The other day I got upset about Danny Sullivan’s Search Engine Land publishing an article which suggested search marketers could get “free links” by spamming the new Wired Wiki. I called his choice of headlines “stupid”. You can read it on this blog… it is the previous post. Not only was his an irresponsible headline, but the professional position taken by the SearchEngineLand people was that Google’s “rel=nofollow” attribute should be assigned by default to web publications — something I disagree with completely. As someone else pointed out, even Danny Sullivan’s own Sphinn web site doesn’t use nofollow. Anyway, Danny Sullivan (the most popular guy in search?) got upset and posted lengthy comments here, on Sphinn, and on his web sites. I also got one as email.
But what really bothers me is the comment posted here by someone claiming to be Rand Fishkin. It was posted by “randfish” with the address of seomoz, and you can also read it on the previous post. It is pretty ugly. It reads thusly:
This blog post (and a similar one from another source) are pure hypocrisy, crass negative link (and attention) baiting and feed off the natural draw of drama on the Internet. For shame, John. To think I had respected you, invited you to events and even recommended your services. On occasion, your posts and comments have made me question your integrity or worry that my respect for you was unfounded. Here, you’ve sealed the deal. “Trashy sensationalism that crossed ethical borders for the sake of short term audience attention grabbing” Repulsive, derisive filth (and obvious hypocrisy). Disgusting.
I warned you it was ugly. But I’m not sure it’s real. So I am calling on Rand Fishkin to confirm that he did indeed author that comment, before I remove it from moderation (and address it). You see, fact is, despite what this comment says, I have ever ever even met Rand Fishkin (nor has he met me). I have never been introduced to him, nor him to me. No handshake. Nothing. Never did a gig together; never chatted at any conferences… I know of the guy, but that’s all. Which is why his posting that crap comment on my blog is so “interesting” to me.
See the part where it says he had been recommending me, but would now stop? If we have never met, that really doesn’t make sense, does it? And the part about questioning my integrity? Well.. I’ll wait to address that.. I don’t want to be misled by a FakeRandFishkin or anything like that, if this really isn’t the same Rand Fishkin from seoMOZ.
So if anyone does actually know Rand Fishkin, please ask him to post a comment on one of his own properties to prove that he really did submit this comment here, on my blog. It might be best to drop a note over here as well so I will see it. We need to clear up a few things.
Update: End of story. Rand Fishkin of SEOMOZ admits to writing that comment, and apparently admits so proudly. He also retracted an invitation to have lunch, which he sent me years ago. Funny, really. He has never met me, and makes up that crap to try and make it look like he’s a long time friend now losing his confidence in me and distancing himself. What trash. And the scariest part of all this… he had the balls to jump on what looked like an opportunity to trash me for what.. to gain favor of Danny Sullivan? At what cost?
Ruffled feathers. Boo hoo Rand doesn’t like me any more. I guess the four times I turned him down for lunch/coffee/meetup over the past 3 years didn’t hold any clue. But that’s not the point. The point is, even though I disagree with just about every position he takes, and dislike most what he says publicly, I don’t dump my critical comments in his living room for everyone to read. Some people have no class.
Update again: oops… silly me. I just noticed Rand Fishkin has been hawking Danny Sullivan’s upcoming SMX West Conference. Duh. Rand says right in his super-promotional “article” that “Danny, Chris, Michelle, Karen, & other Chris aren’t just people I respect and work with; they’re friends…SEOmoz does have a partnership with Third Door Media…apologies in advance for the somewhat promotional nature…” Okay so call me ignorant… I didn’t know Rand was shilling for Danny, but that explains alot.