Top 5 Blogosphere Smackdowns

Where would television be today without Reality TV? Where would the blogosphere be today without web celebrity smackdowns?

Without further ado, I give you, the Top 5 Web Celebrity Smackdowns in 2006 (ranked in order of TechMeme link popularity & updated as of 07/27/06).

#5. The LongTail Smackdown

Contenders: Lee Gomes (WSJ) vs. Chris Anderson (Wired)
Time Frame: In-progress

But I’ve looked at some of the same data, and some more of my own, and I don’t think things are changing as much as he does. It would be wonderful if the world as Mr. Anderson describes it were true – Lee Gomes

But Lee Gomes has tried mightily to find flaws with the Long Tail theory and deserves a response of some sort. I asked him to quote the jacket copy in full context, but it apparently wasn’t convenient to his thesis to do so, so he didn’t – Chris Anderson

Please note, though, that I at least clearly laid out the two approaches; nowhere in his book does Chris let on how small, as a percent of sales, his tail really is. I’d like to correct an extremely serious misrepresentation Chris made at the end of his blog posting, to the effect that Anita Elberse of Harvard “urged” me not to characterize her work the way I did. This is manifestly false – Lee Gomes (via Nick Carr’s Blog)

Funny take on the debate by Chris Pirillo.

#4. The Digg Smackdown

Contenders: Jason Calacanis (Netscape) vs. Kevin Rose (Digg)
Time Frame: In Progress

Clever PR stunt, but man, in the end I believe it’s going to do more damage for Netscape than good. Jason, I know AOL has given you access to their war-chest, but honestly, take that money and invest it into site development. Hope this helps – clone on! – Kevin Rose

On the latest DIGG Nation (minute eight), Digg co-funder Kevin Rose goes on a massive attack of my plans to hire a dozen top social bookmarkers, but he doesn’t seem to have a point about it. I’d actually be interested in hearing what he thinks about paying folks to do social bookmarking, but instead he just personally attacks me – Jason Calacanis

#3. The “Web 2.0” Smackdown

Contenders: O’Reilly vs. Tom Raftrey
Time Frame: May 25, 2006

Basically O’Reilly are claiming to have applied for a trademark for the term “Web 2.0″ and therefore IT@Cork can’t use the term for its conference. Apparantly use of the term “Web 2.0″ is a “flagrant violation” of their trademark rights! So Tim was aware of the event in February but decided to wait until 2 weeks before the conference to set the lawyers on us – Tom Raftrey

I apologize to Tom for the unnecessary lawyer’s letter, and ask that he apologize to me for the way he stirred up the mob. I then explain the back story behind the registration of the Web 2.0 mark, and our current thinking about what to do about it – Tim O’Reilly

#2. The Web Journalism Smackdown

Contenders: Robert Scoble vs. “The Irritant Journalist
Time Frame: March 27, 2006

Mr Raymond Vardanega, the Marketing Director, of Acer Australia has confirmed independently of SmartHouse Magazine that “We have also been told that up to 60% of the Vista code will have some form of re writing or changes made.” – Smarthouse Magazine

Apple Computer founder and CEO Steve Jobs sold 45 per cent of his Apple stock this week. Jobs sold 4.57m shares at a price of $64.66, netting him a cool $295m – The Register

Some bloggers don’t know who is a credible journalist and who isn’t. Hint: anything the Register writes is NOT credible. But, we should now start deriding people who link to non-credible sources. I will. Anyone who links to that jerk down in Australia anymore is simply not doing bloggers any favors – Robert Scoble

#1. The RocketBoom Smackdown

Contenders: Amanda Congdon vs. Andrew Baron
Time Frame: July 5, 2006

Contrary to what has been said on Rocketboom, I’m not on vacation. So here I am on Unboomed, as I apparently have been Unboomed! – Amanda Congdon

We wanted her to get to L.A. to pursue her personal opportunities as soon as possible, but her demand to move this week without waiting any longer, without a justification, and without an adequate proposal for a plan for how the show itself would work, we were unable to uproot Rocketboom from NYC at this time – Andrew Baron

I am disheartened by Andrew Baron’s decision to spread misinformation. He knows I cannot move to LA without a job…but insists on spinning things this way to shore up his assertion that I am “walking away” from Rocketboom. I did not walk away. I did not accept Andrew’s idea of “partnership” – Amanda Congdon

These might have been battles between big-name blogosphere contenders but who wins? Of course, us the readers. Where else can you expect such drama AND also be invited to participate via comments!

Which of the above is YOUR FAVORITE? Chime-in.

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  1. Michelle


    Nice blog, Check out my Michelle Mccool site!

  2. Marketing Nirvāna — by Mario Sundar

    Blogosphere Smackdown – Aug 06

    Well, it’s here already. The Blogosphere Smackdown of the month between traditional journalists (who sensationalize) and bloggers (who question that)… and this smackdown involved Digg too. So, here are the juicy details:
    The Business Week S…

  3. Mario Sundar

    Thanks, Ann.

    Congratulations to the Daily Fix on getting into Viral Garden’s “Top 25 Marketing Blog” rankings.


  4. Ann Handley

    Great idea for a post, Mario. I enjoyed it!

  5. Mario Sundar

    I don’t think blogosphere smackdowns have an impact in the real world, yet.

    Unfortunately, a few smackdowns is akin to airing dirty laundry in public. However, a few such as the “web 2.0” and the “digg” issue are precursors to larger discussions.

    I look forward to reading your post on similar topics.

    Thanks for adding Marketing Nirvana to your blogroll. Appreciate it.

  6. Mario Sundar


    My favorite is #2, cos I loved the irony of a blogger smacking-down a more “traditional” journalist.


  7. CK

    Thanks for this great list. Been thinking a lot lately on the % of good vs. % of ill that comes from these smackdowns (but yes, they’re fun to watch). Do these drive positive outcomes…or damn our cause?

    On the one hand, involving the community garners support of some important issues. On the other, it deters many outside the community from joining in…since they’re concerned about the negative back & forth (remember folks, there are many more non-bloggers than bloggers, and we want them tuning in…not out.)

    Not sure, but I think there’s a fine line on what should be aired (e.g. social issues, poor marketing practices) and what should not (business partner fights). Otherwise it just becomes one big social-media soap opera.

    I’ll likely blog on it (and point to this GREAT post) after I’ve thought it through more. Thanks for giving me more to think about :-).

  8. Swifty

    #4’s the one I’m kinda following more, I guess.

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