Technorati: In a hole but still digging

Mike Arrington noticed the exact same thing I did when I read Wired’s interview with new Technorati CEO Richard Jalichandra. When asked about Techmeme, which just came out with its Top 100 “leaderboard” feature, the new Technorati honcho said it was a “great little site,” but it was clear that he didn’t see it as much competition.

As Mike notes in his post, this comes off sounding awfully high and mighty — and from a company that has surprisingly little to be high and mighty about, when you get right down to it. Technorati has been riddled with performance issues for longer than I care to think about, has launched new features that seem poorly thought out and are already being done better by others (WTF comes to mind), and is in danger of being overshadowed by a website run by a single person, Techmeme’s Gabe Rivera.

Many people have pointed out that only focuses on a small number of tech blogs, while Technorati covers the waterfront of the blogosphere — and that’s true. But Google blog search already does a far better job of that, despite only having been around a fraction as long. And when it comes to blogs, tech is still a big segment, and Techmeme pretty much owns it as far as I’m concerned (although has a chunk as well).

To his credit, Jalichandra responded to Mike’s post in the comments at TechCrunch, and said he didn’t intend to come off as belittling Techmeme in any way. So he’s clearly a good sport. But if there’s one thing the new CEO should know by now, it’s that when you’re in a hole the first thing you should do is stop digging — and his new company is still in one heck of a hole.

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About mathewi

I'm the chief digital writer at the Columbia Journalism Review in New York, and a former writer for Fortune magazine and the Globe and Mail newspaper.

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