I’ve had a day to think about it, as have some others, and I’m unsure what to think of Seth’s new toy.
I left Squidoo after it was apparently penalised by Google – I can do all of the same things it can do through WordPress anyway, with enough pages and plugins. But Squidoo provided an interesting and, at the time, recognizable platform to get my stuff “out there” – now I’ve got had whyreadthemanual.com, which I’m considering shutting shut down in part because I haven’t got the time I used to to play about with it, and in part because Envato (the jolly green Australian giant) started up workawesome.com, which is essentially what I wanted to do, but with backing. Envato communities and netizens number just shy of half a million; I have eight subscribers and no time to write.
However! When I first read the post about Brands In Public, I thought it was a good idea. When people want answers about something, they go to destination sites, like CNet for technology reviews, or Consumer Reports. Kind of a good idea, right? Well, I muse have missed the part about charging extraneous fees for companies in the interest of doing PR. I know sites need funding to remain online, but this service is leechlike. Just like Squidoo, any company tht wishes to could do all of this stuff already if they have a PR department who are at all good with the net and/or social media.
Which means instead of acting to create positive, validating change in how companies operate, Godin’s new peoject appears to provide a bandaid solution? Why bother? It doesn’t help that Godin’s other projects are getting flack from Google to begin with; the negative netstorm this has just caused will likely do more to hurt him and the work he does in the future.