Michael Arrington

Michael Arrington
J. Michael Arrington (born March 13, 1970 in Huntington Beach, California) is a serial entrepreneur and the founder of TechCrunch, a blog covering startups and technology news. Arrington attended Claremont McKenna College (BA Economics, 1992) and Stanford Law School (JD, 1995) and practiced as a corporate and securities lawyer at two law firms: O'Melveny & Myers and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. His clients included idealab, Netscape, Pixar, Apple and a number of startups, venture funds and investment banks. He also co-authored a book on initial public offerings. In 1999, he left WSGR to join RealNames as VP of Business Development and General Counsel. In 2000, he cofounded Achex, an online payments company, that was later acquired by First Data Corp for $32 million. Achex is now the back end infrastructure to Western Union online. Arrington worked in an operational role at a Carlyle backed startup in London, founded and ran two companies in Canada (Zip.ca and Pool.com), was COO to a Kleiner-backed company called Razorgator, and consulted to other companies, including Verisign. In May 2008, Time Magazine named Michael Arrington as one of the world's 100 most influential people. Conflicts Of Interest Updated 10/23/12 I am a partner at CrunchFund, a venture capital firm with investments in many startups around the world. I am also a limited partner in many other venture funds which have their own startup investments. Because of these investments, if there's a startup there's a good chance I'm a direct or indirect investor in it. Many times I won't even know that I'm an investor, because venture funds that I invest in don't normally share non public information with limited partners. Also, CrunchFund's investors include AOL and many of the top tier venture funds. That means I invest in a lot of startups. And I invest in a lot of venture funds. And a lot of venture funds have invested in me. I also occasionally own public company stocks. I currently own shares of Facebook. Until recently I owned shares of AOL. I also own other public company stocks through the management of a third party, although I typically don't know about those investments and they are primarily not in the tech industry. Sometimes I have so many financial conflicts of interest that I can't even keep them straight. So when you read what I write on Uncrunched, TechCrunch or wherever, understand that I'm conflicted. A lot. How do I deal with this and still write? I addressed it in one of my first posts on Uncrunched in 2011: "Here are the things you can expect from me: TRANSPARENCY: I will disclose, as I've always done, all financial conflicts of interest (I have lots and lots of those). I'll also disclose other conflicts of interest, like friendships, when I can. I know a lot of you don't understand why I can't disclose all conflicts of interest. The answer is that if I did, not that many people would want to talk to me in the direct, honest way that I prefer. As a reader you must remain aware of the inherent bias in everything you read, and form your own opinions accordingly. Read this post on TechCrunch and the links for more about how I see the world. TRUTH: I always try to find the truth in a situation. That unvarnished, pure nugget of truth at the core of every issue that I write about. Sometimes this takes more than one post, and sometimes I have to go back and correct things I've gotten wrong. I'll continue to do that. For more on this, read my post about process journalism. BIAS: I have lots of it, and I never try to ignore it or hide from it. The main thing to know about me is that I'm a champion of entrepreneurs and the startups they build. They are my rock stars. If in doubt I side with them, and that's clear from my writing. For more on this, read my ll always disclose the conflict of interest directly in that post. CrunchBase profile →

Latest from Michael Arrington

  • Screw The Rich (Here’s How)

    Screw The Rich (Here’s How)

    Tax the rich. Those bastards. I get why people who aren’t rich hate those that are. No one really cares what they have, they only care what they have relative to others. When there is inequality, and there always is, even the hyper intelligent call for a redistribution of wealth. It’s an enduring longing for us as a species, and no evidence to the contrary will convince people it… Read More

  • WhaleShark Media Buys UK’s Top Coupon Site, VoucherCodes

    WhaleShark Media Buys UK’s Top Coupon Site, VoucherCodes

    WhaleShark Media, which just announced an investment by Google Ventures, continues to acquire coupon sites around the world. Tomorrow they’ll announce the aquisition of eConversions, Ltd., operator of the web sites VoucherCodes.co.uk in the UK and Gutschein-Codes.de in Germany. Vouchercodes is the UK’s largest coupon site, says Whaleshark. The size of the acquisition isn’t… Read More

  • Dropbox Chooses Investor Group, Valuation Set at $5+ Billion

    Dropbox Chooses Investor Group, Valuation Set at $5+ Billion

    We’ve been tracking the twists and turns of the Dropbox mega funding round for over a month now. In July Sarah Lacy wrote that they’d be raising $200 million to $300 million at a $5 billion or higher valuation. A week ago MG Siegler wrote that the auction process was over and Dropbox was considering bids as high as $10 billion. The company has now chosen which investors will lead… Read More

  • U.S. Judge Slaps Around Brazilian Court In Zynga v. Vostu

    U.S. Judge Slaps Around Brazilian Court In Zynga v. Vostu

    Ah, litigation. Nothing ever really gets done, but the lawyers get paid, and there’s always drama. The Vostu v. Zynga case exemplifies all of this. And it just got weird to boot. Today a U.S. judge just told a Brazilian court that they can’t shut down a Brazilian startup. That’s definitely a new one for me. Background: On June 16 Zynga sued Brazilian clone Vostu in California… Read More

  • Omaha Startup PeggyBank Digitizes Old Media For Online Sharing

    Omaha Startup PeggyBank Digitizes Old Media For Online Sharing

    If you’re like me you’ve thought about digging up old 8mm film, or VHS tapes, and converting them to a more modern format. There are a lot of services that fulfill this need – just do a search for “media conversion” or something similar and you’ll see dozens of services. Most of the sites don’t inspire much confidence in sending them priceless… Read More

  • Lighter Capital’s Debt Without Equity Fundings Expand At Perfect Time. Also…Tomato Fight!

    Lighter Capital’s Debt Without Equity Fundings Expand At Perfect Time. Also…Tomato Fight!

    The economy is a mess. And while venture capital is still flowing like whiskey during the Prohibition, it’s not right for every business. A year ago we wrote about the birth of a new type of investment fund, Revenue Loan. The experiment has worked, says founder Andy Sack. They’re expanding it, changing their name, and offering $500,000 to the right type of startup. First, the basics. Read More

  • DJ Patil Lands At Greylock Partners As “Data Scientist in Residence”

    DJ Patil Lands At Greylock Partners As “Data Scientist in Residence”

    DJ Patil, the former LinkedIn Chief scientist who recently left Color Labs, now has a new job. He’s the “Data Scientist in Residence” at Greylock Partners, working alongside his old colleague, LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman. This title’s a new one for me. Venture firms regularly hire experts in particular areas who can help their portfolio companies, like… Read More

  • Life At AOL – The Expenses War

    Life At AOL – The Expenses War

    I’ve said this before, but working at AOL is my first experience working at a “big” company. I’ve watched, mostly with amusement, as a Dilbert cartoon has come to life around me. Some of the policies and bureaucracy are useful (I’ll think of some examples, just give me a second). Some are hilarious (forced drinking events). Some are really annoying. For… Read More

  • Zynga Sues Google Over Vostu Dispute, Brazilian Judge Grants Injunction

    Zynga Sues Google Over Vostu Dispute, Brazilian Judge Grants Injunction

    Two big pieces of news today in the Zynga/Vostu lawsuit (details on lawsuit here and here). In addition to that first lawsuit filed in California, Zynga also quietly sued Vostu on its home turf in Brazil (lawsuit embedded below, but it’s in Portugese). Zynga dragged Google into that lawsuit, apparently because Orkut, popular in Brazil, is hosting the Vostu games that Zynga says are ripoffs. Read More

  • DST Invests $50 Million Into ZocDoc So They Can Finally Get A Decent Logo

    DST Invests $50 Million Into ZocDoc So They Can Finally Get A Decent Logo

    Have you heard about ZocDoc? The company launched at TechCrunch in 2007. Their goal – to let people find and book appointments with doctors, dentists and other health professionals online. The company has raised $50 million in a new round with DST. The company was valued at $700 million or more in this round, we’ve heard from various sources. ZocDoc won’t comment, though… Read More

  • Google Ventures Invests In Coupon Startup Whaleshark Media

    Google Ventures Invests In Coupon Startup Whaleshark Media

    Whaleshark Media had already raised $120 million in capital to roll up the online coupon space. Now they’ve raised $10 million more in a round led by Google Ventures, with some participation from previous investors. They’ve also added Homeaway CEO Brian Sharples to the board of directors. Sharples will be useful. He grew HomeAway into a monster. He raised half a billion dollars… Read More

  • Airbnb Offers Unconditional Apology, And $50,000 Insurance Guarantee

    Airbnb Offers Unconditional Apology, And $50,000 Insurance Guarantee

    It’s never too late to fix bad press with a straightforward, unconditional apology. That’s what the world got from Airbnb today. It was the first time that the company addressed the robbery/ransacking issue on its blog, and CEO Brian Chesky offered an unconditional apology. From the post: Read More

  • Start Fund And SV Angel invest $9 Million In New Y Combinator Startups

    Start Fund And SV Angel invest $9 Million In New Y Combinator Startups

    Earlier this year SV Angel and Yuri Milner partnered on a new venture fund, called Start Fund, to invest $150,000 in every new Y Combinator startup. All but one company from that class took the money. And LikeALittle, the holdout, had already taken funding from both Milner and SV Angel. At TechCrunch Disrupt in New York a couple of months ago SV Angel said they were making the same offer to… Read More

  • Another Airbnb Victim Tells His Story: “There Were Meth Pipes Everywhere”

    Another Airbnb Victim Tells His Story: “There Were Meth Pipes Everywhere”

    This last week we’ve all watched in horror as the story unfolded about an Airbnb user who had her home ransacked a month ago. Other than the sideshow of us getting dragged into the story, it seemed to be winding down yesterday. The company appears to be bending over backwards to compensate the victim and avoid another of her blog posts where she writes about how scared she is, still… Read More

  • Buying An Electric Car

    Buying An Electric Car

    After 3.5 years, I’ve finally re-joined the community of car owners. Between February 2008 and last week, I was car-less. I borrowed and rented cars, took taxis and Zip cars, and occasionally biked. I also bummed a lot of rides (thank you very much – you know who you are). It had started when the warranty on my fancy German gas guzzler expired; I sold the thing, and never really… Read More

  • How The Hell Is This My Fault?

    How The Hell Is This My Fault?

    You’ve doubtless heard about the Airbnb fiasco – being dubbed #ransackgate by some – that’s been exploding the last couple of days. If you’re not familiar with the story, we first covered it here, and there’s some terrific source material from the woman who’s home was ransacked and robbed here and here. Today Y Combinator founder (and Airbnb investor)… Read More

  • Airbnb Victim Speaks Again: Homeless, Scared And Angry

    Airbnb Victim Speaks Again: Homeless, Scared And Angry

    Yesterday we wrote about “EJ,” a woman who had her San Francisco apartment burglarized and vandalized by someone who rented her home for a week via Airbnb. There was some confusion about how Airbnb was and is dealing with the situation. See the updates to that post above, and CEO Brian Chesky’s post here on TechCrunch later yesterday talking about the situation. The… Read More

  • The Moment Of Truth For Airbnb As User’s Home Is Utterly Trashed

    The Moment Of Truth For Airbnb As User’s Home Is Utterly Trashed

    Until now everything has been just great for Airbnb, a service that lets people rent out their homes and become a sort of mini-hotel. The company launched in 2008 and has grown rapidly. They’ve been cloned by the Germans, which is always a mark of success. And they’re now a part of the billion dollar valuation club. Even the clone raised $90 million. Which is all super great. But… Read More

  • Google Tried To Buy Color For $200 Million. Color Said No.

    Google Tried To Buy Color For $200 Million. Color Said No.

    If that headline looks familiar to you, you’re probably remembering our story about Google offering to buy Path for $100+ million from earlier this year. Path turned that deal down. About the same time, multiple sources have confirmed, Google was also making a run for Color, the mobile social network founded by Bill Nguyen. This was well before Color launched, and Google was looking at… Read More

  • Vostu Goes On The Offensive Against Zynga. This Will Get Uglier.

    Vostu Goes On The Offensive Against Zynga. This Will Get Uglier.

    Zynga hit Brazilian gaming startup Vostu with a massive lawsuit last month, alleging that the company was copying Zynga’s games so closely that they even inadvertently included the bugs. Today, Vostu responded with a 368 paragraph document of their own (embedded below). It’s a longer version of Vostu’s press statement immediately after the lawsuit was filed, which boils down… Read More