Vampires are in, Cuban.

The AlwaysOn OnMedia 2010 Conference was held Feb 1-3 this year in New York City. [http://alwayson.goingon.com/ecom/productview/20968]

Considering the steep admission price of just over  $1600 a head, the conference featured some–interesting–guests this year. I’m specifically referring to  HDNET President/CEO Mark Cuban, considered of the “keynote” speakers.

http://www.adweek.com/aw/content_display/news/digital/e3i5b66cf4107653551816d07a6ca49adf0?pn=1

Cuban rallied newspaper and magazine publishers to stop linking their content to search engines–specifically naming Google–claiming that these “Web giants want to take [their] content” and “reap the benefits.” He likened them to vampires, while “newspapers and magazines are the chesty blondes who fall victim to their charms…”

He went to so far as to say “there is no reason to be indexed in Google” and that “readers who find headlines via Google rarely convert to traffic, and publishers have a hard time monetizing that traffic.”

Sigh.

I had to read, reread, and then read this article again to make sure I was not totally dense.

Firstly, the vampire simile was a poor choice in his attempt to make Google the villain. Vampires are hot these days Cuban–America is obsessed with them.

Secondly, I still don’t grasp how search engines are “taking content” (could he have been more vague, please?). It’s not rocket science–the search engine lists results corresponding with your keywords and provides links to those results. I’m missing the “taking” part…it’s more like Google is pointing a digital finger in the direction that you should go.

I especially loved the “there’s no reason to be indexed in Google” part. As soon as I read that sentence, I opened a new tab in my browser and checked to make certain my blog was indexed in Google. How else are random people supposed to discover my awe-inspiring voice?

The only piece of an otherwise ridiculous and futile argument that held any truth was his insistence that search engines like Google “reap the branding benefit” of the content it displays…

…until the person clicks on a link and is taken away from the search engine. And if they clicked on a New York Times article and are still thinking about Google, then that’s more of a reflection on the branding issues with the NY Times, no?

To Cuban: Honestly guy, you should stick to sports, trashy women and Dancing with the Stars.

(Sorry, but I had to recycle this picture on my blog)

And still–I’m strangely comfortable with this…

NOTE: I found out after writing this that Cuban is the founder of IceRocket–a search engine I’ve never heard of. The irony is beautiful…

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