Leaving Search Engine Watch

After ten years, I’m leaving Search Engine Watch and almost certainly leaving the Search Engine Strategies conference series as well. My contracts with their owners Incisive Media are expiring, and we’ve not been able to agree on new ones.

I’ll explain more about the situation below. However, let me stress that the purpose of this post isn’t to cast blame. It’s simply to explain directly from me to those who care about why I’m leaving the site and conference series with which I’ve been associated with for so long.

Back in 1997, I sold Search Engine Watch to what became Jupitermedia. That company later started the Search Engine Strategies conference series. I had a long and prosperous association with both of those properties (USA Today recently recounted the tale here). I renegotiated my contract to provide services for both of them to Jupitermedia several times without any major issues.

Last year, Jupitermedia sold the site and the series to Incisive Media. I wasn’t unhappy with the sale and chose to let my contract be extended through the end of 2006 as part of it.

I was concerned about moving forward with Incisive, however. I’m far from the only reason behind the success of SEW and SES, but I’ve played a major role. I helped build both of those assets. Then I watched one company sell them to another without me having any formal capital stake in the sale. That left me wary of history repeating itself. I wasn’t going to help this new company grow the business out of the sheer kindness of my heart.

I explained these reservations at the very beginning of my relationship with Incisive, that I needed some long-term incentive for helping them continue to grow and strengthen the site and conferences. After over a year of talks, that’s failed to materialize. As a result, I’m departing.

I love both the site and the conference series. I hate to say goodbye to them. They’ve also been good to me. I’ve done very well financially and enjoyed plenty of personal satisfaction through them. I’ve written things that people have told me have helped them immensely. At our conferences, it’s great to hear from so many people that they’ve learned a lot or far more than they were expecting.

In terms of Search Engine Watch, I’ll be serving as editor-in-chief through November 30, 2006. As of December 1, I’m gone, except for an extremely slim chance I might do some columns for them going forward. It’s so slim that no one should be expecting that it will happen.

As for SES, I’ll still be chairing the SES Multimedia & Mobile Edition show this October in Los Angeles, then the SES Chicago show in December. After that, I’d say there’s another extremely slim chance that I might do SES events on a case-by-case basis (again so slim that I’m not expecting it will happen). At the moment, I’m not contracted for any thing beyond those named (I’m currently listed as chairing the SES NY 2007 event, and I’ve asked that I be removed from the site).

Aside from SEW and SES, it’s far more likely I’ll be doing writing and conferences elsewhere. This might be for other companies, depending on what happens in the next few weeks. I’ve also entertained the notion of simply expanding my own consulting company and going it on my own with a new site and/or conferences. We’ll see. Somewhere in there, I might even finally do that book I’ve been threatening to do.

Overall, I’m sorry to leave many of the people at Incisive, especially those I’ve worked with for such a long-time on the conference side that came from Jupitermedia. I’ll be extremely sorry to say so long to my ClickZ and Search Engine Watch friends and colleagues: Elisabeth Osmeloski my managing editor, the correspondents that have come onto the SEW Blog, the hard-working volunteer moderators in our SEW Forums, the many speakers I’ve worked with for SES events and most of all Chris Sherman, my partner in search crime for the past five years.

Whatever I do, I’ve tried to make it a hallmark to always to be inclusive of content, people, web sites or organizations that will help my readers, even if I might technically be competing with them. Whatever I end up doing, you can expect I’ll still be pointing at Search Engine Watch as appropriate and wish those that remain a part of it the very best.

To keep up on my future plans, keep checking back here to my personal blog, Daggle — or take the Daggle feed, to be notified of new postings automatically.

As for the Daily SearchCast, I’m happy to say I’ll be continuing to produce that show as I’ve been doing with WebmasterRadio.FM since it began. The site moves to a new location, the appropriately named DailySearchCast.com.

Comments, questions, concerns? I’ll be happy to address them as best I can below. Just be aware that at this time, I have no idea who will take over from me at Search Engine Watch or for the SES events that I usually do.

Postscript: I’ve also added some further thoughts in The Day After & Many Thanks!

Postscript 2: (January 2010): These days, I now write at my Search Engine Land web site and run my own conference series, SMX: Search Marketing Expo.


Comments

  1. Li says

    Wow – talk about a shocker so early in the morning (at least here on the East Coast)!
    I have to say, I wondered how long you would stay since the sale from Jupiter to Incisive, so in some ways it isn’t a total shock, but yet it is.
    Congratulations to you Danny! I know whatever path you take you are definitely going to be at the head of the pack that will follow.
    I know I’m going to miss insight and wisdom at the SES’s after Chicago. I’m sure that sentiment is going to be echoed a coulple hundred times over the next couple of months.
    I think though this means there will be some kind of big party in chicago! :)

  2. says

    Danny, I wanted to say Thank You for anything you did to help this industry evolve and for letting me participate at your conferences. Good luck for your new ventures!

  3. says

    Danny, sorry to hear that you’ve had these problems with Incisive Media. You will, I’m sure, be missed from SEW.

  4. Amanda Watlington says

    Danny, Thanks for being a clear voice for our industry and for letting me participate at your conferences.

  5. says

    I’d figured that something like this was coming down the pike. I’m sure there will be many of us watching to see what you do next, and wishing you luck with it.

  6. says

    Danny,
    We understand that you have your own reasons for quitting. But that does not make us less sorry. We all at Unofficial SEO Blog have got so used your helpful postings. Post-December, we hope you will create other avenues to get back to us. However, Search Engine Watch and Danny Sullivans will remain inseparable associations. Hope to see you at SES Chicago this December. Your idea of going with your own site/conferences has our support and best wishes. Thanks for continuing with DailySearchCast.com and leaving your mark in the industry.

  7. sarah says

    sad news, but – not that such an industry legend will need it – good luck for all you do in the future (including gadgets & travel hints;) ).

  8. says

    Good luck with whatever happens, Danny! You know all of your speakers will move forward with whatever conference you eventually set up.
    Jill

  9. Jenstar says

    I have certainly enjoyed my time as an SES speaker and working under you on the SEW blog as well. You will definitely be missed, and I look forward to seeing where you go from here, because SES conferences just won’t be the same without you. We’ll still need our Danny fix so I hope your future includes conferences!

  10. says

    Hey Danny, thanks for 10 years of being a lighthouse for the search marketing industry. I can’t imagine what in the world Search Engine Watch or SES will be without you.

  11. says

    Danny, it’s unfortunate that Incisive Media couldn’t see the value you bring to the Search Engine world. Best wishes for all you will do, I’m sure it will be a great success.

  12. says

    Hi Danny,
    Thank you for all that you have done to help build the search marketing industry with Search Engine Watch and the Search Engine Strategies Conferences. You’ve had an incredibly positive impact on site owners across the web, and on the search industry as a whole, and I’m certain that whatever you decide to do in the future will be successful.

  13. Brokerblogger says

    We met face to face only once, Danny, at a ConsumerReportsWebWatch Conference, but I’ve always had, and have, the greatest respect for your love, knowledge and respect for the Search Marketing Industry.
    I’m sure you will do very well no matter which of the many options you decide upon.
    Best,
    Bill Kelm

  14. Allan says

    Danny – Thanks for all of the help over the years. We would not have come as far as we did without you and the all the other great folks that speak and attend your conferences. Best wishes!
    Allan

  15. Gilad says

    Good luck!
    SEW & SES won’t be (the same) without the man who started it all.
    I’m sure that new and thrilling challenges are yet to come, wishing you nothing but pure success.

  16. liam morrison says

    Danny, Just want to say thanks. I’ve been reading your stuff for almost the entire 10 year period. You made Search Engine Watch and SES what they are…an enormous success. Best of luck at what ever you choose to do. I’m sure we’ll be hearing more from you.

  17. Susan says

    Thank you for all the help you provided with Search Engine Watch and the Search Engine Strategies Conferences. I am really surprised that Incisive would let you go, apparently they don’t realize like the rest of us that Danny Sullivan is Search Engine Watch.
    I wish you every luck in the future and I am sure I’ll be attending any conference you plan on organizing should you decide to go that way.

  18. Mike McDonald says

    Good luck to you Danny. SES is one of the better conferences out thare and you’re due a lot of the credit for that. I’m sure you’ll succeed whatever you end up doing. You’re good enough, you’re smart enough, and dog gone it – people like you…
    This is certainly surprising to me, as it is most everyone I suppose. I remember talking to Tim Weller just after the Jupitermedia sale and asking him specifically about your contract status. Understandably, he didn’t couldn’t get into any details but described keeping you on board as a ‘primary objective’. I guess this is the difference between a primary objective and a done deal.

  19. says

    Wow!
    Danny can i say from the bottom of my heart thanks for all that you have done at SEW for so many years – throughout my entire time online SEW and Danny Sullivan have been one of the only constants in a fast changing world.
    I look forward to following whatever you do in the future and feeling even older now that i know its ten years online for me too :(

  20. says

    I have added a top10 list of things that tell you youve been online since Danny started SEW at my blog – i know you hate them but it seemed appropriate :D

  21. says

    Astounding news, Danny. I started reading you back in the 90′s on your occasional post at SearchEngineForums, and then as a member at your original Search Engine Watch site. But, while things sometimes change, I suspect that you’ll do just fine, as your success isn’t due to what *site* you own or are affiliated with, but to your knowledge of and relationships within this industry. Best wishes. ~DianeV

  22. Vanessa says

    You’ve done so much for the industry in the last 10 years, Danny. I’m excited to see what you’ll do in the next 10.
    (And 20 and so on, but thinking past 10 years makes me think of getting older, which leads to images of me whacking young whippersnappers with my cane, telling them about the good ‘ole days when we walked 5 miles uphill in the snow — both ways — for our search. So, I’ll stick to thinking about the next 10 years for now, when we both will continue to be youthful and spry.)

  23. says

    I’m not an insider, but I get the sense that the majority of speakers at SES are there because of Danny, and have each gained from the relationship. If I were one of them, I’d get everyone together in the back-room at SEMPO or wherever they hang out, and send Incisive a quick note explaining that they have no speakers for any upcoming events, and they have no interets in speaking at any event in which Danny holds less than a 20% equity stake.
    Danny made his bed, and now he’s lying in it. People have to live with their decisions and actions. That said, he should have other assets beyond his past contracts. Depends upon the folks around him I guess.

  24. says

    Danny, you will be sorely missed at SEw and SES. I respect you very much and look forward to following your career and continuing to gain from your infinite wisdom. ;)
    Good luck to you!

  25. says

    Few industries have ever had someone sow the seeds of progress and acceptance the way you have done the past ten years. Not only is the industry as a whole indebted to your work but also you have been critical to individual livelihoods and careers. Where would I have been during the Florida update without you? Not to mention the fun I’ve had at all the SES shows and the privilege of presenting that you entrusted me with. Once again, a big thank you.
    With change comes opportunity. That’s a good thing. And like a top recording artist, it doesn’t matter what record label your songs are on. Your loyal listeners will follow you wherever you go. I know there are many more songs to be sung. I can’t wait to hear them all.

  26. says

    I have been reading SEW for years, and have enjoyed going to SES. You have my deepest respect and best wishes… I can’t wait to see what you do next. :)

  27. duanef says

    Thanks for everything over the past few years Danny. :) Much appreciated. All the best moving forward and I’ll keep in touch.
    Duane Forrester

  28. says

    I completely understand the reasoning behind the move, business is business and you helped build the conference. Still, I can’t say I am happy it had to come to this. The SES was the one definitive place those in our industry could get together and share knowledge. Many will follow you to the next conference scene you create *crosses fingers* and many will continue to attend SES, but I am not sure that either will be as big as SES with Danny Sullivan would be.
    I can’t think this will show well for Incisive Media. Good luck on your future endeavors. I’m subscribing to your feed to see what’s coming next.

  29. says

    Danny, thanks for everything. SEW and SES have had a tremendous impact on the search marketing industry and in my own life. Your contributions to the search sector are too numerous to mention. Indeed, many SEOs, including myself, credit you with popularizing SEM, virtually starting the industry.
    Best wishes to you in the future. Thousands of us are eagerly waiting to see what comes next.
    Thanks again Danny.

  30. says

    Wow! What a bombshell to read this as I start my morning. All I can say is that Search Engine Watch and Search Engine Strategies will not be the same without you. Heck, I don’t know if both can even continue with the same success. Not to discredit everyone else that is involved as your staff is awesome but you are SEW and SES. We all know that and I think Incisive will learn that soon enough as well.
    I can only hope that they will realize their folly and do all they can to work something out with you. However if they don’t, I know you will continue to be a major voice in search some way or another.
    I’m glad to hear that you will continue to do The Daily SearchCast. What’s next for Danny Sullivan? I guess we will have to stay tuned and see.

  31. says

    Danny, you will be missed at both SEW and SES. I loved the SES sessions and keynotes you moderated over the years. Your hard work and industry knowledge made that conference by far the best in the search world and it definitely won’t be the same without you. Who else could bring Barry Diller, Eric Schmidt, Matt Cutts, Tim Mayer, and every other big name in search to one conference?? No one but Danny Sullivan.
    Best wishes in all your future endeavors – I know whatever you do, it’ll be successful.
    Melissa Mackey

  32. says

    Danny – I have to admit that I’m scared for the conferences, and for the industry. Whatever any of us can do – just ask and we’ll deliver. Money, time, resources, people – we’re here for you.
    While I’m sad to hear that you’re leaving, I want you to be happy above all else – here’s to hoping you land in a position where you will still have the power to make this industry a great space.

  33. David says

    Wow!
    In the short time I’ve been a part of this community, I can’t think of anyone that has been more helpful in starting that process for me than one Danny Sullivan. In fact my journey started with an e-mail directly to you and you took the time to reply to me directly – a complete nobody in your community at the time. You see each new person you meet as interesting and as an opportunity to expand your and your communities’ horizions and it is one of the things I admire most about you.
    Typing this is emotional for me, I can’t even begin to imagine what it is like for the people that have known you a decade. Yet is likely going to be means for celebration eventually as you start something anew. I urge people to look forward to see the wonderful possibilities that might await us all. I know I do. Talk to you soon…

  34. says

    Hi Danny,
    That’s a bummer. I will especially miss The Daily SearchCast. I was already missing it when you skipped a few days. I hope you continue to be active in the world of Search Engines and do something without Incisive Media.
    The 100 people village will become boring as hell after a month or two :) .
    Hey, if the Show Title “The Daily SearchCast” is owned by Incisive Media, start your own, same guy, same thing, new Name and I bet Daron would say YES! on the spot, if you would ask him.
    See ya around.
    Cheers and good luck.
    Carsten Cumbrowski

  35. says

    I wish you luck in whatever you do next, and count me in if you have a speaking opening. Just so long as you’re not diving from a cliff, I’d follow to pretty much anywhere you’re taking the SEO Industry.
    Thanks for the great conferences and for the opportunities you’ve given me. It’s meant more than you’ll ever know to everyone at our company.

  36. Tanya says

    Thanks for soooo many things Danny. You are a great person to learn from even though I’ve never officially met you :) I look forward to learning more from you in the future and know you will find the perfect fit for your search passion in no time (have the offers already started coming in?).

  37. says

    You think you’re all in shock? I still am too, after knowing for months this would likely be the final outcome, dreading this very announcement, and keeping my fingers crossed that something would change in the meantime.
    But, as a friend and colleague, I completely understand and fully support Danny’s decision, and know that it won’t be long until he figures out the path he needs to take. No matter what he does, we’ll all be eager to see what happens.

  38. says

    Yes, I am in shock after learning this news. Whatever happens to you Danny, I will follow you and wish you all the best. And thanks for all the good things at the SEW and SES.
    Please keep all of us posted here.

  39. says

    Wow, thats a shocker. Must say its a crying shame, and from a personal perspective, the SES conferences will be the poorer without you.
    Good luck in the future, and if you fancy another UK challenge feel free to drop us a line :)

  40. says

    Hi Danny,
    I know you could help grow my business. How does a PR/media director position sound? I’ll give you a stake in our firm based on your assistance in growth. Seriously :)
    Joe Griffin
    Submitawebsite, Inc.

  41. says

    WOW – I stay off-line for half a day and get back to this.
    Anyway, Danny, as you probably know you got a lot of people and old friends behind you. Anything you need or anything we can do for you just let us know.
    Wish you all the best in whatever you decide to do … :)
    - deMib

  42. says

    What does someone say to a pioneer? Thank you for being approachable and open minded. I didn’t go a day at work, in the 1990′s, without checking out SEW. I choose to celebrate your achievements, knowing there will be more to come.
    Be well, Danny.

  43. says

    Danny,
    I think SEM companies around the globe feel that they lost one of their top employees. Not that you were employeed by any of us, but you have played a central role in the way we have grown our businesses and respected others in the industry. You have definitely created a legacy that is matched by no other and will be followed regardless of what you do. If you create your own SEW, we will read it; if you create your own SES, we will attend.
    My final thoughts…just in case Incisive is reading this blog – I speak (and participate) at SES because of Danny Sullivan – Danny provides SEW and SES with leadership that can not be replaced. It is a breath of fresh air to have attended a conference that isn’t overly corporate or overly commercialized – This is because of Danny Sullivan – He will be sorely missed.

  44. excell says

    Danny, Your contibution to this industry is PROVEN by the dedication of idiots that will choose to go through the rigorus proceedure necessary to sign up for the rights to post here on your personal blog…
    This indeed shows your status as so very important to us all… to have such a high calibre of support and I want to add my voice to it…
    We will all wait for you to pheonix up in the costume of your choice. Take a care to refresh yourself. You do rock!

  45. says

    Dan, I wish you all the luck in the world in whatever it is that you move onto… I am shocked that Incisive doesn’t seem to realise what they are letting go of… Strange… On to better things.

  46. Receptional says

    Danny – you have been the biggest voice in Internet Search for nearly a decade. You are legendary and whatever you do – make it count again!
    I join everyone in wishing you well.
    Dixon.

  47. says

    I’m sure I really don’t need to add to your already glowing reviews, but thought I would take a few minutes to do so anyhow.
    You’ve helped a multitude of people to advance their careers within this industry (myself included), and for that I am very grateful. On a personal level, I appreciate the opportunities you’ve helped to give me. On a professional level, you’ve given so much to the industry, that I’m sure you’ll be handsomely rewarded for it no matter which direction the future holds for you.
    Congratulations on making what sounds like a difficult but correct decision, and I don’t think there is much need to wish you “luck” in the future…you’ve earned more goodwill in this community than anyone could ever hope for. Thanks for many years of hard work, and giving the second, third, and upcoming generations of search marketing folks someone to look up to and learn from.
    We’ll all be excited to see which direction you head in next.

  48. says

    Wow Danny – you’ve been the head of SES / SEW since I first entered this industry many years ago! I wonder what those conferences and whatnot will become without your guidance…or perhaps you’ll start heading up WMW PubCon and put SES out of business :-) In any case best of luck for the future.

  49. says

    Thank you everyone for your kind comments so far. I’m overwhelmed, honestly.
    > I was totally edited here?
    No, excell, not sure what happened. I’ve set all posts to go through without moderation, as long as people are registered.
    > Danny, Your contibution to this industry is PROVEN by the dedication of idiots that will choose to go through the rigorus proceedure necessary to sign up for the rights to post here on your personal blog.
    I know, I know — the registration is a pain. I might drop it temporarily for this thread. But believe me, it’s helped save me from getting overwhelmed by comment spam in the past.

  50. says

    I’ve learned a LOT from you over years, Danny, and will follow you wherever you choose to move to.
    If you’d consider something ‘different’ to dabble in while you rethink your future strategy, I’d be honored to have you as a search engine advisor to help build more visibility for the ‘Congenital Heart Defects Awareness‘ website – and earn ‘karma bucks’ to offset any ‘loss’ you incur from your move :)
    All success and good luck where you’re moving to.
    Dr.Mani

  51. Paul J. Bruemmer says

    Wherever Danny goes, I go. There is no SES without Danny Sullivan…it simply could not be of value without Danny leading the way. With eleven years of Search under my belt and having worked alongside many of the professionals in this industry at one time or another, I know what works and what doesn’t work – IMHO Incisive will loose big on brand, content, infrastructure and membership if they continue with this indecisive strategy. Please keep me posted Danny; myself and many others wish you all of the best in the future months ahead.

  52. Frank T says

    Thanks for everything Danny. None of us hear in the forum would be here talking about this without you, your creations, your dreams. I’ve enjoyed listening to you from 1999 to present day. ALL THE BEST to you and your family.
    Frank T…. in Idaho

  53. KeepingUp says

    Danny, Thanks so much for all you’ve done and for working so hard to help so many of us develop into better professionals. I look forward to hearing about your future endeavors and am sure that whatever you choose to do, you will soar.
    Best wishes for you and your family,
    Kathy Fealy

  54. says

    Danny,
    Thanks for all the great words of wisdom. I’m sure that your other endeavors will be just as successful as you are a brand in and of yourself.
    I hope you do make that book. A book about the entire search industry over 10 years would be fascinating.
    Good luck with everything,
    Jason

  55. says

    Danny, I’ll just join the chorus here. To feel the foundations of the industry shaking so much with the movement of just one person is testament to the work you’ve done. Whatever path you choose, it will be an exciting one.

  56. says

    Talk about bittersweet! While it will be sad to see you go I can only imagine the positive outcome this will bring.
    You have really made a impact (personally & professionally) and helped shape the industry to what it is today. I can’t imagine where we would be without you. Thank you for everything you have done. If you need help with anything don’t hesitate, I certainly owe you one (or ten)!

  57. says

    P.S. Please promise us that you won’t dedicate your life now to world wide adoption of flash website design!
    Your quote during your last SES San Jose session ever was priceless…
    “Search engines will read flash when radio shows pictures.”
    - Danny Sullivan

  58. says

    Danny,
    Thank you for opening a door for me this year. It was a real honor to be asked to speak in San Jose. Like everyone above me in this post, I’m excited to see what you’ll do next and glad to help in any way possible.
    Note to Incisive Media: WHAT ON EARTH ARE YOU DOING? Jeez…….

  59. says

    Wow, I am amazed. Thank you for all your contribution over all these years. They were definately an inspiration to me in my work. I wish you the best of luck. I will miss covering your sessions at SES.

  60. says

    Danny,
    Best of luck and all my best. As a veteran search guy I know you’ve been a great voice for a confusing market over the years and you’ve helped a lot of people along the way. Myself included. I’m certain everyone will follow no matter what direction you head into.
    Should you launch a new version of SES you can bet my developing company will be there when we’re ready! Sign me up.
    Regards,
    Joe Holcomb

  61. says

    SEW and SES will not be the same without you. The amount of information, analysis and care you have shared with the search engine marketing industry is beyond measure. Whatever you choose to do will no doubt be a great success. Thank you for what you have given to this industry.

  62. says

    Wow!
    I’m a bit shocked but, my first reaction is this will be great for everyone but Incisive Media. I believe this will be a total disaster for them.
    But then again… Who cares about Incisive Media? I’ve never even heard of them until they purchased the website & conference, so who cares? (Not me)
    I’m looking forward to seeing what new things YOU have to offer and how I can help contribute to the effort. Please keep us posted so we can help.
    Aloha,
    Dave.

  63. Beagle says

    The first time I met Danny Sullivan was in Chicago. I have always been impressed with the way he handled attendees. He treated us like friends and not idiots. I like his grass roots style of speaking and the content of his ideas.
    Danny won’t be missed, because Danny loves SEO/SEM and he can’t stay away.
    We’ll all be waiting for your next direction. I for one can’t wait to see what you decide to do.

  64. Nacho Hernandez says

    Danny,
    Without any doubt, your leadership has taken many friends and colleagues to follow you in the past, as it will continue to be in the future for whatever new venture stands in your path. We (or at least I can speak for myself, I) hope to have earned your trust so that we [I] can be of any support as you see fit.
    Personally, I hope your decision is based on anything else but greed. It has been said that “greed” is the biggest killer to any role model no matter what their past history has been.
    Do what you know how to do best. We’re here for you.
    Best wishes! Thank you for everything you have done for me.
    Saludos,
    Nacho

  65. John Brock says

    Wow Danny! This is a shocker, but good for you! I agree with Hawaii SEO, except for those you care about whom you are leaving behind, who gives a rats-crack about incisive. Dumb move for them to fail to give you a growth share. I can’t stand companies or individuals who do business like that. This tells us a little something about their thinking or lack thereof.
    Anyway, take your 10 years and turn it into something even bigger as I know you will! Good luck Danny!

  66. says

    Danny,
    I remember you started it all back in the days of AltaVista, Excite, InfoSeek, Lycos and NorthernLight (were there one or two others I’m forgetting?), when the global internet user base was what – 50 million? May be a bit more, but certainly under the 100 million mark.
    I remember SEO was not even called SEO back then, and the idea of PPC was not invented.
    We’ve come a long way since then and you are one person who deserves a distinct part of the credit through your work on SEW first and SES later.
    While it saddens the heart to see a landmark depart from the origin (if it really happens), one thing we should not be concerned about at all is
    your (financial) well-being. You simply can’t fail to do (extremely) well in the SE industry. ;-)

  67. says

    WOW !!!
    Really, that’s all I have to say. I’m posted many great links to your work on our blog and have long respected your work. I think the entire SEO community and webmasters alike can say the same.
    I would say it’s a shame to see you go but for some reason I’m pretty sure we’ll see youa gain and likely be attending conferences you hold down the road. :)
    Best of luck to you Danny and thanks for all the gret info and advice. For a decade you’re provided deep insights into the search engine and webmasters world and we all look forward to your continued works in the future, wherever that may be.

  68. says

    Wow Danny – Once the surprise had worn off, I was able to back up and stop having a temper tantrum over here. ;) Only you know what’s best for you, and after all the years where you’ve done so much for the SEM community – you deserve to make those decisions for yourself.
    Do keep us all posted on wherever you go – I guarantee we’ll all follow you, as we have for all these years. Congrats on making a positive movement in your life, and I’ve got no doubt that the “next big (Danny) thing” will be truly huge.

  69. jerryb says

    Say it’s not so! It’s a sad day in the land of search.
    May there be bigger and better things for you in the future Danny.

  70. grasshopper says

    danny, i join many voices here when i say that you’ll be missed at SEW and SES. all hyperbole aside, you’ve been an inspirational figure to a lot of us in the industry. keep up the good work.

  71. Sophie Wegat says

    I remember stumbling upon Search Engine Watch not longer it started and thinking I’d found heaven.
    Thank you Danny for all you have contributed and no doubt will continue to contribute to the SEM community.
    I wish you every success with whatever you choose to do from here.

  72. says

    Wow Danny,
    This is big. While I’m just a spectator for the most part here, I will add that I definately benefitted from your contributions to the SEM community.
    As a tribute to you, I will optimize this post circa 1996 style for ya :) :
    Danny Sullivan best seo. Danny Sullivan seo. seo. seo. search engine optimization. search engine. top ranking. seo. seo. seo.
    Thanks for helping and seeing the maturation of the industry beyond this juvenile crap :)

  73. Kalena says

    Good for you Danny. It’s unacceptable that IM would not associate you with the success of SEW and SES and reward you accordingly. You’re doing the right thing. They’ll realize that soon enough and it will be their major loss, financially and otherwise. Perhaps now you can take a holiday Down Under and we can catch up (we’ve got some fantastic children’s books in Oz!) Whatever you decide to do, I look forward to hearing about the next big chapter in your career.

  74. says

    Pew, sorry for my early comment. I was half out the door when I saw the news and almost choked on my breakfast bagel. I only got to read the first few paragraphs of your post, quickly commented and was heading out with a print out of the post in my Briefcase to read while waiting for the green lights at intersections.
    Glad to hear that the Daily SearchCast will continue. I missed the podcast this and almost all last week, but I do understand why there wasn’t any. Well, I hope to see you around at SES (as speaker or pass owner) or even better, your own SES (Search Engine Sullivan :) ) Event.
    I was at my first SES Event a few weeks ago (in SJ) and should have said “Hi”, but there wasn’t the opportunity to do so without getting pushed away by all those “DS Groupies”. ;) .
    Keep up your good sense of humor. I am looking forward to the next podcast episode of the Daily SearchCast.

  75. marianne says

    I am one of the many silent attendees to your guidance and commendary Danny and I’m selfishly saddened by this turn of events. Although, it does help me make up my mind about SES in Chicago. :) I am reassured by your blog and plan on being a regular subscriber. I know how hard it is to leave something that you’ve nurtured for ten years and, like many who’ve posted here, fear for the future of Search Engine Watch without your participation. However, I also know from experience that I never know what I’m capable of until I stop doing just what I’m good at.

    Vaya con Dios on your upcoming transition and I’m counting on hearing all about it here.

  76. 1888mark says

    Sorry to see you go. You’ve done a fantastic job representing the industry and I’m sure the conference will not be the same without you leading them!
    I wish you the best of luck!

  77. says

    Danny best of luck in your next venture. Your sterling reputation and SEO insights will serve you very well wherever you go.

  78. Nick Wilsdon says

    That’s big news to wake up to! Good luck Danny, you don’t need it though – whatever you choose to do next will be supported 100% by all of us who have grown up in this industry.
    We’ll all be watching your next moves with interest :)

  79. Eduard Blacquière says

    Dear Danny,
    I truly regret the fact that you’re leaving SEW and SES. I think Incicive makes a mistake by being not aware of the great value you are for the SEW and SES.
    I’m really inspired by all the hard work you’ve done during the past years and I still learn a lot from your insight in de Search marketing business. I’ll continue to listen to your SearchCast. I have no worries about your future and the future impact you’ll have in de Search Arena.
    Thanks for everything you ment and still mean to the Search Marketing business. I wish all the luck in the world with whatever you will be doing!
    Best regards,
    Eduard Blacquière
    The Netherlands

  80. Winooski says

    When I started learning SEO in ’98, my boss told me to start reading this site, Search Engine Watch…Danny, thanks for all your years of calm, balanced, and rational guidance. Best of luck to you, and I look forward to continuing my education with you in whichever venue you choose.

  81. Elandrael says

    Danny,

    Thx for your serious implication in making the thing bigger.

    Since I started SEO in early 2000 and knew about you via Jill of Highrankings. I didn’t stop reading your articles and following the thing. I had the chance to participate to one of your conference in London, and the truth is you are simply GREAT!

    Good luck for the future.

    One thing is sure; I will follow you to anywhere you go.

    JMD

  82. Ethan Giffin says

    Danny… There is no doubt that much of what I call a career comes on the back of what I learned from you and your shows. I remember my good friend John bringing me to my very first SES in Dallas of 2001. I was blown away at what I saw those few days. I have met some of my greatest mentors and business associates while walking the halls (and drinking spots) during your shows. They -and you have totally changed my outlook on the web. With one of my greatest accomplishments was being asked to present at SES, which I have done on several occasions. Thanks again and see you in Chitown!

  83. says

    Danny,
    This means I have to be in Chicago to get you to karaoke!
    I know this must have been a difficult decision for you – this is your ‘other’ family. The community you established has grown into something really impressive. Whatever your future endeavors I will help any way I can, as I know many many more than just those of us who have posted here will also be ready to lend a hand.
    The multilingual search guys are trying their hand at a conference in Iceland and the multilingual search space could use someone like you to lead the way….
    I am sure you have all sorts of ideas and possibilities – make sure you reach out as you need us.
    AussieWebmaster

  84. Jody Nimetz says

    Mr Sullivan,
    The one thing that remains constant in this industry is change. I echo the sentiments of many here in that I wish you luck with your new endeavors. Thank you for your dedication and hardwork.
    Jody Nimetz – Enquiro

  85. says

    Danny,
    I am not sure why I waited until now to thank you for the many kindnesses you’ve shown me over the years, but I am ashamed to say that I did. Thanks so much for all the opportunities you provided me.
    Know that I wish you nothing but the best in whatever you decide to do next. If there is any way that I can help you, please ask. I suspect that you need little help to continue to make your mark, but your friends and colleagues support your decision and want to help.
    Thanks again for all you’ve done for our industry and I look forward to working with you for many years to come.

  86. Connie says

    Mr. Sullivan,
    Thanks for giving me a career… Of course you don’t know me… but I know you, your work, the positive impact your efforts have had on so many organizations/companies, and the individuals who work on their behalf.
    You have no idea what an impact you have made.
    Thank you.

  87. SEO Joe says

    Danny,
    Thank you so much for your guidance over the years. You have been my virtual-mentor for quite a long time.
    There is no doubt that Incisive made a very poor decision. However, the silver lining is that you are now free to control your own destiny. We can only hope to be part of it in some small way.
    I look forward to what’s next for Danny Sullivan!!!

  88. says

    You left over an equity issue because you were tired of the fruits of your labor being bought and sold and you not sharing in the profits. Takes guts to walk when you’re well paid and completely established. Kudos!
    Now what to do? No matter what you do, people are going to be comparing it to the second sequel to a popular movie: is it as good, better, or not as good? You’ve been SEO central to me. If it was important to you I read about it because I assumed it was important to me.
    What you’ve done best for me as a reader is keep me informed. Hope you can develop a means to simply continue your focus on what’s going on NOW in the world of search and dessiminating it to appreciative readers like me.
    Good Luck and I’ll see you on the web somewhere I’m sure. You have all of our eyes, ears and friendship. You just need a place for the majority of us who cannot attend SEO conferences (but wish we could) to find you on the web and stay informed.
    I can probably only afford one annual $99 subscription. Where do I send you the check? Tonerman

  89. Chatmag says

    Danny, Thanks for ten years of dedication to the industry. Your work has been a constant source of information and inspiration to many of us in the search field.

    The two people I’ve counted on for straight answers has been yourself, and Doug at IHelpYou. AT Searchenginewatch, and in the conferences, you’ve introduced others knowledgable in the business, brought it all together into a collective work without equal.

    I’m looking forward to your next project. I disagree, this is hardly an end of an era, just a turn in the road.

  90. says

    Sorry to hear you’re moving on after meeting you 3[?] times now at SES in London. But, am looking forward to the book which I trust will be all about search engine optmisation?

  91. says

    I have added a top10 list of things that tell you youve been online since Danny started SEW at my blog – i know you hate them but it seemed appropriate. Greetings

  92. says

    Danny,
    I am a huge fan of yours and you have played a very important role knowingly or unknowingly in the say i understand search engine marketing.
    Life is always about change and the winner is the one who takes everything in the positive stride. I wish you best of luck with everything you wish to do including the webmasters Radio FM show.