My apologies to Gabe / Memeorandum

Gabe Rivera of Memeorandum left a couple of comments for me to wake to this morning. They relate to my antics a few weeks ago.

I think it is only fair to Gabe that I highlight his comments to my blog's readers.

Here is the first:


I want to leave some belated comments here. Because I was mostly away from the Internet the first time around and even now your page ranks high in a Google search for "memeorandum".

I think you omitted, intentionally or not, touching on a lot of important points that undercut your assertion.

First, a memorandum “hacker” must be a blogger with an established reputation and in doing so risk their reputation and the prospect of future placement on the site by “hacking”. I think it’s mistaken to assume that lots of bloggers will do this.

Second, one needs to spam their own site to spam memeorandum. Your screencast asserts that we should expect Viagra ads on the site soon. It seems doubtful to me that influential tech bloggers will blog about Viagra to bring about this result. Remember, anonymous link farms which affect Web search aren’t seen by memeorandum in the first place.

Third, memeorandum can even be policed in real time. It’s just a page, not a search engine. It requires about 1/10 of a human to check headlines. I think you’ve applied a search engine mindset to something that isn’t a search engine.

Finally, I have a problem with some of the images you posted to document your efforts, since disappeared quietly. They were misleading, and had the effect of exaggerating the impact that the hacking had to readers not intimately familiar with my site. You even planted the words “Memeorandum hacked – the return” where there were none onto a supposed screenshot of my site. I think that was a low blow, and unfair for your readers too. "

And this comment:

"Oops, I was mistaken about the "disappeared quietly", this was the post where you included the misleading image. (I had multiple people ask me if the above photoshopped image actually occurred.) "

OK, all fair points Gabe.

First, I want to thank you for building Memeorandum. It is a seriously great product. I'm going there regularly to see what's 'hot'.

Second, as you confirmed, I haven't removed any images I posted.  I had to remind myself and find the offending image where I 'planted' the words 'Memeorandum hacked'.  This is the post.  It was not the intention to mislead, but I see what you mean - the pic looks like I had inserted into the page which was clearly not what happened. No actual 'hacking' took place.

So Gabe, I apologise for any inconvenience caused. Please view my antics as just my beleated adolescence coming out. And thanks for taking the time to comment.

Now, all I need is to have a couple of other bloggers to link to this post and we'll

Comments (3)
  1. Alex,

    I don’t know if you have to apologize – I like Memeorandum too and Gabe levelled the same complaint against me. Frankly, I think he’s just concerned about the words "hacking" and "memeorandum" appearing together so often. In truth, the market will decide what sticks.

    Right now, he needs to get on and start improving Memeorandum before someone eats his lunch. We need to import OPML files, or at least have lots more verticals. He says it took "man years" to build the original site and hence these features will take a long time too. Whatever. Get some investment. Get a new coder if you must. But people are already starting to clone the site, so he needs to stay ahead. I agree with Simon Brocklehurst’s comments over on Scobleizer:

    "I’ve got no doubt at all that Gabe is a smart guy. However, there are other smart people in the world. One man year of work – even from a great developer – does not constitute a significant barrier to entry. In other words, if there is an appetite to replicate what Memeorandum does from a technical point of view, it would be easy to do."

  2. You are sooooooo naughty…;)

  3. Gabe says:

    Alex: thanks, and a funny ending too.

    Pete: First, I never said it required man-years. I said building a large scale service to do personalized memeorandums would take man-years (because it’s basically Rojo or Bloglines + alot more stuff).

    Second, why are you imputing motives? Maybe when I said the misleading image bothered me, I meant that the misleading image bothered me. The rest of my comment is a response to Alex’s earlier posts. You know, like when people have a conversation.

    Third, thanks for the advice. Still, I think it’s possible to occasionally leave comments on blogs AND improve memeorandum.

Comments are closed.

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