Flabbergasts! New York-based TechCrunch editor Erick Schonfeld, newly-named editor in chief of the site, has been accused. In a glorious resignation post, TechCrunch writer Paul Carr pointed a finger at the New Yorker: “While Heather, Mike and other senior editorial staffers were making a stand for the site’s editorial independence from The Huffington Post, Erick cut a side deal with Huffington to guarantee him the top job once Mike was gone.”
This information came from Mr. Arrington “and was later corroborated by more than one other person close to the situation,” Mr. Carr told Betabeat by email. “I don’t really want to say much more than that.”
Mr. Schonfeld appears to be on an airplane at the moment and did not respond to an email seeking comment.
Mr. Carr let loose the dirt on Mr. Schonfeld and AOL content overlord Arianna Huffington in his farewell post.
“The curious thing is that Erick knew everyone at TechCrunch supported him, at least for the interim role. And yet when Arianna called, he answered. Mike and I spoke at the time and he gave me his take on the deal: “at the point Erick began negotiating with Arianna instead of standing firm with the rest of us, he became nothing more that Arianna’s pet. All hope for independence with him at the lead became lost”. (Mike asked me to keep our conversations confidential until the situation was resolved.)”
“In this situation, though, I think [Ms. Huffington] screwed up badly by allowing her growing personal animosity towards Mike — and, let’s be clear, this fight was almost entirely personal — to rule her head, ejecting Mike completely from the company he founded and installing his polar opposite as a puppet editor.”
“I really can’t over-emphasize how much Mike, as an editor, made writers feel like he had their back.”
“Do I have another job already lined up? The answer is no. Once I hit ‘publish’, I’ll be without a regular writing gig for the first time in five years. This is both terrifying and exciting in equal measure. Sometimes you just have to hurl yourself off the cliff and see if anyone tries to catch you.”