TechCrunch CEO Heather Harde Reportedly Leaving AOL

    November 18, 2011
    Chris Crum

Who would have ever thought that AOL purchasing TechCrunch wouldn’t go down as a completely smooth journey off into the sunset?

If you follow tech journalism news, you know that the journey has been anything but smooth, with the biggest bump in the road being that whole Crunch Fund, Michael Arrington ordeal earlier this year.

Since then, TechCrunch has lost some of its writers (though popular reporter MG Siegler still contributes a bit. He’s had 4 articles on TechCrunch this month).

Now, reports are out that CEO Heather Harde is quitting after disagreements with The Huffington Post, which is running the AOL content show these days. Henry Blodget at Business Insider says he’s heard from a source that Harde has handed in her resignation, but that AOL management is still trying to get her to stay.

It’s been quite interesting to see how the tech blog, which pretty much set the bar for the tech startup news niche seems to be coming apart at the seams since purchased by the online media giant.

That’s not to say that TechCrunch has done a poor job since then, by any means. They still have plenty of the names that have helped build the site into what it has become, and if I said I’ve seen better coverage of the tech startup industry, I’d be lying.

But how long will this last? That’s the real question. With the internal struggles that have been publicized (who knows what hasn’t been?), one has to wonder if AOL is going to run a much-respected tech site into the ground.

Here’s some of what people are saying about the Heather Harde news on Twitter:

The AOL talent hemorrhage continues: Heather Harde is latest to leave. 4 minutes ago via TweetDeck · powered by @socialditto

Bad week for AOL — Heather Harde leaving 57 minutes ago via Twitter for iPhone · powered by @socialditto

it just gets worse and worse at TechCrunch. CEO Heather Harde has just resigned. 4 hours ago via Tweetie for Mac · powered by @socialditto

I haven’t seen much in the way of praise for AOL. Unless you count something like this:

techcrunch CEO heather harde also quitting aol. place is gutted. at least aol didn’t waste 600m like they did w beebo 13 hours ago via Twitter for iPhone · powered by @socialditto

Everything seemed to be going pretty well with TechCrunch before AOL entered the equation. I’m sure more than a few people are still wondering if Uncrunched will become the new TechCrunch.


Chris Crum
Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.