Is Scoble important without MS?

I’m fairly new to the blogging thing and the only way that I know Robert Scoble is as the Microsoft Blogger. Now, he’s leaving for Silicon Valley startup There are plenty of people talking about this. Om Malik seems to have been the one to break the news. If you want links to them all, you can certainly find a few on techmeme. Tdavid seems to think it was all about money.(CORRECTION: He only thinks that money played a big part) I think he’s wrong, money didn’t play that big of a part.
While I wish Robert the best of luck in an industry that I think is on the rise, the question come up, would Robert Scoble be Robert Scoble without Microsoft? Would there be nearly as much talk about this if he hadn’t been the Microsoft Blogger? The answer? Perhaps. Perhaps if he hadn’t become the Microsoft Blogger he might have become the Oracle blogger or some such. It’s all hypothetical. Would Dave Winer be Dave Winer without RSS and OPML? Think not.

The point is that what we do makes us who we are. I don’t think that Robert Scoble would argue that. He’s been at Microsoft for a long time and as anyone who works somewhere for an extended period of time knows, there comes a time for change. He’s not doing it entirely for money, but for new opportunities, change, and to be closer to his son also. All admirable reasons. Patrick should be proud.

Best of luck Robert, you’re entering an exciting time that is sure to be full of new challenges and most likely more than a few rewards.

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About Shane Ede

Shane Ede is an IT guy by day and a Entrepreneurial Blogger by night. You can follow him here on Thatedeguy or over on Twitter and Google+.


  1. Where did I ever say I thought it was “*all* about the money”? Rather, I pointed out that several times Scoble himself has complained that he was underpaid publically on his blog and that money in fact changes everything.

    Money wasn’t the only factor, nor was it all-encompassing the factor, but Robert’s own words betray him claiming otherwise. Money definitely played an intergal part in the decision. It does for every job/career change unless you are already wealthy. Scoble isn’t wealthy.

    You think if Microsoft would have paid him a lot more the first time he complained that he’d still be leaving? I doubt it. Not when he kept leaving comments about being underpaid on his blog.

  2. Thatedeguy says

    TDavid: you’re right, you didn’t say that it was “all” about the money. Not in so many words at least.
    “Cyndi Lauper had it right: money, money, money changes everything.

    Scoble has been leaving clues on his blog saying he was unhappy about his pay for quite some time now, so the reality that he is in fact leaving Microsoft to join shouldn’t be all that surprising to his readers.”
    “I hope Scoble received a lot more money.”
    “And for anybody thinking of working at Microsoft, they might be reminded of the company who didn’t pony up to the guy who was publically admitting he was underpaid for the work he was doing.”

    While I’m sure you’re happy for Robert, your post sure leans towards the money a lot. I think that the money did play a part in his choice. I just think there were a lot of other reasons that played a bigger part. Being closer to Patrick probably the biggest.

  3. We do know that MS is still important without Scoble. I mean, unless we hear about Ballmer throwing anohter chair across the room, Scoble;s leaving is likely pretty much a non-event as ar as MS is concerned in the grand scheme of things. He wasn’t doing anything to hasten the shipping of Vista or Office, so it impact added very little to the bottom line.

  4. Thatedeguy says

    LayZ: I think your wrong there. I think that even though Scoble didn’t contribute directly to any of the products, he added quite a bit of impact to the bottom line. He gave many of Microsoft’s sceptics a more inside view of how microsoft works and gave us all a more human level view of the giant itself.


  1. […] Update 1:20pm PST: Toby stopped by to point out the Wall Street Journal already has an article about this (see comments). Also, Thatedguy wrongly assumes by reading this post that I think Scoble’s decision is “all about money.” No, it’s not all about money but for anybody to suggest that money hasn’t played a big part here, they are ignoring the history and Scoble’s own words on the subject. Unless Scoble was just joking the numerous times he’s said on his blog that he wished he was paid more? […]