Where Have The Bloggers Gone?

The VC blogs didn’t seem as active last week as they have in previous months. Is the bloom off the blogging rose? Most likely not.

We can excuse Steve Jurvetson (http://jurvetson.blogspot.com) for not having posted anything new since early January. His firm, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, just closed on a $400 million fund (see story, page 4).

But we also noticed that deal activity slowed last week, as evident by our having only one page of listings for our Week In Deals chart (page 10), which is normally stuffed with two pages of transactions.

Perhaps all the VCs, many of whom reside in the San Francisco Bay Area, headed to Lake Tahoe and other mountain resorts to enjoy lots of snow and a break in the weather.

If so, then next week’s blogs should be all about the slopes they conquered.

A Tivo Replay

Fred Wilson, Flatiron

I recently received a call from an executive recruiter who was handling the Tivo CEO search.

I didn’t return the call, because I am not interested in the job and frankly I don’t know anyone who is.

But it got me thinking about what I’d do if I had to do that job.

I’d walk away from the cable and satellite operators who only want to commoditize Tivo. And I’d focus on building a low-end version of a Media PC that allows people to bypass the cable and satellite operators and get their entertainment directly from the Internet. I’d build it on Linux and low-cost hardware and use the Tivo brand to generate demand for the product.

I’d also get into the content aggregation business to provide programming on this device.

As Steve Jobs has said, selling to the cable and satellite operators is a no-win proposition. So Tivo has to walk away from that business and find a new one that they can serve.


Ten Years of Drudge

Paul Kedrosky, Venture Fellow, Ventures West Management Inc.

Name the most popular and only blog in the top 50 Internet properties, as measured by traffic. Think it’s Instapundit or BoingBoing? Wrong.

It is the one and only Drudge Report, of course – and this is the 10th anniversary of Matt’s still-influential site.

It is worth reminding people newly hyperventilating about blogs – which, by the way, Matt Drudge maintains he is not – that Matt beat us all to the punch; he gets more traffic than all the popular blogs combined; and he clears better than $65,000 a month.

And we, well, don’t.

Say what you will about Drudge, but he nearly took down a sitting president singlehandedly. Sure, he did it mostly because he could; and yes, he created a dangerous political attack culture that will outlast all of us, but you can’t deny his impact.

He is frequently scurillous, silly, vain-glorious, and vamping, but he still breaks stories, or at least finds stuff before everyone else does, and then he pounds that drum relentlessly (even if it’s a misguided attempt to get Chris Rock fired as Oscar host).

In other words, Matt Drudge may be a force for something – but that something is really just the greater glory of Matt Drudge.


Bloggers Beware

David Hornik, August Capital

If there is one thing that I think is the hallmark of a successful corporate blog, it is the willingness of the blogger to speak candidly about the good and bad of his or her company and that corporation’s commitment to allow such a conversation without fear of repercussion.

Needless to say, such candor is a scary thing for many corporations; but, without it, corporate blogging becomes nothing more than company slideware.