me interested.
    I read it, I didn’t think his comments were that bad.
    Sure, maybe he should have separated the website from the product but come one now, I woke up this morning and it’s all over the tech blogosphere!
    Which is good for Robert, but the comments indicate some bloggers have psychological problems.

    To me Robert is the kind of guy who knows how to spot something interesting.
    He looks at companies, websites, products and makes up his mind about them.
    He’s not always right, but when he’s wrong, his audience will tell him and he will turn around and tell you when he’s wrong.
    That saves me a lot of time because I didn’t look at all those websites.

    The main point Robert is trying to make is they should’ve invested some of that Demo money in their own website!
    But ok, let’s suppose some of those sites’ products do have the potential to become another Del.icio.us or craigslist, … Robert will tell you he was wrong before it hits mainstream.
    And he will probably do a video about it too giving those guys more publicity than they got by going to Demo.

  48. I think this is all blown out of proportion. Look at what these guys write, it’s linkbait, I mean come on, I agree Robert would be better of if he lived a healthier life but what has that got to do with anything.

    Robert gave us a list, he invested time in it.
    That’s not what most of you guys did.

    He then told us his opinion about those company websites.
    That too got me interested.
    I read it, I didn’t think his comments were that bad.
    Sure, maybe he should have separated the website from the product but come one now, I woke up this morning and it’s all over the tech blogosphere!
    Which is good for Robert, but the comments indicate some bloggers have psychological problems.

    To me Robert is the kind of guy who knows how to spot something interesting.
    He looks at companies, websites, products and makes up his mind about them.
    He’s not always right, but when he’s wrong, his audience will tell him and he will turn around and tell you when he’s wrong.
    That saves me a lot of time because I didn’t look at all those websites.

    The main point Robert is trying to make is they should’ve invested some of that Demo money in their own website!
    But ok, let’s suppose some of those sites’ products do have the potential to become another Del.icio.us or craigslist, … Robert will tell you he was wrong before it hits mainstream.
    And he will probably do a video about it too giving those guys more publicity than they got by going to Demo.

  49. What do you mean? My name is Peter (I go by Pete) and you have my email address. I’m not anonymous by any means. If I had a blog or site I would put it here.

  50. What do you mean? My name is Peter (I go by Pete) and you have my email address. I’m not anonymous by any means. If I had a blog or site I would put it here.

  51. Now THAT’S marketing!

    Scoble gets his ass chewed and then, turns it into a post, which probably gets more hits than some of the websites he slammed for having poor marketing.

    Why don’t someone pay Scoble to go and get their site some traffic?

    Jim

  52. Now THAT’S marketing!

    Scoble gets his ass chewed and then, turns it into a post, which probably gets more hits than some of the websites he slammed for having poor marketing.

    Why don’t someone pay Scoble to go and get their site some traffic?

    Jim

  53. It’s funny how people respond. Know what I did with the post in question? I bookmarked it, shared it, and then started looking at the startups you mentioned. I get the complaints people are leveling, but I read most of their negatives as just being part of your voice, your opinion.

    Me? I just started learning about the startups.

    I’m working in the events business. I’m not into competing negatively. Heck, I’m speaking Monday at an event that competes in some ways with one of my other events. Call me the Rodney King of social media, but I like it when people get along.

    Can you / should you criticize things going on in our space? Sure! I learned from the post.

  54. It’s funny how people respond. Know what I did with the post in question? I bookmarked it, shared it, and then started looking at the startups you mentioned. I get the complaints people are leveling, but I read most of their negatives as just being part of your voice, your opinion.

    Me? I just started learning about the startups.

    I’m working in the events business. I’m not into competing negatively. Heck, I’m speaking Monday at an event that competes in some ways with one of my other events. Call me the Rodney King of social media, but I like it when people get along.

    Can you / should you criticize things going on in our space? Sure! I learned from the post.

  55. all he said, some websites suck … and people attack like he maligned jesus or allah ..

    the cult of the holy startup has some problems i think

  56. all he said, some websites suck … and people attack like he maligned jesus or allah ..

    the cult of the holy startup has some problems i think

  57. Hey Robert,

    I don’t necessarily agree with all the blatant “Scoble sucks” comments that are being pandered about, it seems to be a polarised knee jerk reactions to your polarised viewpoint.

    I doubt many of the people crucifying you bothered to look past the home page on a lot of these sites to see what you were talking about.

    You did have a point, some of these sites did not align well with the markets they were targeting (some were plain awful) but I think the point is that you could have perhaps handled it more professionally. Especially considering you are one of the TC50 judges, some might say there is a conflict of interest there.

    Anyway, perhaps you could take screenshots of all the scoble sucks comments, combine them into a large collage and make a poster (or a tshirt?). Turn the negatives into a moneymaking positive!

  58. Hey Robert,

    I don’t necessarily agree with all the blatant “Scoble sucks” comments that are being pandered about, it seems to be a polarised knee jerk reactions to your polarised viewpoint.

    I doubt many of the people crucifying you bothered to look past the home page on a lot of these sites to see what you were talking about.

    You did have a point, some of these sites did not align well with the markets they were targeting (some were plain awful) but I think the point is that you could have perhaps handled it more professionally. Especially considering you are one of the TC50 judges, some might say there is a conflict of interest there.

    Anyway, perhaps you could take screenshots of all the scoble sucks comments, combine them into a large collage and make a poster (or a tshirt?). Turn the negatives into a moneymaking positive!

  59. I can almost guarantee most of these ‘haters” would never bash Scoble nearly as harshly in person. Instead they hide behind twitter of friendfeed to criticize him. It is really sad to see how malicious people can be.

  60. I can almost guarantee most of these ‘haters” would never bash Scoble nearly as harshly in person. Instead they hide behind twitter of friendfeed to criticize him. It is really sad to see how malicious people can be.

  61. I have to strongly agree with Robert’s post.

    Let’s look at this this way, if you had a product you’ve worked on and believed in 100%, would you prefer your sales team to go out presenting it in their best suite and tie, clean shaven, smelling like hugo boss or would you let them stumble out of bed, mumble a few words or a lot of words to the crowd and hope for the best?

    I take it that if your like me, you’ll prefer leaving that lasting 1st impression. That’s what most of these startups just aren’t leaving. Within seconds of hitting their website which is really the face and salesman for their service, they should have me hooked… Or have me at Hello :)

    http://www.seovice.com

  62. I have to strongly agree with Robert’s post.

    Let’s look at this this way, if you had a product you’ve worked on and believed in 100%, would you prefer your sales team to go out presenting it in their best suite and tie, clean shaven, smelling like hugo boss or would you let them stumble out of bed, mumble a few words or a lot of words to the crowd and hope for the best?

    I take it that if your like me, you’ll prefer leaving that lasting 1st impression. That’s what most of these startups just aren’t leaving. Within seconds of hitting their website which is really the face and salesman for their service, they should have me hooked… Or have me at Hello :)

    http://www.seovice.com

  63. Well, fwiw, I wrote a post about your complaints regarding the startup sites, because I saw a lot of value in your critical remarks, at http://www.design-for-users.com/ A startup company, especially a tech company, does not have the luxury of not knowing how to market themselves if they want to survive and best at least some of the competition. I don’t know your relationships with the people who are outraged, but in my little corner of the world, this was a valid discussion.

  64. Well, fwiw, I wrote a post about your complaints regarding the startup sites, because I saw a lot of value in your critical remarks, at http://www.design-for-users.com/ A startup company, especially a tech company, does not have the luxury of not knowing how to market themselves if they want to survive and best at least some of the competition. I don’t know your relationships with the people who are outraged, but in my little corner of the world, this was a valid discussion.

  65. Why should Robert bear the burden of massaging delicate egos? In short, he shouldn’t. Robert has never made a secret of calling things as he sees them. If the sites sucked, they sucked and Robert shouldn’t be attacked for speaking his mind. Asking him not to do so is called censorship, and to have him say otherwise is called propaganda. These days a web site is a direct reflection of the company. I see a poorly designed site and I immediately start questioning the quality of said company and the service(s) it is offering. Besides, if any of these guys truly believed in their business they wouldn’t be worried about the Scoble effect on them. If you one negative comment from a tech blogger is going to illicit this kind of reaction, why would I, as an investor, want to get behind such a shaky business model?

  66. Why should Robert bear the burden of massaging delicate egos? In short, he shouldn’t. Robert has never made a secret of calling things as he sees them. If the sites sucked, they sucked and Robert shouldn’t be attacked for speaking his mind. Asking him not to do so is called censorship, and to have him say otherwise is called propaganda. These days a web site is a direct reflection of the company. I see a poorly designed site and I immediately start questioning the quality of said company and the service(s) it is offering. Besides, if any of these guys truly believed in their business they wouldn’t be worried about the Scoble effect on them. If you one negative comment from a tech blogger is going to illicit this kind of reaction, why would I, as an investor, want to get behind such a shaky business model?

  67. i appreciate your honesty and share your frustration. people should know that it takes a lot for you to say anything negative and it’s really not against the law to do so. Maybe if they took some of the time they’ve spent complaining about your opinion into listening and incorporating some of your suggestions into their web site the whole exercise would be more productive.

  68. i appreciate your honesty and share your frustration. people should know that it takes a lot for you to say anything negative and it’s really not against the law to do so. Maybe if they took some of the time they’ve spent complaining about your opinion into listening and incorporating some of your suggestions into their web site the whole exercise would be more productive.

  69. Message to entrepreneurs, your project is humbling, it’s a competitive space, it’s harder than you ever imagined and Robert probably just did you a huge favor so listen.

    We’re 3 guys, bootstrapped, delivering on a very ambitious product, no designer, no pr and we still made it right and so could have you.

    Proof is in a tweet from Robert this morning http://twitter.com/Scobleizer/statuses/912563851 “yours was more informative than many of the Demo ones”.

  70. Message to entrepreneurs, your project is humbling, it’s a competitive space, it’s harder than you ever imagined and Robert probably just did you a huge favor so listen.

    We’re 3 guys, bootstrapped, delivering on a very ambitious product, no designer, no pr and we still made it right and so could have you.

    Proof is in a tweet from Robert this morning http://twitter.com/Scobleizer/statuses/912563851 “yours was more informative than many of the Demo ones”.

  71. Pete, I believe Robert’s comment was an actual answer to your earlier post about using anonymous screen shots.

    He wasn’t saying that YOU are anonymous and that’s why he doesn’t answer you.

  72. Pete, I believe Robert’s comment was an actual answer to your earlier post about using anonymous screen shots.

    He wasn’t saying that YOU are anonymous and that’s why he doesn’t answer you.

  73. Robert,

    To respond to the Gary V. angle sprinkled into the comment thread earlier:

    I want away from your previous post with the vibe that you had mentioned Gary V. as a “style of presentation”… not just his website, but his interactivity with the community, his openness and sense of humor, his all around attention to detail on every face of his product/presentation (not about marketing, about having one’s finger on the pulse, so to speak)… not just something as one dimensional as his website. I felt that if the presenters who are readying to go onstage (for which they paid close to $20k to do) in the next few days were 1/2 as “in tune” with the-way-it-is as Gary V. was then their websites would A.) Exist and B.) Not look like that. Period.

    And I agree. These places paid eighteen thousand fucking dollars to stand on a stage for a matter of minutes and say something to a few thousand people. (ok ok, say something to the world blah blah blah).. the point is, they paid all that money to do that and they couldn’t find $2000 (or a person or two on the team) to have a really nice placeholder or mini-site put together for all the pre-press of the big event??? It’s a testament to how misaligned these places priorities are and could very well be a harbinger of their unsuccessful ventures.

    Anyway, Robert… I still think you shine.. why? Cus in these past 3 posts/threads I can’t recall seeing a single link to the “conversation at friendfeed” … hehehhe. j/k (i slammed you hard in the past for that stuff, so it seemed relevant to remind you [if you ever even saw before] of that alongside my backing you up for the voice you chose to write your posts in this weekend. I enjoyed them, I respect them, and I think you bring up very valid talking points that could really inspire some constructive debate if people were willing to just suck it up and deal with the fact that not everything is sugar coated… call a spade a spade sometimes, people. I had thought about you and TC50 and all that jazz…. but really truly… you are right… had SOME, not all, of these companies with sites like this applied to be onstage at TC50 i doubt they would have ever made it past the first interview… just a hunch.

  74. Robert,

    To respond to the Gary V. angle sprinkled into the comment thread earlier:

    I want away from your previous post with the vibe that you had mentioned Gary V. as a “style of presentation”… not just his website, but his interactivity with the community, his openness and sense of humor, his all around attention to detail on every face of his product/presentation (not about marketing, about having one’s finger on the pulse, so to speak)… not just something as one dimensional as his website. I felt that if the presenters who are readying to go onstage (for which they paid close to $20k to do) in the next few days were 1/2 as “in tune” with the-way-it-is as Gary V. was then their websites would A.) Exist and B.) Not look like that. Period.

    And I agree. These places paid eighteen thousand fucking dollars to stand on a stage for a matter of minutes and say something to a few thousand people. (ok ok, say something to the world blah blah blah).. the point is, they paid all that money to do that and they couldn’t find $2000 (or a person or two on the team) to have a really nice placeholder or mini-site put together for all the pre-press of the big event??? It’s a testament to how misaligned these places priorities are and could very well be a harbinger of their unsuccessful ventures.

    Anyway, Robert… I still think you shine.. why? Cus in these past 3 posts/threads I can’t recall seeing a single link to the “conversation at friendfeed” … hehehhe. j/k (i slammed you hard in the past for that stuff, so it seemed relevant to remind you [if you ever even saw before] of that alongside my backing you up for the voice you chose to write your posts in this weekend. I enjoyed them, I respect them, and I think you bring up very valid talking points that could really inspire some constructive debate if people were willing to just suck it up and deal with the fact that not everything is sugar coated… call a spade a spade sometimes, people. I had thought about you and TC50 and all that jazz…. but really truly… you are right… had SOME, not all, of these companies with sites like this applied to be onstage at TC50 i doubt they would have ever made it past the first interview… just a hunch.

  75. I thought you made some excellent good points. Can’t understand the uproar, unless people are finding that truth hurts.

  76. I thought you made some excellent good points. Can’t understand the uproar, unless people are finding that truth hurts.

  77. I think people are just pissed that you made such a blanket statement about that many startups. They are obviously all very different. Startups are used to getting torn up by blogs (if need be) but they are usually given the reasons why.

    You should either go back and explain why each of them suck (individually), or say sorry and take it back until you’ve had time to sit and analyze each startup. Most of these companies are brand new and probably haven’t gotten written up in a blog yet, and so far you haven’t been inspiring much hope.

  78. I think people are just pissed that you made such a blanket statement about that many startups. They are obviously all very different. Startups are used to getting torn up by blogs (if need be) but they are usually given the reasons why.

    You should either go back and explain why each of them suck (individually), or say sorry and take it back until you’ve had time to sit and analyze each startup. Most of these companies are brand new and probably haven’t gotten written up in a blog yet, and so far you haven’t been inspiring much hope.

  79. I’ve been trying to figure out who has a bigger ego: You or Jason Calacanis. I’m undecided. But, I can tell you this. Your post and previous posts on this subject show a lack of hubris. No one likes someone who lacks the basics of humility.

    By saying that a website’s quality was indicative of a company’s quality you’ve essentially said sites like Amazon suck. Amazon.com has been lauded for it’s ancient and difficult to use design. But, shockingly they do quite well.

    Perhaps focusing on facts, less on opinions, and dialing back the attempt to be polarizing would help you come off as someone with more integrity. Remember, it’s quality that got you where you are, not volume.

  80. I’ve been trying to figure out who has a bigger ego: You or Jason Calacanis. I’m undecided. But, I can tell you this. Your post and previous posts on this subject show a lack of hubris. No one likes someone who lacks the basics of humility.

    By saying that a website’s quality was indicative of a company’s quality you’ve essentially said sites like Amazon suck. Amazon.com has been lauded for it’s ancient and difficult to use design. But, shockingly they do quite well.

    Perhaps focusing on facts, less on opinions, and dialing back the attempt to be polarizing would help you come off as someone with more integrity. Remember, it’s quality that got you where you are, not volume.

  81. People bitching about the poor startups? They just got 10x more press than they might have gotten if he hadn’t touched it like this!

    Each startup is now going to try a little bit harder on their web presence, user interface, and the overall reason they should exist. Making them…better?

    Nobody is going to cast these companies into space based solely on Scoble’s post.

    This is a huge opportunity to have some great conversations (Seth?) about their brands!

  82. People bitching about the poor startups? They just got 10x more press than they might have gotten if he hadn’t touched it like this!

    Each startup is now going to try a little bit harder on their web presence, user interface, and the overall reason they should exist. Making them…better?

    Nobody is going to cast these companies into space based solely on Scoble’s post.

    This is a huge opportunity to have some great conversations (Seth?) about their brands!

  83. Robert,

    I haven’t been following you all that long, but you’ve really earned my respect with this entire situation.

    1) You’re absolutely right – most of those sites suck. Good for you for having the balls to tell the truth. The fact that some people slammed you really amazes me. This post actually PUSHES those startups to be better instead of just saying “wow, there’s some interesting companies going to DEMO”.

    Yeah, we know it’s freakin’ hard to get to the startup phase … but if they want to get BEYOND the start up phase, they better re-read your post and thank their lucky stars that you just gave them the free advice you did.

    2) Love the way you’re handling the haters. Brilliant really. You definitely know how to keep a conversation going. I’m taking notes.

  84. Robert,

    I haven’t been following you all that long, but you’ve really earned my respect with this entire situation.

    1) You’re absolutely right – most of those sites suck. Good for you for having the balls to tell the truth. The fact that some people slammed you really amazes me. This post actually PUSHES those startups to be better instead of just saying “wow, there’s some interesting companies going to DEMO”.

    Yeah, we know it’s freakin’ hard to get to the startup phase … but if they want to get BEYOND the start up phase, they better re-read your post and thank their lucky stars that you just gave them the free advice you did.

    2) Love the way you’re handling the haters. Brilliant really. You definitely know how to keep a conversation going. I’m taking notes.

  85. the 80′s?????? You are putting that on your resume? The 80′s???? hilarious.

    BTW, by your standards Google’s web site sucks, too. Consequently I guess they must suck.

  86. the 80′s?????? You are putting that on your resume? The 80′s???? hilarious.

    BTW, by your standards Google’s web site sucks, too. Consequently I guess they must suck.

  87. What really struck home for me was the comment at the bottom of the post where you asked if I would Report or write about any of the sites.

    That was where I realized the impact of the marketing techniques of the sites I visited. There was no impact. And I think thats the point.

  88. What really struck home for me was the comment at the bottom of the post where you asked if I would Report or write about any of the sites.

    That was where I realized the impact of the marketing techniques of the sites I visited. There was no impact. And I think thats the point.

  89. I’m too lazy to go through all the comments, but … WHAT? I don’t get it!

    What exactly did you write or say that so many people are pissed off? I think your work is great, I can still remember the great Davos coverage when QIK was new and all the famous people passing by ;)

    I hope this stuff doesn’t get you. Now I know why you don’t like twitter so much anymore :)

    Best regards from Germany

    Markus

  90. I’m too lazy to go through all the comments, but … WHAT? I don’t get it!

    What exactly did you write or say that so many people are pissed off? I think your work is great, I can still remember the great Davos coverage when QIK was new and all the famous people passing by ;)

    I hope this stuff doesn’t get you. Now I know why you don’t like twitter so much anymore :)

    Best regards from Germany

    Markus

  91. First I’m going to say that I have no vested interest in Robert – for or against. He’s not a Twitter or FB bud, and I don’t tune into Scobleizer regularly. What I will say is that in reading the original post, a lot of his comments are very blunt and on the mark. I’m a brand consultant who’s worked with tech start-ups since the 1990′s. What I took away from his post is that these start-ups that are granted at the demo stage don’t have their act together on the brand and (sometimes) user experience side. It doesn’t take rocket science to do this – doesn’t take million dollar budgets (and yes can even be for less than $18k). That basic, stripped down messaging/positioning/user ease should be a part of the demo experience as well. The start-ups who are willing to look at that as carefully as the coding will do a lot better out there.

  92. First I’m going to say that I have no vested interest in Robert – for or against. He’s not a Twitter or FB bud, and I don’t tune into Scobleizer regularly. What I will say is that in reading the original post, a lot of his comments are very blunt and on the mark. I’m a brand consultant who’s worked with tech start-ups since the 1990′s. What I took away from his post is that these start-ups that are granted at the demo stage don’t have their act together on the brand and (sometimes) user experience side. It doesn’t take rocket science to do this – doesn’t take million dollar budgets (and yes can even be for less than $18k). That basic, stripped down messaging/positioning/user ease should be a part of the demo experience as well. The start-ups who are willing to look at that as carefully as the coding will do a lot better out there.

  93. salut robert,
    maybe i’m too much european, but i’m much more interested in product’s than website’s.
    all the best for you france and take care,
    martin

  94. salut robert,
    maybe i’m too much european, but i’m much more interested in product’s than website’s.
    all the best for you france and take care,
    martin

  95. Seems like you deserve it. There are a lot of people working hard to put this together. Whether you like it or not, you didn’t have to belittle their efforts so scathingly. I don’t think you helped anyone here – you certainly didn’t help these fledgling companies – and you certainly didn’t help your readers. You should have bit your tongue and said nothing.

    Although you say that you don’t want to be like mainstream media just trying to make a headline, your articles of late certainly don’t seem that way. Disparaging remarks about someone else’s work is not news by itself.

    Robert – the sad part of this is that you could become a great media source if you want. But when you post articles like this, you look like an amateur. I suspect your career suffered a big setback this week. I hope you get it back together.

  96. Seems like you deserve it. There are a lot of people working hard to put this together. Whether you like it or not, you didn’t have to belittle their efforts so scathingly. I don’t think you helped anyone here – you certainly didn’t help these fledgling companies – and you certainly didn’t help your readers. You should have bit your tongue and said nothing.

    Although you say that you don’t want to be like mainstream media just trying to make a headline, your articles of late certainly don’t seem that way. Disparaging remarks about someone else’s work is not news by itself.

    Robert – the sad part of this is that you could become a great media source if you want. But when you post articles like this, you look like an amateur. I suspect your career suffered a big setback this week. I hope you get it back together.

  97. I’ve had similar distain for people dissing a site that is not completed yet…although we didn’t do a PR on it either(http://www.dailydooh.com/archives/2273 and http://natenead.com/youll-shove-the-lawyer-where/ ). However, any publicity is often good publicity, in my mind, and you just have to learn not to take it personal. It should give these startups incentive to improve. Although I thought your criticism did seem a bit over the top and mean spirited, they need to get over it. It’s not going to change anything. Better just to take the advice, chalk it up to experience and move on.

  98. I’ve had similar distain for people dissing a site that is not completed yet…although we didn’t do a PR on it either(http://www.dailydooh.com/archives/2273 and http://natenead.com/youll-shove-the-lawyer-where/ ). However, any publicity is often good publicity, in my mind, and you just have to learn not to take it personal. It should give these startups incentive to improve. Although I thought your criticism did seem a bit over the top and mean spirited, they need to get over it. It’s not going to change anything. Better just to take the advice, chalk it up to experience and move on.