Dilbert: Hiring A Weasel To Do SEO & Corrupt The Industry

The Dilbert cartoon above doesn’t speak well of the search engine optimization position. The cartoon ties people who do SEO as weasels and those that hire SEOs as an accomplice, someone who actively participates in the commission of a crime. It goes on to say the SEO will go ahead and “game the system” and “corrupt the integrity” of the industry.

This clearly does not speak well of our industry and the SEO job profession. But then again, it is just a cartoon?

The cartoon reads:

I hired a pantless weasel to do our search engine optimization.

He’ll help us game the system and corrupt the integrity of all the internet search results for our industry.

Your new job title is “accomplice.”

This is not the first Dilbert cartoon related to the industry, here are the others we covered:

Hat tip to inbound.org for spotting this.

Related Topics: Channel: Industry | SEM Industry: Community | SEM Industry: General


About The Author: is Search Engine Land's News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry's personal blog is named Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here. For more background information on Barry, see his full bio over here.

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  • http://www.sasch.co/+ Sasch

    This fits quite well into an ongoing discussion between AJ Kohn and myself. “Can the SEO industry redeem itself from the bad rep it’s gotten over the past six years or so, or is it time for a new job-title, especially in view of the simple fact that a promoter’s task-sheet now consists of so much more than just ‘search engines’?

    By the by… Has anyone ever audited this site’s UX? ;-)

  • http://www.link-optimise.com Richard Teahon

    I think he must talking about Google’s personal search results

  • http://searchengineland.com Jonathan Hochman

    Excellent Dilbert. The industry bears full blame for the poor public perception. Our national organizations and conferences don’t publish any ethical standards. People stand up at conferences and have a good laugh while sharing the latest spam techniques. The only standard seems to be, “if it works, we do it.”

  • http://www.search-usability.com/ Shari Thurow

    Hi there-

    I just think the ‘toon is friggin’ funny…even though I have never been a “pantless weasel.”

    Scott Adams is a very nice person. Since I’m a huge Dilbert fan (my little Dogbert has been in my desk area for years), I appreciate his humorous perspective.

    However, I echo Sasch and Jonathan’s sentiments that we, as an industry, bear the blame for the poor public perception. I did not contribute to this poor perception. I get more flack than others for being public about my very white-hat point of views.

    I think too many SEO/SEM organizations pay lip service to spam and ethics (they’d rather have the money/membership). So yes, I agree that the only standard seems to be, “if it works, we do it.”

    It’s a shame that those of us who don’t deserve this reputation? We have it whether we like it or not.

  • http://www.search-usability.com/ Shari Thurow

    Oh, Scott Adams has responded to the few emails I’ve sent to him, including the story that I once worked for a person who would never be considered a pointy-haired boss. You don’t run into many bosses like that, do you?

    His correspondence to me has been nothing but polite. I think he’s a nice guy and more insightful than many care to admit.

  • P.W.

    Comparing unscrupulous SEOs to pantless weasels is very insulting to…pantless weasels.

  • http://www.search-usability.com/ Shari Thurow

    P.W.’s comment has me roaring….

  • http://www.acsgrp.com Ken Mozlowski

    Yes, insult to SEO Professionals. True, No. Viral content to try and get link back, Yes. Is it a dog eat dog world, Yes. Where anyone will say anything true or not to get their agenda on the table, Yes. Fact: We have worked with many clients who have sites so poorly set up by “professional web designers” that often there are thousands of pages of duplicate content with duplicate urls and meta info. We fix those problems without even having to do any this so called “weasel work”. Many are small businesses who get most of their business live and die by their organic traffic. Reputable honest companies victimized by ignorant web developers who dont have a clue about building proper web sites for their clients. Also those who speak at conferences remeber the old adage: “Those who cant do , teach.” and now I add to that who draw cartoons.

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