Shhhh, rock and roll show, don’t pass it on…

I picked up this week’s Portland Phoenix and read the review of the new disc by Dominic and the Lucid. Very favorable review. I’ve heard great things about them, and am interested in checking out the CD release show. Awesome! Ok, I see it’s at the Empire. That’s a good club, I’ve been there before, let’s just jog over to their website… oh no, my heart just sunk. Please tell me they have a website! I plug in my trusty search into Google: “empire portland maine” Success! Oh joyous light shining from above, narrowing your heavenly beams on me and my hip mac laptop (cut out the glare, though, seriously). The very first hit on Google is the website for the actual EMPIRE club in Portland! My faith in humanity has been restored.

Let’s give it little click-aroo.

No.

No, please.

This … no, this isn’t happening.

Please, I encourage everyone to go there now. As of this posting, which is 3:40 PM on August 22, 2008, the first thing you read on the Empire’s website is “Cool show on Sunday” posted on May 2, 2008. Over three months ago.

30 PM - 8-22-08

Empire Screen Shot - Main Page - 3:30 PM - 8-22-08

Ouch. That is painful. But, hey, I’m forgiving, I’m sure they at least update their calendar! Who wouldn’t update their online calendar? Click on “Live Schedule” (if you have a steel encrusted stomach).

30 PM - 8-22-08

Empire Screen Shot - Live Schedule - 3:30 PM - 8-22-08

Speaks for itself, doesn’t it? “Stay tuned for updates shortly.”  This gets the all time WTF.  Let’s weigh the pros and cons of not posting your establishment’s events on your website.

Pros

  • Undesirable patrons (drunks, hippies, bad tippers) won’t stumble across the event during their e-searching – at the public library – for places to raise rucki
  • Hipsters may think they are the only ones in the know about your secret event and will have falsely raised opinions of your club
  • Okay, I’m reaching here, I can’t even think of any good funny “Pro’s”. On to the Cons…

Cons

  • People with internet-adoring ways may not think your club is open, and won’t come and give you their money
  • It looks like you have your head firmly up your ass
  • Someone Googling a band that has played there won’t stumble across your site and now know about how cool your venue is for having had that band play there
  • Someone wanting quick info about the show – at your venue – won’t be able to get it from – your site
  • You’re ostracizing the 2-300 internet using Portland denizens
  • You’re contributing to the social acceptability of not using the internet as a means of promotion
  • You’re doing a disservice to the bands that play there by not doing the simplest means of getting the word out
  • If you have your events listed, the only possible difference conceivable is that MORE PEOPLE MIGHT COME. That benefits you financially, the band financially, the people who come entertainably
  • It benefits all the same parties longterm because when more people attend the event it builds a bigger scene and the comfort with, and even an expectation of, going out, and seeing, and being seen on the scene

In conclusion, what is wrong with you people! In the time it took me to write this post, you could have the whole next month up there. Did you lose the password to your admin site?

Why bother with a website when you have foot traffic?

And another thing – websites are impossible to set up. Cumbersome. Send away a check, wait 6-8 weeks, finally you take your screwdriver out – and always end up losing the screws – open the casing, install your photos you just got back from the developer, let it sit over night, and bam, if you’re lucky, a website. Well, I can’t see any benefit to having one to begin with, I don’t need someone at home looking at my stuff or my store or my restaurant, I need them here, shopping, purchasing, consuming. Fiddlesticks. Down with new, up with old.

Right, so, it’s 2008. If you’re a business, if you’re an artist, if you even so much as ‘like stuff,’ you should have a website. No, I take back “should” (if only there was a way to go back and edit my own sentence!). It’s absolutely imperative. Any place I’m about to visit or check out or think about giving some of my money to, I go right to google and type in the name of the place and “portland maine” (gotta add ‘maine’ otherwise you get all the delectable options from across the country). Anything more frustrating (in the realm of establishment google searching I mean) than finding simply a bunch of references in local papers ABOUT the place? Get a website. Even if it’s just a virtual business card, get your info up there, it’s not expensive. 50-60 bucks a year, with full hosting, probably even cheaper if you’re just getting a web presence up. In 2008, there’s no excuse.

What prompted this? My last post about late night food. I added a link easily for Becky’s – I googled “becky’s diner portland maine” and the first hit was their site. Excellent. Then I googled “hot suppa portland maine” and got a ton of references in MaineToday and other online review sites. No official site. I was trying to find the name of the head chef – it was in the original Phoenix article – I wanted to use it. No, nope. Bummer. It’s a shame that the internet police keep such tight reigns on who can and cannot set up websites. If not for them, just anyone could create online content. Then what use would the World Wide Web be?

Too bad Hot Suppa is ineligible for website activity, it’s got some awesome corned beef hash.