TechCrunch founder explains it’s downfall at the hands of Arianna Huffington

  • 20/12/2011 AT 20:01 by It's a Gadget Staff
  • News, Technology

Michael Arrington was the founder of TechCrunch and his tech blogging hobby became a business back in the end of the year 2006. TechCrunch was still a growing force in the tech news world back then, but by 2007 Michael Arrington had taken it to new heights and even recruited an executive from Fox to run his sales team. This executive’s name was Heather Harde and she was the missing piece that TechCrunch desperately needed.

Due to Michael Arrington’s idea to put the success of his site over his own ego, Heather Harde was hired as HIS boss and she began fearlessly leading TechCrunch with a resonating calmness. No matter what troubles Heather faced she was able to efficiently lead TechCrunch through unscathed and better than ever.

Back in 2006 the revenue TechCrunch was pulling in was just about $500,000 however, with the combined effort of all TechCrunch executives, the tech blog was pulling in about $10 million each year! By the time TechCrunch was pulling in that massive $10 million per year, Michael Arrington made the dreadful mistake of selling it to AOL.

While all of Michael’s previous business decisions had steered TechCrunch in the right direction, his last decision pointed it towards eminent failure. AOL would have never made a good home for TechCrunch, but they were able to purchase it from Michael due to their lucrative offer.

When TechCrunch was integrated into AOL, everything was operating at the highest efficiency, however this was just the calm before the storm. Michael Arrington claimed that TechCrunch was getting so much attention that Arianna Huffington, AOL’s editor and president of The Huffington Post Media Group, became enraged.

Michael states that Arianna Huffington became jealous at the amount of attention TechCrunch was receiving even though TechCrunch was reporting to her. Due to this tension there began a “turf war” between Arianna and Michael that eventually led to Michael being publically terminated from his own company!

Instead of taking the public termination quietly, Michael decided to “blow the whole situation up and create chaos”. His idea of creating chaos was to try and remove his former site from the Huffington Post by talking with AOL. He wanted AOL to give TechCrunch the ability to either buy itself back from AOL or operate on their own, unfortunately neither request was granted.

Due to Arriana’s standing with AOL, TechCrunch was kept and is now, according to Michael, headed towards eminent doom. Already the seams of TechCrunch are quickly unraveling with several original members being run out. First Michael, the founder of TechCrunch, was fired, then shortly after Paul Carr resigned. Paul Carr’s resignation was followed by a rather brutal “see you later” post by Erick Schonfeld.

Just after Paul Carr left, MG Siegler left to join Michael Arrington and Sarah Lacy then resigned via a blog post. Out of the main core members of TechCrunch only Heather Harde was left. Heather is now faced with “brutal verbal abuse” from Huffington Post workers and is saving face by staying with TechCrunch.

Michael finishes his blog post by stating “I’d trade 100 Arianna’s for a Heather any day.” and going on to assault Arriana’s egotistical nature. Since his forced departure from TechCrunch Michael has since ventured out onto new things, but it is painfully obvious that he is still pouting over his decision to sell his baby to AOL.


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