I’ve had a few random, semi-connected, somewhat emotional things happen over the last few days. It’s all jumbled up in my head, but tomorrow I fly to Seattle for the Microsoft Search Champs event, and the time “offline” will hopefully allow me to bake everything and settle down. But for now, it’s 2:30 in the morning, I’m exhausted but I can’t sleep. Here’s some of it:
1. A good friend today told me that someone told him to “watch out for Arrington” because “he clearly has an agenda”. I normally have a pretty thick skin (ok that’s a lie), but this really hit home. I’ve also gotten a few nasty comments thrown my way on techcrunch lately that suggest the same thing.
It seems that people don’t understand why someone could just write a blog about companies and leave it at that. They assume I have some outside influence that affects what I write about or what I say.
All I can say is: I love companies and the people who start them. I am passionate about them in a way I can’t describe. I love it. I have no agenda other than that.
2. I have a bit of a problem around a company I’ve gotten to know recently. I like their product a lot and think that they are doing something that’s interesting and good for the web. But one of their founders is a really bad person. I know this person from years ago and witnessed him doing some incredibly evil stuff. Not go-to-jail kind of stuff, but seriously deranged, selfish behavior and I suspect that there is a lot of ugliness and potential violence just beneath the surface. The other founders seem great. For now, I am not writing about the company, but its really bothering me.
3. On a happier note, I had lunch today with a whole bunch of really smart people. Dave Winer, Steve Gillmor, Sylvia Paull, Carleen Hawn (who I’ve run into twice in the last two weeks), Laurence Toney, Ted Cho and Tom Maddox. There was some incredible brainpower there and an interesting discussion around blogging/journalism. Steve wrote some really nice things about me. And this got me thinking – just a year ago most of the people at that table were celebrities to me – people who I knew through their writing but never really thought I’d “know”. They are my friends now, they include me in their conversations and occasionally ask for my advice. It’s thrilling, and I still feel a bit overwhelmed by it. It’s like, when are they going to find out I’m a total nobody and stop talking to me?
4. TechCrunch has taken a bit of a turn to the dark side recently with some fairly harsh posts on companies like Ning and Tello. In the past I’d just not write about stuff like that, and focus more on the positive. I don’t know if this is making me a more balanced writer, or if it’s an unhealthy trend that needs to be addressed.
5. Edgeio is almost ready for private testing. It’s exciting but stressful. Also, I am trying to figure out what role TechCrunch should play in getting the message out about edgeio. The conflict is obvious, but edgeio is something I would write about if I weren’t a founder. I need to figure this out soon, and make sure I’m very clear on the conflict.
6. There is someone new and incredibly important in my life and I’ve been smiling more than usual.
7. I hung out with Steve and Dave after the lunch today, and then drove Steve home and spent more time with him. He’s so smart he makes my head hurt. And he talked about some self-defeating tendencies people we know have…and I realized I also have every one of these bad habits. More stuff to fix…