Marissa Mayer’s the new Yahoo! CEO, and frankly I’m tickled pink, and no that’s not a double-entendre. I’m am so, because for someone who lives in Oakland, and has covered the tech scene via a number of events, but mostly TechCrunch events when Michael Arrington (who’s mad at me right now) presided over the blog and its gatherings, it’s nice to see so many people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and talking with, and sharing ideas with, hit their personal marks of success.
It’s also yet another reminder of just how economically powerful the SF Bay Area is. And it’s another example of just how much Michael Arrington brought together a number of people who have come to define the tech scene for the World.
I think we take this for granted. In part because it’s a largely invisible development unless you have the unique perspective I’ve been blessed with. And undoubtedly there are others who share my perspective and may have considered this, but are just too upset with Arrington about this or that to give him the props he deserves.
Think about it. How many times has Arrington had Mark Zuckerberg or Marissa Mayer or any one of a number of people associated with the Silicon Valley tech scene on state at The Crunchies or TechCrunch Disrupt? And how many of those people have moved on to capture the attention of The World in some kind of way? There’s TechCrunch Crunchies favorite AirBnB. How about Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook, the multi-time winner of “best startup” until it wasn’t a startup at The Crunchies. How about the number of times Mayer has come to these events to take Arrington’s ribbing with a laugh, and then go on to talk about Google’s efforts in local? Or the number of times she’s served as a judge at The Crunchies?
We take all of that for granted, but considering the success of all of these people – how about Randy Zuckerberg’s growing Trippy – you’ve got to wonder if it was all part of Michael’s plan for World Domination. If it was a plan, it’s being hatched before us. He’s seeding his associates in various companies that have an influence on what we do in life. Ok, I’m half-kidding.
The reality is that no other blog in any industry had the kind of impact on American culture and arguably economics just by forming a tech social circle that TechCruch was at the center of. I can say I know all of these people to some degree. In Marissa’s case, I met her at TechCrunch Disrupt, New York, in 2010.
The setting was as she was visiting startup presentations in what’s called “Startup Alley,” But Mayer was also being chased by scores of male attendees requesting a photo with her, partly because she was a major player at Google, party because she’s very attractive – Ok, hot. A photo with Marissa was not my objective, however. I had business on my mind because I am a user of Blogger, the Google-owned blog platform, and a Google / YouTube Partner, and out of respect for Melissa, I took my concerns directly to her.
I’ll explain how she handled that in a separate blog post, but the point here is that no other event I can think of has allowed that kind of interaction between massively creative people, and that’s thanks to Michael. Michael can continue to be upset with me about matters I consider small, but that’s him. It’s not going to stop me from pointing out the unique thing he did in creating TechCrunch as he ran it, and with Heather Harde, Sarah Lacy, and others working with him. That gang’s split up now.
We’re not going to see a time like that again.