December 27, 2007:
Hey. eric eldon here from venturebeat. i’ve been enjoying your posts.
are you set on a solo blogging career, or would you consider writing for another blog. say, venturebeat?
Almost exactly six years ago, Eric Eldon changed my life. That may sound like hyperbole — it is not. That message, sent via Facebook, truly did alter the course of my life.
Today, Eric announced he is stepping down from his role atop TechCrunch to “try something pretty different.” And while I have nothing but respect for that decision, the tech press is a little worse for it — as are we all, as readers.
I say these things about Eric because he would never dare say them about himself. That’s just who he is. In an era where only egos trump pageviews in terms of importance in tech blogging 1, Eric was the selfless, steady hand that guided so many of us.
He was great both as an editor and mentor. But also a recruiter of new talent. All you have to do is look at the bylines found on VentureBeat, Inside Network, and TechCrunch over the years to find countless names that became mainstays in the tech blogosphere thanks solely to him. Again, not an exaggeration.
Most people also don’t know that Eric took a break from journalism before to do a startup, one that was one of the earliest admitted to Y Combinator. And yes, he was a hell of a writer too — here’s one favorite that stands out. I only wish he would have taken more time to write and less time to edit over the years.
And here’s where I realize I’m writing about Eric as if he’s passed away. Actually, he’s alive and well and entering the prime of his career. 2 I’m excited to see where he goes next, because where he goes, greatness tends to follow.
The note Eric sent me six years ago out of the blue actually was attached to a friend request. I accepted, and within a few weeks, was meeting up with him for drinks in an exciting new city, San Francisco. Best decision I ever made.
Fare thee well, E.
As I’m sure many of you will point out (in jest or not), I’m not exactly one to talk here. And certainly this footnote doesn’t help. ↩