Demystifying Depression

Parts 1 & 2

While those articles are not directly associated with SEO, I know many SEOs who:

  • rarely sleep

  • rarely exercise
  • smoke & drink
  • have lots of caffiene
  • eat unhealthy
  • are under heavy stress
  • constantly multi task
  • etc.

I don't think depression is just a physical or psychological issue, but is deeply intertwined. The articles focus more on the physical reenforcing aspects of severe depression.

Before doing SEO I was in the Navy and then later a mid level manager for another company. At my prior jobs it was not uncommon to drive & work 80 (mid level manager guy) to 120 (Navy) hours a week. I also did much of my initial learning SEO / marketing / web while in that mid level management position (and got so many speeding tickets during that time period too).

When you are first getting started in SEO you may have to work long hours, and sometimes it can be hard to escape work when there is so much to learn and it rests just beyond the edge of your bed. This is especially true when the alternative is to go work for a company that wants to chew you up for all you are worth, and then fire you or go under before you get any benefits out of your retirement.

A few other things that make it easy to stretch yourself too far doing SEO are

  • that many times you do not have to leave the house or interact with society in general to get by

  • pricing SEO services can be somewhat hard, especially when you are new and do not appreciate the value of your services. about a year ago I had like $20,000 of credit card debt, which has since been joyfully erased.

I don't necissarily agree with everything those articles said (particularly the endorsement of the prescription drugs), but did find the articles interesting.

Hopefully this somewhat off topic post helps more people than it makes mad.

Headed to the Desert...

On the first part of the journey
I was looking at all the life
There were plants and birds and rocks and things
There was sand and hills and rings
The first thing I met was a fly with a buzz
And the sky with no clouds
The heat was hot and the ground was dry
But the air was full of sound
- America

Going to the desert for a couple days... should be back Tuesday :)

Thanks to Stoney for reviewing my ebook

Thanks to Fantomaster for his good posts in this thread.

Stocks, Insider Info, & SEO

< sorta off topic post >
Due to tax charges and technology investments Amazon reported quarterly results which the market generally thought sucked. This weighed down tech stocks.

Oil futures dropped based on increased US oil inventories & the Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah recent visit to President Bush’s Texas Ranch.

These two forces (Amazon & oil) moreless offset each other. Earlier today InfoSearch Media was up nearly 10% and is now up two cents on the day.

Earlier today DigitalGhost, one of their star researchers, announced his retirement from SEO:

I want to pursue pure research regarding etymology, LSI/LSA, philology, etc. Parallels can surely be drawn with regard to search tech I’m sure, but I want to pursue words. So, I’m leaving the SEO/SEM game.

I was not sure whether or not that means he is staying with InfoSearch Media, but NickW asked on his blog, and Digital Ghost already replied saying he is leaving them.

While I don't know enough about the stock market to compete in it on general stock buys, I am wondering if my tidbits of knowledge here and there can allow me to understand market forces within the SEO space better than the average investor?

and thk are a couple SEO / SEM related stocks on the market. There are not many publicly traded SEO stocks, so it would not be that hard to keep up with them.

With the current market atmosphere of:

  • mergers and acquisitions
  • the falling dollar

  • the uneven trade balance and huge federal debt
  • the impending float of the Yuan
  • many ad agencies behind the ball on search
  • search engines crossing into traditional ad markets
  • the rapid growth of search

I am sure this will be an interesting space in the financial markets for the next couple years.

Like people, companies are born and die. SEO is just manipulating information systems. The stock market is just a large information system. Stocks, options, futures, and shorts are just a bet for or against what people think will happen.

Insiders have the house advantage, but can traditional individual investors compete with the market? I think if you know a market well enough and can emotionally separate yourself from it then you can, not sure if I would be any good at that though.

Not sure if I will participate much in the market, but I do find it interesting that ISHM.ob has been up or at even the whole day on a relatively flat day when they just lost one of their star employees.

Movable Type & The Magical Hidden .htaccess File

For some reason one of my hosts hides .htaccess files from FTP view. So when you go to add an .htaccess file you overwrite the hidden .htaccess file, and all is not well with MovableType. :(

MovableType tells you that you need to contact your host, since .htaccess is a host issue. Your host tells you that you should see the backup .htaccess file in your domain. Which is not true since they hide the .blah files.

Today has been lost in translation. But I do now know that

Options +ExecCGI
AddHandler cgi-script .cgi .pl

is an important piece of Movable Type .htaccess code. So should customer support at Movable Type? And DreamHost should really tell you that the .blah files are hidden! Surprised I did not notice that until now.

Messages that Made Me Laugh

None of the things posted in this post are news really, just all of them made me laugh or say WTF. From the Forums:
the ethical poor lifestyle

In 1998 we first went online after starting a brand new industry in the health field. We immediately became overrun by unethical people with savvy SEO skills. And here I am 7 years later burping and chirping on the curb, barely making payroll. With a Google page rank o 4. I want to get it to 7-8. We are determined to remain ethical (to the grave?).

If after 7 years SEO has not got them where they needed to be (and they even blame being poor on SEOs) you would think they would learn to look elsewhere?

From the Inbox (#1):
Apparently one of the more well known link brokers is sending out automated spam email. I am not going to mention their name, but if I were them I would stop that shit in a hurry before they destroy their brand.


I noticed that you have a really high quality site, [really bad site. domain edited to protect the guilty], and that you are actively looking for link exchange partners.

If you are interested, we would like to pay you $100-$200 to link to a few of our client's quality, relevant sites.

Or, if you just want to simply exchange links, we have links on many
sites that we would be willing to trade.

Thank you for your time,
[large link broker]

From the Inbox (#2):
someone wants to list in Black Hat I thought this email was rather funny.

RE your website:

We have a top doorway program with an affiliate program (if ye be interested)

affiliate program is at

enter DOORWAY and click

Happy to send you a free copy to try

It is for webbie masta's only
it does not use templates and is NOT designed for dummies

It is however a rather powerful and simple program
3 templates, keywords and away you go (min 10 keywords)

more blurb on the website if you are keen

There is NO doorway genie PRO
This is some other crap program someone is trying to pass off as ours

Is it still illegal to shoot assholes ???

I will get back to you with a legality status soon James...

I Always Wanted to Sell T Shirts

I have made a few, which have not sold many, & still might not be good at it yet ;) but I will eventually pick up graphics a bit better and am a huge fan of irony.

Recently WordPress got caught content spamming by using a hidden div. Their motto is "Code is Poetry," and that it is.

Anywho, here is the image from my first SEO related T Shirt, which you can buy from SEO Shop (with what the price is set at I do not think that I profit from sales, but if I do that would go to charity.)

I have done more stupid things than most people who are still alive, so I am not going to pretend that I am better than anyone. Admitidly this whole incident is a bad deal for WordPress, but I am amazed - and perhaps even perplexed - at the lengths some people will go to in order to describe their actions or the actions of their friends as legitimate.

From J Luster's blog

Spam involves other, involuntary, carriers. No comment boxes were contaminated, no mailboxes, no Usenet forums, and certainly no one spent a single byte of extra bandwidth (with the exception of the links from Wordpress.Org) on it. It's not spam.

The interesting thing there is he is trying to describe spam as it relates to email or social software. WHICH IS THE SAME MARKETING SPIN SEARCH ENGINES USE TO DESCRIBE THEIR FAULTS WITH THEIR ALGORITHMS.

It is fine to say there is no such thing as search engine spam. The truth is search algorithms are not - and will never be - perfect.

Many a webmaster has been told that he is a hunk of crap for doing far less than what WordPress did. If what they did was not search engine spam then perhaps WordPress does not believe in search engine spam. If that were the case, then why did they sign up / support NoFollow?

Again the hidden story that nobody is giving any coverage to is that up until yesterday Google was the company who was funding that lousy content, and it is their own business model and complete lack of quality control that caused that search engine spam.

To say AdSense was on the whole funding quality content would be Orwellian.

Why isn't anyone giving Google crap about this? What we saw with WordPress was just the tip of the iceberg.

Audio Recordings Killed the Blog Star

I am not really a star per say (as I do not use the word blogosphere enough to be one), but I will be on the phone tomorrow at noon Central. The topic is SEO and local search. You can listen in too if you like.

This will be like the third audio recording thingie I have done in the last year. I think I am probably getting a bit better at them, though I do have a tendancy to talk a bit quick.

It is free to listen to if you want to.

Happy Easter, Ads, & Gluttony

Happy Easter all.

I just got back from eating way too much food :(

While digesting it...

I thought about looking up how to spell gluttony and noticed that Google only shows two ads for the proper spelling and no ads for glutony.

Overture only appears to have one ad.

Does this term have any value to various dieting products or services? Maybe. Maybe not.

Kinda weird to see the fact that almost nobody is currently testing the market though, eh?

The No S Diet is advertising on Google AdWords and looks cool.

Its kinda funny that the site does not have much of a business model since thier advice is free and

Google policy does not permit the advertisement of websites that contain "the solicitation of funds and do not display tax-exempt status".

Random Non Search Stuff...

SES Parties

At the SES conference there are many parties. Yahoo! and Google both held parties which were rather open. I think some of my friends who did not even attend the conference were at the Yahoo! party and I guess Jason Briggs or someone like that was at the Google party.

Ask Jeeves held an invite only party.

MSN held a party where many people thought you only needed to have a conference badge to get in. You drive across town in a cab for 20 minutes to get turned away at the door.

With all the money MSN is spending on marketing it is rather stupid for them to turn people away. I am not ranting stating that I deserve a free party just that its bad marketing to turn people away like they did.

The parties are often as good as the conferences because on top of being able to do social networking you can learn a ton about how various people market their products and services.

This conference was awesome for meeting people. I can't even name all the people who I got to hang out with, but thanks to everyone for all the fun.