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An exercise in futility?

Finally, Jeff Jarvis, the professorial guru for Google and doomsayer of print’s prospects, and I agree on something.

Online advertising can be self-defeating. He calls it failure.

I’ve been telling people for some time that online advertising sets up a declining return by sending visitors to your Web site directly to a seller. Thus you’ve created a direct line between seller and buyer and eliminated the need for the intermediary advertisement. The more successful you are in bringing them together, the less the advertising medium is needed.

Jarvis says on his BuzzMachine blog “the ideal relationship a company should have with its customer is that it produces a great product the customer loves and talks about and thus sells; there is no need for advertising there. It’s only in the case of failing at that idea that one needs to advertise. (And by the way, I hope there’s enough failure to continue to support media!)”

In another blog posting Jarvis describes how his arguments have painted himself in a corner. He concludes: “Advertising ends up having nothing to do with media. They become decoupled. Audience no longer yields advertising. Hell, advertising isn’t advertising. It’s relationships. Media only get in the way. There’s the corner we’re painted into, the chaos scenario, perhaps the doomsday scenario for media.”

No Pollyanna, this guy.

But that Bob Garfield is a real downer with his Chaos Scenario.

Here is a sample of Jarvis:


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