Friday, July 10, 2009

Good for Goode or "Martin Sargent needs to get over himself"

While I certainly had my own little beef with the Murphy-Goode Winery Really Goode Job Search, Martin Sargent really needs to get over himself. The so called "web celeb" managed to get a large article in today's San Francisco Chronicle that amounts to nothing more than him whining about not making the top 10 top 50. Nevermind that the rules (if he bothered to read them) clearly stated that public voting only counted partially towards the decision (a lesson I learned last year in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest with my novel The Deadworks).

Murphy-Goode's responded by:
saying votes were less important than being a "deft, multi-faceted social media communicator," arguing that the choices had been weighted to give "equal shots" to last-minute entrants and those "who may not have quite as intense a personal PR machine as others."

A comment left on the online version of the article by WhipArtist hits the nail on the head:
No doubt there are dozens of people who thought they were perfectly qualified for the job, put together excellent material, and weren't chosen. One of them just happens to have the right connections to make a lot of noise. Boo hoo.

And another commenter asks "Why is this newsworthy?"

Because some guy has an over-inflated sense of his self worth (quote from his website "I AM INTERNET"... um, yeah. Neil Gaiman has 40 times as many Twitter followers) and the Chronicle has nothing better to write about apparently. And it wonders why its print edition almost got shut down this year.

(Photo Credit)


  1. Well said! What does the whining prove except MG made a really good decision on that front? Also the Chronicle had to have something to break up "fog week" in the datebook section. Yeah, too bad for hundreds of arts organizations struggling to get exposure...we're gonna cover fog this week.

  2. Who the hell are you? I read your profile and I still dont know who you are. After reading it, I care even less. Nice job trying to catch a piece of the Martin Sargent wave - the only reason I found this crappy blog is because I have a Google alert set to Martin's name. Go ahead and blame him for being a "whiner" while you write blogs with his name in them to draw attention to yourself. The guy is an entertainer. Get over yourself loser.

  3. As a friend of mine commented in another forum:

    "I like to think that if I had some "medium" amount of celebrity, I'd find something more meaningful to do than whining. Or (to be fair to Martin) getting my followers to whine."

  4. Yeah, Alan, how dare you write about something you're interested in, just to jump on some douchebag's 'wave'!

    Congratulations on your first troll!

  5. Dude! Dude! Comment is 10 times funnier if you read it in Chris Crocker voice!


  6. I find it rather telling that whatever troll posted the comment flaming Alan and his blog chose to hide behind their anonymity. How lame is that? At least Alan put himself out there, open to criticism, which is more than Anonymous did.

    Martin, have you been out here putting anonymous comments on Alan's blog? Kidding! Geez, you Martin groupies can't take a joke.

  7. In all, Sargent does have the right to complain if a contest set up to see who could create the most public buzz has the most popular candidate getting shelved. Okay, the fine print gives Murphy Goode final say, as it should, but why have a public voting system in place to begin with?

    It was stupid on their part to have it in place when ultimately it didn't matter. It's a PR disaster (relatively, seeing that I'd never heard of them). It's akin to having American Idol's public vote for their favourite, but then having the judge kick him/her off the show.

    PS. I have no f'ing clue who Martin Sargent is. I just heard the story on Diggnation yesterday and as an outsider, it just seems really unfair.

  8. Sargent should've won, he's got every right to be pissed.

  9. Sang, you're incorrectly concluding that "ultimately it didn't matter" when certainly it did. They took the voting and the social media buzz into account in making their decision, but those weren't the only things they considered. It was the other factors they considered that left Martin Sargent off the list.

  10. Look, I'm behind the fact that it's Murphy Goode that ultimately makes the choice and that it's not a popularity contest. But that still doesn't change the fact that it was a gigantic PR blunder. The vast majority of people don't care about the fine print. When you introduce a public voting system, most will conclude it's a public process.

    So in this sense, no, it'd ultimately didn't matter when they have the power of veto over thousands of votes.

    And it doesn't make sense that they didn't have the where with all to at least let him into the Top 50, if only for posterity's sake. They didn't have to ultimately hire him, but they should've at least let him move on if only to keep up appearances.

    And am I the only one who thinks it's counter intuitive that the guy who got the most internet buzz behind his campaign wasn't even considered for a job to build internet buzz?

  11. I think Sang is absolutely right. It is obvious no matter your feelings towards Martin or not, Murphy Goode has missed the point. If you are trying to hire the most savy, web 2.0 internet PR person to help your company that is obviously suffering after recent layoffs then you should hire the best. Martin was obviously able to create the most PR and largest Buzz about this contest. So, either Murphy Goode decided to ride the free wave of advertising or they simply missed the point. Either way, the negative PR connected to Facebook, Digg, and Twitter will end up doing them more harm than good. Imagine had they kept Martin in. Their Facebook and Twitter pages only have about 1700 followers right now. With Martin in the contest they would have been 10 times that amount.

  12. "With Martin in the contest they would have been 10 times that amount." except they wouldn't be following the winery or the contest, they'd be following Martin.

    Fine, I've written another post which says things like "focusing $60,000 of advertising at a cult figure’s cult following does not particularly seem like a wise investment to me"


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In 1789, the governor of Australia granted land and some animals to James Ruse in an experiment to see how long it would take him to support himself. Within 15 months he had become self sufficient. The area is still known as Experiment Farm. This is my Experiment Farm to see how long it will take me to support myself by writing.