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Tim Armstrong, President, Advertising & Commerce, North America, and David Eun, Vice President, Content Partnerships at Google to Speak at Bear Stearns 21st Annual Media Conference

Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) announced today that Tim Armstrong, President, Advertising & Commerce,
North America, and David Eun, Vice President, Content Partnerships, will participate in a question-and-answer session at the Bear Stearns 21st Annual Media Conference in Palm Beach, FL. The session is scheduled for 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time / 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time on Monday, March 10, 2008.

To access the live audio webcast of the presentation, please visit

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ASW08 Looking Back at My New Friends at Affiliate Marketing Summit West

Apologies for the lack of posts during the conference. My Dell Inspiron, as well as several other people’s, could not connect to the Affiliate Summit Internet signals. This is Dell’s fault, not Affiliate Summit’s. On that note, Dell needs to finally take responsibility for the many flawed drivers and poorly designed hinges in these machines and do a complete and total recall. I’m gathering horror stories for a future post since Dell is not taking these problems seriously and correcting them fully and globally. If you have a Dell Inspiron horror story please drop me a note.

OK, back to my highlights of Affiliate Summit West 2008!

– On Saturday meeting Ned Farra from Zappo’s, Patrice Kaddatz from, Heather Paulson, Chris Graham from Syntrx and Carsten Cumbrowski was great! Learned some great things.

– On Sunday at the Meet Market I had tons of great conversations! I met John Chow for the first time and he wasn’t anything like I expected him to be! He was amazingly down to earth and easy to talk to. I ran into Kevin Lee from Did-it, we had a nice catch up chat. I met Dominic Sofia from DGM, Richard Forster from and George Hansen from Digital River about their quality offerings – really awesome people I’m glad to now call friends. Also had a great talk with Geofferson Marcy at Advaliant about how they uniquely manage publishers.

– Meeting Shawn Collins on Monday during Jason Calacanis’ speech. Shawn complimented me which was quite unexpected but a nice surprise. As you know I attend alot of Internet conference however this was my first time at Affiliate Summit. I was immediately struck at how difficult this conference community is to manage and program due to it’s highly fragmented and unstandardized nature. The accomplishment of not only satisfying this community but growing it in the way that they have is something that both Missy Ward and Shawn Collins should pause to appreciate. The use of Twitter in a group manner as they did at the conference is also brilliant (note to self – I need to get instructions on how to set up a group Twitter like that – maybe Shawn will point me in the right direction!). I look forward to building an outstanding long term relationship with Shawn and Missy over time.

– Speaking of Jason Calacanis and Mahalo, you see me asking a question of Jason in this photo after his speech. Regardless of whether you love and/or hate Jason, I’d highly urge anyone to listen to his speech in the Webmaster Radio link (on Affiliate Tip). It was highly thought provoking talk that replaced the word seo with affiliate spam. So what did you ask him Dave? Let me set some background first. Since meeting Jason Calacanis in December, 2006, he sent Linkedin invites to his whole address book while an entrepreneur in residence at Sequoia and then did not participate in the ecosystem there, he’s sent me dozens of Facebook invites, yet last year when I was in Santa Monica and gave him a jingle and he didn’t call me back. Jason has stated that Digg was “Brilliant” yet Digg is causing content to be recycled and stolen from small blogs and pushed to the lazy masses. Mahalo also has the Alexa toolbar installed on all of the machines at Mahalo, which games Mahalo’s Alexa rating.

So Jason what is your role in creating and contributing to Internet spam? You are certainly not a totally white clean angel virgin here. Listening back to the recording today though, I admit you acknowledged and didn’t deny anything I said when I stated and asked my question. I gotta respect that. I’m left mildly confused if that is the blogger in you that is taught to engage the one that questions you or whether it is truly how you feel. I’m conflicted. To me a friend means going beyond the surface level, I’m still not convinced you are fully capable of it. I’d love nothing more than for you to prove me wrong. I’d also like to thank the dozens of people who came up to me during the rest of the conference and stated that they appreciated my bringing up relevant examples of how Jason (and everyone else) participates in polluting the web, some are more guilty than others of course but nobody is completely innocent.

I’ll ask you another question Jason, “You mentioned how you you have ego alerts during your speech, then you attacked Seth Godin and Squidoo. How can you reconcile how you are urging the creation of content with your ego alerts and how that is terribly different than your personal views on Seth Godin’s creation?”

Alright enough about what I think, here are the other posts on Jason’s talk:

Mahalo’s Missing DNA back at you Jason Calcanis

Affiliate Summit West Thank You

Calacanis is and the Real Hurdles for Affiliate Marketing

Live Blogging the Jason Calacanis Keynote at Affiliate Summit

Jason Calacanis Urges Affiliates to Think Big, Stop Holding Up Checks

Message board discussion of the keynote

“Don’t pollute the river”, affiliates told.

Jason Calacanis Keynote Recap (Affiliate Summit)

-Other people I met on Monday include Jamie Birch from Converseon, Mark Kirschner from Linkshare, Krissy Mitchell a Northwestern University Kellogg alum who works at Avon in New York City. Also met Gary Vaynerchuk from Wine Library TV who will be speaking at the TECHcoktail conference in May. Dan Murray at Ravenwood Marketing and Steve Schaffer from Vertive gave an truly educational talk about how to manage affiliate managers.

– Affiliate Bash – WOW!!! Daron Babin and Brandy really outdid themselves at this one! The Blue Man Group performance during party was amazing. The venue was awesome! Special thanks to Kris Jones at Pepperjam for being the primary sponsor of this event.

– On Tuesday, I sat at a table and there was a talk about WordPress with Karen Jackie and Dana Rockel from Content Robot. Fun folks who know their WordPress.

Attending Affiliate Summit was an outstanding experience, if you attend many other Internet conferences you’d benefit highly by attending the next Affiliate Summit and seeing how these folks fit into your existing web strategy – irregardless if you are a search or a brand marketer. See you in Boston in August! If you met me at Affiliate Summit, please feel free to add me on Twitter, Facebook or Linkedin. See you soon.

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Google’s Alan Eustace, Senior Vice President, Engineering & Research to Present at Morgan Stanley Technology Conference

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — February 21, 2008 – Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG)
announced today that Alan Eustace, Senior Vice President, Engineering
& Research will participate in a question-and-answer session at the
Morgan Stanley Technology Conference in Dana Point, CA. The session is
scheduled for 9:30 a.m. Pacific Time / 12:30 p.m. Eastern Time on
Monday, March 3, 2008.

To access the live audio webcasts of the presentation, please visit

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Google Creates Alumni Relations Program Manager Position

It appears that Google is starting to prepare for the inevitable acceleration of pre-IPO employee departures and exodus as it has posted the role of Alumni Relations Program Manager. UPDATE: While I at first thought this was creating an employee alumni program from my quick read, it’s actually to create relationships with university alumni programs.

Many strategy consulting organizations with outstanding reputations have alumni relations programs including: McKinsey & Company, Booz Allen Hamilton, Boston Consulting Group (BCG), A.T. Kearney, Bain & Company, Katzenbach, ZS Associates, Marakon Associates, L.E.K. Consulting, The Parthenon Group, Oliver Wyman, Kurt Salmon Associates and Monitor. If it is n longer hyperlinked it mean the consulting firm changed the URL without a 301 redirect.

Some investment banking and institutional money managers have started to follow this trend of starting alumni relations groups that the consulting companies started such as: Goldman Sachs and Lehman Brothers. I’d be delighted if BlackRock joined this elite financial services thought leader club creating alumni networks shortly as I’d love to reconnect with many of my former BlackRock, reconnect with them, form and fund entrepreneurial ventures with them. There is amazing value that can be created for everyone that puts a common social network experience in the center of the conversation.

In all of those companies there is a diversified portfolio of services and business development that can be created from these interactions that is good for the company. In Google’s case, I’m struggling to see what value can immediately be created beyond selling Adwords to alumni’s new companies and facilitating funding or acquiring start up companies via Google’s corporate development department.

One thing is clear, Google is planning for a future that includes more former Googlers who have moved onward!

UPDATE: One word changes ALOT of meaning. I neglected to notice the word university. Apologies.

Ironically this makes this role even more unique. As I’m unaware of any companies that partner directly with either of my university alumni programs in this manner. Makes you wonder if they have plans to offer a service offering to this sector.

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Venture Capital Speed Dating – Entrepreneurship Week at Stanford University

As part of Entrepreneurship Week at Stanford University, they are holding a Venture Capital Speed Dating event and mixer. This event looks like so much fun, I wish we had casual events like this here in Chicago, especially since Stanford encourages lifetime social interaction with the community and properly sees it’s role as larger than simply current students. They state “Events are open to all students, alumni, members of the greater Stanford community, and the general public.” Chicago university leaders, take note!

Venture Capital Speed Dating

Friday, February 29th

1:00-3:30 PM Student pitches
3:30-4:30 PM Mixer

Wallenberg Hall Learning Theater (Building 160)

For more detailed directions, please visit the Searchable Campus Map
Asia-Pacific Student Entrepreneurship Society (ASES)

Student Application/VC Registration:
No registration required for mixer


Students, pitch your business ideas to Silicon Valley venture capitalists (VCs). Apply in advance for 3-4 opportunities to give three-minute pitches to VC pairs and receive three minutes of feedback. This portion of the event is closed to pre-registered students and VCs (see above for registration information).

At 3:30, the event opens to the public for a networking mixer. Come join us to meet entrepreneurial students and VCs. Event will end promptly at 4:30; continue networking at Arrillaga as you wait for the Innovation Tournament Showcase to begin.

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Biggest Threats Google Faces – Adding to Rand Fishkin’s Post

Rand put together a very thought provoking piece on the threats Google faces.

Since he asked for feedback on the article about other potential threats, I’ll say his list is a fine starting point, then I’ll add these:

The first one I’ll call 1b – A privacy breach event at Google (think search history in a court case or something similar) allows another player to gain share – Ask Eraser could easily benefit from such an event.

The other has to do with monetization. If someone were to come up with a superior monetization model that solves existing problems this could cause people to migrate both advertisers and users alike.