SXSW: Why Read One News Source?

Posted by: Douglas MacMillan on March 16, 2009


At technology conferences like South by Southwest, Gabe Rivera feels most at home in the press lounge, trading news tips with bloggers. But he’s no ordinary journalist.

Four years ago, software engineer Rivera launched Techmeme, a site that aggregates the latest top headlines in technology industry news and organizes the reaction to that news as it streams in from various blogs and mainstream outlets during the course of a day. His site requires little cost – he employs only a few people – and he’s turned a profit by placing ads from tech companies alongside the news headlines.

Recently, Rivera has taken the same secret, news-gathering algorithm that made Techmeme a hit, and applied to the new aggregation sites WeSmirch (celebrity gossip), memeorandum (political news), and Ballbug (baseball updates).

In this video I shot with Rivera, he talks about why his model is best for “niche categories” and not general news, and he tells us which tech company he’s paying most attention to these days.

Gabe Rivera, Techmeme from Doug MacMillan on Vimeo.

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BusinessWeek writers Peter Burrows, Cliff Edwards, Olga Kharif, Aaron Ricadela, Douglas MacMillan, and Spencer Ante dig behind the headlines to analyze what’s really happening throughout the world of technology. One of the first mainstream media tech blogs, Tech Beat covers everything from tech bellwethers like Apple, Google, and Intel and emerging new leaders such as Facebook to new technologies, trends, and controversies.



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