A9watch, etc.

News, reviews, and commentary about A9.com, other new search technologies, and related topics. Send news, inquiries, and rants to randalldotnewton atgmaildotcom. Subscribe at http://feeds.feedburner.com/A9watchEtc.

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Well-connected blogger gets first crack at reporting A9 debut

Magazine columnist and Silicon Valley veteran John Battelle broke the news on his web log yesterday that A9 was live. Within minutes of his initial report, the news was ricocheting from blog to blog, into RSS feeds and only then out through traditional media sources. Today his interview with A9 president Udi Mander is a Business 2.0 magazine Web Exclusive.

If you read only Battelle’s blog account, you might get the impression that he was just a lucky Joe who happened to be in the right place at the right time—just another blogger standing watch. The first-person and personal nature of Battelle’s blog—like most blogs—encourages this view. But Battelle is no amateur; he is a well-connected reporter and editor whose career beat is the intersection of old and new media with Silicon Valley. He is a columnist for Business 2.0 and was a co-founding editor of WIRED. He did a tour of duty as CEO of Standard Media International, publisher of The Industry Standard, and was named a “global leader for tomorrow” by the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. He is also currently a visiting profession at the University of California, Berkeley, where he received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

So, one story behind the story is: Who worked harder to make sure Battelle was the first to report on the A9 launch, Battelle or A9? This isn’t about looking for conspiracies, but about understanding the PR process that occurs behind the scenes. It is one of the many angles we plan to cover in working, over time, to tell the full story about A9.

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