To his undying credit, John Stokdyk acknowledged the cock ups that AccountingWeb made in attempting to get its pay to play effort back on track Right now, they’re in deep water with little credible way of getting out. It’s a classic example of media thinking it understands what’s going on but without using its muscle to get side by side with those who deal with the real issues, parsing those and then coming out the other side with any sense of balanced understanding. It’s the triumph of half arsed understanding over real experience. In doing so, they utterly miss the point. John rightly notes that:
Rarely does Dennis Howlett miss an opportunity to send a barb in our direction
He’s right but then AW is cannon fodder for those who understand fundamental error. John is gracious enough to say that on some points I’m hitting it on the head. I’m happy to take the validation. I’d go further – John is pleasant – I am not so pleasant. But then there is good reason. To be frank, AW doesn’t have a credible alternative position yet we’re talking about a real industry with real values that can deliver breakthrough end user value AW has yet to comprehend let alone acknowledge. That matters. Here’s the real problem. AW asserts:
The size of the finance contingent at the main event is a concern, and I find it odd that a technology as apparently democratic as the Cloud is following the traditional adoption pattern where corporates buy in early and SMEs follow along when it matures. But then, of course, there are a number of cultural, procedural and technological barriers holding finance and accountancy back from the Cloud.
What we try and do on AccountingWEB.co.uk and other Sift Media communities is reflect and respond to our members. Our Software Satisfaction Awards are tellilng us is that Cloud accounting applications are taking off in significant numbers (roughly doubling each year for the past two years). The Cloud vendors have caught the attention of the HR & CRM sectors, but as I told the panel yesterday, the Cloud’s real battle for business hearts and minds is now taking place within the finance and accounting function.
[My emphasis added.]
This is utter rubbish and completely backside about apex. Large scale adoption is working in exactly the opposite way to that AW asserts. I have the stats to prove. If AW had used its claimed 600K subscription base to truly understand what is happening then it would know the reverse of what it suggests represents the real adoption curve. In turn, it would be asking a very different,much more incisive set of questions. My current conclusion is that AW doesn’t understand that today’s media is not just about community but about challenging what they see as the norms for the benefit of all who are part of that community. If not then we all end up in a sea of mediocrity and in a navel gazing exercise that stifles the very innovations that SaaS is delivering.
In the meantime AW has to find a way of leveraging its allegedly qualified database. I have an answer to that. See next Monday’s post.