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When AOL bought the Huffington Post for $315 million, it bought a brand, a big staff, a lot of traffic and a technical whiz named Paul Berry.Just after the aquisition, the buzz was that Berry would soon be AOL’s CTO.
Now Berry is stepping back from his day-to-day work at AOL/Huffington Post, Forbes’s Jeff Bercovici reports.
The official line is that he’s going to work on more “strategic” issues.
The whispers are that Berry will soon quit AOL for a startup. Maybe he’ll join his best friend Jonah Peretti at his startup, BuzzFeed. Peretti is a Huffington Post cofounder.
Losing Berry would be a big loss for AOL.
Just after the aquisition, one former HuffPo staffer told us that during his tenure at the company, “I totally got the impression [Berry] was the genius”
“What the [Huffington Post] does well is technical stuff. Editorially it doesn’t have any direction. [Berry] and [departed HuffPo cofounder Jonah] Peretti just totally understand how to present content.”
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“Anything tech related there happens so quickly.”Berry is also well-regarded in the industry.
The gossip is that Tina Brown tried to poach Berry a couple years back to run the technical side of The Daily Beast.
So what’s this Berry guy like?
Our former staffer says Berry is a “really loud,” leader who “gives talks to the entire office quite often.”
According to one source, he “pushes around the editorial operation.”
He is “extremely strong-willed, very ambitious.”
He is “very shoot first.”
He’s a “hacker” not a “waterfall engineer.”
“He’s the most powerful person at HuffPo besides Arianna.”
Related: The AOL Way >>