Podtech.net: the dark horse of the new media pack
It's a perfect contrast of new and old media distribution models. Podtech is very much a media company of these times: its printing press is the Internet and its focus is on publishing video and audio content.
It wants to become the YouTube of compelling video content for Silicon Valley and beyond... and to take over the world, of course.
These are healthy ambitions for a Silicon Valley startup. And Mr Furrier's New Jersey roots bring an extra kick to the company's ambitions.
What has impressed me for a long time about Mr Furrier is that his instincts as a media entrepreneur have been spot on. His analysis of media and the disruption of the economic models in that sector is very similar to mine but we get to our analysis by different routes.
I worked as a software engineer a long long time ago, so my analysis comes from having worked in mainstream media and now working in the new (conversational) media. We see things very much in the same way, we tell each other insights that we already know, about how things are changing.
Mr Furrier has been on my People Watch list for a while now because he has been making some very savvy moves. Last year, SVW had a massive story, nearly as massive as our discovery of the identity of LonelyGirl 15, it was: Robert Scoble leaving Microsoft for PodTech.
The next day I met with Robert Scoble and congratulated him on his return to the valley. I also ran into Mr Furrier, who was seated quietly on a sofa, tapping on his laptop.
I swear he had a Cheshire Cat grin on his face. It was a brilliant deal. He'd just picked up the largest brand in the blogosphere, Scobleizer. That's what Richard Edelman (Edelman is an SVW sponsor) did too, giving a job to Steve Rubel and Micropersuasion, the largest blog brand in PR.
Robert and Steve have done very well with their blogging, increasing their incomes, and have built proven media brands that they can take with them wherever they go.
BTW, blogging is great for your career. Blogging is by far the most honest form of self-promotion bar none--because you can't fake it. Software engineers have been landing plum jobs in this way for years.
Mr Furrier has been equally savvy in building the rest of his team, now up to 40. I know several from pre-PodTech. He has many media professionals on the team, recruited from Hollywood and from public radio and TV stations. Their mission is to use their professional skills to produce tons of compelling content for their network.
PodTech is up to 36 customers, which includes large tech firms such as Seagate, Intel (Intel is an SVW sponsor) and Computer Associates.
Podtech recently launched its own Flash video player for its hosted videos which follows a YouTube type model. I said I would try it out over on Silicon Valley Minute. And there are some interesting projects coming from PodTech that I'll be writing about later this year.
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The era of the media engineerTechnology is a cheap commodity, and getting cheaper. Original content is not cheap, and producing it requires real people, with real expertise. That means the future belongs to tech-savvy content producers and technology-enabled media companies. Not to automated link-harvesters and aggregators. imho.
Posted by Tom Foremski on August 19, 2005 8:00 AM
My son Matt is exhausted from telling the story of LonelyGirl15 to the media so many times. He did well, I'm not sure I could have handled that kind of attention at 18 years old.
Wednesday was a whirlwind. I hadn't realized how much interest there would be in our part in the LonelyGirl15 (LG15) story. My 18 year old son Matt Foremski became a prime focus for this part of the story: the unmasking...
By Matt Foremski and Tom Foremski for Silicon Valley Watcher One of the most interesting questions in the online world is who is LonelyGirl15? We think we know who she is. Late last week it was revealed that LonelyGirl15, aka...
Photo by Scott Beale of Laughing Squid. . . .I usually try to keep my weekends geek-free but Sunday afternoon I popped into VLoggerCon, the conference for video bloggers. As soon as I walked in Robert Scoble almost walked...
Posted by Tom Foremski on June 12, 2006 12:55 AM
Andy Plesser from Plesser Holland and the videoblog Beet.tv just called and told me Robert Scoble is leaving Microsoft and will join PodTech.net, the podcasting network. He will be moving from Seattle to Silicon Valley....