Eight defectors from AOL’s tech site Engadget are starting a new tech site with their former boss, Jim Bankoff, who now runs a federation of sports sites called SB Nation, the New York Times reports.
So what went wrong at AOL? Engadget was apparently working as a permanent start-up, with 16-hour days. “We have been working on blogging technology that was developed in 2003, we haven’t made a hire since I started running the site,” said Joshua Topolsky, who was the editor of Engadget.
Sounds rough! While there will still be a brand called Engadget at AOL, Topolsky and as many as eight of the “prominent editorial and technology staff members” are leaving to start the new gadget site.
Because AOL acquired Engadget in 2005, David Carr at the Times looks at the loss of these staff members as a possible omen for what might happen now that AOL has acquired Huffington Post. “AOL has found a way to acquire what it cannot build, but it still hasn’t found a way to hang on to what it has.”