At least, not in the way most people seem to think. That’s just not the way it looks to me. This is probably the 4th or 5th time now I’ve seen the recent Rand fiasco speculated upon as being typical link bait (very nice read Li, by the way). Personally I thought the motivation behind this whole thing would have been more apparent, but I guess not.
Guys, it was the Forbes article that Rand mentioned that he wanted everyone to notice. The sites he outed, and even the topic itself, were completely secondary to that, and hence unimportant. I’m guessing now that most people didn’t actually read it. The important bit was contained at the beginning of the second paragraph:
“Search engine marketing consultant and blogger Rand Fishkin recently compiled a list of more than 70 sites…”
That was it. That was the whole reason Rand had to rush and post, why the post he did sounded forced, and why he needed people to notice it. Basically:
- Rand (and SEOmoz) were mentioned in Forbes.
- Rand was aware of the fact that the vast majority of the SEO/SEM community would never see that article.
- Rand decided that it was important that people know Forbes mentioned him, probably thinking that it would magically erase any negative criticisms he may have gotten in the past (worked with Newsweek, right?).
- Somehow, he comes to the conclusion that just telling people that they mentioned him would be too honest, that being humble is a sign of death throes, and so instead contrives a rushed article based around the same topic.
- To this end, he posts (again) without considering what damage he might cause.
This does make sense, of course, since being mentioned in a major magazine is much more important than actually writing quality material that has merit all on it’s own.
For the record, in my opinion, had Rand just said “Hey! Look at me! I’m in Forbes!“, then he would have gotten a nice small round of applause (clap clap) from those who cared, definitely would have gotten a few links here and there, people would have moved on, and he would not have looked (again) like an ass.