Silicon Valley Watcher - Former FT journalist Tom Foremski reporting from the intersection of technology and media

Out and About: TechCrunch et al . . . Techmeme in SF . . . UK Guardian in SF . . . and Backlash on Scoble's Link Baiting

Posted by Tom Foremski - September 7, 2008

I popped in to see Pat Phelan and pals on Sunday evening because of the Techcrunch50 (TC50) conference this week. Pat is one of Ireland's top entrepreneurs and CEO of Cubic Telecom and the MaxRoam service, a disruptive mobile company (new info tomorrow). Pat and a few others have rented a house in San Francisco for the week and had a bit of a house warming with a few dozen people.

In addition to TC50, the DEMO conference also starts start this week. And although DEMO is in San Diego and TC50 is in San Francisco, there are a lot of people in town because of these events, and a lot of chatter about the merits of the two conferences.

Some people say that it's not right that DEMO, which selects presenting companies, as does TechCrunch50, charges $18,000 per company for the opportunity. But if you factor in travel costs, accomodation, and tickets to the conferences for your teams, there is probably little difference between the two when each company's costs are summed up at the end of the week.

My opinion is that there is room for both conferences and this rivalry is just plain old link baiting and tiresome.

Also tiresome is Robert Scoble's attack on the web sites of nearly all the companies presenting at DEMO. He criticized their web site design and thus their marketing.

Startups: your web site sucks

I visited each website from the list of Demo finalists.

Boy, do they suck. Really, really suck.

This is just Robert trying to be controversial and it seems to be backfiring badly. The people I met with yesterday and today were universally disdainful of his approach. He spent much of the weekend trying to put out the fires online.

Scoble’s rant reflects badly on him, not the 72 companies — Alec Saunders SquawkBox

Moving to San Francisco: Gabe Rivera who runs the popular Techmeme news aggregator is now living in San Francisco in the "Dog Patch" neighborhood in the south of the city. He moved up from Menlo Park about three weeks ago. I'm trying to persuade Gabe to host a loft-warming party.

200809072145.jpgAlso new to San Francisco is Bobbie Johnson, from the UK newspaper The Guardian. He is living South of Market and trying to decide on which neighborhood to live in. "Our closest correspondent is in Los Angeles, which is not close enough for covering Silicon Valley," he said.

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Please see:

The Man Who Broke the Telco Cartel . . . and Bridged the Global "Voice Divide"

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