Is Seth Right?

May 12, 2009 by lindac

The video is 1 minute, 18 seconds. Watch it. So, what’s your first reaction?


  1. Susan said :
    May 13, 2009 at 1:32 am

    Makes perfect sense to me. But then, I hate social networking, so it dovetails nicely with what I prefer to be true!

    However, Theresa Mayhew, with whom I am working closely, does do this sort of thing very well, and has received referrals to her site (and gotten people to promote her) via Twitter, so I suspect she’d feel differently - or so she’s told me. I’m sure she’ll weigh in with her thoughts on this.

    All I can be absolutely sure of is: I have no faith in, loyalty to, or vested interest in an anonymous Tweeter or Facebookworm (or whatever they call themselves). I like and do business with people who have proven they respond to my questions and concerns quickly. I don’t care what their favorite movies are, or how cute their picture is, or believe any promise they made in 140 characters or less.

    But I’m not among the Gen-Xers, or Gen-Yers, or the several generations behind me-ers who get this stuff better than I do. So is my opinion worth anything? Meh. Depends who you ask.

  2. lindac said :
    May 13, 2009 at 2:37 am

    For me, I don’t hate social networking, but I do hate wasting time. Time is what life is made of. Wasting time is like wasting my life.

    Sure your opinion has worth. Opinions are like the ends of a metronome. Things swing wildly side to side and then find middle ground. IMHO, I think that people need to find that middle ground.

    It would be all too easy to make social networks into a numbers game. Follow 2,000 people and “x” percent will follow back. That’s the same mentality spammers use. Send 1 million spams to people that don’t know you - and if 1% buy, it’s worth doing again.

    I never want to have that mindset, but I do see the value of following people you’d actually want to read and seeing if they follow back. Plus, there’s the idea that if we post good stuff, people WILL want to follow. That’s my middle ground.

  3. Cheri Merz said :
    May 13, 2009 at 3:01 am

    First reaction? Thank goodness! Someone in an earlier thread mentioned that the thought of Twitter made him gag, or something of the sort. Same here. That said, I think it has its place, but following thousands of people…sheesh, when would you do any work?

    Seth Godin rocks. Have you read his book, Purple Cow? I just did, maybe three weeks ago. Still very solid, though a few years old.

    Linda, you have been giving the same advice for as long as I’ve known you, and presumably before that as well. So has another friend of mine, Kathleen Gage of Street Smarts Marketing. Seth’s opinion shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone who’s older than, say, sixteen.

    What’s surprising is how many people have jumped on the bandwagon and put out product after product to teach the ‘new’ trend social networking. Isn’t that what we’ve been doing since before it was called that?

    On the other hand, it’s great to have a venue where a couple of dozen people know you and like you well enough to go read an article you’ve posted on a forum or your blog, and then come back and say they liked it. That’s one of the reasons I cultivate a group of friends on Facebook since good old ALP went to the dogs, er, spammers. Twitter? I’ve got to draw the line there, at least for now.

    So yeah, what Susan said.


    PS Do you think he shops for his glasses in the same place Elton John does?

  4. Gary Simpson said :
    May 13, 2009 at 3:26 am

    Hi Susan & Linda,

    Good comments from you both.

    I have a LOT of followers on Twitter but I have personally selected them all. I don’t (knowingly) follow any porn people who are doing a hell of a job of taking over Twitter. They disgust me. Kids access Twitter and there are these revolting people engaging in all sorts of explicit sex acts.

    I am NO prude but TPC - time, place, circumstance. And Twitter is NOT the place for brazen and overt sex acts being displayed on avatars or background pages. I am sure this is against the Twitter TOS.

    Anyway, I am (mini) ranting. I have formed a lot of very good relationships via Twitter. I help people and they help me and others back. I use a lot of links to reference things of interest and I am able to direct people to my blog and the blogs of other people - just as you did here, Linda.

    Some people will completely ABUSE any system, no matter what it is. I didn’t see much value in Twitter at first but I am now a convert - so much so that I have written an e-book on it called “Twitter Muscle.” (It’s 45 pages, free and will be available soon.

    Re: the video above - liked the message, didn’t like the glasses. He must be wearing them to win a bet - surely!


  5. Gary Simpson said :
    May 13, 2009 at 3:30 am

    Oops, I was posting while you were Cheri - hi!

    LOL, I guess I am one of those people who is writing about Twitter. However… my comments about Twitter can be applied to ANY social networking. I’m hoping people will understand my messages in my e-book (and my latest RANT against flamers, abusers and haters on my blog)


  6. lindac said :
    May 13, 2009 at 4:02 am

    following thousands of people…sheesh, when would you do any work?

    Following thousands isn’t really hard. The way twitter works is that you have a “home” page, and when the people you’re following post, it shows on your home page.

    The downside that I see to following thousands, IMHO, is that if there’s someone you really do want to read, it’s easy for their posts to scroll off your page if someone else is using twitter like a live chat.

    I see a lot of people do that. They get on twitter and “chat” for hours on end. Then when I go to my home page, most of the posts are by the people using it to chat.

    Earlier today, I was on and happened to see TechCrunch tweet a new blog post. I clicked and was the first to post a comment. It’s rare to be first to comment on TC.

    Thing is, most of the time I’d miss tweets like that because the chatters make the posts scroll off the page so fast.

    IMHO, twitter would be more useful if chatters who want to talk for hours on end with one person would use the DM (direct message) for that.

  7. Ken Garrett said :
    May 13, 2009 at 4:09 am

    It seems to me that Seth is simply saying “the emperor is waering no clothes”.

    Twitter is IMHO an unlimited chat room in which you can only use 140 characters for conversation. It is also the new frontier for network marketers. Mr “Guru” manages to accumulate a large following because he is “Mr. Guru”. He develops a product for he and his “cronies”(good ole boy network, circle of friends, mentor group etc. - feel free to choose your own label)to promote via affiliate sales arrangements after a much hyped prelaunch promotion to their mega lists( and we all receive multi emails( complete with embedded video clips) from all of them - each with a bigger bonus than the last to entice us to buy through their affiliate link.

    Because of all the hype twitter becomes validated and there will be multiple launches until the market becomes saturated and “Mr. Guru finds another area to use to sell someone something to use to sell someone something to us to sell someone…etc. etc. perpetuating the niche(dog and pony show?) known as internet marketing.

    The end result is that there will be bits and pieces of information which will be applicable to those marketing actual products and/or services. We need only to wait and watch for them to filter out.

    I am not sure if this makes me middle of the road, on the outside edge, a cynic or just completely lost but I have not found what I feel to be a valid reason to become highly involved with twitter. If I were promoting internet marketing products I suspect i would feel vastly different.


  8. Wendy Wood said :
    May 13, 2009 at 9:26 am

    Well, I’ve signed up for Twitter but haven’t tweeted yet and can’t seem to get excited about Twitter. Seems like just another thing to do and remember to keep doing it. I agree with Seth’s comments.


  9. Denis said :
    May 13, 2009 at 7:39 pm

    Hi Linda:

    First, what a horrible camera angle. It reminds me of looking at yourself in a doorknob…or the dog who blunders up to the lens and gives it big ‘ole lick…

    Second-I do agree with his message (I just can’t look at him). I believe that the original intention of many creations are for good….But, Aye, there’s the rub. Because then the swamp dwellers come slithering out of the muck to attack, conquer, and render the creation wounded and helpless. It’s the black-hatters, spammers and the like, that are the quickest to pounce and capitalize on something created with good intentions. They then drain and destroy, and move on with no other thought, save money. How sad to only view life through a dollar sign, etched onto one’s field of vision…So much of the “Energy of the Light” needs to be utilized just to defend and counter the Darkness…

    Linda- So you have gone over to the “T Side”? Don’t get me wrong, Twitter is great for those who feel that Twitter is great. Yes, it is useful for socializing and marketing. That said, one needs to innately be a social creature to utilize social media. Unfortunately, so many people have diarrhea of the mouth and constipation of the brain. Now, it seems that so many internet marketers want to be celebrities. This “celebrity image” fuels the need for a marketer to always be in your face, or yapping at your heels, like a litter if Chihuahuas (nothing personal, owners), or waving their arms and flailing about in emails, like an six year old boy who’s gotta go to the potty. Look at me! Look at me! Pick me! Pick me! The marketer needs to always push to the head of the line for people to remember who they are. Then everyone pretends to be your friend-“Hello Friend, I’m on vacation (again), so please buy my recycled crap, so that I may go on another vacation, whoops, I mean seminar”. No, I’m really not bitter. More power to ‘em all. I just state things the way I see ‘em. The truth of the matter is that no celebrity would be a celebrity if the public did not make them one. In actuality, it’s a symbiotic relationship. The public has a burning need to follow and worship someone, anyone, who can make them forget their futile existence, if only for a mere moment.

    My goal will be to crawl out of the woodwork every now and then, blow everyone away, and then go back to where I came-enjoying my private life behind the scenes…We’ll see if I can do that…

    (You’re hearing it here first, folks..I’m working on my very own public service announcement video to go on YouTube- against child predators. I will be in character in the video, even shaving off the “fu” to get an even five days growth. I guarantee this video will to turn your stomach. Sorry, but that’s the intention)…Oh heavens, I’ve said too much already (wink, wink)…

    I will have to join Tw…Twit…(see, I can’t even type it)…Twitter…

    From the “Portal”

  10. lindac said :
    May 14, 2009 at 5:28 am

    Ken… When I first started using Twitter, I thought the same. I had a handful of people “follow” me, so I followed them all back. Courtesy, and all. Then I watched my homepage fill up with chatter and gurus and pseudo-gurus hawking their wares.

    I’d watch these posts scroll by about lol, look at my pic. I’m doing this, I’m doing that. And the blatant ads. Download this, download that. I was growing disenchanted FAST!

    Then I realized, DUH, *I* get to pick what’s on the page by who I follow. So I unfollowed a handful of people who posted incessant ads and a couple of the people that post senseless drivel faster than I can blink an eye.

    Then I went and followed some of the people I actually like to read. Michael Arrington, copyblogger, Chris Pirillo, etc. People whose blogs, articles and writing I enjoy reading.

    Suddenly, my “homepage” was useful. Tech Crunch sent a tweet about a new blog post about a change at Google. Change at Google? Right up my alley. I got to be the first comment on that blog post. That’s rare.

    Then I responded to a tweet by shoemoney - and amazingly got a group of new followers immediately after.

    What I realized is that there’s another way to interpret Seth’s message. Useless following and friending for the sake of a big list of friends and followers is useless.

    But if you choose who you follow with care, it can be a very valuable tool for making connections. Like any tool, it’s about how we use it.

    I suspect that I’ll end up pruning the people I “follow” a great deal over time. When people repeatedly post clutter that I don’t want to read, I’ll remove them from the list of people I follow so that the page I see contains what I want to read and the people I want to keep up to date on.


  11. Gary Simpson said :
    May 14, 2009 at 5:35 am

    Oh Crikey Moses Denis!

    Every time you post something like this I just sit here and nod and snicker relentlessly to myself. Man, you are SO funny. You have such an ascerbic wit. I really admire it.

    There’s way too much amusement in that post even to single one thing out for HIGH PRAISE. It’s ALL worthy of high praise.

    Now, about this pedophile stuff. Be VERY CAREFUL my friend. These mongrels are EVIL personified. You would be astounded at who in YOUR community likes to molest little kids in a sexual manner.

    Over here we have just had a bloody policeman charged! I couldn’t listen to the details. As soon as they mentioned “nappy” my blood began to boil and I switched off. I hope the mongrel goes to jail and gets his OO’s kicked in - regularly!

    Anyway, good luck with your crusade. Just bear in mind my warning.


  12. lindac said :
    May 14, 2009 at 5:48 am

    Denis… You’re quite right that the black-hatters, spammers and the like are the first to pounce on new technologies. The first piece of spam was sent in 1978, before there was even the world wide web available to most people. (It was sent to 600 people via Arpanet)

    And why do we all have Akisment or some other plugin to manage comment spam? Same reason.
    Same reason Google has to change their algorithms regularly. Abusers.

    LOL on “diarrhea of the mouth and constipation of the brain..” So, so true. There’s a lot of that. It only took me one day on Twitter to discover the solution. I look for their photo and click the ‘remove’ button beside their name. Then I never have to see what those people post again.

    You make some very, very valid observations about the symbiotic relationship between some internet marketers and their followers. One has in inner need to stand on a pedestal and the other has some inner need to worship at the pedestal.

    I don’t understand it, because I’ve never had a desire to do either of those, but I have seen it for 14+ years.

    What I also learned - in part due to people like you, Ken, Susan, Cheri, Adam and everyone that posts here is that there is a third group. The group of people that don’t have either of those complexes. Just ordinary people that are willing to roll up their sleeves and figure out what works, and are willing to share what they learn along the way.

    There’s something else I suspect. I think there’s more of “us” than “them.” More ordinary people willing to work and share and learn than there are people with guru/follower complexes. In the old days when I taught art classes to the K-8 crowd, I learned that the 6 kids out of every 30 that are loudest and most full of themselves usually don’t represent the 24 that are quietly just doing their thing.

    So yup, I’ve gone over to the “T” side, but I’m using the follow and unfollow buttons to make sure I only see the stuff that’s useful to me, not the garbage.

    When you post your video, let me know! Just based on how you think, I’m interested in following your projects even if you’re NOT on twitter. lol

  13. Denis said :
    May 14, 2009 at 11:51 pm

    Thanks Gary and Linda for the kind words of endorsement.

    Coming from such learned and esteemed colleagues, really means a lot and helps me to believe that I’m on some kind of right track – somewhere, so onward I’ll trudge. I just wish there were fifty hours in a day…

    Linda, my thanks for your wonderful knack of being able to add clarity and a factual basis to my rambling generalities. You help me to look like I know what I’m talking about. LOL…


  14. Denis said :
    May 15, 2009 at 1:43 am

    Oh yea, and Gary, all it took for you to crack me up were four words: Oh Crikey Moses Denis!

    I can’t help but chuckle at that one (even a day later, it still brings a smile to my face)

  15. Gary Simpson said :
    May 16, 2009 at 7:16 am


    You are quite welcome. I always get great amusement out of what you say and I so enjoy your sardonic comments. You have a great way with words.

    I only wish you were coming to Viva Las Vegas with the rest of us. We have quite a team assembling there.

    Keep up the comments. I like being amused. In fact, more often than not I guffaw at what you say.


  16. Hilary Dickinson said :
    May 18, 2009 at 8:57 pm

    Hi Linda

    I’m a bit behind catching up with your recent postings. May is always an incredibly busy month at college trying to get all the students to finish their work before the end of term (Friday for the full time students). I’ve just finished marking a set of ICT papers and thought I needed a break!

    Twitter - I’ve been at a class in college today (as a student!) on eSkills for eLearning. It is a really good course and I’m learning loads for my teaching and my intended niche as well as contributing to it.

    At the end of today’s session I was showing other teachers a blog I had come across through Twitter and #teachertuesday which was about web2.0 resources for teachers. I would never have found that blog through Google and yet I have found a great resource, made a comment, the blog owner tweeted back about my comment (haven’t checked how many new followers I got from that!)and I am about to send her information about another site that we were told about today. I’d call that a great use of Twitter!

    I was showing some of the other students and the tutor how I use Twitter - how to log on, get friends etc and showed them some of my conversations from this weekend. I’ve found a really nice lady whom I like to chat with - so when we want a longer more private chat we move over to Skype.

    My fellow lecturers saw the benefits of Twitter when properly used and are going off to join - I even gave a couple of them Gary Parkes’ web address to look at his ebook (don’t worry Gaz I’ve shown them your site too!).

    As for business - many of you know that I am looking into getting set up in the financial education for young people (14+ ish) niche. I will have to wait until I stop teaching before I can devote time to it, but in my research I have met several really helpful people through Twitter, one of whom runs a money site for younger children.

    I have come to like and respect her and when I have the time she has said that I can chat on Skype with her and pick her brains. She is also writing an ebook on allowances and I have said I will write a chapter in it - so I will get read by her list (and those of other contributors too I hope!) and she has asked me to send her a testimonial about her ebook I’ve just bought to put on her site for more advertising for me.

    None of this has been overtly ‘money grabbing’ just conversations between people I would not have met otherwise that have developed in a variety of ways.

    Life has changed and so have our ways of meeting people. If used correctly it can only be for the better of us all.

    Just remember to use the remove button - you do have control.

    Sorry for the long post!


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