Henry Blodget—yeah, that guy from the last bubble—is back, selling himself as an Internet entrepreneur. The haters are still angry, but his straight-talking analysis of the Web world is earning him new fans.
December 2008 (16.12) issue
By Daniel Roth
Henry Blodget has never gotten used to the chorus of hate that follows his every move. He's merely learned to live with it. When he started his personal blog in 2005, the comments dripped with disgust. "You are a boldface liar," a reader wrote. "Give me one reason why I should believe what you are writing," said another. And that was just in response to Blodget's innocuous first entry.
During his years as a star Wall Street analyst, his pronouncements were welcomed and celebrated; now he couldn't say hello without getting savaged. Just last August, TechCrunch mentioned that Blodget would be one of more than two dozen tech celebrities judging a contest for startups. Blodget knew what was coming, even if his hosts didn't. "Blodget is scum.... He is no longer the arrogant prick we saw in the '90s, but he's still scum," someone wrote. "A lot of people lost money listening to this dirtbag." "Blodget is a Web 1.0, bubble-creating has-been." "He is unethical." "He's as crooked as they come."
I meet Blodget at the offices of his new business, a year-old site called Silicon Alley Insider, shortly after the TechCrunch beat-down. Alley Insider is one of many tech business blogs that feed news, earnings info, and rumors to investors and corporate insiders. But Alley Insider has one thing that others don't. Blodget. He's smart, he's skeptical, and he's got the kind of self-assured voice that sells well in the blogosphere. As the market sinks, his opinions are even more in demand, though he's still hated by a large portion of his prospective audience. (more)