Plagiarism by Neil Walker. Should we pity SEO dinosaurs?

Maaaaaaany years ago, one evening whilst still working at Just Search, in the course of a few hours at home, I built a ‘mind map’ (using Mindnode on an iMac) of what I thought (at the time) the elements of a successful site should be.

To my surprise, whenever I showed this to people, they loved it, and thought that I had taken months to create it.  It could not have been further from the truth.  I even showed it at an industry show in the US, again with great reaction from so-called search ‘giants’ that should know better.  With my initial permission, I know of two people that used to take it into interviews when looking for search roles and it almost does the interview for them (their words, not mine).

I had been told that an ex-colleague of mine, Neil Walker, had been passing off my work as his own at various trade shows and getting rave reviews, although I never gave it much thought.  Maybe I didn’t want to believe it, or thought it too tall a story to believe.  I just came across the video today, and while I haven’t reacted badly to it, it is never nice to see people passing off your work as their own.

Here is the video itself (I expect this to be taken down at some point when this post is seen by Neil.):

I have included a few screenshots here, for the eventuality of the video being pulled.

Screenshot 2014-02-15 at 15.00.11

This was the mind map I created.

Screenshot 2014-02-15 at 15.00.50

Looks rather smug about the applause, doesn’t he?

What I feel sorry for is not just Neil having no strategy of his own, or to actually steal something such as someone else’s work, but the fact that in 2014 – aroundSIX YEARS since I left – he still uses it to show people he knows what he is talking about!  So, something that I created one evening in just a few hours, probably in my Pot Noodle-stained pyjamas at home in Wilmslow, is still something of a flag bearer and helps people to earn an income.

Has he no shame?  If I stole other people’s work and passed it off as my own I wouldn’t be able to look at myself in the mirror, never mind my family. Is it laughable or is it criminally inept?  What do you think?

This, good marketing directors and managing directors of the UK, is what is wrong with much of the SEO industry still to this day.  Little innovation.  There are some amazing companies out there, but nowhere near enough.

I genuinely don’t know whether to feel honoured, pity, ashamed or miffed…I think pity.

*** additionally, one of my team is STILL using the very same iMac that I created the mindmap on and it was still there! (maybe I should invest in newer computers? lol).  Its a bit small, but the screenshot below shows the date of creation.  If you email me, I will send over the original .mindnode file to anyone that wants it.

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