After a stalker forced him to spend $2,000 a day on security last summer and a man spit on him at a conference, TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington says that he might quit altogether. Previously, he’d only said he would take a month’s leave.
In an interview with the WSJ, Michael said he hasn’t decided whether or not he’ll come back after February. “I’m going to take a month to think about it,” he said. “I feel like a load has been taken off.”
During the same interview, the top tech blogger blamed rival tech blogs for both the stalker and the spitter.
Specifically, Michael said reporting from Dow Jones’ AllThingsD and Gawker Media’s semi-shuttered Silicon Valley gossip blog, Valleywag, made him a target for crazy people.
“I think there are crazy people out there, like the guy that threatened to kill me,” he said. “I just wish that people wouldn’t suggest to the crazy people that I’m a good target.”
“Whoever is the top blog will get attacked by everyone else and that’ll just be the way it is. We really need to think about, the community of bloggers, if we’re going to continue to slay our own for competitive reasons.”
AllThingsD blogger Kara Swisher said being stalked is “scary and disturbing,” but that “our site is trying to raise ethical and reporting standards in the tech blogosphere but is in no way responsible for people stalking Michael Arrington.”
“To say so is truly unfortunate on his part. I am appalled he is being stalked, which is scary and disturbing, and am sorry for the strife it has clearly caused him and his family.”
Gawker owner Nick Denton said the TechCrunch blogger’s response to criticism “says more about his emotional volatility than it does about anything more meaningful — like the pressures on tech journalists or Internet publishers.”
(Disclosure: Nicholas Carlson used to write for Valleywag)
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