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One of these gatherings this afternoon had me wondering where people placed their priorities when two of those standing there chose which session they would attend by which SEO Rockstar was on the panel or by which SEO celebrity was speaking.
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from cre8pc 4514 Days ago #
Votes: 2

A well written perspective from Mike Valentine offering a different point of view.

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from dannysullivan 4514 Days ago #
Votes: 0

We’ll work on the titles. I thought Industrial Strength SEO was pretty good.The networking pass makes great sense for pros that want a conference experience but don’t really need the sessions. I think Mike underestimates the value of the pass suggesting it lets you "munch pretzels." Access to very expensive (if you know hotel food prices) lunches on three days, three major parties (with a lot more than pretzels), plus the keynotes. Frankly, we thought the passes were exceptional value :)

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from MattMcGee 4514 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Hmmmm. I don’t see what’s wrong with choosing sessions based on who’s speaking. I think it’s smart. There are 4-5 people I’d gladly listen to no matter what they’re talking about because they’re incredibly smart and I never fail to learn something from them (including Marshall Simmonds, who’s mentioned in Mike’s article). Actually, I volunteered to be Q and A Moderator at the Industrial Strength session because he was on the panel. Every conference I go to, my session choices are mixed between what the topic is and who the speakers are.

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from randfish 4514 Days ago #
Votes: 2

I second that "industrial strength SEO" does a good job conveying it. I suppose if you had to be "literal" you could say "enterprise site SEO," but I question whether many others were confused.Also agree with you Matt - I almost always pick sessions based on speakers, not content. It’s not about who’s "famous," but about who consistently brings fresh, A-game material.

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from cre8pc 4513 Days ago #
Votes: 1

I REALLY like the idea of a small fee for networking for a lot of reasons.  For someone like me, I like to get together with old friends and meet new ones, but don’t always need the sessions.  As a "live blogger" for conferences, I don’t have the luxury of choosing based on my favorite speakers.  I pick topics that I’m interested in and in some cases, ones I’m completely unfamiliar with because I want to learn something new.I sphunn this because negative feedback is just as valuable to conference organizers as the "Great job" feedback. 

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from randfish 4513 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Ummm.... "very unnpleasantly surprised to see only Bud and Bud Light being offered at the tailgaiting party sponsored by SEOMoz"We didn’t sponsor any tailgating party, Jill.

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from RealitySEO 4513 Days ago #
Votes: 4

<div style="word-wrap: break-word; -webkit-nbsp-mode: space; -webkit-line-break: after-white-space"><font face="Verdana" size="2" class="Apple-style-span"><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">Thanks for the Sphinn Kim! </font></font></div><div style="word-wrap: break-word; -webkit-nbsp-mode: space; -webkit-line-break: after-white-space"><font face="Verdana" size="2" class="Apple-style-span"><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span"></font></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">Danny, as I said, criticisms were minor. Great conference - if session titles were my only problem with SES, I’d keep going to three SES’s a year like I used to, but now that I have an alternative, I’ll just do the SES closest to home in San Jose and reserve the rest of my conference budget for SMX.</font></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span"></font></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">Rand, I hope I didn’t offend you. It was in good fun that I used your name in the post, just like the one before it about the WebProNews video. I have nothing but respect for SEOMoz and am considering signing up for the pro membership (if you’ll let me after annoying you with my post). In your "Desphunn" post you said:</font></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">...</font><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span"> this is a very odd, negative post.</font><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">Jill is right, it wasn’t intended to be negative to the conference, I was expressing surprise at the way people choose sessions to attend based on the star quality of the personalities on the panels instead of the topics being discussed. </font></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span"></font></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">I hope you didn’t miss this:</font></div><div></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">Don’t get me wrong, please. I think that </font><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">Rand Fishkin</font><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">, Danny Sullivan, and </font><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">Lee Odden</font><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span"> are probably all great guys ... </font></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">I also tried to temper the whole thing with the opening sentence where I said:</font></div><div></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">... an observation which has me puzzled, but one that comes down to my own quirk of valuing SEO topics over "SEO personalities."</font></div><div></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">I’ll also freely admit that the networking preference is my own quirk as well. I have nothing at all against those who do it, I’m just very uncomfortable doing it myself - in all settings. </font></div><div></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">I far prefer observing and reporting to being on stage too - so I’ll continue to come hear you speak (yes I have attended many of your sessions and enjoyed them more than most) but a fun part for me is the commentary. It helps me process what I’ve heard. Anyone who knows me will understand that part.</font></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span"></font></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span"> I’m not quick with witticisms and take awhile to respond to things because I  prefer to think before I speak to avoid putting my foot in my mouth. Which is also why I don’t speak at conferences or do podcasts. I prefer to leave that to those of you who are really good at it. (It’s also why I waited for 16 hours after being "desphunn" to respond here, so I could speak from my head instead of my heart.)</font></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span"></font></div><div></div><div><font face="Arial" class="Apple-style-span">I’m glad my post was considered worth the Sphinn and apologize for the ruffled feathers. I’ll hope to see you in August in San Jose, but I’ll still choose my sessions based on what you talk about.  ;-)</font></div><div></div><div></div></font></div>

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from randfish 4513 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Mike - don’t take my desphinn the wrong way either :)I was talking with the Sphinn editors this week and they were saying that no one ever uses it, because they’re afraid to attach their names to a desphinn, so I told them I’d start being less afraid to do so :)In any case, I think it was a fine post and a fair one - great to offer your opinion, but I also felt like it wasn’t something I personally wanted on the front page of Sphinn (though, to be honest, I don’t want about 80% of the stuff that makes it there to go popular, but I guess I’m just a curmudgeon that way).And I’ll still go to see sessions based on who’s talking!! :) Hope to spend some time with you in person at the next show.

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from RealitySEO 4512 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Thanks Rand, I’ll look forward to that. I’m glad we can agree to disagree on this point.I’ve probably rambled too much here, but am adding a few thoughts to my original post for anyone who’d like to continue the thread.Looking forward to the next conference.

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from bwelford 4512 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Good discussion, you all.  If I may plug away at an idea that doesn’t seem to get anywhere, I agree that DeSphinn should be a non-conflict expression of differences of opinions.  So call DeSphinn HoHum and have a button for it that is as prominent as the Sphinn button.  Also put any HoHum comments in the regular flow of Comments.  I really would like this place to be less like American Idol. :)

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from randfish 4015 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Given that the writer actually proclaims at the end how much he liked the conference, this is a very odd, negative post. Not front-page material, IMO.

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