The FriendFeed for the rest of us

Chris Tolles, CEO of Topix

Yeah, you are probably sick of the FriendFeed hype. Sorry about that. But I do look around to see if there’s any other choices out there. Today I found one.

125,000 comments per day. Heck, FriendFeed doesn’t even have that many people on it yet.

Here’s an interview with Topix’ CEO, Chris Tolles, having a conversation with me about the online community business. How is he doing it? He covers his advertising, his marketing, and other aspects of his business.

He also discusses the differences between “normal people” and people who read TechCrunch and hang out on FriendFeed.

Of course we’re discussing this video over on FriendFeed now. :-)

Oh, and note that this was done with an updated Qik client which gives a little better quality.

I don't feel sorry for Yahoo

I keep trying to ignore this year’s biggest technology industry news story. I’d rather try out the latest Twitter client (TweetDeck is the one on my screen right now and it’s pretty cool). But through that client came a torrent of news this morning and, indeed, the story is all over the top of TechMeme. Steve Ballmer still wants to buy Yahoo, but only if Yahoo’s current board gets fired first.

I don’t care and I don’t feel sorry for Yahoo. I am thinking back to the first days of this story, back in January. I still remember Maryam, turning to me after I told her that Yahoo was turning down Microsoft. She said “are they crazy?” If a normal person can have that reaction, something must have been wrong inside the leadership of Yahoo.

Translation: Yahoo is being burnt to the ground by its current management.

Sometimes management does this. I wish I knew why. I’ve seen this happen at big companies and small ones (even some that I’ve worked at).

It causes a lot of consternation, layoffs, hurt careers, etc. But on Saturday I saw the silver light in all this: Silicon Valley just got a ton of innovators that now are free of bad management.

I was at a breakfast with a former Yahoo worker. He’d been laid off in this latest round of layoffs. He, and a friend, were starting a new company that is doing something I want (we’ll talk about this later after they come out of stealth mode).

And it’s not the first time I’ve heard of an ex-Yahoo employee doing something innovative, either.

Watch over the next year as a bunch of new stuff comes out because all of a sudden a bunch of ex-Yahoo employees are following their dreams. Even when they don’t start new companies, they are making contributions to other companies.

It’s the cycle of life in Silicon Valley. The old mess up and screw up their companies, spinning off tons of smart people, and that helps the new happen.

So, don’t expect me to cry about Yahoo.

Go Jerry, go!