Eleven (years of blogging)

I have published GigaOM a lot longer before it was a blog. It was a website where all the links went to articles from Forbes, Red Herring and other publications I used to write for. It was an archive for all my email newsletters. It was home to my resume. But in December 2001, MovableType’s Ben Trott installed the MovableType software for me and with that GigaOm, the blog was born.

This year, I celebrated its eleventh birthday by taking a quiet walk down embarcadero on a very rainy day, musing about how the world (and blogging has) changed since then. I thought about how blogging changed me, my view of the world, and how I practice the art of writing. It helped me discover my voice and myself. 

When I started to blog in earnest, the masters of blogging at the time were (and still are) folks such as Dave Winer, Doc Searls, Anil Dash and Dave Pell. They were the best role models for anyone who was interested in the fine art (or craft) of blogging. They were generous with tips, time and suggestions. Most importantly, they were generous in spreading the word, but linking to a rank newcomer. And they still are the best practitioners of blogging. I enjoyed reading them. I learned from them. And I wanted to follow in their footsteps. Not a day goes when I don’t make my way towards their blogs – and not their twitter feeds. Stopping at their web homes is walking down the neighborhood, pausing and saying hello to everyone.

But the world of blogs has blossomed since those early days. Blogging has become big business. I am glad to have turned GigaOM into a platform for smart, intelligent and analytical voices. From the very beginning our focus has been on the business of technology.  We try hard to add context and analysis and go a little deeper than the daily news, because that’s where we think the most value lies — and we try to stick to our blogging roots by injecting a little of ourselves into it as well.

As a group, we tend to have a bias towards real technology and thinking and focusing on future is a default state for our team. What started as one voice is now a symphony composed of smart, fun, interesting and lovers of real technology, who honor me by helping my dream turn into reality. I have now seen four generations of technology bloggers come to center stage – each one is different, each one unique and each one interesting. There are so many to single out, so I won’t. Reading something unique, provocative and interesting still gives me a kick.

Today, I also get a lot of joy from helping newcomers getting started into technology blogging– whether they are part of team GigaOM or not. Winer & Searls pushed me forward, and I am just doing the same. New minds means new perspectives and new thinking — and there is nothing more fun than that.

Last year, I shared statistics as part of the 10-year-anniversary report card. The eleventh year wasn’t quite the same as my previous 10 years. I posted about a post a day — 363 in total for the year. The posts here fewer, but longer – on an average about 800 words. Of course, I have been active here on om.co, mostly because there is no reason for me to distract you from the fine work of my colleagues by my photos of blue skies, chatter about the Yankees and musings about shoes.

But, as the year winds down, I am wondering what I want to do during the next twelve months. I am going to continue to write about technology, trends and companies, but the focus will be more on the future of technology and its impact on society and business. I am looking to focus on the science of technology. But most importantly, I am looking to divorce myself from the vicious and demanding news cycle. As someone who grew up on breaking news, this will perhaps be the toughest thing to give up — even tougher than giving up smoking!

Of course, Om.co will continue to be a daily blotter of my life with usual fare — photos, people I meet, random musings, Yankees, shoes, bags and tips about interesting brands. Except for one small addition — I will start doing more posts about lessons I have learned as a writer, founder, start-up junkie and a dreamer.

Thanks for coming along with me on this journey.

Related readings: Ten simple rules of blogging & Why blogs need to be social

gigaomoldschool

Responses

  1. Reema Bahnasy (@rbahnasy) says:

    December 29th, 2012 at 8:10 am Reply

    Congrats Om on turning 11 and on what you’ve built in those years. Looking forward to your new additions. Please also include watch maker reccos alongside the new musings ;)

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 29th, 2012 at 8:31 am Reply

      Thanks Reema. The request is duly noted.

  2. Cloudquays (@cloudquays) says:

    December 27th, 2012 at 2:36 pm Reply

    Hi Om, thanks for this post. I really like your writing and we love GigaOM. Was wondering if we could pick your brain sometime as we also blog about tech. We are thinking of taking Cloudquays.com to the next level and would really appreciate any tips you have for that. We look forward to hearing from you. Merry Christmas and we wish you a very Happy New Year.

  3. David H. Deans says:

    December 27th, 2012 at 1:04 pm Reply

    Congratulations, Om, on your accomplishment. I’ve been using Blogger since July 2001

    http://www.blogger.com/profile/05497702989231830479

    Like you, I thank the pioneers that started this phenomenon. In particular, Evan and Meg, the founders of Pyra Labs, for inviting me to use their platform (back when it was still in beta).

    Om, you said, “But, as the year winds down, I am wondering what I want to do during the next twelve months.”

    Have you considered working with some of your Silicon Valley buddies to craft a manifesto for “Broadband 2.0″ in the U.S. market? It seems that most of the well intentioned public policy efforts have failed to gain the momentum needed to create meaningful change in 2012.

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 28th, 2012 at 7:16 pm Reply

      David

      Congrats on your 11 years as well. Glad to see us old timers on the job. I am looking forward to taking you ideas and sharing with folks in Silicon Valley.

  4. Varun Kohli (@vk_is) says:

    December 27th, 2012 at 10:54 am Reply

    Om, met you at the TechCrunch last year. Really enjoyed reading your blogs. Good luck with your next venture.

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 28th, 2012 at 7:17 pm Reply

      Varun,

      Thanks – Same adventure, different pace. :-) See you soon.

  5. Arne Kaufmann (@septuplicate) says:

    December 27th, 2012 at 9:15 am Reply

    I really enjoy the content you are putting out. However I always was more likely to visit your personal blog (this one here) than Gigaom, because of the design decisions. This here is clean and great to read, Gigaom not as much. It seems it has to be very difficult for bigger media outlets in general to keep a great balance between content and advertising. Gigaom is one of them who still do a relatively good job at it, but it is nothing compared to Quartz for example. Or the smaller sites like Daring Fireball, Shawn Blanc, Kottke etc. Would like to see more non-messy sites. While it may be difficult to include advertisements in a way the visitor enjoys them and it still the advertiser gets the most out of them, it can’t be so difficult for the sites to use another typeface with a comfortable font, font size, line height, font weight, column width etc. fitting to the rest of the site. Also I think it is weird to have clustered sidebars. A reader only can focus one at a time, so he does not concentrate on one fully. Why not put that content somewhere else or turn the opacity down or similar to this one hear or just a few blocks in height, so it is gone after a few paragraphs. Hm.

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 28th, 2012 at 7:18 pm Reply

      Arne

      Thanks for the feedback. It is exceptionally useful and I already shared it with our team. Appreciate the time and thought you put into it.

  6. Alexis C. Madrigal (@alexismadrigal) says:

    December 27th, 2012 at 8:38 am Reply

    I’m also proud to say that I got my start with you, too. Your team gave me my first shot at making the transition to journalism after few years writing research reports. I still see flashes of the GigaOm/Earth2Tech voice in my work, all these years later — and it makes me happy.

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 27th, 2012 at 8:39 am Reply

      Alexis

      I am just thrilled to see you flourish and add intelligence to the blogging world. COntinued success and keep doing those amazing pieces.

  7. tgprice5 says:

    December 27th, 2012 at 7:46 am Reply

    Om, I’ve known you since you were at Forbes. Remember Agere? Anyway, went through the same time passage last year. Always keeping an eye on technology, but now my partner, Diane Bernard and I are launching a new website for indie filmmakers. Will continue to follow your blogs. Go find the next Higgs boson and next time I’m in SF let’s go catch a cup.

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 27th, 2012 at 8:32 am Reply

      Hi Tom

      Thanks for the kind note and yes, will love to catch up next time you are in SF or I am in New York.

  8. Mark Evans (@markevans) says:

    December 27th, 2012 at 7:08 am Reply

    As an early reader of your blog, I blame you for my obsession with blogging. :) Glad to hear you’re blog and blogging are evolving and continuing.

    Mark

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 27th, 2012 at 8:31 am Reply

      Lol, Mark. Well at least you are off that awful blogging platform you were using in the early days. :-)

  9. Doc Searls (@dsearls) says:

    December 27th, 2012 at 6:16 am Reply

    Thanks, Om. Knowing and following you all these years has been a pleasure and an honor. Looking forward to many more. Rock on.

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 27th, 2012 at 8:30 am Reply

      Doc

      Thanks for the kind words of encouragement, now and forever. I hope to follow in your footsteps, now and forever.

  10. Dan York (@danyork) says:

    December 27th, 2012 at 4:24 am Reply

    Om, I well remember those early days when there was a small crowd of people blogging about VoIP and you were there with “Om Malik On Broadband” if I recall correctly. You were then an inspiration to many of us who were also writing… and you continue to be an inspiration to this day. I look forward to your your thoughts on the future of technology – something I have always enjoyed from you – and I look forward to your lessons learned, too. Many thanks for all that you do – and all that you share!

    P.S. good luck breaking that addiction to the news cycle – I think that might be in your DNA! :-)

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 27th, 2012 at 8:31 am Reply

      I think it is time to change that addiction to news cycles, Dan, otherwise I will never change. :-)

      Thanks for your kind words.

  11. Arthur Simiyu (@artsim) says:

    December 27th, 2012 at 2:11 am Reply

    “They were the best role models for anyone who was interested in the fine art (or craft) of blogging”

    And now you are that to the rest of us. Thank you.

  12. Shripriya Mahesh (@Shripriya) says:

    December 26th, 2012 at 10:55 pm Reply

    Congratulations! I’m happy to have followed it for 10 of the 11 years.
    And, we need to catch up. Lots to update you on. xx

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 27th, 2012 at 8:33 am Reply

      Shripriya

      THanks and glad we connected and it is nice to have friends who give you feedback, especially when you are screwing up. Thanks for reading and we do indeed need to catch up.

  13. Prateek Panda (@prateekpanda) says:

    December 26th, 2012 at 10:38 pm Reply

    You have always been a great inspiration. GigaOm was one of the first blogs I started reading with devotion. I have learnt so much from you and have so much more to learn as well.

    Keep sharing your experiences as they help make ours as well. :)

    Best wishes.

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 27th, 2012 at 8:33 am Reply

      Thanks Prateek and Saru

  14. Saru says:

    December 26th, 2012 at 10:07 pm Reply

    You are an inspiration OM. Love the way you write and your perspectives on technology. Please do keep inspiring us. Thanks again. My advance new year wishes to you sir.

  15. Aakar Anil (@aakarpost) says:

    December 26th, 2012 at 9:55 pm Reply

    Congratulations Om.

    I’ve been following GigaOm from last 2-3 years. I’m very thankful to you that I’m learning great things everyday from your blog. Sometime I think I’d have followed your blog from the very beginning.

    Keep doing what you do.
    :)

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 27th, 2012 at 8:34 am Reply

      Last 2-3 years it is all our team that is doing the hard work.

  16. DangerousBri (@DangerousBri) says:

    December 26th, 2012 at 9:14 pm Reply

    I love your site, especially your writings. I want to thank you for everything that I’ve learned reading your writings. I somehow came to your site from Popsugar and gigaom still keeps me interested.

    Any tips you have on blogging going forward will be much appreciated. Also love all the photos, any tips and software you use are always appreciated.

    Thanks again!!

    1. Om Malik says:

      December 26th, 2012 at 9:23 pm Reply

      Now I blush @dangerousbri. thanks for your kind words. I will try and keep you entertained.

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