At SWSWi, one of my many hallway conversations revolved around the trouble of getting profiled on TechCrunch. My fellow “mobile panelist” (thanks Chris Heuer for that term) said something like:
“If you don’t get profiled when you launch, you’ll never get profiled on TechCrunch. If they can’t point to their early coverage of you, they think they look like they missed something.”
For some reason this stuck with me, probably because it scares me that one of the biggest sources of news for this industry I love so much is so …. haphazard and personal. Eager to test this theory, I checked out the latest stories about startups on TechCrunch, and this theory defintely seems to ring true. When I wrote this blog entry, I checked the first three older startups featured on the site, and each entry made reference to previous coverage in a significant way.
 “In mid 2005 I profiled YouTube for the first time.”
 “London based Songkick, a Y Combinator startup that launched in October 2007…”
 “See our February 2008 review of Bungee Connect here.”
I have nothing at all against being self-referential. I do it here, and I wouldn’t begrudge anyone else. But if this theory plays out in truth (I’ll be watching to see), then that’s a bit sad. Imagine CNN or MSNBC not covering a story because they didn’t break it.
Fox News? Maybe. But do we really want our biggest industry source to more closely associate with Fox News than honest journalism? (And yes, TechCrunch is absolutely journalism)