Layoffs and, um, funding?

TechCrunch started a page to keep track of layoffs in the startup world.

Me? I’m seeing tons of depressing news hitting our economy. That’s what I get for watching CNBC and reading TechMeme.

But, there were a group of companies funded this week too and there are plenty of jobs open. It sure is an interesting time to watch the startup community right now.

How would you report this ongoing story? Several over on FriendFeed want bloggers to avoid overcovering the bad news and, instead, focus on the positive news. What do you think?

Who is doing the best at covering the economic times hitting startups? My top vote is for VentureBeat.

37 thoughts on “Layoffs and, um, funding?

  1. My point is … I’d rather be INFORMED (not scared), than being OVERWHELMED.

    ABSA Bank South Africa are repossessing more than 1700 vehicles EVERY MONTH. Computer prices have climbed from R2800 to R4200 in less than 4 months. Does that sound like speculation?

    I feel sorry for those who seek only GOOD NEWS, because sometimes there isn’t much – especially if you have nothing to cling to but your own speculation.

  2. My point is … I’d rather be INFORMED (not scared), than being OVERWHELMED.

    ABSA Bank South Africa are repossessing more than 1700 vehicles EVERY MONTH. Computer prices have climbed from R2800 to R4200 in less than 4 months. Does that sound like speculation?

    I feel sorry for those who seek only GOOD NEWS, because sometimes there isn’t much – especially if you have nothing to cling to but your own speculation.

  3. Only want good news. Scared of bad news. Wait, I’ve heard that somewhere before:

    Jeremiah 6:14
    They dress the wound of my people as though it were not serious. ‘Peace, peace,’ they say, when there is no peace.

    Ignorance Isn’t Bliss

    Judges 18:27
    Then they took what Micah had made, and his priest, and went on to Laish, AGAINST A PEACEFUL AND UNSUSPECTING PEOPLE. They attacked them with the sword and burned down their city.

  4. Only want good news. Scared of bad news. Wait, I’ve heard that somewhere before:

    Jeremiah 6:14
    They dress the wound of my people as though it were not serious. ‘Peace, peace,’ they say, when there is no peace.

    Ignorance Isn’t Bliss

    Judges 18:27
    Then they took what Micah had made, and his priest, and went on to Laish, AGAINST A PEACEFUL AND UNSUSPECTING PEOPLE. They attacked them with the sword and burned down their city.

  5. What I’d really like as a news consumer would be to apply a filter that I can turn on and off depending on my daily mood: “Good news” and “Bad news”. Wouldn’t that be great? So when you’re feeling down in the dumps you can switch to an all-optimism mode. Why the heck not? The whole idea of “balanced” is a farce anyway, since it’s still dependent on an editorial bottleneck of coverage.

    Even in the last recession, there were some ultimately strong winners that emerged who are still doing relatively well today (think eBay, Amazon). I think we’ll see the same thing, and some new categories that will pop up to capture consumer and investor interest. Brand names like Facebook will ultimately find their way to monetization if people don’t panic too soon and cut them off from their exploration. Was delighted to read about the new INQ1 phone in Business Week, which is heavily tied into social media apps and a low price point that is recession-friendly.

    I’m also gratified to see that Search and online PR are two of the promotional channels that are still in vogue, since those are the two sectors I’ve spent the last 12 years cultivating. (Pats self on back, but carefully in case the gods are looking.)

  6. What I’d really like as a news consumer would be to apply a filter that I can turn on and off depending on my daily mood: “Good news” and “Bad news”. Wouldn’t that be great? So when you’re feeling down in the dumps you can switch to an all-optimism mode. Why the heck not? The whole idea of “balanced” is a farce anyway, since it’s still dependent on an editorial bottleneck of coverage.

    Even in the last recession, there were some ultimately strong winners that emerged who are still doing relatively well today (think eBay, Amazon). I think we’ll see the same thing, and some new categories that will pop up to capture consumer and investor interest. Brand names like Facebook will ultimately find their way to monetization if people don’t panic too soon and cut them off from their exploration. Was delighted to read about the new INQ1 phone in Business Week, which is heavily tied into social media apps and a low price point that is recession-friendly.

    I’m also gratified to see that Search and online PR are two of the promotional channels that are still in vogue, since those are the two sectors I’ve spent the last 12 years cultivating. (Pats self on back, but carefully in case the gods are looking.)

  7. Hi Robert,

    Great session on video yesterday at Converge South. Thanks!

    I think you are right about funding – from what I read – you think it is a mixed bag.

    I work for a new start-up and would be interested in sharing some of my experiences.

    Again, thanks for yesterday – your break-out was cool.

  8. Hi Robert,

    Great session on video yesterday at Converge South. Thanks!

    I think you are right about funding – from what I read – you think it is a mixed bag.

    I work for a new start-up and would be interested in sharing some of my experiences.

    Again, thanks for yesterday – your break-out was cool.

  9. TechCrunch is for sure leading in this space. They are always showing the negative side of the depression which is a good thing. VentureBeat is OK but needs to grow.

  10. TechCrunch is for sure leading in this space. They are always showing the negative side of the depression which is a good thing. VentureBeat is OK but needs to grow.

  11. for the Good news: i think TechCrunch Cover them too. and for a mirror to the layoff dashboard you still have Crunchboard that covers the company that hires and all the other job board…Blogs should cover the good news like the bad news. Not become blind to reality

  12. for the Good news: i think TechCrunch Cover them too. and for a mirror to the layoff dashboard you still have Crunchboard that covers the company that hires and all the other job board…Blogs should cover the good news like the bad news. Not become blind to reality

  13. One thing you could do, Robert, is to use these times as a study. Some of these start-ups will be more successful than others, and they will survive, even in the toughest of times. There will be a lesson for the rest of us. Help us understand how we should have prepared in the good times. What are the success factors?

  14. One thing you could do, Robert, is to use these times as a study. Some of these start-ups will be more successful than others, and they will survive, even in the toughest of times. There will be a lesson for the rest of us. Help us understand how we should have prepared in the good times. What are the success factors?

  15. Hi Robert

    In answer to your question about how the ongoing story should be reported, it would clearly be wrong to shield us from the bad news by only reporting the good stuff; and vice versa. We need a balanced, truthful view and the maturity to react to both sides of the story in a constructive way wherever possible.

    In answer to Jim (previous comment), the good news is that Jemstep, Inc. will also be hiring as from next month. Despite all the bad news, I am relocating from South Africa to Palo Alto with my family in a couple of weeks to get our start-up business going.

    We will be renting offices, hiring people and we remain positive.

    Kind regards
    Kevin Cimring

  16. Hi Robert

    In answer to your question about how the ongoing story should be reported, it would clearly be wrong to shield us from the bad news by only reporting the good stuff; and vice versa. We need a balanced, truthful view and the maturity to react to both sides of the story in a constructive way wherever possible.

    In answer to Jim (previous comment), the good news is that Jemstep, Inc. will also be hiring as from next month. Despite all the bad news, I am relocating from South Africa to Palo Alto with my family in a couple of weeks to get our start-up business going.

    We will be renting offices, hiring people and we remain positive.

    Kind regards
    Kevin Cimring

  17. I’ve asked everyone I could think of today where are the stories about startups hiring (like us) or getting funded?!? I know they’re out there. I dont see it covered…its fear mongering because it sells. Where the balance!? Media know fear sells period.

  18. I’ve asked everyone I could think of today where are the stories about startups hiring (like us) or getting funded?!? I know they’re out there. I dont see it covered…its fear mongering because it sells. Where the balance!? Media know fear sells period.

  19. It is a perfect opportunity to analyze the cream of the crop.

    The business models of those Start ups that are managing to survive and thrive during this period.

    Those that manage to get VC funding

    In other words, turn this into a positive learning experience, not one for gloom and doom reading

    A few of those exceptional firms that will stand out during this period may have ideas that will evolve into the next Google or Microsoft or Apple in terms of impact

    Lets focus on THEM and what they are bringing into society.

    Lets watch them grow and learn WHY they are becoming what they are

    Stay Positive :-D

  20. It is a perfect opportunity to analyze the cream of the crop.

    The business models of those Start ups that are managing to survive and thrive during this period.

    Those that manage to get VC funding

    In other words, turn this into a positive learning experience, not one for gloom and doom reading

    A few of those exceptional firms that will stand out during this period may have ideas that will evolve into the next Google or Microsoft or Apple in terms of impact

    Lets focus on THEM and what they are bringing into society.

    Lets watch them grow and learn WHY they are becoming what they are

    Stay Positive :-D

  21. I think you should just call it like you see it. You don’t do anyone any good by sugar-coating the news.

  22. I think you should just call it like you see it. You don’t do anyone any good by sugar-coating the news.

  23. I think it’s more than sad that bloggers are focusing so much on the bad news with such enthusiasm. Bloggers (particularly Tech bloggers) have a unique opportunity to track and blog the good news… about new hires despite the economy, about funding successes, about reducing burn rate, about partnerships being formed about the innovative things these companies are doing to meet considerable challenges. Positive news is most needed and the hardest to find.

    We already have the controlled media talking heads feeding us a minute by minute diet of bad and negative news… because, as we know, it sells. And let’s face it, that’s what their paid to do. But why bloggers have to follow suite is beyond me. A layoff graph?? Some balance, at the very least, would be good. I think blogggers could easily provide that balance.

    I can’t say I know who’s doing the best in covering the positive news in the tech industry (you’re not doing too bad a job yourself), but whoever it is, more power to them and I hope we see – and hear – more.

  24. I think it’s more than sad that bloggers are focusing so much on the bad news with such enthusiasm. Bloggers (particularly Tech bloggers) have a unique opportunity to track and blog the good news… about new hires despite the economy, about funding successes, about reducing burn rate, about partnerships being formed about the innovative things these companies are doing to meet considerable challenges. Positive news is most needed and the hardest to find.

    We already have the controlled media talking heads feeding us a minute by minute diet of bad and negative news… because, as we know, it sells. And let’s face it, that’s what their paid to do. But why bloggers have to follow suite is beyond me. A layoff graph?? Some balance, at the very least, would be good. I think blogggers could easily provide that balance.

    I can’t say I know who’s doing the best in covering the positive news in the tech industry (you’re not doing too bad a job yourself), but whoever it is, more power to them and I hope we see – and hear – more.

  25. I agree with Brian, you can’t deliver them what they want.

    You need to point out the fact that we’re in a pretty bad recession and the worst is still to come. However, on that note you should also be trying to boost the morale of your readers. Scaring your readers might help a few realize how deep we really are but most already know where we stand and your just feeding their fears. Try to provide both sides to evoke fear but, also to calm it.

    “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” ~ FDR

    Who’s doing the best job?
    I have to agree with VentureBeat. Also, I’m liking The Inquisitr and yourself, now that you seem to have calmed down.

  26. I agree with Brian, you can’t deliver them what they want.

    You need to point out the fact that we’re in a pretty bad recession and the worst is still to come. However, on that note you should also be trying to boost the morale of your readers. Scaring your readers might help a few realize how deep we really are but most already know where we stand and your just feeding their fears. Try to provide both sides to evoke fear but, also to calm it.

    “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” ~ FDR

    Who’s doing the best job?
    I have to agree with VentureBeat. Also, I’m liking The Inquisitr and yourself, now that you seem to have calmed down.

  27. Its quite optimistic to see people opening up for jobs now.
    The point is that the gratitude factor is better now. The employee wont quit and park his car in the next lot for a better pay.

  28. Its quite optimistic to see people opening up for jobs now.
    The point is that the gratitude factor is better now. The employee wont quit and park his car in the next lot for a better pay.

  29. Your comment is a bit like the perennial argument between the “artist” and the “producer”. The readers pay the bills. If everyone is getting tired of reading about bad news, pretty soon they stop reading blogs that only report the bad news. You need to publish at least some of what people want to read or soon you won’t be publishing to anyone.

    I think the point of many is that there is plenty of good news as well, just make sure you balance the bad with the good. Those companies that got funded this week need the coverage as much or more than the companies laying people off this week.

  30. Your comment is a bit like the perennial argument between the “artist” and the “producer”. The readers pay the bills. If everyone is getting tired of reading about bad news, pretty soon they stop reading blogs that only report the bad news. You need to publish at least some of what people want to read or soon you won’t be publishing to anyone.

    I think the point of many is that there is plenty of good news as well, just make sure you balance the bad with the good. Those companies that got funded this week need the coverage as much or more than the companies laying people off this week.

  31. Your value as a blogger approaches zero as you tell people what they want to hear as opposed to what you see happening.

    It isn’t that you are 100% right… it is that you are offering your honest perspective.

  32. Your value as a blogger approaches zero as you tell people what they want to hear as opposed to what you see happening.

    It isn’t that you are 100% right… it is that you are offering your honest perspective.

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