Random thoughts from the United Airlines Red Carpet Lounge at JFK

1. Craig Newmark is one of the smartest business folks I’ve ever met. I was watching CNN recently and they were talking about a women who had been either killed or attacked–I was half listening–by a person who tried to hire her for a job listed on Craigslist. Now, for any other online service it would have become a “MySpace killed this women” type discussion, as if a website or domain name could reach out from behind the monitor you’re reading this on and strangle you. However, for Craigslist it was a different story. The anchor said something to the effect of “are the authorities in touch with Craig from CraigsList?” Brilliant. Craig has put him out there so much and has been so helpful for so long that the anchor on CNN a) knew who he was and b) gave him the benefit of the doubt. Take note people: being responsible for your brand on and offline is VERY important.

2. I’m really tired of meeting the same folks over and over again. Dim Sum 2.0 on Thursday night really sent it home for me, and to a certain extent the same reasons were why I didn’t go to The Lobby conference. Now, I love Dave Hornick, and I was really flattered to be invited. HOWEVER, spending $2,500 for a ticket to a conference with no agenda to spend time with 100 folks I already know really well and can take a meeting with at any time is, well, not so important to me right now. What’s important to me right now, on a business and creative level, is meeting people I don’t know.

3. In a related note, my favorite part of the TechCrunch40 event, which we are in planning stages for 2008 on, was meeting all these new companies and entrepreneurs. Getting to hear people’s visions, hopes, dreams, and fears is really special and I don’t take it lightly. The TechCrunch40 event took 10 days of my life–and those days are important when you’re running a startup. Those days were well spent given the amazing insights and inspirations they gave me. For me spending the week up to the event with the presenting companies was like going to a Yoga retreat. It was pure Zen. I can’t wait until next year!

4. People get odd as they get older. I’ve started noticing this more and more both in myself and other people I know. They get locked into certain ways of doing things without even knowing it. The way our dry yourself when you get out of the shower, the way you read the newspaper, and the way you interact with people can all of a sudden–over 20 years–become set. I think it’s important to change that and break the synapses in your brain. I think that’s what Twitter did to me with regard to five years of blogging and what blogging did to me after 10 years of writing. Blogging let me communicate in a conversation tone and now Twitter has allowed me to speak in fragments. The next step is obviously to speak in gestures.

5. Looks like we lost the tape of the Gillmor Gang we tapped on Friday. It’s a damn shame because EVERY member of the old Gillmor Gang was on the show and it was probably the best show ever ALMOST taped. I seriously think the GG is cursed… every time we try to bring it back something, or some lawsuit, comes and smacks it back down.

6. I noticed that a number of other folks have picked up on my “Random thoughts from…” style of blog post. That’s kind of cool.

7. Had drinks with the Weblogs, Inc. team last night and I have to say in some ways I was depressing for me. Most folks have left the brands they helped build and the ones who stayed are dealing with, how do I say this in a nice way, umm… “challenges.” Of course, it was inspiring at the same time because so many of the folks had moved on to bigger and better things, or were plotting bigger and better things. One of the great joys of my life is seeing the talented folks who I’ve hired over the years go on to do things that are 1,000x better than the things they did with me. Certainly there is a certain amount of ego-centrism involved in a statement like that, but truth be told I think that one of the things that happens when folks work with me is that they say “well, if Jason could make it happen why can’t I.” That’s a perfectly reasonable statement and it’s true. As I said at USC on Friday night when talking about entrepreneurship it’s all about how many times you try because even a blind man can hit the ball if he swings the bat enough times.

8. The Knicks played a strong game last night against LeBron James and four other guys in Cavaliers uniforms. They lost, but they kept LeBron under 50 points, so I guess that’s success.

9. The Knicks play again tonight against the Kevin Garnett-less Timberwolves. It should be a blow out… I’m just hoping the Knicks put up a fight.

10. The Knicks have a great chance of making the playoffs this year… if Boston and New Jersey wind up involved in a betting scandal and get suspended for the season.

11. Seriously, I kid, I kid…. I love my Knicks, I’ve just set my expectations so low at this point that if the Knicks break 40 wins I’d be happy… that is, 40 games over the next two seasons. ZING! POW! Thanks everyone I’ll be here for three more nights… do try the veal and take care of your waiter–those guys are working real hard for you.

12. I’m off to LA.

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