Kevin Fox, who's sporting a new look on his blog, isn't happy about some trash talking on Jeffrey McManus' blog. Kevin notes that there's always been a form of "benign competition" at work between our respective companies (Google and Yahoo).

the kind of thing when you work at a company which is in competition with other companies over who can make users lives better faster. It's more sport than cut-throat competition; it's the kind of thing where after the game is done and everyone's taken showers you're cool going out for beers with the other team.

Kevin, I should buy you a beer one of these days. Tied House is near both companies and has good beers. What do ya say?

Anyway, he thinks Jeffrey has crossed the line:

It's always good to remember that just because a guy will get drunk with you after the game doesn't mean he won't clock you across the jaw when the ref isn't looking.

Part of the problem here it that people who know McManus will read his post very differently from those who do not. They'll hear his voice and his sense of humor. But it's like that problem some people have with e-mail: you can't tell when someone is joking or laughing when they leave out a smiley. This feels the same way to me, unfortunately. Sometimes there's no substitute for face to face interaction.

Posted by jzawodn at July 05, 2005 10:54 PM

Reader Comments
# Tim Converse said:

Jeremy said:

"Part of the problem here it that people who know McManus will read his post very differently from those who do not. They'll hear his voice and his sense of humor. [..]

Um, out of all people who read McManus's posts, what proportion have met him personally? (I'm hoping that the proportion is small, for more than one reason.)

"Sometimes there's no substitute for face to face interaction."

Um, yes, that's true in social life, and also true in almost all jobs. Except for, perhaps, the job of being an evangelist at a large Internet company. I mean, if evangelists aren't judged by how they communicate electronically, then how are they judged?

on July 6, 2005 01:20 AM
# RG said:

Ugh, that's just silly. I don't suppose that he could've emailed Jeff or commented before his post could he? It's things like this that make me worry about blogging's real mainstream appeal. Blogging won't truly be accepted by the masses until it rids itself of the perception that bloggers are just whining about issues that aren't very important to those outside of the "blogosphere". How about everyone agrees to lighten up a little bit, engage in MORE, not less, conversation and accepts that writing a post immediately ISN'T always the best course of (re)action? Novel.

on July 6, 2005 01:25 AM
# Jeffrey Friedl said:

As much as I'd like to support someone who advocates Yahoo!, it's pretty hard not to immediately discount as an immature and irrelevent whiner someone who refers to Google employees as "meatheads up the road", particularly when in reference to their engineers, which have shown themselves to be Smart People. Having worked at Yahoo from 1997, you can guess where my support lies, but you'd have to be a fool not to have a lot of respect for Google. Especially if you are a Yahoo! employee.

If Jeff McManus isn't an immature irrelevent whiner, I would encourage him to learn how to present himself so as to reflect it, at least as long as he's using "we" when talking about Yahoo.

(PS: why is it that so many people have blog stylesheets that make it difficult to determine who posted a comment? Jeremy, yours is one of the rare clear ones, but Jeff's is one of the common ones where, if you're looking at a comment in the middle of many, you have to go up to the first or last comment to figure out if the name is above or below each comment, then return again to the one of interest. Why can't people design things to be obvious?)


on July 6, 2005 05:15 AM
# Mookie Kong said:

I agree with Jeffrey, name calling (especially "meatheads") was not the right thing to do. The Google people are very talented and smart people, and for that they deserve respect. They do have some cool stuff that us Yahoos don't have (my fav being the drag'able maps feature). I think that a face-to-face meet is probably the best way to get things off their chests though since the whole "blogwars" things will probably break-down to: "You suck!" "No, you suck more!"...

on July 6, 2005 08:00 AM
# Jason Lefkowitz said:

Wait. There are people out there who couldn't tell that a list with entries like

"3. Brand X's Maps API smells like burnt dog hair."

is a joke?

I don't work for Yahoo or Google, so I don't know the politics, but when I first read McManus' post I chuckled and went on with my life. It certainly didn't seem like the sort of thing that anyone would get upset over.

What am I missing?

on July 6, 2005 08:53 AM
# Jeffrey Friedl said:

> It certainly didn't seem like the sort of thing
> that anyone would get upset over

For my part, I'm not upset at all. I merely commented that the writer's post would make me immediately disregard that writer (and indeed go on with life). Since the original point of Jeremy's post was that the writer in question was perhaps misunderstood (and by implication of Jeremy's reading the guy, that the writer is worthy of one's attention), I wanted to add the thought that perhaps the problem is with the writer's style, and not the reader's ignorance of the person behind the writing.


on July 6, 2005 11:16 AM
# Big mama said:

Come on, Jeremy. Be fair. You know he was being a brat with this one.

on July 6, 2005 11:28 AM
# Scott Johnson said:

Not knowing McManus, I took his post literally and very seriously. I am convinced that he believes that Yahoo's APIs are better than those of the competition. I just don't quite see why someone could be so offended by that post.

on July 6, 2005 03:04 PM
# pwb said:

If Jeffrey has presented how the rest are advising, I would probably still be thinking that Google's mpas are better in all respects. Now I know that Yahoo has done some nice work on its maps APIs. It's actualy maps, of course, leave a bit to be desired.

It *is* interesting what people get bent out of shape over.

on July 6, 2005 10:04 PM
# Dave McClure said:

the post was funny. jeffrey is funny.

you don't need to know him personally to recognize he was being playful, and only folks with the thinnest of skins would find any harm in his post. in fact, quite the opposite.

and tim: YES you should judge an internet evangelist by his writing. in fact, you should judge him by the # of posts, comments, links & trackbacks to the information he provides on behalf of his company. if you happend to piss off a small % of folks by taking a few risks now & then -- well, you can't please every body. nor would i want to.

by any measure (humor, information, attention, promotion) jeffrey's posting was a great success.

now can we get on with life? sheesh.

- dave mcclure

(full disclosure: used to be an internet evangelist at PayPal, sometimes worked & traded barbs with jeffrey, now an evangelist for

on July 7, 2005 08:23 AM
# Tim Converse said:

Dave - that's weird, I didn't think the McManus post was funny at all. Had a strange and unfunny tone. But I agree about information, attention, promotion. And the last thing I want to say is that a post is cool only if the jokes are working for me. (Tough room, isn't it :) )

I just thought Jeremy's argument was strange: that you have to meet the Internet evangelist one-on-one to realize he's an OK guy.

Getting on with life now...

on July 7, 2005 09:37 AM
# Philip Wasylow said:

Hi Jeremy, I tried to see if Google or Yahoo could get my work address correct. Check my weblog URL to see who was right if you have a second.

on July 7, 2005 03:29 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

Thanks, I'll get a bug report filed.

on July 7, 2005 04:11 PM
# ac.cacolog.ricardo said:

my coments://>>>>>>>>>>no html tags) sorry my lansguaj very poor

on July 20, 2005 10:15 AM
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