Sebastian is the technical genius and SEO behind Sebastian’s Pamphlets. This warm fellow’s well-known avatar is rather ironic – a crab! We’re continuing the Sphinner interview series that began with Dave ‘theGypsy’ Harry.
1) What benefits have you seen from your activity at Sphinn?
Sphinn is the best aggregator for SEM stuff (stories, links, discussions), ever. Despite the noise on the upcoming pages, Sphinn has all the news that matters. In other words, Sphinn is a great time-saver, although I didn’t dump my feedreader yet. Also, I’ve met nice folks at Sphinn, people I wouldn’t know otherwise. Joining Sphinn was this decade’s best decision (besides moving my WebDev/SEO-pamphlets away from Blogspot).
2) Share 3 – 5 key elements of your success with Sphinn.
Define success. I’m just a user, taking more than I can give back. Thanks to great Sphinners I’m pointed to interesting stuff, bookmark (sphinn) it, and every once in a while I submit a pamphlet and my fellow sphinners honor that with very nicely targeted traffic, thoughtful comments, and sometimes even links. I’ve no sphinny world SEM community domination plans.
3) What other social networks do you participate in (Digg/clones, Facebook/LinkedIn/Myspace, Ning-type sites, forums, specific blogs you comment on a lot)? Can you share your usernames there, and what type of content you’d consider sharing with the other members of those sites as well as what you wouldn’t pass on?
I’ve spread my red-crab.ico under the “SebastianX” label everywhere, but besides Sphinn I use only Delicious and StumbleUpon as bookmarking tools, and Twitter for gossip and communication. Of course, I vote elsewhere for a tiny fee when nicely asked, provided I like the content. I’m not in the social media game. I just use those services when they make sense for me. In my spare time, I help out Google with Webmaster support.
4) What features (besides those announced, like “Mark as spam/Bury”) would you like to see on Sphinn?
On the submission form, I miss the “bypass the new list” checkbox. Sometimes sphinn+save is not enough to praise an awesome piece, hence an easy way to manage a few dozens of user profiles for power-voting would make sense.
5) Are you a socialist or a medium? [Me trying to be witty and failing miserably.]
I’m an anarchist. My code rules the chaos.
6) Define the term: “Sphinn doctor.” [Ditto.]
All sphinners properly feeding my ego deserve this title. Seriously, I nominate Michelle who keeps things running and makes Sphinn an even better hangout with every update. Having so many attention whores and pro bloggers in the community we tend to forget the Seabees.
7) Besides only submitting their own stuff or only sphinning their own stuff, what are some common mistakes people make with social media?
Taking it too seriously.
8) Tell us a minimum 3 non-Sphinn items about yourself that people could use to catch your eye on Sphinn (i.e. to Sphinnbait you).
I won’t sphinn “how to get raped by aliens” items like “new version of MS Visual Studio is out” and crap like that. Titles like “Why TrustRank is way sexier than plain old PageRank”, “Increasing index penetration without abrading link condoms” or “Automating unpenalized paid link gangbangs” get my vote for sure, provided the article is geeky enough and makes sense. You see, sex sells, even to old farts crabs like me.
9) Which of Cialdini’s 6 principles do you feel most important to gaining influence and why? Can you share some anecdotes?
Social Proof. It might be wishful thinking, but I hope that applying a brutal zero-bullshit tolerance in combination with sharing knowledge and experiences can influence people and prevent them from crappy decisions.
10) What is the future of social media?
Getting plastered with so many ads that one can’t find the contents anymore.
Like I wrote above – this is part of a series of interviews with Sphinners. They were actually conducted years ago then left to rot in my inbox. Time to get ’em out!