Slawski & Baker Chat with Mike McDonald

    April 26, 2007

“It’s my blog,” Bill Slawski says, towards the end of a debate about blog ethics and the possibility of adhering to a Code of Ethics. The interview of Bill Slawski and Loren Baker by Webpronews’ Mike McDonald features two discussions. One is on local search and the other, blog ethics.

Bill dominates the discussion, which I expected because there’s a ton of information in his head. He can pull out facts and figures as effortlessly as my husband does. They have brains that work like databases with Google installed. A quick search, prompted by a discussion and they have the information in seconds. I’m so jealous.

Loren Baker and Bill Slawski have worked together and individually on local projects. They bring to the interview personal observations based on their work, as well as pointing out how differently search engines handle local search. Bill points out a patent in China and how it’s specifically designed to locate businesses there. They point out that Yahoo! and Google get and compile their local search data differently from one another. The differences in their approaches directly affect SERPS.

The discussion on blog ethics begins with Bill’s describing what prompted the outcry for a code of ethics in the first place. They roll around topics like moderating comments, and who is responsible for what appears on their blog property. The consensus is that we can’t tell people how to aspire to certain conduct because it’s too indefinable. Bill compares it to how laws start out, and gives an example of how a basic idea for a rule builds from something to aspire to, towards something based on behavioral data and circumstances. Kinda like it’s not helpful in the long run to fit everybody’s blog into a “one size fits all” type of box.

I get the biggest kick out of the Webronews interviews because of the background silly stuff. Half the fun for me is watching people behind the interview table who forget the camera is on. It’s funny to see how many times Bill moves his soda, and is it me, or did Mike’s subtle southern accent get stronger after he mentioned he’s from Kentucky?

Two good topics. For anyone seriously interested in local marketing, Bill injects some great ideas based on simple, easy techniques he’s already seen in action. Great inspiration there.

Get comfy. You can watch the interview here.