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Look Who's Blogging

How five executives got blog religion and are using it to their professional and personal advantage.

Alan Meckler
Tip #5: Don't be afraid to take stock and eat crow


Alan Meckler, CEO, Jupitermedia Corp.

Alan Meckler,
CEO, Jupitermedia Corp.
For anyone who decided not to write a blog for fear of embarrassment or of shooting himself in the foot, meet Alan Meckler, CEO of business-technology research, content, and events company Jupitermedia Corp.

Meckler has been blogging since February 2003, a month after he decided that his company was going to bury Comdex Las Vegas, the legendary computer-industry convention, under a tombstone. Jupitermedia was creating a competing show, called Computer Digital Expo.

"I had a feeling that Comdex wasn't long for this world," Meckler says. It was canceled in 2004, though the show has been scheduled again for this fall.

"I decided to do a diary several times a week about what the industry was saying about our moves," Meckler says. He also wanted to document how Jupitermedia was going to "take out the greatest trade show of all time." But it didn't work out that way.

The Computer Digital Expo show that opened in November 2003 wasn't a financial success, Meckler says, though he maintains that it enjoyed some critical success. Say what you will about Meckler's taste for big-game hunting and self-promotion, he used his blog to perform a post-mortem on the show, even questioning the very need for the kind of show Jupitermedia created.

Since December 2003, Meckler's blog, now called Internet Media, has focused on online publishing and how it ties into the history of the Internet. It sometimes reads like a big-city gossip column but no more so than most blogs:

"Watch Jason Calacanis!

"I just had breakfast with Jason Calacanis. For those who do not remember or know of Jason: Nobody was a bigger mover or shaker in the New York City Internet doings (once called Silicon Alley) than Jason. Now Jason is back big time with Weblogsinc."

Blog excerpt: June 23, 2004
"I admitted my failure with cdXpo [Computer Digital Expo]. It is hard to admit failure. But sometimes one has to face reality. ... The trade show industry needs originality. We tried to do that with cdXpo. We failed, but we sure did try and took a significant financial loss. ... I have no regrets about cdXpo. We did a great job. Success was not in the cards."
— Alan Meckler


Updated four times a week, the blog steers clear of the personal. Meckler says he has thought about writing more personal passages, but "I've gotten a lot of criticism in the past. Why open myself up?"

Asked just how much he has opened himself up in the blog, Meckler recounts an entry that mentioned his mother-in-law. And they say the biggest blogging risk executives face is running afoul of industry regulations. Indeed.


Continue to the sidebar:
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More Execs Who Blog
Bob Lutz,
vice chairman at General Motors
fastlane.gmblogs.com

Ray Ozzie,
founder, chairman, CEO at Groove Networks, www.ozzie.net/blog

Greg Papadopoulos,
chief technology officer at Sun Microsystems
blogs.sun.com/roller/
page/Gregp


Werner Vogels,
CTO at Amazon.com
weblogs.cs.cornell.edu/
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