How I Became The Most Dangerous Man on the Internet

The title “Most Dangerous Man on the Internet” is a tongue-in-cheek poke at people that believe people like myself are the most evil people on the planet. It’s insane hyperbole on their part. Sure some of what I have done can be characterized as “spam”, but in the end I am a realist and do not see any purity in the marketing game.

It is at its purest form:

the commercial processes involved in promoting and selling and distributing a product or service

Not exactly feeding the hungry.

However, I have not always been the spammer and wretched master of Internet manipulation I am now. In fact, I used to have a truly noble profession, I was a teacher.

In 2005, at the age of 23 I decided I was not going to be a famous musician and needed to get a real job. Armed with a degree in the always sought after craft of Creative Writing, pickins were slim. So I decided to try my hand at teaching. I was hired by Westglades Middle School to teach 7th grade English.

Imagine the terror of being 12 years old and walking into your classroom the first day of school and seeing me at the dry erase board.

Recently speaking at Bend WebCAM

I spent the next three years teaching. There is no profession more noble than that of an educator. That is a fact. The patience, understanding, and sacrifice of the educator is something that is overlooked in society. This becomes profoundly clear when you are in the trenches, working with kids and scraping by on very little pay.

During my first year of teaching I had one of the most emotional periods of my life. I got married, my best friend died, and had my first son, Dante. I had a family to support on a teachers salary, and living in South Florida was expensive so I moved my family into my parents house to save money and basically make ends meet. It was insane, and demoralizing, but not as demoralizing as what came next.


For my family, our situation was not as serious as the epidemic that faces nearly 500,000 people in this country. However, we did lack a safe,  permanent place to live, and nothing has ever scared me more. A series of events led to my family being without a place to live shortly after Hurricane Wilma. Basically here were the events (Update: I was the direct cause of my housing issues. No one was to blame but me. I thought I made this clear when I first wrote the post, but wanted to clarify. My parents are awesome, and although they loved this post, I don’t want anyone thinking negatively of them. I don’t and never will blame others for my mistakes):

1) Hurricane hits

2) Parents + My three person family loses power for an extended period of time

3) Tempers flare

4) Two large men get into confrontation

5) 1 family has no place to live

We were not on the streets, so put away the tissues. We were quickly taken in by a generous friend, and I found a way to get my family into a home. The only way I could make this happen was getting a roommate; again I was demoralized.

Here I was, a productive member of society, and I coudn’t support my family. I couldn’t even get us our own place to live. I was shaping young minds and trying to figure out how I was going to make my student loan payments to pay off my own education.

This was not the place for me. So I began to tutor on the side, and work 16 hour days to get us out of the funk. Nothing worked out for me. There were times we couldn’t pay rent. There were times we had to borrow cash for groceries.

12 months past. Wounds healed with my family, and I wanted to save up to buy a house, so in my infinite wisdom I decided to move my three person family back in with my parents. I think you know what happened next.


So after a few months a series of events led to us not having a place to live again and being taken in by another charitable friend. The series of events:

1) Parents + My three person family get on each others nerves

3) Tempers flare

4) Two large men get into confrontation

5) 1 family has no place to live

Within a few weeks I was able to scrounge up enough money to put my three person family into a 700 square foot one bedroom apartment. I broke. My third year of teaching I decided my life had to change. I could not raise my son like this, and my wife had been promised more than this when we married.

But what the hell did I have to offer the world? What could I do to change my fate? I was good at writing, teaching, and playing bass guitar, none of which were lucrative professions on average.

I began to scour the web for paid writing opportunities, and began working for a number of fantasy sports publications and scouting minor league players for some baseball sites. It was pretty cool, but tiring. I would work all day, tutor for a few hours, then travel to Jupiter to watch the minor league teams play, and finally end up in front of a computer writing updates on fantasy sites for a few bucks an update.

I wondered what would happen if I took what I was doing for other sites and did it for my own. I started a blog, (I let it lapse long ago). I didn’t know what a CMS was, so I just hand coded HTML web pages.

Sidenote: If you want to understand HTML and on page SEO, you should really be able to code a full HTML webpage in notepad.

I began to learn about SEO, analytics, how to monetize a website, the importance of unique content, and how to run an editorial calendar. I devoured everything I could read about websites and how to market them. I made a decision.

Job change.

I took a gamble, one that was fought fiercely by everyone I knew. I was going to leave teaching and find a job in the web world. At first I thought I would just find a gig as a content manager at a web design firm, but soon I began getting calls on my resume about SEO and online marketing. I didn’t know a ton about the topics, so I devoured more and more information on the concepts.

I got a new job.

I learned more, became better, worked in a competitive niche, and learned how to control the SERPs. I learned how to handle large PPC accounts. I studied even more. I began messing with social media for branding and link building.

Some people in life are lucky enough to find the career that is a perfect fit for them. Internet marketing was tailor made for me. I could create concepts to drive traffic and leverage search with ease within less than a year of my career change. Insane amounts of study and a knack for creativity were a perfect mixture to create a successful Internet marketer. When I talk to SEOs now who throw around how long they have been in the business I happily tell them I have only been professionally doing this for a portion of their lengthy career, because in the end talent and drive are what this game is all about, not the number of years someone has been mediocre.

Within six months of changing my career I was helping a large company achieve 30% growth in the travel space through organic search, a 700% ROI on average from PPC, and had a successful branding campaign running for them via social media.

Within 1 year I was writing for my friend Andy Beal at

Within two years I was speaking at my first SES.

Speaking in Denver on a Black Hat/White Hat Panel with Frank Watson and Scott Polk

Now I co-own one of the most respected search publications on the web, and an industry respected search agency. I work alongside some of the best minds in search, and most innovative companies online.

Me with two “bad men”, Dave Naylor and Todd Friesen

This isn’t the full story, and there were plenty more hardships, but I want people to take something away from the portions I have shared. Everyone has talents that if given the proper opportunity can equal success. Hard work + an understanding of your talents + luck = success. You control the first two components.

So when people attack me, and call me a spammer, or tell me I am a bad person because I market online to make money, I shrug it off. I wonder if they have ever wondered where there 1 year old son is going to sleep at night, or had to scrounge for rent. I wonder if they have ever been afraid of the future, and the life they can give their family. The reality is that the only people whose opinions matter to me live in my house, the one I can now pay for every month without a worry.

So yeah I am a bad man, the most dangerous man on the Internet, but more importantly I am a husband and father that worked his ass off to give his family the life they deserved, and in the end those are probably the only titles I actually care about.

A Return to Blogging

So I have tweaked SnydeySense, and I am making a commitment to return to blogging. This time out I will be using SnydeySense for true blogging, bringing a voice to things in the tech, business, and internet space that interest me. More of my internet marketing related posts will be found on , which is where they belong anyway.

So what has been happening since my last stint of regular blogging:

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