Search Engine Watch
SEO News

Go Back   Search Engine Watch Forums > General Search Issues > SEM Related Organizations & Events
FAQ Members List Calendar Forum Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 09-09-2004   #1
Mike Grehan
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 116
Mike Grehan is a name known to allMike Grehan is a name known to allMike Grehan is a name known to allMike Grehan is a name known to allMike Grehan is a name known to allMike Grehan is a name known to all
Danny Sullivan leaves SEMPO.

Danny, I tip my hat to you again and happy to do it in public.

Your reflections on SEMPO piece is written in your usual fair and well balanced style.

However, I think it's a very sad day for the industry when two of the leading figures in it (yourself and Chris Sherman) feel more comfortable in an arms-length relationship with that which would be an industry representative body.

I honestly believe that, as you are so highly regarded in this industry, your presence with the organisation is likely to have been a primary factor in why a good number of people joined in the first place. It's certainly something that I factored in.

And I have to say, personally, I feel even less comfortable about the organisation without you and Chris on board than I did before.

The veil of silence which SEMPO continues to surround itself with is the poorest example of community or public relations I have ever witnessed in my entire marketing career. And that much silence only sends ominous signals that they have that much to hide.

During this whole episode, since I wrote the first article about SEMPO, you have pretty much been the conduit between the board and the members. Other people such as Jill Whalen and myself have tried to get some direct answers, but as you mentioned yourself it has been much of a "teeth pulling" exercise.

Without you as "the messenger" and because the board is in a position to replace yourself and Chris with couple of marionettes should they wish (once again it will have nothing to do with the members), I for one, just felt another chunk of what little credibility they have, slip off the side and into the sea.
Mike Grehan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #2
AndyBeal
Fortune Interactive
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 29
AndyBeal is on a distinguished road
Have to agree

Where does SEMPO go from here? Without the support of Danny and Chris, could Google and Overture question their involvement?

Any news on what Jupiter plans to do? Surely their involvement was directly linked to Danny and Chris.

At this stage, I'm not sure if SEMPO is worth salvaging or if we should all go back to the drawing board. The board of directors will always be commended for setting up the organization, they simply did not have the experience to run a non-profit organization that separates the goals of the many from the goals of the select few.
AndyBeal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #3
Nick W
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 593
Nick W is a jewel in the roughNick W is a jewel in the roughNick W is a jewel in the roughNick W is a jewel in the rough
That's great news.

That's been itching at me for a little time now: why is DS still a part of this?

Now he's not. Good stuff.

Nick
Nick W is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #4
rustybrick
 
rustybrick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: New York, USA
Posts: 2,810
rustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud of
Andy, To be fair to Danny and Chris, as they pointed out at your blog, they both make it clear that they will continue to offer advice to SEMPO but not in "an official capacity". I personally find this a good thing, why? Because Danny and Chris are the leading news body on the SEM industry. For them to be too closely tired to SEMPO in an official capacity, would hurt their objectivity when reporting on SEMPO. I can not talk for them, but I have a strong feeling that this was one of the major reasons for them stepping down.

Now, does that have an impact on if Jupiter will drop out? Maybe, but I don't believe so. Jupiter is a company with less of a direct, responsibility to the industry then Danny or Chris (IMO).

Its true, SEMPO is moving incredibly slow. I am not sure how many types of organizations you have been associated with on the same level as we are associated with SEMPO. I am told, that these non-profits move at turtle speed. I know from being on the education committee, that there are a lot more email communications going back and forth between the committee members and the people who run the organization (a lot more then ever before). I keep being the one to say, lets give them more time. I am beginning to question myself.
rustybrick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #5
orion
 
orion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,044
orion is a splendid one to beholdorion is a splendid one to beholdorion is a splendid one to beholdorion is a splendid one to beholdorion is a splendid one to beholdorion is a splendid one to behold
Exclamation

This is actually a great day. When one starts an experiment and something goes wrong, it is better to start all over again. This little SEMPO exp is not likely to succeed with the present leadership and mentality.

Better start a new organization from scratch.

Orion
orion is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #6
dannysullivan
Editor, SearchEngineLand.com (Info, Great Columns & Daily Recap Of Search News!)
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Search Engine Land
Posts: 2,085
dannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud of
SEMPO will survive and thrive not because I'm involved, Chris is involved, Overture is involved, Jupiter is involved, Google is involved or any individual person or company, in my opinion. SEMPO will survive if its members want it to survive.

As said in the article, SEMPO is making news, and it makes sense for Chris and I to step back. I don't think it should be seen as a sad day for SEMPO that we're doing so. I think it's a sign that SEMPO has actually grown to the point where people care about what is is doing, good or bad. We need more distance, ironically, for better ability to cover the group.

By the way, I've no idea of what Jupiter plans to do. Jupiter's involvement with SEMPO as a sponsoring organization is completely independent from what Chris and I did in our roles as working for SEW.

As for whether it should simply be replaced with something new or instead improved, again I return to something I said in the article. SEMPO needn't be the only industry group out there. This isn't Highlander. There can be more than one.

In fact, the IAB search committee is very much a rival group to SEMPO that has received none of the attention that SEMPO has gotten. So we've got at least two groups out there. Maybe more marketers will band together to create others. And that would be great.

But I do think SEMPO deserves a bit more time, as I covered in the article -- near future time, and real progress updates during that period. I know, it's tiring for some to hear this. But they actually did appear to gain more volunteers stepping forward than they ever had before. And it would be good for them to have time to more carefully think out how they restructure, rather than to just rush. Otherwise, they could get right back to some of the same problems they've encountered already.

And that brings me right back to the members. Ultimately, they'll as a whole dictate what the group does, where it goes and how successful or not it will be -- not any one individual.

Last edited by dannysullivan : 09-09-2004 at 10:02 AM. Reason: fixed typo
dannysullivan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #7
Mike Grehan
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 116
Mike Grehan is a name known to allMike Grehan is a name known to allMike Grehan is a name known to allMike Grehan is a name known to allMike Grehan is a name known to allMike Grehan is a name known to all
Quote:
Originally Posted by dannysullivan
And that brings me right back to the members. Ultimately, they'll as a whole dictate what the group does, where it goes and how successful or not it will be -- not any one individual.
I admire your continued support for the people behind SEMPO Danny. And I respect your optimistic attitude for the organisation as a whole.

However, the quote above suggests that the members actually do have some say in the direction and future of the organisation. It's precisely because the members seem to have NO real say in the future or direction of the organisation that I wrote my first article and remain anti-SEMPO.

I'm a member and nobody has ever consulted me about anything since the day I joined. I've been TOLD what I'm expected to do for SEMPO and railroaded around a bit by one of the board members, but I've yet to be consulted or asked to vote on an issue. And that's because of the lack of ethos. SEMPO is really not about members.

Just look at the way members are ignored at levels well beyond those which would be tolerated by those of any other industry body.

The continued veil of silence and total lack of open dialogue with members is simply embarrassing and unprofessional, to say the least.
Mike Grehan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #8
rustybrick
 
rustybrick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: New York, USA
Posts: 2,810
rustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud ofrustybrick has much to be proud of
Which was why I was so surprised by the SEMPO meeting in San Jose. The members were there right? Maybe the stuffed the room with people who were told to be quiet and clap.

But very few number of members actually said anything negative about SEMPO during the 5 minute Q&A session. I guess some of it was orchestrated, but my impression was that the vast majority of the member base was happy.
rustybrick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #9
Joseph Morin
 
Joseph Morin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Irvine, CA
Posts: 655
Joseph Morin is a glorious beacon of lightJoseph Morin is a glorious beacon of lightJoseph Morin is a glorious beacon of lightJoseph Morin is a glorious beacon of lightJoseph Morin is a glorious beacon of light
Quote:
Originally Posted by rustybrick
but my impression was that the vast majority of the member base was happy.
I would agree because I'm one of them and I would have to say that most members I speak to have no beef with SEMPO, it seems like a few who are upset for one reason or another (and to their credit are making valid points) are the ones making the most noise.

SEMPO is what you make of it. I wasn't contacted, I volunteered and the organization has been very good for me and for many I have spoken to, but then I spend more time in person or on the phone with my industry colleagues than on the boards.

Our industry need a voice. I continue to support.
Joseph Morin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #10
AndyBeal
Fortune Interactive
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 29
AndyBeal is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by dannysullivan
This isn't Highlander. There can be more than one.
... cue Queen's "Who wants to live forever!"
AndyBeal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #11
rankforsales
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: near Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Posts: 8
rankforsales is on a distinguished road
Sempo

I guess the ball is in SEMPO's court now...

It will be interesting to see what they do about this. Like most people that have posted here, I also agree that SEMPO is taking way too much time to address this issue.

Also, the way they carried themselves at the meeting in San Jose leaves a lot to be desired.

I wish them well, but at the same time, I think the industry is apprehensive of what will follow next.
rankforsales is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #12
bethabernathy
Looking forward to Summer
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Lake Tahoe, California
Posts: 419
bethabernathy has a spectacular aura aboutbethabernathy has a spectacular aura aboutbethabernathy has a spectacular aura about
Quote:
Originally Posted by dannysullivan
In fact, the IAB search committee is very much a rival group to SEMPO that has received none of the attention that SEMPO has gotten.
I am not sure on this, but I checked out the IAB site and incorporation status, from what I can see, they filed as "Not for Profit" in New York. I read about their advertising and while they do say they give you a hot link on their website, from looking through the various member categories I am not seeing links or anything hierarchical like Sempo. I think I could be missing something? See:

http://www.iab.net/comm/searchengine_comm.asp

bethabernathy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #13
dannysullivan
Editor, SearchEngineLand.com (Info, Great Columns & Daily Recap Of Search News!)
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Search Engine Land
Posts: 2,085
dannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud ofdannysullivan has much to be proud of
Beth, I didn't mean to say (1) the IAB was doing anything wrong or (2) that there was some specific non-profit the IAB might be doing wrong. What I was pointing out is that SEMPO since its launch has been under a microscope for a variety of issues that I outlined in my article. In contrast, I've never heard any of these issues raised about the IAB committee. Some of them probably are applicable, as I said in my article, such as the "elite" nature of that group or the fact they seek to establish standards regarding XML despite having from what I can tell fewer search marketers signed up than SEMPO.
dannysullivan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2004   #14
hiero
If winning isn't everything, why do they keep score? --Vince Lombardi
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Los Angeles, California
Posts: 119
hiero is on a distinguished road
Arrow

Well....it appears to me that one thing is for sure, and that would be that if SEMPO is to live on it needs to re-invent itself. It also needs to state UP FRONT exactly what it does and will continue to do. All marketing hype and propaganda needs to be removed from this not for profit organization.

It should start by DOING (not stating) exactly what it says:

Quote:
SEMPO is a non-profit professional association working to increase awareness and promote the value of Search Engine Marketing worldwide.
hiero is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2004   #15
bethabernathy
Looking forward to Summer
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Lake Tahoe, California
Posts: 419
bethabernathy has a spectacular aura aboutbethabernathy has a spectacular aura aboutbethabernathy has a spectacular aura about
I checked out, as much as possible today, the IAB, and looks like they run a totally different deal. They changed names from the Internet Advertising Bureau to the Interactive Advertising Bureau see:

http://www.workz.com/cgi-bin/gt/tpl_...t=1947&nav1=1&

"The Interactive Advertising Bureau, formerly the Internet Advertising Bureau, is restructuring with a renewed mission to help direct the industry to a new level of performance."

I think this group was formed way before SEM came full scale into the mix. Looks like 1997. Anyway, my point is: Sempo is here at the time when SEM is coming into a real AD AGency MIX. Which means to many companies quite a bit of $. So that is probably why Sempo is under more scrutany.

I only put this out there for comment and have no factual basis on my internet review, which makes this, just, one of my very little tiny opinions.

Last edited by bethabernathy : 09-10-2004 at 12:21 AM.
bethabernathy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2004   #16
Jill Whalen
SEO Consulting
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 650
Jill Whalen is just really niceJill Whalen is just really niceJill Whalen is just really niceJill Whalen is just really niceJill Whalen is just really nice
Quote:
Other people such as Jill Whalen and myself have tried to get some direct answers, but as you mentioned yourself it has been much of a "teeth pulling" exercise.
Yes, it certainly has been like pulling teeth!

But I have to say that communication has certainly been getting better. They have people like Dan Thies and Matt Bailey on their communication committee, which has brought about some changes.

This month's SEMPO newsletter was just sent out yesterday, and it was a huge improvement over last month's. Plus, they did address most of the questions I and others had posed to them regarding some major concerns people had.

They've even allowed Ian McAnerin to post legal answers (not as their attorney, but answers nonetheless.)

Bottom line is that SEMPO is showing that the ARE trying to communicate better, and according to that communication, they are trying to fix what was broken. For that I applaud them (but you don't have an applause smiley like we do at HRF! ).

As much as I love Mike, I was a little taken aback by the headline of this thread, where he seemed to sensationalize Danny's stepping down as a SEMPO advisor. I read Danny's article where he mentioned -- what seemed like in passing -- how he and Chris Sherman had decided to step down for the reasons he has also posted here.

Yes, technically, Danny has left SEMPO, but it's not like he's quit in anger, because he doesn't believe they're doing a good job, or not fulfilling their mission.

Unfortunately, I see that there's another whole problem with the SEMPO UK committee now, which is a shame because I really was thinking they were on the right track. Hopefully, that one will get squared away to everyone's satisfaction.
MODERATOR NOTE: A new thread discussing the UK committee was created and some responses from this thread moved there: How Was SEMPO's UK Committee Formed?

Last edited by dannysullivan : 09-13-2004 at 07:07 AM.
Jill Whalen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-11-2004   #17
ihelpyou
 
Posts: n/a
LOL Ridiculous.

I think "some" people need to listen to Mike Grehan more often. This kissing up to others that some out there are doing is truly noticeable. You know who you are.

SEMPO "may" be improving. I certainly hope so since they have had exactly 1 1/2 years now to start. I personally don't see much of anything of an improvement. Committees? My goodness; I would think they should get the Major issues worked out first before anything such as a "committee" of any kind exists. Then, to top things off, we have good people who are secretly appointed to a committee who aren't even a member? Too funny.

BTW, Chris and Danny resigning was a "very" smart move on their part, no matter what the reasons may be.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-11-2004   #18
Nick W
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 593
Nick W is a jewel in the roughNick W is a jewel in the roughNick W is a jewel in the roughNick W is a jewel in the rough
Quote:
Originally Posted by IHU
I think "some" people need to listen to Mike Grehan more often. This kissing up to others that some out there are doing is truly noticeable. You know who you are.
Im not with you there? but I think this is the first time we've agreed on anything....

Nick
Nick W is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-11-2004   #19
Jill Whalen
SEO Consulting
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 650
Jill Whalen is just really niceJill Whalen is just really niceJill Whalen is just really niceJill Whalen is just really niceJill Whalen is just really nice
Look guys, SEMPO obviously has a lot of things to work out.

I'd love to see any one (or more) of you start your own org. so we can pick you apart too.

C'mon, who's gonna step up to the plate. I know I'm sure not gonna. I have enough people who like to pick on me without doing something like this.

Please, think of it from their point of view. They ARE trying. Cut them some slack and let 'em do what they need to do.

Once again, I have to say that people are getting a little bit over zealous with this. Yes, there have been mistakes made, and apparently they are big ones. It's great to bring them to their attention because otherwise they'd never fix 'em. But they are still all volunteers, and they are still all trying to run their own businesses at the same time.

They are making strides. We are seeing improved communication and things being fixed. I for one would like to see them have some time to fix the rest of what needs to be fixed.

If you still have a problem with anything in particular then voice you concerns, and hopefully they will work on it. They've been very responsive this past month. That is a GOOD thing.

To those who just want them to die, and who always have, well we already get your agenda.
Jill Whalen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2004   #20
bethabernathy
Looking forward to Summer
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Lake Tahoe, California
Posts: 419
bethabernathy has a spectacular aura aboutbethabernathy has a spectacular aura aboutbethabernathy has a spectacular aura about
Just an FYI, this is the most unorganized operation I have ever seen. Of course, I have only worked in house, for strictly organized lawfirms.. who trained me. I finally received their Articles of Incorporation from the State of Delaware and it is just a complete wash. Bottom line, the group was founded on self promotion, crying about the work, getting paid as a result. Probably trying to upstage the UK SEMs. I have been doing some posting out here and when someone is annoyed with me, I listen and try to understand their opinion. Sempo, no way, would they begin to listen and/or respond to grievences (sp?) and that is from DAY 1!!!
bethabernathy is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off