The joy on her face

GeekBrief TV's Cali and Noah Lewis

I met Cali Lewis yesterday. Don't know her? I didn't either, but her story tells you a lot about why I am jumping into Podcasting and Videoblogging and Second Life with both feet.

She started her videoblog in December (she does the Geekbrief videoblog). A mere six months ago. Today she is getting millions of downloads a month. Yesterday she and her husband and partner told me:

"We just quit our day jobs to do this full time."

Now what I really noticed was the joy on her face.

Oh, by the way, I'm talking about competitors again. She's working for Adam Curry, who runs the Podshow network. They already are doing some of the most interesting stuff right now and, if Cali's story is typical, are seeing rapid growth.

I forget who said it, but I learned long ago that an industry will only be strong if it has great competitors in it. Imagine a mall that only had one shoe store. How boring. The most vibrant mall has dozens of shoe stores. How can they all survive? Easy, their competition draws more people into the mall.

But what Cali is showing us all is that you can get a low-cost video camera, make an interesting show in your nights and weekends, and within six months get such a large audience that you are quitting your day job.

Yesterday I was talking with Amanda Congdon, one of the co-founders of Rocketboom. Her videoblog is now seeing about 300,000 viewers a day. That's, what, a year or so old? Did you know that advertisers are now paying her $85,000 per week? That's almost as much money as I made in an entire year of working at Microsoft.

Now, I have no delusions that I'm either Amanda or Cali. I'm not half as cute as either of them, for one. Nor am I as smart. Or as visionary. I'll just have to work harder (which is going to be very tough, since Amanda tells me she and her team are working nearly around the clock right now to put together their three-minute videoblog).

But I had the same smile on my face when I told Cali I just quit my day job too to work in this new media industry.

+++++

Patrick's graduation

On Thursday I was sitting on the lawn in the front row at my son's graduation from Elementary School. One part of the graduation that effected my decision was when the teachers read off what each kid would like to do when they "grow up." I loved some of their ideas. Veterinarian. Policeman. Actress. Videogame designer (whoa, Bill, hire them now!)

Anyway, my son was so cute. He said he wanted to be a famous blogger like me and work at a big company like Apple or Microsoft. That made my heart warm.

But it also made this decision clearer. I only have a couple more years left before Patrick wants nothing to do with me (that's how almost every teenager behaves, it's just natural). Maryam and I were definitely tired of the every-other-week flights and drives to see Patrick. Being closer to him just was a major part of this decision. Microsoft, by the way, offered to move us down to Silicon Valley, which was very flattering (thanks Jeff and Vic) but I just knew that if I stayed at Microsoft all the action would be up in Redmond and that would be tough to manage.

This morning I saw Vinnie Mirchandani's post about his hanging out with his 12-year-old son and it reminded me of Friday's lunch with Jonathan Schwartz where we talked at length about our kids and the kind of world we were leaving behind for them.

One of the strongest arguments that Sanjay, Vic, and Jeff gave me for staying at Microsoft was the family that had built around me. All of us have kids and we had lots of great discussions about what's important in life. In a few minutes I'll be leaving to go pick up Patrick, who is staying with us for the summer. I can't wait to see him and that certainly played a huge part in this.

++++

The BMW. One thing about the BMW. It has a jack to plug in a cell phone or an iPod. Now, it's a rich-man's toy, right? But what that tells me is that there's a huge growth in the distribution channel for podcasts coming. Why? Cause what the rich man can buy today you'll be able to buy tomorrow.

Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, taught me that. I remember in 1990 when he had bought one of the valley's first dye-sublimation printers. It was a color printer that cost $40,000. I thought to myself then "I really want one of those." Today, about 16 years later, a $70 printer does a better job than his did. So, if you're not rich and you want something that a rich guy has, just stick around!

But, back to the car. It made me realize that there's a new media-distribution network being built. We're still in the very early days of that. I feel like we have lived through the first few years of Television. Or radio. And I can see nothing but incredible growth ahead.

++++

This morning on some of the blogs I see people saying that Microsoft is clueless for letting me go and that they don't care about this new stuff (or that they won't "get it").

I have a totally different viewpoint. Did you not see on Engadget that Microsoft is working on a portable media player? I can't break wind about it, but when Microsoft comes into that market it'll create new opportunities. New media distribution channels. Translation, that product will create new "Amanda's" and new "Cali's." And it's not the only one coming. I've seen and heard about some really awesome stuff coming soon from other companies as well. That all spells OPPORTUNITY for all of us.

Oh, and then there's the little thing about Google vs. Microsoft. When two big companies are struggling to build audiences to stick advertising next to it creates new opportunities. Startups can zig and zag where big companies just can't take advantage of new opportunities the way someone like Cali can. Remember, she didn't exist six months ago. SIX MONTHS AGO!!! And who the hell is Amanda? She didn't exist 1.5 years ago. Now she's been on CSI and big huge media companies are vying to get near her brand. What a world!

++++

Will I lose my audience? That's a question I've seen on the blogs.

Yes.

Huh? You will unsubscribe if I don't give you a payoff. For many of you Microsoft was that payoff. Yes, Microsoft is still an interesting company for many many people in the world. When I was at my mom's funeral, what did we end up talking about at lunch afterward? Microsoft. Everyone had an opinion about Microsoft. Everyone knew who it was. What it did.

PodTech.net? Huh? Who are they? What are they? Why do I care?

Over the next few months if I don't give you a payoff you'll leave. That'd be OK with me, I didn't do this for the audience. When I started blogging there were only a few hundred blogs that I could find. I never thought it'd get to the point where I'd help build a media property that had 3.5-million unique visitors last month (http://channel9.msdn.com).

But, when life hands you a metaphorical equivilent of a gold coin you better do something with it. Invest it in something else. If you don't I believe that's unethical. My ethical system says that you should reinvest your talents and your luck to make the world a better place.

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The team. One of my interviews was with Karen Edwards, who is on the management team at PodTech.net. She was, if I remember right, the 17th employee at Yahoo. She got her job by writing to the kids who started Yahoo and saying something like "you need me to build you a global brand." They took a chance on her and she did just that.

She isn't the only superstar at PodTech. You'll hear about others after I get there (I start July 5th).

Just about a year ago John Furrier interviewed me at the Supernova conference. I thought he was the nicest guy who I had ever met. That was important to me. Why? Cause nice guys attract great teams. I've seen that with Sanjay, Vic, and Jeff and many other experiences in my life. It was very important to me that I join someone who was nice.

Speaking of which, I've gotten to know John's family. I thought John was nice, but his kids and his wife are even nicer. And they play an important role in the company too. You'll hear more about that next month too.

++++

Silicon Valley.

On Friday I started up my videocamera and filmed as I went into one of my last conversations with John and his team before making my decision. I passed under the sign that said "Sand Hill Road."

It is the dream of many entrepreneurs around the world to come to Sand Hill Road and talk a venture capitalist out of a few million dollars to start a company.

I've never worked for a venture capitalist before. When I mentioned the companies that were backing John Furrier to my friend Buzz Bruggeman, his voice dropped and he said "wow." (They were USVP and VenRock). Now, if you know Buzz, you know he knows everyone in the tech industry. So, I knew then that John had gotten the best.

John later told me how he did it: he interviewed a bunch of venture capitalists. He said that process taught him a lot about how clued in each firm was, and how much they'd help PodTech along after the money came.

I'm sure we'll talk a lot more about what it's like working for a venture-backed firm.

++++

Maryam Scoble

My wife. Maryam. She was involved in the discussions too. And, even, was my negotiator. She told me during one of the negotiations "shut up, will you?" Heheh. It's always good to have someone on your side. John said at one point during the negotiations "you're a shark." She answered back "I'm a guppy."

I love my guppy. Maryam and I are a team. More on that team later in the week.

++++

Christopher Coulter. Oh, Christopher, my arch-nemisis. Last week he wrote a rant about the podcasting and videoblogging industry and how lame it was. He had no idea I was considering taking a job in that industry.

I thought to myself "oh, it'll make him mad? Even better!"

So, blame this all on Christopher. Heheh.

More later, journalists are calling left and right. Thanks so much for everyone's support!

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157 thoughts on “The joy on her face

  1. I agree with Guy. But you’ll need to change the name of your blog now, I guess. Heheh.

    Good luck! You’ll always be on my reading list!

    Like

  2. I agree with Guy. But you’ll need to change the name of your blog now, I guess. Heheh.

    Good luck! You’ll always be on my reading list!

    Like

  3. Great news!
    Now, I bet that you planned to post this later this week but the net gossip speed had you sitting down all day explaining things to your fans.
    πŸ™‚

    Like

  4. Great news!
    Now, I bet that you planned to post this later this week but the net gossip speed had you sitting down all day explaining things to your fans.
    πŸ™‚

    Like

  5. thanks for linking to my post. I was explaining to my son this morning we experienced a “where were you when it happenmed” moment and I was the second blogger to report your rumored (at least it was then) departure last night. Not sure he is that impressed -) Sorry, tough to compete with a manga comic character…

    Congrats on the move. I am excited for you – and for the bloggerhood!

    Like

  6. thanks for linking to my post. I was explaining to my son this morning we experienced a “where were you when it happenmed” moment and I was the second blogger to report your rumored (at least it was then) departure last night. Not sure he is that impressed -) Sorry, tough to compete with a manga comic character…

    Congrats on the move. I am excited for you – and for the bloggerhood!

    Like

  7. Hiya Robert…

    Thanks mightily for the candid clarity with which you’re doing this.

    You turned Microsoft around for me. In my past, MS WAS ‘the evil empire’. Now it’s a company that great people work for, and great people sometimes leave.

    I’ll continue following your blog. It was never the MS content of the blog that got me reading. It was the humanity of Scoble. And the example you set for others.

    Thanks, dude.

    May your new position (and deeper partnership with Maryam) bring you abundance, joy, and loving.

    Blue skies
    love
    Roy

    Like

  8. Hiya Robert…

    Thanks mightily for the candid clarity with which you’re doing this.

    You turned Microsoft around for me. In my past, MS WAS ‘the evil empire’. Now it’s a company that great people work for, and great people sometimes leave.

    I’ll continue following your blog. It was never the MS content of the blog that got me reading. It was the humanity of Scoble. And the example you set for others.

    Thanks, dude.

    May your new position (and deeper partnership with Maryam) bring you abundance, joy, and loving.

    Blue skies
    love
    Roy

    Like

  9. I have met you, I had to deal with you. You clearly are one of the dumbest people that I have ever met. I am glad you are gone from Microsoft. We hired you when we had that push to hire anyone. I love to see the when the dumb guys quit. Now I need to go yell at Sanjay, Vic and anyone else who tried to get you to stay. Microsoft value just went up today. Thank you for leaving.

    Like

  10. I have met you, I had to deal with you. You clearly are one of the dumbest people that I have ever met. I am glad you are gone from Microsoft. We hired you when we had that push to hire anyone. I love to see the when the dumb guys quit. Now I need to go yell at Sanjay, Vic and anyone else who tried to get you to stay. Microsoft value just went up today. Thank you for leaving.

    Like

  11. Scobleizer, congratulations and best of luck in your new job at a non-evil company. Despite my numerous barbs, they are aimed at Microsoft and your defense of Microsoft’s low-quality products and dirty tricks, not at you personally. This is truly a better opportunity for you as a “media guy” and I hope you are getting the increased power and responsibility you crave. You are very capable.

    Did you know that advertisers are now paying her $85,000 per week? That’s almost as much money as I made in an entire year of working at Microsoft.

    Everybody should push for the maximum compensation possible, but there is obviously something wrong with the economy and the valuation of skill and knowledge if somebody who edits a few home movies and posts a couple of diary-like entries a day on the internet makes more than entry-level coders at a technology company like Microsoft.

    Now that you are finally leaving the convicted monopolist, would you consider writing a book that “spills the beans” on the real issue of morale inside Microsoft and who is really pulling the strings over there?

    Like

  12. Scobleizer, congratulations and best of luck in your new job at a non-evil company. Despite my numerous barbs, they are aimed at Microsoft and your defense of Microsoft’s low-quality products and dirty tricks, not at you personally. This is truly a better opportunity for you as a “media guy” and I hope you are getting the increased power and responsibility you crave. You are very capable.

    Did you know that advertisers are now paying her $85,000 per week? That’s almost as much money as I made in an entire year of working at Microsoft.

    Everybody should push for the maximum compensation possible, but there is obviously something wrong with the economy and the valuation of skill and knowledge if somebody who edits a few home movies and posts a couple of diary-like entries a day on the internet makes more than entry-level coders at a technology company like Microsoft.

    Now that you are finally leaving the convicted monopolist, would you consider writing a book that “spills the beans” on the real issue of morale inside Microsoft and who is really pulling the strings over there?

    Like

  13. Good decision, don’t know much about podtech, but I am sure I’ll read more as time goes on. The good thing is you are back in the new… I may subscribe again! πŸ˜‰

    Like

  14. Good decision, don’t know much about podtech, but I am sure I’ll read more as time goes on. The good thing is you are back in the new… I may subscribe again! πŸ˜‰

    Like

  15. David, I presume you were not joking. MS’s problem may be it has too many smart people around. Last time I checked MS has spent $ 20 b in R&D in the last 3 years and not delivered much product… You could use some “dumb” transparent folks like Scoble to bring some humility and passion and yes, frustration at the payback for the dollar. He personally delivered one of the best ROIs for the marketing dollars MS invested in in the last year or so.

    If Scoble is dumb, so am I – probably the last time you will hear a former Gartner analyst say that in public!

    Like

  16. David, I presume you were not joking. MS’s problem may be it has too many smart people around. Last time I checked MS has spent $ 20 b in R&D in the last 3 years and not delivered much product… You could use some “dumb” transparent folks like Scoble to bring some humility and passion and yes, frustration at the payback for the dollar. He personally delivered one of the best ROIs for the marketing dollars MS invested in in the last year or so.

    If Scoble is dumb, so am I – probably the last time you will hear a former Gartner analyst say that in public!

    Like

  17. Just echo’ing what was said above. I’d love to read about a tell all Microsoft book, too. Your meeting with Cali and her story and her husband’s story are just plain darn’d inspiring.

    Like

  18. Just echo’ing what was said above. I’d love to read about a tell all Microsoft book, too. Your meeting with Cali and her story and her husband’s story are just plain darn’d inspiring.

    Like

  19. Dude,
    I was just all over rocket boom looking for advertising…donde esta? I want advertisers that pay me to not promote them πŸ™‚

    Good luck on the move.

    Like

  20. Dude,
    I was just all over rocket boom looking for advertising…donde esta? I want advertisers that pay me to not promote them πŸ™‚

    Good luck on the move.

    Like

  21. Congratulation Robert on the move. I don’t think you will lose that much of an audience overall. You will just get different type of readers. You’ll always have an opinion on

    I know for one, you’ll always get me as a reader.

    Like

  22. Congratulation Robert on the move. I don’t think you will lose that much of an audience overall. You will just get different type of readers. You’ll always have an opinion on

    I know for one, you’ll always get me as a reader.

    Like

  23. Congratulation Robert on the move. I don’t think you will lose that much of an audience overall. You will just get different type of readers. You’ll always have an opinion on tech. And that is what counts. Thats what people want to read at the end of the day.

    I know for one, you’ll always get me as a reader when it comes to the IT industry. )

    Like

  24. Congratulation Robert on the move. I don’t think you will lose that much of an audience overall. You will just get different type of readers. You’ll always have an opinion on tech. And that is what counts. Thats what people want to read at the end of the day.

    I know for one, you’ll always get me as a reader when it comes to the IT industry. )

    Like

  25. Ahhh, arch-nemesis? Way way too strong of an acidic drink there, and to me it seems as if you have dropped a burden, Pilgrim’s Progress styled, and the ole Scoble is back.

    And how can I be mad at the ole Scoble? It was the Micosoft-induced personality change when this all blew up. But water over a bridge now. Also you owe me a pizza. Back when you first heard news, I said you’d leave before “Longhorn” even came out, which in the pre-PDC 2003 frenzy was quite the ‘burn at stake’ heresy talk. But I win. πŸ™‚

    And my rant was on the BUBBLEISH nature of some of this podcasting and shaky-cam stuff. It’s never going to replace Hollywood or Burbank, it’s just narrow-casting, and broadcasting is always the big player. Rocketbloom and YouTubeims for all the “hits” is still niche and just as bloggers downplay experts and think in terms of egalitarian idealism, podcasters downplay TALENT. What podcaster slaves months and months over scripts? What podcaster can even write? How many podcasters can morph to broadcaster? (Hint: if mega-lucky, less than 1%).

    Still something to be said for a customized narrow-casting market, and culled end-user content, just don’t wrap it in venture-capital hyped-up world changing revolutionary utopianistic clothes. Podcasting? It’s just branding, really. But man if ‘bubble’ wasn’t your middle name, falling for every bubble around, Longhorn to Tablets/UMPC to Web 2.0 to Second Life and now to Podcasting.

    Like

  26. Ahhh, arch-nemesis? Way way too strong of an acidic drink there, and to me it seems as if you have dropped a burden, Pilgrim’s Progress styled, and the ole Scoble is back.

    And how can I be mad at the ole Scoble? It was the Micosoft-induced personality change when this all blew up. But water over a bridge now. Also you owe me a pizza. Back when you first heard news, I said you’d leave before “Longhorn” even came out, which in the pre-PDC 2003 frenzy was quite the ‘burn at stake’ heresy talk. But I win. πŸ™‚

    And my rant was on the BUBBLEISH nature of some of this podcasting and shaky-cam stuff. It’s never going to replace Hollywood or Burbank, it’s just narrow-casting, and broadcasting is always the big player. Rocketbloom and YouTubeims for all the “hits” is still niche and just as bloggers downplay experts and think in terms of egalitarian idealism, podcasters downplay TALENT. What podcaster slaves months and months over scripts? What podcaster can even write? How many podcasters can morph to broadcaster? (Hint: if mega-lucky, less than 1%).

    Still something to be said for a customized narrow-casting market, and culled end-user content, just don’t wrap it in venture-capital hyped-up world changing revolutionary utopianistic clothes. Podcasting? It’s just branding, really. But man if ‘bubble’ wasn’t your middle name, falling for every bubble around, Longhorn to Tablets/UMPC to Web 2.0 to Second Life and now to Podcasting.

    Like

  27. Scoble,

    Thank you for a great look at MS and also thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule for a brief tour of MS for my wife and I.

    Last year, I just emailed Robert and asked him where great places were to stay and great things to do when my wife and I came out to Seattle. Out of the blue he said to let him know what day we would be able to come and stop by MS. I didn’t even know he would respond let alone allow a brief tour of MS. Thanks a lot for that.

    Don’t forget to add a tour of MSNBC to Channel9 πŸ™‚

    Like

  28. Scoble,

    Thank you for a great look at MS and also thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule for a brief tour of MS for my wife and I.

    Last year, I just emailed Robert and asked him where great places were to stay and great things to do when my wife and I came out to Seattle. Out of the blue he said to let him know what day we would be able to come and stop by MS. I didn’t even know he would respond let alone allow a brief tour of MS. Thanks a lot for that.

    Don’t forget to add a tour of MSNBC to Channel9 πŸ™‚

    Like

  29. I have to agree with Christopher Coulter on this. I was out this afternoon kayaking and playing beach volleyball with a group of friends and none of them care about blogs or care about podcasts and Second Life, etc. None of them really care about things like that. Where do they go for news? Local news sites, other websites, Cable News, etc. Not to a podcast, a YouTube event or even blogs.

    Robert you are aware of this after your trip to Montana however you need to get further outside of Seattle/Valley areas and find out what people are really using technology for.

    Like

  30. I have to agree with Christopher Coulter on this. I was out this afternoon kayaking and playing beach volleyball with a group of friends and none of them care about blogs or care about podcasts and Second Life, etc. None of them really care about things like that. Where do they go for news? Local news sites, other websites, Cable News, etc. Not to a podcast, a YouTube event or even blogs.

    Robert you are aware of this after your trip to Montana however you need to get further outside of Seattle/Valley areas and find out what people are really using technology for.

    Like

  31. I think you just got a scoop there, Robert: that photo of Cali is one of the only ones that includes her husband, who never appears on camera. Finally!

    Oh, and good luck in the new job. See you at Gnomedex, I hope.

    Like

  32. I think you just got a scoop there, Robert: that photo of Cali is one of the only ones that includes her husband, who never appears on camera. Finally!

    Oh, and good luck in the new job. See you at Gnomedex, I hope.

    Like

  33. To elaborate on Zach’s comment:

    The story “Famed Microsoft Blogger Scoble leaves for start-up” is currently the seventh “most popular” news story on Yahoo! News, and the third “most viewed” news story.

    Of course, the fourth most-viewed news story is, [Paris] “Hilton backs SUV into car after shopping.” Soooo.

    To get to the top of the news story heap, I’m guessing you need a headline like, “Famed Blogger Robert Scoble backs into Paris Hilton after leaving Microsoft.”

    Good night, and good luck.

    Like

  34. To elaborate on Zach’s comment:

    The story “Famed Microsoft Blogger Scoble leaves for start-up” is currently the seventh “most popular” news story on Yahoo! News, and the third “most viewed” news story.

    Of course, the fourth most-viewed news story is, [Paris] “Hilton backs SUV into car after shopping.” Soooo.

    To get to the top of the news story heap, I’m guessing you need a headline like, “Famed Blogger Robert Scoble backs into Paris Hilton after leaving Microsoft.”

    Good night, and good luck.

    Like

  35. Vloggercon was great and it was great to see you there. The energy was terrific from the real grassroots folks to those building media properties. It is clear why you are excited about this space (as am I).

    You are, of course, three great things: a terrific brand (that stands for integrity and curiosity and more), a media “property” (but you knew that), and a human being. Your experience at your son’s graduation is terrific – a great push-you-over-the-edge-of-the-next-great-adventure experience. My son, Nick, is eleven. He is already programming. He actually thinks I am cool and, brother, we know that won’t last too much longer. So, as I embark on my own new adventure at Ogilvy, I will think about Nick and the story you shared. As Lou Reed said about his child being born, “it’s the beginning of a new adventure.”

    Like

  36. Vloggercon was great and it was great to see you there. The energy was terrific from the real grassroots folks to those building media properties. It is clear why you are excited about this space (as am I).

    You are, of course, three great things: a terrific brand (that stands for integrity and curiosity and more), a media “property” (but you knew that), and a human being. Your experience at your son’s graduation is terrific – a great push-you-over-the-edge-of-the-next-great-adventure experience. My son, Nick, is eleven. He is already programming. He actually thinks I am cool and, brother, we know that won’t last too much longer. So, as I embark on my own new adventure at Ogilvy, I will think about Nick and the story you shared. As Lou Reed said about his child being born, “it’s the beginning of a new adventure.”

    Like

  37. Your family can see something that millions never get, Dad’s soul. The secret is out and simple, being brave and free go hand in hand. I wish I had your courage, in the meantime thank you and others who continue to help people think different. Forget names and labels, it’s not about new media it’s about talent finding its reward. 20 years from now this will just be a blink in peoples memory but observing someone again being paid for what they love, that is something our schools can again teach. Happy pioneer days dear friend, I will probably never met you and other A list stars, who cares, I can see heart. What an exciting time to be alive.

    Like

  38. Your family can see something that millions never get, Dad’s soul. The secret is out and simple, being brave and free go hand in hand. I wish I had your courage, in the meantime thank you and others who continue to help people think different. Forget names and labels, it’s not about new media it’s about talent finding its reward. 20 years from now this will just be a blink in peoples memory but observing someone again being paid for what they love, that is something our schools can again teach. Happy pioneer days dear friend, I will probably never met you and other A list stars, who cares, I can see heart. What an exciting time to be alive.

    Like

  39. “…I learned long ago that an industry will only be strong if it has great competitors in it….

    LOL. That’s rich! Coming from an evangelist for a convicted monopolist that has never known the meaning of fair competition.

    And ironic that this comment comes at a time when you are leaving Microsoft. Anyway, I wish you the best on your new endeavor. Just don’t get too successful or your ex employer may decide to “cut off your air supply” or “knife the baby” or some such other phrase. In other words the best wishes I can send you is that you are never on the receiving end of Microsoft’s competition.

    Good Luck. Keep up the good work.

    Like

  40. “…I learned long ago that an industry will only be strong if it has great competitors in it….

    LOL. That’s rich! Coming from an evangelist for a convicted monopolist that has never known the meaning of fair competition.

    And ironic that this comment comes at a time when you are leaving Microsoft. Anyway, I wish you the best on your new endeavor. Just don’t get too successful or your ex employer may decide to “cut off your air supply” or “knife the baby” or some such other phrase. In other words the best wishes I can send you is that you are never on the receiving end of Microsoft’s competition.

    Good Luck. Keep up the good work.

    Like

  41. Hash: that’s bullshit. I remember the days when Microsoft was small and was always having to dig its way into things. I remember when Novell totally DOMINATED networking, for instance. Back in 1989 I Apple TOTALLY DOMINATED the GUI-style interfaces everyone takes for granted now. And I can think of half a dozen other instances where Microsoft was the underdog and had to vigorously compete. Oh, and when I was born? There was NO Microsoft.

    Like

  42. Hash: that’s bullshit. I remember the days when Microsoft was small and was always having to dig its way into things. I remember when Novell totally DOMINATED networking, for instance. Back in 1989 I Apple TOTALLY DOMINATED the GUI-style interfaces everyone takes for granted now. And I can think of half a dozen other instances where Microsoft was the underdog and had to vigorously compete. Oh, and when I was born? There was NO Microsoft.

    Like

  43. I always wondered whether MS could be muscled to increasing your pay πŸ™‚ with your subtle hints about how you are paid less at MS to the number of job offers you are getting and lastly the BMW post πŸ˜‰

    I admire MS for taking a risk in letting you go as much as I admire you for making this move. You are really worth than 85k/year. So money was the only reason? If not I would be interested in hearing what was lacking in your MS job.

    Good luck with getting everything that you wish for πŸ™‚

    I don’t subscribe to vcasts, but if I do.. you will be the first person I come to.

    Like

  44. I always wondered whether MS could be muscled to increasing your pay πŸ™‚ with your subtle hints about how you are paid less at MS to the number of job offers you are getting and lastly the BMW post πŸ˜‰

    I admire MS for taking a risk in letting you go as much as I admire you for making this move. You are really worth than 85k/year. So money was the only reason? If not I would be interested in hearing what was lacking in your MS job.

    Good luck with getting everything that you wish for πŸ™‚

    I don’t subscribe to vcasts, but if I do.. you will be the first person I come to.

    Like

  45. hi robert

    u were one of the few people who replied back to me

    so i am grateful to u.

    i am glad u are leaving microsoft.

    does podtech plan to open a indian office?

    if so i am ready to join for 40$ per month salary

    i just want a real life one thats not restricted to computers.

    i am ready to join even today

    my prayers will be with u and ur family.

    if u know any company which is intrested in motivational, public speaking, stress management and principles of luck classes with a free seminar then we-me and my dad will be glad to help them

    send me a email anytime

    bye
    @runb@laj!

    Like

  46. “Her videoblog is now seeing about 300,000 viewers a day. That’s, what, a year or so old? Did you know that advertisers are now paying her $85,000 per week?”

    Well, I hope they are building a good pension and you too because this bubble will burst, too. Don’t think it’s a bubble? ha! It’s one of the smallest one you’ll see.

    “Translation, that product will create new “Amanda’s” and new “Cali’s.””
    Yup, and the more the merrier. Also less money.

    Vlogs and postcasts bore me to tears.

    Like

  47. hi robert

    u were one of the few people who replied back to me

    so i am grateful to u.

    i am glad u are leaving microsoft.

    does podtech plan to open a indian office?

    if so i am ready to join for 40$ per month salary

    i just want a real life one thats not restricted to computers.

    i am ready to join even today

    my prayers will be with u and ur family.

    if u know any company which is intrested in motivational, public speaking, stress management and principles of luck classes with a free seminar then we-me and my dad will be glad to help them

    send me a email anytime

    bye
    @runb@laj!

    Like

  48. “Her videoblog is now seeing about 300,000 viewers a day. That’s, what, a year or so old? Did you know that advertisers are now paying her $85,000 per week?”

    Well, I hope they are building a good pension and you too because this bubble will burst, too. Don’t think it’s a bubble? ha! It’s one of the smallest one you’ll see.

    “Translation, that product will create new “Amanda’s” and new “Cali’s.””
    Yup, and the more the merrier. Also less money.

    Vlogs and postcasts bore me to tears.

    Like

  49. @38, Yea, but there was IBM when you were born.. and they got hauled into court just like Microsoft.

    Again with the naive comments, Scoble. It’s not the fact that MS was having to compete..it was HOW they competed. Do they really keep you guys that much in the dark about how MS was found guilty? Are the MS PR releases the only thing you read when it comes to Microsoft?

    Like

  50. @38, Yea, but there was IBM when you were born.. and they got hauled into court just like Microsoft.

    Again with the naive comments, Scoble. It’s not the fact that MS was having to compete..it was HOW they competed. Do they really keep you guys that much in the dark about how MS was found guilty? Are the MS PR releases the only thing you read when it comes to Microsoft?

    Like

  51. I know this podcasting thing might feel like a bubble to some people but the trend I see at the freshman year of college is the arrival of as many MP3 players as mobile phones. Some of my data are skewed because I teach a multimedia degree program. Those incoming students already know how to subscribe to podcasts and they rip their own takeaway media on laptops in the cafeteria before they get their network log-in details.

    This podcasting bubble concerns personal control of personal media. It might be small and nerdish but it’s in the personal entertainment space and that’s the place where people hang out without knowing they’re surrounded by technology.

    I think Scoble’s feet-first landing in that space will only boost its profile. That makes my lecturing job easier because wobbly-cam podcasts and personal podcasts will continue growing. While there’s no denying the small sector that personal entertainment represents, it’s a big chunk of change when you look at the money needed to ramp up into it and to sustain the habit. Advertisers sense that’s a sector with discretionary income to burn and they’re booking media campaigns into it. Those paid placements, sponsorship packages and personal subscriptions sound more like the development of a new media industry instead of the yammering of thousands who drank the Kool-Aid.

    Like

  52. I know this podcasting thing might feel like a bubble to some people but the trend I see at the freshman year of college is the arrival of as many MP3 players as mobile phones. Some of my data are skewed because I teach a multimedia degree program. Those incoming students already know how to subscribe to podcasts and they rip their own takeaway media on laptops in the cafeteria before they get their network log-in details.

    This podcasting bubble concerns personal control of personal media. It might be small and nerdish but it’s in the personal entertainment space and that’s the place where people hang out without knowing they’re surrounded by technology.

    I think Scoble’s feet-first landing in that space will only boost its profile. That makes my lecturing job easier because wobbly-cam podcasts and personal podcasts will continue growing. While there’s no denying the small sector that personal entertainment represents, it’s a big chunk of change when you look at the money needed to ramp up into it and to sustain the habit. Advertisers sense that’s a sector with discretionary income to burn and they’re booking media campaigns into it. Those paid placements, sponsorship packages and personal subscriptions sound more like the development of a new media industry instead of the yammering of thousands who drank the Kool-Aid.

    Like

  53. “Imagine a mall that only had one shoe store. How boring. The most vibrant mall has dozens of shoe stores. How can they all survive? Easy, their competition draws more people into the mall.”

    Interesting argument. I notice that wasn’t the one Microsoft itself used during the anti-trust trial. Particularly in relation to the MS-IE and MS Windows relation. What was wrong with giving MS Windows users the chance to try out alternative web browsers? You’ve just made BillG and SteveB guilty of perjury.

    And in relation to sports, I know it very, very well – the more competitors you have, the more vibrant your sports code. Microsoft’s statements during the anti-trust trial would get it laughed out of any sports league. It’s perfectly alright to compete fiercely on the football oval or the hockey arena – heck, it’s the only way to have any fun! You can’t get out what you never put in, in the first place, and from first bounce to final whistle, you have to play the ball, but mark your opponent and contest the ball every time. “cutting off their airsupply” – playing the man – takes away the fun, unless you prefer fighting to winning.

    Like

  54. “Imagine a mall that only had one shoe store. How boring. The most vibrant mall has dozens of shoe stores. How can they all survive? Easy, their competition draws more people into the mall.”

    Interesting argument. I notice that wasn’t the one Microsoft itself used during the anti-trust trial. Particularly in relation to the MS-IE and MS Windows relation. What was wrong with giving MS Windows users the chance to try out alternative web browsers? You’ve just made BillG and SteveB guilty of perjury.

    And in relation to sports, I know it very, very well – the more competitors you have, the more vibrant your sports code. Microsoft’s statements during the anti-trust trial would get it laughed out of any sports league. It’s perfectly alright to compete fiercely on the football oval or the hockey arena – heck, it’s the only way to have any fun! You can’t get out what you never put in, in the first place, and from first bounce to final whistle, you have to play the ball, but mark your opponent and contest the ball every time. “cutting off their airsupply” – playing the man – takes away the fun, unless you prefer fighting to winning.

    Like

  55. Good luck at the new job. I mentioned this on our business blog because I think where you are, the business world should watch. I look forward to hearing about your new company and what we will learn from that.

    Like

  56. Good luck at the new job. I mentioned this on our business blog because I think where you are, the business world should watch. I look forward to hearing about your new company and what we will learn from that.

    Like

  57. “..Hash: that’s bullshit. …. And I can think of half a dozen other instances where Microsoft was the underdog and had to vigorously compete.”

    Correct. And the Novell’s at the time DID NOT use their dominance to illegally muscle out/crush Microsoft. I believe the phrase is called barrier to entry. You may want to re-read the Findings of Fact in the DOJ trial. Unless you are saying that case was BS too.

    http://www.usdoj.gov/atr/cases/f3800/msjudgex.htm

    p.s Do us a favor and in one of your future high profile MS Exec interviews ask Gates or Ballmer this simple question:
    Who contacted Baystar to invest in SCO, and Why? And under who’s direction were they acting?

    p.p.s Leopards don’t change their spots.

    Like

  58. “..Hash: that’s bullshit. …. And I can think of half a dozen other instances where Microsoft was the underdog and had to vigorously compete.”

    Correct. And the Novell’s at the time DID NOT use their dominance to illegally muscle out/crush Microsoft. I believe the phrase is called barrier to entry. You may want to re-read the Findings of Fact in the DOJ trial. Unless you are saying that case was BS too.

    http://www.usdoj.gov/atr/cases/f3800/msjudgex.htm

    p.s Do us a favor and in one of your future high profile MS Exec interviews ask Gates or Ballmer this simple question:
    Who contacted Baystar to invest in SCO, and Why? And under who’s direction were they acting?

    p.p.s Leopards don’t change their spots.

    Like

  59. As a long early podcast junkie I have always wanted to listen to them while driving. The pain is moving the ipod back and forth between the car and computer. I want a wireless device for the car which will update podcasts from my wireless network overnight and be ready with fresh casts in the morning. I was hoping the UMPC would serve this purpose but it is two to three times too expensive. Drive time has the biggest media audience and I believe that’s your future market if we can get cheaper connected devices. “Push” radio will die when we get the equivalent of a TIVO for podcasts in our cars. Success to you in your new venture.

    Like

  60. As a long early podcast junkie I have always wanted to listen to them while driving. The pain is moving the ipod back and forth between the car and computer. I want a wireless device for the car which will update podcasts from my wireless network overnight and be ready with fresh casts in the morning. I was hoping the UMPC would serve this purpose but it is two to three times too expensive. Drive time has the biggest media audience and I believe that’s your future market if we can get cheaper connected devices. “Push” radio will die when we get the equivalent of a TIVO for podcasts in our cars. Success to you in your new venture.

    Like

  61. Another one in the “rants about podcasting and videoblogging industry and how lame it be” series… πŸ˜‰

    Podcasting Reality

    1. Commodity Market Already – Existing content (Radio, TV, Video) can be flipped over without much more than an re-encode. It’s a pre-made commodity market, no need to pay Silicon Valley charlatan-hustlers thousands of dollars to “show you how”.

    2. Start Line on the Faddish Cycle – Like anything “new new” on the net, it runs through the usual cycle: massive experimental euphoria with tons of venture-speculation money thrown around, and then the serious bubble-popping cool-off phase, with a full-circle return to rational value-added markets. World changing? No. Some limited niche value? Yes. Hucksters trying to quick cash in on the boom before the bust? Tons.

    3. Not Discoverable – No channel surfing, no radio-scanning check-out concepts; you can skim thousands of news sites and blogs (or other online reading materials) in no time, not so with podcasting.

    4. No ROI – It takes a heck of a lot longer to listen to podcasts, over reading the same material online. Most of the market, outside of certain niches, isn’t going to invest that time.

    5. Lack of Talent and Quality – People want to hear existing Radio/TV shows and Audio Books, not geeks and goofball Rocketbloomish amateurs playing with gadgets and whatnot. And the podcasting hypesters are populated with the eternally wrongheaded “Medium is more Important than the Message” types. As lesser barriers to entry, is only that, it doesn’t confer any sort of talent or quality along with it.

    6. Passivity – The market wants media without work, pre-packaged in easy forms, not eternal geeky tricks of twiddling and syncing.

    7. Land Grabbing – Audio Books, Audio/Video Training Material, loooong been around. If a certain codec now works on a portable device, it’s now somehow podcasting?

    8. Over-hyped – It’s all venture-fueled, a new new techie hot branding — firehose money at it. It’s JUST a distribution mechanism; and just because you can do it and download it, still doesn’t mean anyone is listening.

    Like

  62. Another one in the “rants about podcasting and videoblogging industry and how lame it be” series… πŸ˜‰

    Podcasting Reality

    1. Commodity Market Already – Existing content (Radio, TV, Video) can be flipped over without much more than an re-encode. It’s a pre-made commodity market, no need to pay Silicon Valley charlatan-hustlers thousands of dollars to “show you how”.

    2. Start Line on the Faddish Cycle – Like anything “new new” on the net, it runs through the usual cycle: massive experimental euphoria with tons of venture-speculation money thrown around, and then the serious bubble-popping cool-off phase, with a full-circle return to rational value-added markets. World changing? No. Some limited niche value? Yes. Hucksters trying to quick cash in on the boom before the bust? Tons.

    3. Not Discoverable – No channel surfing, no radio-scanning check-out concepts; you can skim thousands of news sites and blogs (or other online reading materials) in no time, not so with podcasting.

    4. No ROI – It takes a heck of a lot longer to listen to podcasts, over reading the same material online. Most of the market, outside of certain niches, isn’t going to invest that time.

    5. Lack of Talent and Quality – People want to hear existing Radio/TV shows and Audio Books, not geeks and goofball Rocketbloomish amateurs playing with gadgets and whatnot. And the podcasting hypesters are populated with the eternally wrongheaded “Medium is more Important than the Message” types. As lesser barriers to entry, is only that, it doesn’t confer any sort of talent or quality along with it.

    6. Passivity – The market wants media without work, pre-packaged in easy forms, not eternal geeky tricks of twiddling and syncing.

    7. Land Grabbing – Audio Books, Audio/Video Training Material, loooong been around. If a certain codec now works on a portable device, it’s now somehow podcasting?

    8. Over-hyped – It’s all venture-fueled, a new new techie hot branding — firehose money at it. It’s JUST a distribution mechanism; and just because you can do it and download it, still doesn’t mean anyone is listening.

    Like

  63. Whoa, I’m still messed up by the big “Scoble quits Microsoft” thing floating over the internet. But I should say “way to go, Robert”. You’d rather do what you like most and that’s one of the things I like about you a lot.

    I’m not one of your regular readers, but this shift made me subscribe to your feed. You’ve just won one πŸ™‚

    Like

  64. Whoa, I’m still messed up by the big “Scoble quits Microsoft” thing floating over the internet. But I should say “way to go, Robert”. You’d rather do what you like most and that’s one of the things I like about you a lot.

    I’m not one of your regular readers, but this shift made me subscribe to your feed. You’ve just won one πŸ™‚

    Like

  65. Amen. The notion of you being just another irrelevant blowhard without information I need fo my livelihood is priceless. I would have personally bought you a ticket to bloviated obscurity.

    Like

  66. Amen. The notion of you being just another irrelevant blowhard without information I need fo my livelihood is priceless. I would have personally bought you a ticket to bloviated obscurity.

    Like

  67. Good timing. Amazon delivered your book “Naked Conversations” on Saturday and after reading the first few chapters I checked techmeme and your name was all over it.

    Great decision, Great Book. Your are certainly a visionary in this open-source marketing movement.

    Now Cuban’s Mavericks just need to win the title and help bring blogging further into mainstream culture.

    Like

  68. Good timing. Amazon delivered your book “Naked Conversations” on Saturday and after reading the first few chapters I checked techmeme and your name was all over it.

    Great decision, Great Book. Your are certainly a visionary in this open-source marketing movement.

    Now Cuban’s Mavericks just need to win the title and help bring blogging further into mainstream culture.

    Like

  69. @46. Ah, I see. So it appeals to a market that has no money to buy the products being advertised on the site? Interesting model.

    “The place where people hang out?” What people? Not normal people, or people with all the money.

    Like

  70. @46. Ah, I see. So it appeals to a market that has no money to buy the products being advertised on the site? Interesting model.

    “The place where people hang out?” What people? Not normal people, or people with all the money.

    Like

  71. w00t! I’ve never been happier for someone I don’t even know. I posted a while back I’d like to see what you could do without the restrictions of big co and now we’ll get to find out. Congrats.

    Like

  72. w00t! I’ve never been happier for someone I don’t even know. I posted a while back I’d like to see what you could do without the restrictions of big co and now we’ll get to find out. Congrats.

    Like

  73. Hey! Winer is saying move to the East Bay! DO IT!! I moved from there to LA last summer and I’ve missed it every day since! Props to da nickle-dime!!

    Oh… And congrats on the move… *8-)

    Like

  74. Hey! Winer is saying move to the East Bay! DO IT!! I moved from there to LA last summer and I’ve missed it every day since! Props to da nickle-dime!!

    Oh… And congrats on the move… *8-)

    Like

  75. “For many of you Microsoft was that payoff.” And for some of us you were the payoff, and the Microsoft content was overshadowing you.

    So there are undoubtedly several readers like me who’d wandered off elsewhere over the years, who may be more consistent now.

    Good on you for the move!

    Like

  76. “For many of you Microsoft was that payoff.” And for some of us you were the payoff, and the Microsoft content was overshadowing you.

    So there are undoubtedly several readers like me who’d wandered off elsewhere over the years, who may be more consistent now.

    Good on you for the move!

    Like

  77. I recommend your book to all my colleagues at Google, thanks for the great job evangelizing corporate blogging.
    I also liked your recent posts about what’s important in life, they reminded me some great posts from the first blogger, Michel de Montaigne, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michel_de_Montaigne, in “Les Essais”, circa 1580.
    Good luck with your new company: looking forward to read (hear and watch) more of you.

    P@

    Like

  78. I recommend your book to all my colleagues at Google, thanks for the great job evangelizing corporate blogging.
    I also liked your recent posts about what’s important in life, they reminded me some great posts from the first blogger, Michel de Montaigne, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michel_de_Montaigne, in “Les Essais”, circa 1580.
    Good luck with your new company: looking forward to read (hear and watch) more of you.

    P@

    Like

  79. I wasn’t really a regular reader of this blog. Was going thro BBC news and saw news about Mr Scoble. and have been stuck to this reading since past two hours. All snippets/comments/trackbacks. They have been overwhelming.

    Got stuck at the lines :
    “My ethical system says that you should reinvest your talents and your luck to make the world a better place.”

    Good luck. You’ll find me on your blogs more than often now. Good for me.

    Like

  80. I wasn’t really a regular reader of this blog. Was going thro BBC news and saw news about Mr Scoble. and have been stuck to this reading since past two hours. All snippets/comments/trackbacks. They have been overwhelming.

    Got stuck at the lines :
    “My ethical system says that you should reinvest your talents and your luck to make the world a better place.”

    Good luck. You’ll find me on your blogs more than often now. Good for me.

    Like

  81. I just want to know where the mall is with dozens of shoe stores. Please tell me ASAP…I need to know! It sounds like a wonderful place where I’d like to live.

    Kidding aside, best of luck, Robert. I am sure that you will continue to do great things.

    Like

  82. I just want to know where the mall is with dozens of shoe stores. Please tell me ASAP…I need to know! It sounds like a wonderful place where I’d like to live.

    Kidding aside, best of luck, Robert. I am sure that you will continue to do great things.

    Like

  83. Robert,

    I’ve read your weblog for quite some time. I work at Microsoft as well (although considerably lower profile than you). I’m a divorced father of two boys.

    You’ll never regret living closer to your son.

    This Microsoft stuff and podtech as well, while nice, will never compare the work you do as a father.

    Enjoy the extra time with your son.

    Like

  84. Robert,

    I’ve read your weblog for quite some time. I work at Microsoft as well (although considerably lower profile than you). I’m a divorced father of two boys.

    You’ll never regret living closer to your son.

    This Microsoft stuff and podtech as well, while nice, will never compare the work you do as a father.

    Enjoy the extra time with your son.

    Like

  85. Robert: Sorry to hear you’re leaving MSFT. I totally understand why you made your decision. Kids are only young so long– and if you snooze you lose.

    One other thing… The rich man isn’t the only one with the audio plug in his new BMW. Our nephew Cory, just got a new SCION XB, with the audio plug installed. Not bad for about $15,000. Sure beats the hell out of the price of the new X5 BMW we looked at 3 weeks ago at over $50K!

    Like

  86. Robert: Sorry to hear you’re leaving MSFT. I totally understand why you made your decision. Kids are only young so long– and if you snooze you lose.

    One other thing… The rich man isn’t the only one with the audio plug in his new BMW. Our nephew Cory, just got a new SCION XB, with the audio plug installed. Not bad for about $15,000. Sure beats the hell out of the price of the new X5 BMW we looked at 3 weeks ago at over $50K!

    Like

  87. First a note about BMW iPod integration: you must have noticed that Mercury is showing TV ads with iPod specific attachments – Mercury! Ok, so it offers no real integration per se, but still, the nod is there.

    Podcasts are a way of hearing something different and interesting to listen to without 25 mattress store commercials per cuommute. Certainly I use my iPod to filter out crap I don’t want to listen to…

    Like

  88. First a note about BMW iPod integration: you must have noticed that Mercury is showing TV ads with iPod specific attachments – Mercury! Ok, so it offers no real integration per se, but still, the nod is there.

    Podcasts are a way of hearing something different and interesting to listen to without 25 mattress store commercials per cuommute. Certainly I use my iPod to filter out crap I don’t want to listen to…

    Like

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