Continuing trouble for TechCrunch?

Post ImageBack in September I wrote that in my opinion, TechCrunch had started to lose its edge. I based my comments strictly on the kind of content that had been appearing on the popular Web 2.0 blog. Since then I would say the content has improved. Not that I have been tracking it that closely, but it seems as though it has improved.

TechCrunch appears to be having other problems though. Last week Michael Arrington had something of a meltdown, which you can read about at Valleywag. And just yesterday Michael announced that writer Natali Del Conte was leaving TechCrunch after just three weeks:

She’s gotten an offer from another company (again, I’ll let her make any announcements on that), but was willing to stay on part time with TechCrunch. I appreciate that, but I want our writers to be completely focused on TechCrunch and not working with competitors. She also told me the comments were really getting to her, and the turmoil from last week (TechCrunch UK, NYTimes debacle) played a part as well.

That announcement did follow some good news for TechCrunch though – it entered Technorati’s top 5 for the first time.

I put a question mark in the title because I think Michael should see this as an opportunity for TechCrunch. I think he should spend some time to find the right editor, and I would also suggest revisiting the comment policy. Some of the most valuable information is found in comments, but they need to be effectively policed too. Perhaps implementing a community rating system a la Digg would be wise.

Hopefully we’ll see an even better TechCrunch soon!

  • If what I read is true, then she should have never taken a shot a tech writing. She could not have been that thinned skinned coming from a writing job at Vartiety. She sold PCMag a bill of goods, fibbed a lot and then we bitchy on Cranky Geeks. From what I hear it was not the comments that got to her it was the way she handle or could not handle the comments. She would fight and chew out the posters in a few cases. You can’t do that with customers. Even if they are wrong, she should have been nice and not have pressed the issues or pressed the points. She stood out as a spycho in my mind. She should never work Tech again. See here is what I mean, she could BS her way through a Variety story but she wrote a fluff piece for the Tech columns. You can’t do fluff in Tech. You must know tech to write tech. A hand holding boss isn’t going to help you learn how to write tech. I think she got in way way too far over her head and when people started to comment she freaked out and got mad at the people leaving the comments. She didn’t realize that the commenters knew more about the subject she was writing about and she was looking foolish. But , that is just my opinion.

    I hope I never see the name Natali Del Conte again!!!

    However, if she lost some weight, got a boob job (DD) and came back as a porn star…. I might not mind!

    D

  • Thanks for the comment! I don’t really know anything about her commenting style, but I think it’s okay to try and stick up for your side of the story. As long as it is done respectfully, as you mention.

    She is quite attractive, I’ll give her that.