Ok, who didn’t get an Acer laptop?

December 29, 2006

I was just looking at the list of some of the people who got these things.

In no particular order: Robert Scoble, Craig Pringle, Mitch Denny, Brandon LeBlanc, Scott Beale, Joey deVillaMauricio Freitas, plus a heap of others I’m sure.

Naturally I went to Wally McClure‘s blog, expecting to see that he got one too, but no!

Jay Furr, a friend of mine who was very much an A-list tech-community person way back also missed out. Jay is famous for being the person who first called unsolicited email ‘spam’.

Presumably anyone who’s employed by Microsoft is ineligible, so maybe His First Scoble only got his because he has left?

I think people should obviously write to Aaron Coldiron to let him know that these guys missed out!

Ok, I don’t think anyone should actually write to Aaron about it. But I do wonder what makes some people qualify and others miss out. Wally is certainly well known around the tech community, and many who were around in the early usenet days know Jay. I suppose a lot of it comes down to reputation too.

Reputation is an interesting thing. The MVPs are largely considered to have good reputations, and I’m sure that most of the people who got these laptops are MVPs. You can’t build credibility overnight, but many of these people will soon enter their fifth calendar year of blogging (2003-2007) and have probably found their way into many people’s reading lists. I only started blogging during 2005, and fully appreciate that I don’t have the same kind of sway as many of the bloggers out there. And I’m still more accessible via Msgr than newsgroups.

In conversations about the Acer laptops thing, I’ve started to wonder about magazines compared to blogs (because I think no-one would’ve complained if Microsoft asked someone to review Vista on a particular piece of hardware for a magazine article). If someone in my generation wants an answer to something, they will search the web for it, rather than look through magazines. On the other hand, a magazine is more likely to be read in an evening or on a bus. I read a lot on my PDA / phone, and happily convert PDFs into Reflow mode for that. I think online magazines are good, and increasingly, magazine subscribers are being given logins to read the information online. But if only subscribers can read them, then search engines don’t tend to find the data too well.

Blogs really are the new magazines, just like podcasting is the new radio, but it can be hard to find the good ones. I could add a new blog to my reader most days, but what I have trouble with is culling them. And even finding time to go through them! It’s like I need to set aside time each day just to go through them, and more to work out what is worth spending more time on. Ah – the joys of balancing professional development and the rest of life.

This Post Has 14 Comments

  1. Jay Furr


    Do they sell Velveeta in Australia? I’ve found that a lot of disappointments in life can be ameliorated by consuming melted Velveeta on taco chips, especially if you add a bit of salsa and maybe some jalapeño pepper slices.

  2. robfarley

    Oh, congrats Sandi. If you feel you can keep it, then do so. If you need suggestions about who to give it away to, let me know. 😉

  3. Mitch Denny

    Hi Rob,

    I think to be a successful blog READER you need to seek multiple opinions on the same subject. Don’t just subscribe to one blog, subscribe to three or more, or even better a Technorati feed.

  4. robfarley

    Mitch, I agree. Some of my favourite feeds are ones that have many people contributing. But I also keep coming across blogs (I should say ‘feeds’, because they’re certainly not always individuals) that I want to subscribe to. Technorati can be good, but often they can be way to broad in the number of posts they pick up.

  5. Michael Walsh

    Hi Rob,

    Sorry I’m late to the party but I thought you’d appreciate some input from Acer.

    No, wait. FULL DISLOSURE: I work with Acer EMEA’s marketing team. I have my own independent blog with no official affiliation with Acer yada yada

    Sorry, Scoble-induced safety measures…

    OK. The “free notebook” story is on everyone’s lips, so are the names involved, Microsoft, Edelman and Acer, not to mention Microsoft’s growing list of MVPs.

    There are hundreds of conspiracy theories floating around (well one big one really) yet I just wanted to throw this spanner into the works.

    Acer’s EMEA marketing team knew nothing about this. Sounds crazy I know but it’s true. In fact I’ll go so far as to say we only found out after Scoble published!

    Of course someone must have known, as that many Ferraris don’t get out the door that quietly in one go but whoever it was probably thought he’d just made his Christmas bonus.. For us, it was a great way to end the year.

    Talk about free publicity…!

    I’m not condoning or attacking these marketing tactics, but you’ve got to admit that from my standpoint, Acer couldn’t have asked for more.

  6. Michael Walsh

    I know. You’re thinking: there are hundreds of JMPs out there so why should this be any different?
    What normally happens when MS rolls out a new software (it happened before with Windows XP Tablet Edition in 2002) is that they showcase it on fully-working machines (obviously).
    Microsoft orders and pays for “x” number of notebooks from whatever PC vendor it chooses (Acer on both occasions can’t be a bad sign LOL) and then demos them or sends them out to “a chosen few”.
    In this case the same happened with the Acer Ferraris but rather than go to journalists, they went to bloggers. Like I said, brilliant PR for Acer (heard ANY bad comments about the machines so far??). If only we’d known in advance….

  7. robfarley

    Ah, I see. Nice. Really what I need to do is find someone who works for Acer who would give me a nice desktop-replacement machine that I can use for training, presenting, that kind of thing. Something which will happily run Virtual Server with SQL2005 installed. 😉

  8. Michael Walsh

    Don’t look at me… my reach doesn’t stretch that far. Besides, last time I heard NOTHING gets out of Acer without a receipt LOL.
    Give Edelman a ring before the unwanted ones all end up on eBay 😉

  9. robfarley

    🙂 I wasn’t being all that serious. I figure that people who receive stuff like that are lucky, but that it’s not worth trying to ‘create’ luck like that. If they want to offer me something, then great. But if not, so be it.

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