Jason Calacanis Departs AOL

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The head of Weblogs, Inc, who sold his blog network to AOL for a reported $25 million price tag has followed his mentor, ex-CEO Jonathan Miller, out of the company.

“By the way, touching, but not very politic, to describe the outgoing boss as a mentor, quite so publicly. Unless you’re planning to quit anyway under the new regime.”

That was posted at Valleywag, referring to the lengthy farewell Calacanis posted about Miller on his blog. Not long after that hit the blogosphere, Michael Arrington at TechCrunch heard some news about Calacanis himself:

We just heard from a source that Jason Calacanis has resigned from AOL. Jason joined AOL just over a year ago when his startup, Weblogs, Inc, was acquired. Most recently, he took over management of Netscape, which relaunched earlier this year as a Digg-like news portal.

I just spoke to Jason briefly on IM – his response as of now is “no comment”.

Mark Evans blogged about the departure, and speculated about what Calacanis may have planned for the future:

So what does Calacanis do next? Well, clearly he believes in the online advertising model given his excitement about the IAB numbers earlier this week. The question is whether his severance agreement with AOL precludes him from working for a user-generated company or, for that matter, an online company that generates revenue from advertising.

One persistent criticism of the deal that brought Weblogs, Inc, to AOL was the idea that AOL bought the company just to gain Engadget, the Peter Rojas-run tech gadget site that ranks as one of the most popular blogs.

Calacanis may need another Engadget to build upon for his next success. Finding another blog to equal that one’s success would be the real accomplishment.

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David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.

Jason Calacanis Departs AOL
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