Jason Calacanis retires from blogging

Jason Calacanis, an Internet entrepreneur, says he is retiring from blogging. Simultaneously, he has launched a limited subscriber newsletter. You might want to join it, if it’s not too late. Click here.

In his email to that list yesterday, Calacanis explained why he is retiring from blogging.

It became clear to me last night after my email to y’all.

One hundred of you responded with amazing suggestions to my email last night. After that I realized that blogging is not longer the medium for me–email is. 100 amazing suggestions in 12 hours from a pool of around 500 email subscribers. That’s 20% response rate with really considered words and no drama.

This is really interesting (and it’s not April 1, so I assume this isn’t some kind of hoax or prank, though you never know). Calacanis was co-founder of Weblogsinc.com, one of the first big commercial blog networks. It was sold to AOL in October 2005 for a reported $25 million or so. So Calacanis is someone who really knows blogging and has been doing it for a long time.

You can still a lot of his online movements, of course. In addition to the email newsletter, there’s his Twitter stream, his photos on Flickr, and more in the right sidebar of his blog.

Update: Scoble says Calacanis is playing us. Could be right.

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Comments

  1. says

    In many ways he is playing us. That’s his style. He’s a showman. But he has a very valid point hiding in there.

    People want content that’s valuable to them personally. And unlike downloadable content like audio, video or eBooks, blogs as they scale become nothing more than another news outlet…a commodity. This in turn alienates the original audience (usually rampant individualists) who then leave in favor of a new venue where their voice can be heard again.

    So what is the net result? The people with the most valuable feedback leave in droves, which in turn makes the blog less fun for the writer(s) and leads to an unfulfilling blog.

    But by tapping a core audience of faithful and limiting the audience, he creates exclusivity and value that is unmatched. And he gets only the feedback that is worthwhile to him.

    Plus you have to look at this in the larger spectrum. His blog is not his only bully pulpit. It was just one piece of his twitter, podcasting, social networking bubble. So he uses these other venues to communicate to the larger world, while reserving his more thoughtful musings for a more engaged audience. I frankly think it’s brilliant. But I guess we’ll have to see how it works.

    Bob

  2. says

    I’m not sure I agree about blogs not scaling. There’s still plenty of widely read, successful blogs out there. But I do think Calacanis is one hell of a showman.

    Also, I think we’ll have to see how large an audience he builds with the email. He talked about limiting it to 500 originally, as I recally, but the most recent edition of his newsletter (yes, I subscribed early on) says at the top that it has more than 1,600 readers. I suspect this is just a precursor to something else, though I don’t know what.

    In any case, Jason is always interesting to watch.

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