Teaching, Promoting, Cheering UX and SEO Since 2002

SMS Interview: “The Web is Not TV”

At the recent Search Engine Strategies Conference in San Jose, Joe Whyte interviewed me and Bill Slawski for the Search Marketing Standard magazine. The interview is out now and it illustrates Bill’s brilliance.

Joe did a taped interview, which is harder to do, I think. I’ve done one that way and it requires going back and finding the parts of the conversation where you stayed on track. You need to edit out the off topic sections and giggles. The giggles are nearly always my trademark, I’m afraid.

We were outside on the sunny patio, just off the floor where sessions were being held. It was a favorite casual spot for meeting friends, getting some quick sunshine, or calling someone with some privacy. Joe sat with Bill and I and asked questions on search engine marketing and usability.

The transcribed interview is ready for reading at SES Interviews: Kim Krause Berg and Bill Slawski on Supplemental Index and Usability

I remember the moment when Bill said,

Flash has a tendency to be used in a way that ignores the medium it’s being used upon. The Web isn’t TV. If Flash is being used as one long animation, then they are trying to use the website as a television station. It’s much more than that. It can be used in many more ways. To ignore the fact that you have machines coming to your site to index your pages (or to do other things) is to ignore the medium.

When he said, “The web is not TV”, he said it with such passion and determination that I did a double take. Those five words really nail our responsibility to our web site visitors and the clients who hire us to build and market their web site properties.

It’s our job to know our medium better than they do and help them use all the different technologies available to them in ways that justify their usage.

As for me, I didn’t say anything smart like Bill did. I did, however, tap into the theme I wrote about today in Cre8asite’s Blog, Usability and SEO – Red Light, Green Light, when I told Joe,

My job is to make sure that all the work that an SEO does or a PPC person does pays off as soon as somebody clicks onto the page. If nothing happens when they click, then all that money is down the drain – which is why we need to work together.

And then I giggled, I’m sure.

Related item written by Miriam Ellis of Solas Web Design, called “Good SEO/Bad SEO, Good Designer/ Bad Designer – A Generalization Problem


  1. September 6, 2007    

    Hi Kim,

    I had to edit the giggles out, sorry. If it is any consolation, the laughs were left intact ;)

    The interview was great with many pearls of wisdom from both you and Bill.

    Of course, this doesn’t mean that I’m no longer upset about you not stopping by the booth in San Jose :)

  2. September 6, 2007    

    I did try (to get there), honest!


  3. September 9, 2007    

    I really enjoyed that interview, Kim. You and Bill did just great! And, I agree that “The Web Is Not TV” is a great slogan. So true.

    I wish that there was a line we could draw in the sand when using the term ‘web designer’. When a fellow like Joe Whyte couples ‘web designer’ with ‘people who build websites in flash’ he is certainly talking about the majority…but not folks like us in the minority who would lay down on top of a desk and scream until we convinced a client not to ask for such a website.

    I think I’m going to write a post about this on my blog. It’s a bit like the Good SEO/Bad SEO debate. The Good Designer/Clueless Designer issue is a real one, and just like I hate people to think SEO has something to do with spamming search engines, I hate for people to think I’m going to build them a ‘movie’ instead of a usable website.

    Funny situation, this.

    Thanks for posting the link to the interview. It’s always such a treat to ‘listen to’ you and Bill!

  4. September 11, 2007    

    Kim, thank you for the mention. I just saw it in my bloglines feed! I appreciate it.

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