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I know the HN community looks up to Patrick as something of a "guru", and I have a tremendous amount of respect for him, the information he shares, and his contributions to the community. But... You know, there are lots of people out there who are good at business, the details of AdWords/marketing, can write well, can recruit people, etc(I'm not one of them, but I know many who are).

The only reason you're aware of Patrick and not any other one of the thousands of entrepreneurs is because he engages with the community and promotes himself. patio11 has become a brand on this site- people say things like "oh, that's a patio11 comment" or "I wonder what patio11 would say about this".

I'm not trying to take anything away from what Patrick has accomplished- I'm just saying that maybe, just maybe, he's not as worthy of your adoring blog posts as you think.




>The only reason you're aware of Patrick and not any other one of the thousands of entrepreneurs is because he engages with the community and promotes himself.

Hmm. I don't have a dog in this hunt, but it sounds kind of like saying...

The only reason you think the space shuttle is cool is because it's a plane that flies in space.

The only reason you think a swimming pool is fun is because it's a huge bathtub where a bunch of people can swim.

The only reason you think airplanes are cool is because they let people fly through the air and cross distances in a short amount of time.

I mean, all of that doesn't lack unique value and power, you know?


I agree, but then you have to make a distinction: Do you think Patrick is cool because of his exceptional SEO/business knowledge, or do you think Patrick is cool because he is active in the community? Two very different things.


Great marketing is a skill that is completely underrated. If you can convince an entire Internet community that you're a great guy, you probably deserve most of the accolades you get. There are tons of people with a large surface area on this site, and many posters are well-respected, but he's actually universally adored. In fact, your post may be the first ad hominem attack I've seen directed at Patrick.


I was actually struggling with wording my post so it didn't look like an attack in any way, because I really don't mean to be negative at all.

I'm not attacking Patrick at all! I think Patrick is a great guy! I think Patrick works very hard at what he does, which includes engaging with the community and branding himself in a certain way, and he deserves all of the respect this community gives him.

From a personal branding perspective, it's interesting to see someone rise from obscurity to pg-like levels of fandom simply through hard work and providing value. It's great as a case study/learning experience.


>> " But... You know, there are lots of people out there who >> are good at business, the details of AdWords/marketing, can >> write well, can recruit people, etc"

Just because Patrick isn't the only one to do this doesn't make his accomplishments any less worthwhile. And most of those others don't share their knowledge on HN.


Patrick isn't getting any great financial benefit from "promotes himself" here. If he wanted to invest his time and energies on promotion, it wouldn't be on HN. He does it for non-financial reasons. The other "thousands of entrepreneurs" you know aren't doing it for a good reason.


I would argue he could derive tremendous financial benefit from posting here in terms of furthering his career, networking, consulting gigs, etc. I'm not saying that's the reason he posts here, but it is a tangible fringe benefit.

Here's a thought experiment- How much money would you pay, tomorrow, for patio11 to announce that all of his posts on his blog and on HN have actually been ghostwritten by CapitalistCartr. What if he said the patio11 profile was actually a sockpuppet account run by CapitalistCartr, and all of the respect he has built up through his hard work and posts would now belong to you?

How much would that be worth to you? $1,000?$5,000?$10,000? I bet that intangible, what accountants call goodwill, is actually worth quite a bit.




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