Richard MacManus of ReadWriteWeb wrote a post last night about the big coverage of Cuil, thought and/or hoped by many to be the Google killer.
The MacManus post muses about the coverage of the new search engine and the major criticism that followed its debut. A lot of expectations mismanaged. So MacManus cites the echo chamber and the hyperbole that stokes it.
But let’s not blame the PR people, people. Yes, I find much of the language, elitist and cozy, too much to bear. But somebody’s swallowing it. And it’s not just the TechCrunches and the Valleywags. It’s our highly trained, self-proclaimed highly professional mainstream media.
Here are the suggestions I just shared in a comment to MacManus’s post. Let’s start stripping away the hype. Ultimately, it’s the best thing for all concerned.
Lots of insightful comments on your interesting post. This is not a criticism of Cuil, either. Time will tell.
I do have comments to the press, bloggers, all the new media types “covering” startups, Silicon Valley, tech money:
1 You are part of the echo chamber. Think before you write. Choose your words carefully and wisely.
2 Talk with the potential enemies as well as the pals and coterie of the founders and the VCs.
3 Recognize that not everyone tells the truth.
4 If you don’t understand the technology, find someone neutral who does. Neutral = doesn’t have an ax to grind.
5 In comparing products, rely on your own instincts and that of a true expert to unearth key points of differentiation between products and services. Don’t just reprint what you’re being fed.
6 Start looking for the real stories of Silicon Valley. Yes, you’re busy. But when you take on the responsibility of distilling facts for others, you take on the responsibility to dig. If you don’t have the work ethic for this role, find something else to do. We’re sick of the hyperbole. The real stories of Silicon Valley are not that far beneath the superficial surface on which you skate.
This is coming to you from someone who helps to craft and tell the stories of startups and corporations that are in this for the joy as well as the payoff — and who wouldn’t dream of yanking your chains. Wake up.