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I really don't know why people are beating up +Chris Brogan over his decision to charge for intelligence?

Is it because Google+ is "too young," or because people believe that just because THEY get social media without paying for it that everybody should get social media without paying for it?

[EDIT: Due to this thread's popularity, I would like to use some of your comments (with credit) in my impending blog post about the topic. If you have an issue with this, I would assume you wouldn't have commented publicly.]

http://chris.pirillo.com/is-charging-for-information-right-or-wrong/
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99 comments
 
Would you pay that? Or advise anyone you knew to pay it?
 
If he charges I think folks will graduate back to FB and FF
 
Context please - where's the fight? Need a link.
 
+Aaron Wood I'm the "wrong" market, and if you wouldn't pay for intelligence, YOU are the "wrong" market, too. ;)
 
Charging? Charging whom? For what?
 
+Chris Pirillo
"God is trying to sell you something,
But you don’t want to buy.
That is what your suffering is:
Your fantastic haggling,
Your manic screaming over the price.” - Hafiz
 
I agree, Chris. Let the potential clients decide whether the info is worth the asking price. Then if no one signs up, that will be message enough as to whether it's right or wrong.
 
I would never pay for it. I would not recommend it. However, I can not blame the guy for trying to make money off of new things.
 
I personally hope +Chris Brogan sells out all 1000 spots. He has something of value and there's people willing to pay for it. Just because Bob knows this and that and all the thingamabobs and doohickies, doesn't mean everyone else is in the same boat.
 
I love that Chris gives so much for free! The guy has a right to make a living. I'm not a kitchen table company-I'm a dyslexia teacher and I enjoy his information. He's smart and easy to understand.
 
Fwiw I think its a fantastic use of G+
 
Social Networks are not free, they sell your private information to companies.
 
These days, people are unwilling to pay for anything.
 
I find the topic boring and he claims it does not bother him (criticism) but I think the fact that he continues to talk about it shows it does bother him.

I am annoyed porche wants me to pay for a car. They should give it to me. 
 
Look, there are some things that can be taught. Like the importance of using media, and what gets shared and spreads. The need to develop relationships, especially now before the masses get here and the noise grows. It's not too different from Twitter, and Brogan knows Twitter well. But on the flip side, no one really knows where G+ will be in another month. It is kind of crazy to say you have long term advice at this point - but I don't think that's what Brogan is saying.
 
I think people who are under the mistaken notion that the stuff in other people's brain should be free is bad.
IF the guy knows something more than other people do(and to be fair, he does) if he wants to sell that knowledge and insight he should damn well get something for it.
 
Let the man make some money...but he should have marketed to a specific circle that needed his expertise. Did he make his offering public? That would be bad G+ marketing :)
 
If you can do something well, never do it for free right? The flip side of this is that there are a huge number of people on the internet who do exactly that, arguably we are where we are technologically because of people who have contributed freely to open platforms and provided instructions on how to use technology.

I think this is what is making people upset.

That being said, if you have a service that people are willing to pay for, than you should charge for it. People find it worthwhile to pay for something like that as a time-saving measure.

We all need to make money, let's not pretend otherwise. Why get angry for someone making a living?
 
Brogan makes money as an author, and is a professional speaker. This whole ordeal invented by either jealous trolls or know-it-all tech nerds is blown way out of proportion. Let the guy give high quality seminars for a premium and continue his profession - boohoo if you didn't think of it first, nor have the professional background or platform to launch it even if you did.
 
As the person who first discovered that Chris Brogan stood to make $47,000 off of his one hour Google+ for Business seminar...well, if he hadn't blocked me then I probably wouldn't have spent the better part of my day kicking him in the teeth (figuratively speaking of course!)
 
Funny how "social" media can turn anti-social so quickly...
 
I don't have a problem with it - I wouldn't pay for such a thing, the market will decide if what he is doing is of interest.
 
Break out your pitchforks, guys and gals! The G+ Witch Hunt is officially on!
 
I think that if people had to pay for social media, you'd simply have only a tiny fraction of the population using that social media, and then they would leave immediately because no one they cared about was using it. It's a chicken-and-the-egg problem, and charging for the service simply gets rid of the egg... or is it the chicken?
 
If someone made something they should be allowed to charge people to use it, just because someone else decided to make a free option doesn't mean people should just give hard work away. Also it is your choice if you want to pay or not.
 
If Mr. Brogan offers a service that others find worth exchanging their money with him to receive, I have no idea why that would be of interest to anyone else? No one is forced to do business with him, as far as I understand the situation, and if his clients feel that they receive value for their money, what can anyone outside of the transaction possibly be objecting to? ~Tim
 
Oh believe me, if you have information others want/need, that's a market. You only fail in the market if you price it above what they are willing to pay. Heck, I know everything and I'd still pay Chris for intel. :)
 
I'll be honest - if I did not know +Chris Brogan from a personal standpoint, I might think this was some bogus nonsense, just another intertube scam. But after hanging out with him in more than a couple of good times and being honestly astounded by his brilliance? It's not a sales pitch of knowledge any more than going to college by a professor from the school of hard knocks. Period. He's got what's up, he knows it and he has ALREADY sold it to much wealthier people. 47$ for industry leading capabilities? You're damn right.
 
I for one never paid for FB. I do not click on ads, nor will I pay for games. Yet it is obviously a successful business model.
 
feel free, infopreneurship is valuable and if he's spent 250+ hours to my 24 hours, then that makes him an expert in my book, and i'd pay to learn more about it if i wished to..
 
Ok, +Chris Pirillo, let me rephrase that. Would you pay for information for a product that was not yet complete? This is technically in a field trial stage. What he's teaching on Wednesday could be outdated some Thursday. THAT is not knowledge I would pay for. The knowledge people are after should at least be stable knowledge. People wouldn't pay to learn a beta copy of Photoshop 6 in the 1st week of beta development would they? By the time the product hit shelves it more than likely would have changed a lot of mechanics/functionality.

Google has already posted a list of upcoming changes/fixes. I'm going to go ahead and assume Chris has no hard knowledge of exactly how ALL those changes/fixes will be implemented.
 
I don't see anything wrong with what he is doing. He doesn't appear to be misleading anyone about the product he is selling. He does not appear to be making unsupportable claims. This is in line with what he does for a living. If the knowledge he is selling is worth the price, people will pursue it. if not, it will go away. that is what markets are for. There is a huge industry built around facebook. Why would Google+ be different?
 
Context. If I need it now, I'll pay. Otherwise; I'll learn.
 
Well I definitely think it's a little foolish to offer 'expert' device about a service that isnt't even close to fully realized, but as already said as well I think this is a case of supply and demand. He feels he can supply guidance worth paying for, and it's credibility and value falls on the consumers and their demand for what he is offering.
 
I personally know several people who have come over here and don't understand how G+ works at all. I agree with whoever said to let the market decide.
 
It may be a bit premature to offer this now, but technology is always in a state of flux. If you wait for Google+ to stop changing before you offer instruction on it, you will never do so. If there are people who want to learn what +Chris Brogan knows and are willing to pay the fee he is charging, then no one else should really have a problem with it. It is a good deal by definition when both parties are satisfied with the arrangement.
 
I honestly don't see what the big deal is. He's got a great reputation, he's got a loyal following and he's not exploiting little puppies or children or anything. He's sharing what he knows with an audience who is eager to know. Yes, it's too early to know what G+ will ultimately become. But it's not too late to try and get a leg up on this thing just in case it takes off the way many think that it will. Just because most of us already know the basics doesn't mean that there's anything wrong with paying to learn them. And even if Google+ completely changes how it works, looks and feels in a couple of months, well, the people that paid to learn the basics will already be one step ahead of the game in the event that this thing explodes once made public.

I applaud +Chris Brogan for this. Sure I'm jealous that it's not me taking of advantage of something like that. But then again, I don't have the knowledge that he has. If the guy was shady or had a bad reputation, then I'm sure alot of his supporters (myself included) would be singing a slightly different tune. That's not the case here though, at least not from my point of view, so let's just see where this ride takes us and support those of you like +Mike Elgan , +Arleen Boyd , +Christina Trapolino and countless others who are sort of championing this movement. Even though it's yet another take on social media, it's still fairly new territory in that we don't know what all it can or will do. And every new movement like this needs leaders, cheerleaders and teachers. Let the man teach and make a little (or a lot) of money while he's at it.
 
I agree that this may be a bit premature to offer something like this, as there's not even business accounts on G+ yet. However, I applaud Chris for getting in before anyone else. If someone is going to pay for something like this, why shouldn't someone make money off of it?
 
Information and knowledge should be free!!! That used to be the mantra I remember when the internet was first around, and I never subscribed to it. It's a matter of the person who has the knowledge who is willing to share it with you at a fair price. I think that's not unreasonable no different than going to a college course or continuing education class.

I think it's important to have some value to what you believe is your knowledge and experience. If you don't value someone else's knowledge and experience do you freely give away your own at the expense of putting food on your table and a roof over your head?

Maybe that's what they call the "sellout" the person who actually decided to make some money doing what they used to do for free. I guess that applies to musicians, artists, and all other walks of life.
 
Is it me or is this 'outrage' by some an internet phenomenon? There is some expectation that anything non-tangible offered on the internet must be free today. While offline it doesn't seem so prevalent.

Should musicians not charge for any of their own concerts? Should teachers and professors not be able place a monetary value on their teaching skills?

We all have to pay taxes in the US. While you can do it all yourself, some are more than willing to pay an accountant or at least for tax software that will help them.

If you don't like it, simply don't purchase it. Chris isn't holding a gun to anyone's head.
 
Right now its mostly early adopters and techies on Google+. Not your target audience for such an event.
 
I just liked his awesome Facebook style post earlier that I accidentally shared to the public instead of my lolinternets Circle (yes, I have one).
 
Information can be free, but we routinely charge for laziness. I'm fine with that!
 
Teaching something unknown and changeable is no different than teaching the known. Learning has to start somewhere, so why not with a good teacher?
 
While I agree with some of what +Aaron Wood is saying, I also believe that the free market reigns. If someone is willing to pay for a service that they feel adds value, so be it. Old or new, sensible or not, people want what they want. Perhaps this is simply an extension of what google+ can and will deliver: participation at a faster pace. Caveat Emptor, always. 
 
If you could charge for intelligence, do you think Britney Spears would still be rich?
 
I'll let you know how the content is. As Time Ferriss mentioned in his post today 'We’re all ignorant of something, as mastering everything just isn’t an option'. I'd rather pay for someone who has spent more time with this than I have to give me the proverbial bullet points and things to consider. The cost is really insignificant. The fact that +Chris Brogan can leverage technology to deliver what an audience is willing to pay for for perceived value is fine by me. Its no different than any student that pays tuition.
 
Well it does seem a little odd to have a paid seminar on a product that's still in beta. It would be like paying for a generic apple pie recipe when the really good apple pie recipe will be released six months later. Then you just have to go buy that recipe too. But as far as beating him up over it, that seems uncalled for.
 
I think +Chris Brogan has a great idea to offer Google + for business training. The timing is impeccable and the price is very reasonable.
 
There must be plenty of business decision makers that might appreciate a solid overview of Google+, so they can talk about it intelligently with colleagues, customers, and employees
 
+Chris Pirillo I commented on 'experts' on another post by +David Schlesinger . I hope you don't mind if I re-post it here. It had to be said (and it seemed appropriate)...

Not to create a 'Love Fest' or anything, +Roger von Oech but I've seen random, and some un-random acts of kindness since my first five minutes on G+. David has been awesome, as have been many others, and like a fish without a purpose - I was hooked. That's what I am most thrilled about here - I have randomly run into the most amazing people here, and I never experienced that on those 'other' sites. To address the opening lob - I'm not necessarily against anyone self-proclaiming themselves as 'guru's' or 'experts' as long as they were there (here).

Since Day One, I've seen the +Chris Brogan 's and +David Schlesinger 's posting and helping people, and responding, and generously sharing their time and understanding of G+. I valued their opinions. So, overall, if some people have a problem with that, I'm okay. I was there (here) and I have directly seen their contributions to this New World, and I'll defend them against attackers if need be. But - if you weren't sharing and helping, and giving advice and 'holding hands' over the last three weeks - shame on you for saying so. I'm just saying...
 
It is nearing 12:45 AM EST where +Chris Brogan is - so I am sure he is resting up for his motivational seminar ;)
 
I'm playing Red Dead Redemption. There's a parallel in this..
 
+Chris Brogan can sell his talents as he see fit, who are we to say other wise. If hr has customers let him serve them without the mob critics.
 
People seem to be marrying 'free' with 'everything' since the rise of music downloads in the 1990s. I am guessing that a whole generation of people have grown up and entered the workforce with what amounts to zero respect for intellectual property.

But I think that's beside the point. What +Chris Brogan is doing is the same thing that professionals have been doing for millennia: selling a service that people want. Hasn't it occurred to any of his detractors that the very fact that they noticed he's charging means it has some value?
 
I think the bitterness, protestation and jealousy is borne out of people (or one person in particular, it would seem) doing the math. If Chris hadn't given away the fact that there were 1,000 seats, I wonder if the outrage would have been so loud. (See comment just above)
 
+mark mayhew Oh, so it matters how much it's worth? That's ridiculous. It's cheap. If that many people want it then good for him. If not, there are literally thousands of other places to get that information.
 
But that's only if he sold all 1,000 seats. He may only have sold one for all we know.
 
Personally, I love to IMITATE , not HATE on those who achieve some form of success.
 
I believe knowledge should be shared. That being said +Chris Brogan has been sharing a ton of it here on Google+. If he wants to charge someone for knowledge that he's attained on a more one to one level, where the value is worth the price, I'm okay with that.
 
My comment has just cost you five bucks. Please pay it into my Paypal before using my comment on your blog... %)
 
Wait a second... that wasn't a joke? That seemed to have been the consensus when I muted the post.

Honestly I do not think that Google+ is complicated enough to warrant someone being paid money to walk you through it Also, I just don't see how you can teach a seminar on how to use a product when no one can really say yet what the product will end up being in the long run.
 
It all depends on how one 'sees' it. It's all karma. If the 'info' in concern is really that elicit, ask yourselves, how did you get to that info. If it was easily available to you, and if I were you, I would make it easily available for others. If you had to struggle for it, it's your choice. But then, how do you define 'struggle'? Everything's relative and no one can do anything about it.
 
IMO, Chris Brogan brings value and if people decide they'd like to get some of his guidance, and it's worth paying for, then good for him. Why would anyone begrudge him that, or even have an opinion, really?

This issue reminds me of a story I heard once: An engineer worked for a large company, on one of their big machines, for 20 years. New management came in and thought, "We don't need him, we can figure it out ourselves". So the engineer was let go abruptly. A few weeks later, the machine stopped working, and try as try might, the new folks couldn't get it going. They were losing money for every minute it was offline, so they frantically called the engineer, who listened to the problem, and said he could fix it, but it would cost them $75K. The company was desperate, so they agreed. The engineer came in, spent 15 mintues checking the machine, and in the end, tightened one screw. The machine started working. The new management was flabbergast as they cut the engineer his check.."You spent 15 minutes, and tightened one screw. Is that worth $75K?". "Nope, it's not...but the $75K isn't for tightening the screw...it's for knowing which screw to tighten.".

A good reminder that information is power, and has measurable value. 
 
Nice one +Karin Konotchick Hanson. Here's another one, in similar lines.

Have you ever had a Chinese calligrapher write your name (no matter what race you are) in Chinese characters?

He does it so very quickly! Just a few minutes. Maybe only one minute. And his fee is not cheap.

Have you ever tried to ask him why he charges so much for one minute’s work? Can you imagine what he will tell you?

He will say, “You are not paying for one minute of my art. You are paying for 30 years and one minute, because I have been doing calligraphy for 30 years!”
 
Unfortunately, I'm not local :/ But I am at least within 50 min drive to Seattle! :D
 
Chris Brogan is a businessman, he sniffs out opportunities. Whilst I don't agree that you should charge for everything, when it is readily available elsewhere for nothing. People shouldn't berate him for doing so. As I said he's seen an opportunity to share his knowledge for a price. If you don't want to pay then don't, move on.

People will also pay for a unique perspective on something. Chris Brogan may see google+ from a perspective no one has ever considered.

I would pay if I thought a unique perspective was being offered.
 
I've been a technical instructor for 16 years. When my kids were younger, they asked me what I did. I responded "I read the book about a subject, then people pay me to tell them what the book said." They, of course thought that was pretty dumb for people to pay me to tell them what they could discover on their own, yet I've made a very good living at it. Isn't what Brogan is doing the same thing?
 
Many of you paid for various Windows OS at their initial release.....nuff said.
 
i wish Mr. Brogan good luck
If i need help with something i go on forums, technical assistance, most of the time i search it (google it mainly) and it's free...even better is the help of a friend...i stick with the free intelligence
 
Intelligence, like media, should be free for everyone in the public domain.
 
I don't believe charging for information is wrong at all. If you are the holder of the information you have the right to do with it what you please. As the consumer if you don't agree with paying for it then don't. It's that simple.
 
+Chris Brogan is allowed to charge for any Webinar he wants. Most of us here have already figured Google plus out so we also had the option to create a webinar and charge for it and those of us who are not interested in doing that shouldn't have to beat him down for trying to earn a living. Its our choice to devise new creative ways to make money of social media which is what Chris did.
 
He has every right to charge what the market will bear, if you don't like it don't use the service
 
I'd never pay for it because it's a generally useless product if you know how to use the G search engine or the help pages. However, if people are willing to pay, why not? I give advice to my non-tech friends for free and would never considering charging, but I'm not a business. I wonder, though, what will happen to his customers when there's a huge update and his info becomes obsolete.
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