I’m Over Here Now [FAQ]

As of last Friday – the only place to get regular updates from me is here at rizzn.com. Change your email address for me to guesswho@rizzn.com. Unfortunately, given the amount of buzz going on around the tubes at the moment, I can’t publicly address or answer questions regarding the nature of my departure for my former position. None-the-less, at this point I don’t bear anyone any ill will, and still treasure the time I’ve spent blogging the last fifteen months or so. It was a great opportunity, and a great learning experience to see what the media world looks like from atop a mountain instead of always being in the unseen trenches. The questions I’ve seen that I can address and clear up is what’s on the horizon for me next (or at least I can attempt to clear that up). What Am I Going to be Doing Next? That’s a real good question. As many of you know, I’m in the midst of a move to Dallas that’s set to conclude the 27th of this month. As such, I’m very interested in what sort of opportunities I’m going to find there. What’s even more interesting has been the flood of very cool and enticing offers that I’ve seen in just the last few days. This is a brand new experience for me – generally, I’m used to scraping and clawing for every consulting gig I can come across.  Now that word is spreading that I’m a free agent, I’m getting people actually trying to compete to employ my talents. This, needless to say, is awesome, and contributes to...

Get Off My (Virtual) Lawn!

Just another cynical observation today, but it seems that with the election out of the way, and all of us settling into a routine of living in the world of our current “Great Depression,” it’s time to trot out the tired old tropes of the social media punditry world.  They’re only trickling in now, but I’m starting to see the resurgence of the blog post on the “A-List” and “B-List” blogs that follows the format… Pick some well established and known aspect of social media or Web 2.0 that’s a primary focus or recurring topic for the blog they’re writing on.. .. talk about how poorly it’s monetized or harp on every single failure that company has had over the year(s)… .. and then somehow tie it into cynical overtones of how there’s a culture of stupid with a trite quote mangle like “Dude, where’s my business model?” or “Honey, I Shrunk the Payroll!” I’m not naming names, but I’ll be honest, there are very few people in my business that have earned the right to write articles like that. Most of the ones who tend to write these articles either live and participate in the Silicon Valley culture…  You know what? Skip that thought. The irony is that these people don’t realize that they absolutely require high levels of technology euphoria to continue in perpetuity if they want to keep collecting paychecks. The thing that they lazily work to undermine every day is what’s responsible for their lifestyle. That never seems to prevent them from jumping on the bandwagon every single time Steve Rubel puts up a blog post...

5 Friggin' Fantastic Blogs

BlogDay this thing thought up by some folks who want bloggers to honor bloggers. I’ve been blogging since the 90s, and this is the first I’ve heard of it. I’m pretty much already on the outs with anyone who owns a computer, these days, since I’m not a card carrying Democrat. That pretty much means I’m required to participate in these sorts of memes so that folks can take breaths between meltdowns induced by my political beliefs (real or perceived). The idea here is that I recommend my readers 5 others blogs that I read/like/would recommend. Get your clicking finger handy, here they come:Sean Kennedy : You wanna talk crazy politics? This is your guy. He’s one of the founders of RantRadio, and is probably most famous for instigating the Wog movement (that is, anti-Scientology) and his Suicide Rant. He’s currently the host of the NewsReal podcast and is finishing up his latest novel, an adaptation of the Afternow audio drama. Links to all that crap are on his blog. Eat it all up. StarterTech : Remember that thing I said about early adopters? You know I was right. We all know or are related to folks who just don’t get it. Sean P. Aune, fellow writer at Mashable, does this site and gets it right (and gets it so that the newbs can understand). WinExtra : You know Steven Hodson. Why aren’t you subscribed to him yet? Chris Brogan : Dude just rocks. He knows everyone, knows darn near everything, and seems to get along with everyone. If you don’t like Chris, there might be something wrong with...

Digital Bill of Rights – Are You Kidding Me?

Just a bit ago, Erick Schonfeld over at Techcrunch posted a public call for a Digital Bill of Rights. Unlike Steven Hodson, I won’t say that this is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard, but only because I had a very similar idea myself when I first logged onto the net in the 90s and saw all it was capable of. The difference was back then it was the 90s, I was a 14-year-old, and I had very little wisdom or life experience to give the ideas I had any sort of meaningful perspective. I had intended to do a video on it this evening, but my computer’s acting up – just as well, since Steven grabbed me for an episode of his discussion points podcast. Download the MP3 here. I’ll break it down in text for those of you without 23 minutes to spare: Most of what Erick said is pure puffery. Many of the things on his list are mutually exclusive from one another. Others don’t need to be rights because they aren’t things that could be legislated away. The list is far too US-centric – the Internet is international. Most importantly, asking for these things to be guaranteed as rights is tantamount to trampling the rights of others. If I start a website, and there is codified law that says I must follow certain laws to say, guarantee privacy of folks who may leave a comment, doesn’t that impede the free exchange of information (another thing he calls for)? It delves down a rabbit hole of complete contradictory nonsense. None of it appeared to be very...

Closer To Epiphany

I want to express appreciation to all the commenters (here and on FriendFeed) on my last piece, as well as Darren Rowse, Duncan Riley, Steven Hodson, and Alexander M. Zoltai for bringing attention to my emerging thoughts. I’m a bit closer to some thoughts and revelations on this. I wanted to highlight one thing in particular that bubbled up in the comments for me that I’ll either end up talking about later here or at Mashable today from Chris Baskind: > Exclusively text content cannot be monetized indefinitely under the current prevailing business models This is pretty close to a eureka moment all by itself. I responded with something akin to “this topic is pretty taboo,” which is true. It’s the type of thing I’d love to explore in front of the much wider audience over at Mashable, but given that it’s a pro-blog, and it might be viewed as some as decreasing confidence in the type of advertisements we sell at Mashable, it might be seen by the higher-ups as something I shouldn’t be doing. It’s definitely something you’re not going to see explored in great depth by most of the A-Listers, and it’s really not something that folks who haven’t worked at a blog Mashable’s size can speak on with experience. Hopefully I’ll find a way to tactfully break this barrier, because it’s something that needs...

Why Go Negative?

Up until Steven Hodson joined up at Mashable, I think there was little contest with regard to who was the most controversial writer at the company (now, though he gives me a bit of a run for my money!). Although no one has explicitly asked the question, I’m pretty perceptive, and I’m sure a lot of the folks who know me and read the site often wonder why I take my articles the direction that I do (that direction being usually politically unpopular positions, and technically unorthodox statements). There’s a complex consortium of motivations behind it. I’m conflicted whether or not I want to pull back the curtain on this. On the one hand, I only have about six or seven readers – but as we learned from Loren this week is that things you say can have a way of coming back to bite you much later. Fortunately for me, none of this could be construed as racism, so I should be fairly safe. In no particular order, my motivating factors: By and large, and particularly from the blogger perspective, readers are unengaged and lazy. If I write straight news pieces, by the numbers, about 1:10,000 readers will comment on a piece. If I add two paragraphs of analysis (read: opinion), I can increase that ratio to 1:1,000. If I use a controversial position, I can increase it to 1:100. It’s so predictable, I can count on it. Controversy is a cattle prod that’s useful for shocking the readers out of their reverie when they’ve had a long holiday weekend or a particularly boring news week. I’m a...

The Current Podcast Renaissance

Friday evening, my fellow Mashable writer Steven Hodson sat in on a sort of round-table podcast with Profy writer Cyndy Aleo-Carreira, Inquisitr‘s (and occasional Mashable contributor) Duncan Riley, and Cyndy’s husband (sorry, didn’t catch his name!). It’s apparently destined to become a weekly thing, and another instance of members of the alleged “rat pack” spidering out into all parts of the blogosphere. I like to think this trend all began with the ‘rat pack’ podcast “Elite Tech News,” the weekly foray into tech as decided by the L33t Reddit Filter. The podcast is unofficially part of the Mashable family of podcasts (but in no way owned by Mashable, and is not a Mashable property – in fact, we really don’t even think of it as a property). The management never explicitly sanctioned it, but somehow I got away with throwing it online into the site’s mix (I think I asked someone at some point, but no one can remember who okayed it – not even me). Four members of the rat pack panel are in some way affiliated with the Mashable, and Sean P. Aune and Adam Ostrow have been past guest panelists (as have Allen Stern and Robert Scoble), hence the unofficial Mashable affiliation. Still, VentureBeat‘s MG Seigler, The Blog Herald‘s Jason Kaneshiro and ReadWriteWeb‘s Frederic Lardinois have all been members of the l33t tech squad since the beginning. The idea for a podcast grew organically as the group came together, but as one of the people who suggested it (you knew it had to be me, right?), I can say that I was inspired by Leo Laporte’s...

Been Busy This Weekend

First of all: congrats to Louis and his family. I know how amazing it is to see your children appear before your very eyes. It’s lifechanging, amazing, and can reduce an otherwise stoic man to tears. I know it did that for me. In other news, I’ve been building video elements for my new video podcast. Instead of saying some sage things here, I’ll point you to some hopping conversations elsewhere: Steve started a topic I really like here, and continued it here. Chris Brogan talks about Liz Strauss and business for bloggers. I started this at Mashable, but it’s a topic that I’ve been talking about for ages: Veg-Factor. Both Sean Kennedy and I are against gun control. Here’s why. There aren’t many left in the Rat Pack who haven’t been absorbed by the big boys. Congrats Frederic (and Corvida!) That’s it. Hopefully I’ll have some episodes to start showing you folks next week....

Elite Tech News #11: Hot Coffee Pods

Hey Rizzn-ites, I figure, since I’m posting here regularly, there’s no reason I shouldn’t use this personal blog platform to pimp my other podcast as well, Elite Tech News, to all four of my readers (or is it five? Steven, did you ever subscribe to the feed?). I say that it’s “my” podcast, but that’s just because I elected myself ringleader and ‘dictator for life.’ What really makes it something anyone else would want to listen to are the other guests and I do mean that. Last time I did a solo one hour podcast gig, I had about as many listeners to that show as I do readers of my personal blog (since the reset). This week, it was a smaller panel, consisting of Frederic, Steven and I with my buddy Art doing the producer thing. We went off on a number of tangents, and if you look at all the other blog posts about it, you can get all the topics we started with. Aside from those, I know we talked about: DHL losting my laptop last Christmas. Class warfare. Noah David Simon on FriendFeed and Twitter. My love of liveblogging, and MG’s new love of FriendFeed as a liveblogging platform. Igor the Troll, and how Scoble blocked him. Other things. In other words, we’re apparently honing our bantering skills. Check it out and enjoy! You can download the directly show from here or: Subscribe to the Elite Tech News podcast here or: Add directly to iTunes here (or give us a rating) Add directly to your Zune...