Casey Newton

Casey Newton

Silicon Valley editor, The Verge

THIS CHAT HAPPENED ON March 22, 2017

Discussion

Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
Hi — I'm Casey Newton, Silicon Valley editor at The Verge. I've spent the past six years living and working and Silicon Valley, picking apart tech companies to see what makes them succeed or fail. I'm here to answer questions you have about Silicon Valley, tech journalism, and what Ryan Hoover is really like. AND NOW OUR TIME MUST COME TO AN END. Thank you all very much for your questions and for following along. I apologize to those of you whom I did not get to. Ask me @CaseyNewton on Twitter and maybe I can help more there!
Ryan Hoover
Ryan Hoover@rrhoover · Founder, Product Hunt
Casey! As tempted as I am to ask you a joke question, I'm more interested to hear your thoughts on this: There's a lot of interest and talk about the next big platform shift, most notably VR/AR and voice-based technologies. What are you most excited about and why?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@rrhoover Hello Ryan! I have next to zero credibility on the subject of next platforms, because I thought the next platform was going to be bots! Do you remember bots?? We were so innocent then, in the halcyon days of January 2016. It was so obvious to me then that apps were dead and people would want intelligent agents running in the background performing tasks of their behalf. And instead the bots arrived and they were all terrible and the world shrugged, and people had to start writing about Alexa like a $200 speaker that tells you the weather is the future of computing. And maybe it is! But after having one for a year I don't use it nearly as much as I had hoped. As far as AR and VR, I'm still relatively optimistic about those — the PlayStation VR sales numbers were better than anyone suggested, Snapchat Spectacles are a very good 1.0 product, and the best experiences I've had in VR rival anything else I've seen in tech. So I suspect we'll have to wait a while, but eventually AR and VR will become major sources of consumer interest. (Also let's maybe check back in with bots in a year or two.)
Zoli
Zoli@zolihonig · CoFounder @waivecar
When is your HBO comedy special going to be confirmed?
Niv Dror
Niv Dror@nivo0o0 · VC at Shrug Capital
Who did you sit next to at the Crunchies and would you ever willingly do it again?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@nivo0o0 I sat to some guy at Product Hunt who was like hey you should do a Q&A. And I said, how much does it pay. And he changed the subject, and then the next thing I knew I was doing this and I am still waiting for the answer to my question!!
Soph 🤓
Soph 🤓@sophmoji · Emoji Queen 🐱💵🍃.ws
Soph 🤓
Soph 🤓@sophmoji · Emoji Queen 🐱💵🍃.ws
Hi Casey! Huge fan of your writing and Twitter virtuosity, as you already know. Quick questions for you: 1) What is your favorite part of being friends with Kara Swisher? 👫 📰 2) Who would you invite to your dream brunch? 🍳🥓 3) Will the cucumber emoji ever catch up to eggplant, and should it be the new heartbreak emoji of choice seeing as it's sliced on Apple platforms? 🥒💬📲 Love you 💖
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@sophmoji Hello Soph! You are one of my most delightful Twitter followers, and I always appreciate your perspective. Answers: 1. Kara knows more about Silicon Valley than she will ever have time to write about, but being around her, you hear the most amazing things about this town's seamy underbelly. I particularly love hearing stories about the early days of AOL and Google and Yahoo, which she of course covered ferociously from the beginning. 2. I would love to have brunch with Tim Cook. I collect stories about sightings of Tim Cook in Palo Alto, and in every story I have ever heard he is alone. Alone at the gym! Alone at the restaurant! I'm sure that he enjoys getting away from it all from time to time, but at the same time don't you think he would enjoy having a fun brunch with me???? 3) Eggplant has first-mover advantage and is frankly one of the most powerful incumbents in the space I have ever seen.
Soph 🤓
Soph 🤓@sophmoji · Emoji Queen 🐱💵🍃.ws
@caseynewton You just made my year 😂 I hope Kara writes about the early days and her unique experiences in tech in a future memoir. Steven Levy's getting a bit tired! As for Tim Cook, he may be woke on immigration & LGBTQ but he's certainly oblivious to how much happier he would be with an exuberant writer at his side. We need to make it happen! Finally, eggplant analysis is spot-on, but I remain hopeful that poor cucumber will become a little more mainstream 😊
Chad Whitaker
Chad Whitaker@chadwhitaker · Product Designer at AngelList ✌️
What, in your experience, is the number 1 reason tech companies fail?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@chadwhitaker So products can fail for almost any reason, which is why I write so many startup obits. The variety is fascinating. But one through-line that I see in almost all of them is that they under-invest in marketing. I understand why this happens: people don't want to invest in marketing until they find product-market fit, because marketing is expensive. Also, I think venture capitalists probably do not get very excited about their millions going to marketing and not, say, a third Android engineer. But the truth is that most startups' problem, to paraphrase Justin Kan, is that nobody gives a shit. Without marketing, no one is going to see your thing or try it. So hire some damn marketers.
Matthew Straub
Matthew Straub@matthewmagellan · Digital Engagement @singularityu
@caseynewton @chadwhitaker In a new startup, what number hire do you think a marketing person should be? I've always said your 3rd or 4th hire, but would trust your idea more than my own.
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@matthewmagellan @chadwhitaker I think it depends on the company. You would know better!
Ayrton De Craene
Ayrton De Craene@ayrton · Code @ Clearbit
What is the most surprising story you’ve covered in the last 6 years in Silicon Valley?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@ayrton It has to be this one: http://www.theverge.com/a/luka-a.... Over six months, I reported the story of a remarkable young entrepreneur who lost her best friend — and then took his text messages, and the text messages he had sent his friends and family, and used it to recreate its voice. Everything about this story was a surprise: the people, the technology, and they way they all wound up feeling about it in the end. The most amazing thing to me in the end was how much the bot had taught Roman's friends and family about who he was, even though he was died. Our digital afterlives are going to be WILD, and I'm looking forward to writing a lot more about this in the years to come.
Matthew Straub
Matthew Straub@matthewmagellan · Digital Engagement @singularityu
@caseynewton @ayrton This is one of the best tech stories I think I've ever read. It made a lot of rounds on our company Slack that day.
Zoli
Zoli@zolihonig · CoFounder @waivecar
@caseynewton pretty sure there's an episode of black mirror like that, but way creepier
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@zolihonig yes it's mentioned extensively in the story :)
Ana Wolsztajn
Ana Wolsztajn@anaulilah · Brand Strategist | Comms @SaaStock
@zolihonig @caseynewton my thoughts exactly
Festlove
Festlove@thefestlove · Apprenuer, Festlove
Hi Casey, Hope you are well, Big fan of your stuff for The Verge, my name is Nakayi an App entrepreneur from London. I have just released a Music/Social App called Festlove, like for most start-ups getting press/journalists/bloggers to feature or write about my app is integral. What would be your advice to attract the press to write about your app? Thanks in advance Nakayi
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@thefestlove Hello Festlove! If you're in the social space, you can get my attention in one of two ways. The first is to bring something genuinely novel to the table. Most social apps are simply remixes of old ideas; I want to see something that suggests new possibilities for communication. The last such app I wrote about was Houseparty — it took the idea of kids talking on the phone after school and refreshed it for the mobile era, letting kids talk through live group video. It's a big idea, of huge potential interest to Verge readers, and when I wrote about it our audience was into it. The second way you can get attention is to be popular. This is a super underrated way of getting press! If your app is interesting enough, people will be beating down your door to write about it. Speaking of the Houseparty team, I never would have written about their previous app, Meerkat, before launch — live video had been done so many times before! But then suddenly everyone I knew was talking about it, and my editors were asking me why I hadn't written about Meerkat yet, since it was obviously a phenomenon. So bring me something fascinating and new, or get super popular doing something old and enduring. I'll be listening!
Peter Mantas
Peter Mantas@pamantas · Startup mentor, adviser and evangelist
Thanks for the nudge;-) What is Ryan Hoover really like? Also... What does it take to get one's message to stand out over all the noise?
Ryan Hoover
Ryan Hoover@rrhoover · Founder, Product Hunt
Don't answer that question, Casey. 😁
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@pamantas Ryan is insanely nice, and it drives me crazy. He built a whole website about judging things and after looking at all of it he took a step back and said, I love it. I fucking love all of it. I wish I could love everything that much! I would probably be much happier!
Jake Crump
Jake Crump@jakecrump · Community Team with Product Hunt
What is your morning routine?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@jakecrump Jake, I wish I had a better morning routine. I really do. You read these stories about executives' morning routines and it's always like oh, well, I wake up at 4 a.m., have a bowl of plain oats, hit the gym for 90 minutes, and I'm at my desk by 8 a.m., which gives me an hour to read three foreign-language newspapers before my first meeting. Once a year, at New Year's, I tell myself that this is going to be my routine. Instead it's more like this: I wake up between 7:30 and 8 and grab the iPad that sleeps next to me because I don't have a boyfriend. I scan TechMeme and Twitter to see what big stories broke overnight. I go into Slack and tell my editor what I am going to be working on that day. Then I read my emails, including THREE daily newsletters, which is more than anyone should ever read: Ben Thompson's Stratechery, which is the fucking best; Matt Levine's Money Stuff, which is like 80 percent unrelated to my beat but hilarious and a daily revelation; and the NY Times' California Today, which is superb and tells me what's going on in this state. And then I delete 40 pitches and take a shower and come to work.
Peter Mantas
Peter Mantas@pamantas · Startup mentor, adviser and evangelist
@caseynewton So why are those 40 pitches deleted? @jakecrump
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@pamantas @jakecrump for the most part it's because they are enterprise SAAS startups, or requests that we publish an infographic (???), or a press release from the International Woodworking Foundation about an upcoming webinar
Marawan
Marawan@marawan_1997 · Cofounder @ Burst
What's the one thing you hate seeing in a pitch?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@marawan_1997 An unsubscribe link. So many pitches come with unsubscribe links these days. Why are you pitching so many people that you feel the need to let them unsubscribe? Why is a pitch part of a subscription .... that I never subscribed to??? Startups would be so much better off just pitching the eight or nine reporters that they think could really make a difference for them than they would doing the spray-and-pray thing with 4,000 email addresses they bought from Cision or whoever.
Theoharis Dimarhos
Theoharis Dimarhos@theo_dimarhos · Marketing+Biz Dev at AngelouEconomics
Hey Casey, what's your advice on reaching out and creating relationships with important people in tech?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@theo_dimarhos Reach out to them before you need something from them. Silicon Valley is uncomfortably transactional, and reporters know this more than anyone. Take a genuine interest in a person and invite them to coffee way before you ever need a favor from them. And see whether there's something you might be able to help them with.
Ace Wang • 王心田 💪
Ace Wang • 王心田 💪@acewacewacew · ▲ Health with ❤︎ - WeChat @ xtw1009
What would you share with us about the Chinese element in Silicon Valley? Chinese money, people, tech?
Kunal Bhatia
Kunal Bhatia@kunalslab · Co-founder & Design Lead @SlidesUp
Hi Casey! What was the most interesting experience you had at SXSW this year? Thanks in advance!
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@kunalslab So nothing really broke out at SXSW this year — it was the least eventful of the four that I covered. (The one where Meerkat went viral was AMAZING, incidentally. To be present at the birth of a phenomenon, even if it only lasted three months.) Anyway one of my favorite bands for the past 15 years is the Shins — I have listened to them almost daily since 2001, seen them in concert a bunch, etc. And I get a random email from a PR firm saying that the Shins are playing at SXSW and do I want to come. The answer was "of course," but the thing about SXSW is that often you RSVP for things and then stand in a long line and never get in because they let literally anyone RSVP. So I follow up asking if I can please please please really see the show, and the PR person responds and says not only that, but how would you like to meet Shins frontman James Mercer???? And I was like yes!!! And so I went to this tiny house in Austin the other day and they led me upstairs into a bedroom where I sat ALONE with James Mercer for 20 minutes, and he told me about this new app he is working on called Pasted — it's a photo collage thing coming out next month. And so I just had this totally surreal experience of meeting one of my favorite artists and talking with him about something I actually knew something about, and it was lovely. And then afterward he went downstairs and played "New Slang" on an acoustic guitar and I recorded the whole thing on my iPhone and sang along and cried.
Kunal Bhatia
Kunal Bhatia@kunalslab · Co-founder & Design Lead @SlidesUp
@caseynewton and this was your least eventful experience?! Thanks for the music tip. I'd love to hear the acoustic version from James Mercer accompanied by you. 😉 Did you post that anywhere?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
Michelle Suconick
Michelle Suconick@suconick · Comms @getroman
@caseynewton @kunalslab Oh man! As one of the random PR people who helped put on this party – knowing this was your fave SXSW thing makes me so happy!
Kunal Bhatia
Kunal Bhatia@kunalslab · Co-founder & Design Lead @SlidesUp
@suconick @caseynewton well then I owe you a debt of gratitude. 🙏 That video was awesome, and I'm listening to The Shins on Spotify right now!
Emily Snowdon (née Hodgins)
Emily Snowdon (née Hodgins)@emilyjsnowdon · Operations @ Product Hunt
Hi Casey thanks for being here today. How has Silicon Valley changed in the last 6 years?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@ems_hodge The rent has gone up by like 8,000 percent!!! Also all my favorite startups died or were acquired because Facebook, Amazon, Google, Apple, and Microsoft are basically the most powerful incumbents the world has ever seen.
Justin Fowler
Justin Fowler@somewhatjustin · Business Analyst, Upswing.io
So chatbots were really hot for a minute, and now we're seeing that cool down. Where do you see that interaction model going in the next few years?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@somewhatjustin I think there's going to be a lot of work behind the scenes to improve the interaction model. Companies have good incentives to make bots work, so I think they eventually will, but right now when you ask a bot to do almost anything, the odds that it fulfills your request the first time around are still less than 50 percent. So I expect we'll see continuous steady improvement, and then one day bots will work OK, and then one of them will become a mainstream hit in the US. This already happened in China with a bot called Xiaoice that Microsoft made; I expect it will happen here eventually.
Bradley Slavin
Bradley Slavin@bradslavin · Digital Ad Strategist
Hi Casey, thanks for answering questions! It seems to me that most new companies build a product to attract users and try to figure out the business (& revenue) later. In your experience, how do successful companies balance priorities between user-base and solid revenue streams?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@bradslavin Oh man, this is a good question and I wish I had a better answer. I think this is one reason that venture capitalists say that market size is destiny — that if you're building a company in health care, you know you could theoretically eventually profit from it, because giant torrents of money are sloshing through health care. Whereas if you wanted to build, like, an ant farm monitoring app, VCs would probably not be super interested in that. So you have to build an amazing product, but it has to be in some vertical with giant sloshing torrents of money, or your path is going to become exponentially more difficult.
Bradley Slavin
Bradley Slavin@bradslavin · Digital Ad Strategist
@caseynewton Really appreciate the answer. Seems like the inverse could be true as well, no? You can build a killer business, but without enough potential users in the vertical you're DOA. Ultimately you have to balance both - do you think it's easier to attract users to a smart business or create a good business to fit if you have lots of users? I lean towards the former...
Rahul Srivastava
Rahul Srivastava@rahulistic
As a person who closely follows the happenings in Silicon Valley, What do you think will be next the product that will rip off Snapchat Stories? Or do you think that it is just Facebook's strategy to become what they couldn't acquire (Snapchat)?
Brayson
Brayson@braysonware
@rahulistic Facebooks approach and idea on this is to create what could potentially kill them. Even if that means cloning or copying. It's even mentioned in their employee handbook.
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
ishwarya srinivas
ishwarya srinivas@ishwaryas · Product manager
Hi Casey...! Interested to know your thoughts on what you think is the most over-hyped tech in silicon valley right now?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@ishwaryas Wearables. Technologically they don't do almost anything ... they're devices we buy to signal one another that we take care of ourselves. "I wear a Fitbit, so it's safe to fuck me." Never mind that they don't seem to drive any meaningful health outcomes over an extended period of time. They're basically sex jewelry.
Giacomo Lawrance
Giacomo Lawrance@giacomolaw · Author of thenerdystudent.com
What's the best tech company you've ever looked at?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@giacomolaw I'm not necessarily in a position to evaluate the tech ... I should have mentioned this earlier, but I was an English major!! But some companies that have consistently impressed me with their product execution between 2010, when I started writing about tech, and today: Apple, Facebook, Rdio, Spotify, Snapchat, Tinder, Venmo, Netflix. Some of those companies have huge problems today, but in terms of successfully building and shipping good products they've all excelled.
Giacomo Lawrance
Giacomo Lawrance@giacomolaw · Author of thenerdystudent.com
@caseynewton Awesome, thank you so much!
Nikolas Huebecker
Nikolas Huebecker@nhuebecker · Building TeenMade!
What do you see as a common attribute in successful tech companies?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@nhuebecker They've found a way to build a moat at a time when the internet — which is to say, near-free distribution — has made building a moat harder for almost everyone.
Zach Dubos
Zach Dubos@zduboss · Building robots @ FTC
You pretty much have my dream job, writing about startups and Silicon Valley for The Verge. Any tips for getting into Vox Media (and tech journalism in general)?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@zduboss My advice to writers is to start writing! Writing is the only thing that distinguishes writers from non-writers, and it's never been easier to start. Hop on Medium and start developing your point of view. Even if relatively few people are reading, you'll be teaching yourself how to build a rhetorical argument. And in today's journalism world, that's insanely valuable — maybe not as valuable as the ability to deliver a Mark Gurman-style mega-scoop, but nearly so. When I've interviewed job candidates, the ones with a defined point of view always stand out. Figure out how to build a case for something with words, and you'll be well on your way to succeeding in tech journalism (and lots of other things!)
Zach Dubos
Zach Dubos@zduboss · Building robots @ FTC
@caseynewton Wow, thanks. This really helps :D
Nikolas Huebecker
Nikolas Huebecker@nhuebecker · Building TeenMade!
Just to reiterate the the controversial question of Ryan's most recent forum, what is your favorite emoji?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@nhuebecker Everyone thinks I would say eggplant, and it's probably top five, but post-Trump my go-to emoji is grimacing-man face. Use it 10x a day easily.
Jake Crump
Jake Crump@jakecrump · Community Team with Product Hunt
What are your top tips for founders looking to get coverage for their startup?
Seth Williams
Seth Williams@sethbwilliams · Designer, Product Hunt
What does success look like for you?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@sethbwilliams Renting a 1-bedroom apartment in San Francisco
Michael Ducker
Michael Ducker@miradu · Cofounder of @pinchrent with @maiab
Hey Casey, given all the video/social stuff the verge does, do people ever recognize you in real life?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@miradu Every once in a while! Verge readers have always been super cool to me wherever I have encountered them IRL. It always makes my day.
Robert K.
Robert K.@kurlov · Student. Chess player. Creator.
How can media prevent great coverage of something that will in turn fail massively? e.g. Galaxy Note7
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@itisrobertk We need to begin every interview with "hey, is this fucking thing going to explode? Because if it is, you need to tell me NOW." Mea culpa; lesson learned.
Matthew Straub
Matthew Straub@matthewmagellan · Digital Engagement @singularityu
Hi Casey! You seem to have a great time on Twitter. How do I make more Twitter friends for snarky banter?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@matthewmagellan Oh man, well you can do what I do, which is to stare at Twitter for 18 hours a day. But you maybe have other obligations in your life??? One thing that I think makes Twitter more fun is to have running gags. So I have a few — I post the subject lines of bad pitches and say I'm going back to bed; I congratulate Google whenever it releases a new messaging app; for a while I just said "it's Friday" every Friday. New running gags come and go. I stole this idea from the Washington Post writer Dave Weigel, who is a Twitter master, and who always seems to be having a great time on Twitter. He has all kinds of running jokes and they are all hilarious.
Arsad Rahman
Arsad Rahman@arsad_rahman · Founder of Candy Softwares
Hi Casey Newton , Tell me about your life experience in Verge :)
Andrew Ettinger
Andrew Ettinger@ettinger · 👟 @wearAtoms // ex @Twitter @ProductHunt
In Trump's America, how has your approach to journalism changed?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@andrewett This is an awesome question! The big one for me is that it has made access journalism — which is to say, stories where you get special access to a big tech CEO or politician or whatever — feel much less meaningful. The kind of gauzy soft-focus feature story where you write about The Entrepreneur's Journey just isn't as compelling in a world where democracy is under assault and the world order is being reshuffled every day. Trump is the corner that none of us can see around — and so it's given new urgency journalism that is more skeptical and confrontational. Confrontational journalism has always been important, of course. But Trump has cast everything in a new light. Tech journalism is often utopian in nature — as an optimist it's why I'm drawn to it — but the world feels wildly dystopian now, and we have to adjust our point of view accordingly.
Andrew Ettinger
Andrew Ettinger@ettinger · 👟 @wearAtoms // ex @Twitter @ProductHunt
You've covered a lot of companies (some good, but mostly bad) -- what has been the common themes amongst each?
Chris Toy
Chris Toy@christoy · founder, @BindleChat @whatswilson
I greatly enjoy your no-fuss "everyman" tone when writing about SV stuff (the Jelly/Pin deal comes to mind), does that ever get you in trouble?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@christoy Yes it does! I am always at risk of coming off as a crank. There have been a number of instances where companies have withdrawn access from me because they felt like I was too high a snark risk. But this is as it should be: it's the entrepreneur's job to believe in the company, and it's my job to be a skeptic. I'm always trying to find a way to puncture the hype without being a reflexive hater. It's tricky and sometimes I fail. But I will always, always be on the side of puncturing hype. Or else what it journalism for?
Chris Toy
Chris Toy@christoy · founder, @BindleChat @whatswilson
@caseynewton agree. someone once told me to try to prove something right by trying to prove it wrong.
Andrew Ettinger
Andrew Ettinger@ettinger · 👟 @wearAtoms // ex @Twitter @ProductHunt
Do we need another social media platform?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@andrewett yes! A world in which Facebook has the only editorial point of view on how a social app should look and feel and work and behave is a dark one, in my view. It's why I root for companies like Twitter and Snapchat to succeed, despite some long odds — they have unique perspectives on the way we communicate. And we need more of those perspectives.
Matthew Straub
Matthew Straub@matthewmagellan · Digital Engagement @singularityu
What sort of tools does the Verge use to manage workflows, projects, task management, and editorial content? Anything you love or hate?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@matthewmagellan G Suite, Trello, Slack, and our homegrown CMS, which is called Chorus. Chorus is the best CMS I've ever used — super impressive. In terms of third-party stuff, Trello is OK but I wish our whole team used Asana instead. I mounted a guerilla effort to get our team to use Asana and failed completely. It still makes me sad!
Peter Mantas
Peter Mantas@pamantas · Startup mentor, adviser and evangelist
What does it take to get one's message to stand out over all the noise?
Jeremy Bauer
Jeremy Bauer@barnabybones · Writer + Arts Instructional Designer
Hi, Casey! Any thoughts on the ed tech space, or disrupting higher ed in general using technology?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@barnabybones I ignore this space completely, though some of the personalized learning stuff that Summit / Facebook are doing is interesting. I wrote about it a couple years ago.
Jeremy Bauer
Jeremy Bauer@barnabybones · Writer + Arts Instructional Designer
@caseynewton Thanks! I'll check out your writing on the Summit/Facebook personalized learning. I don't blame you for ignoring the space. It's extremely slow to innovate, which is super frustrating as someone that's part of that space.
David Gold
David Gold@gavid_dold · Currently @dropbox, previously @citi
Hey Casey, I'm planning a trip out to SF soon. Care to grab coffee? If yes, I'll ask you the question in person. If no, what are you favorite publications and/or podcasts?
sam greemwood
sam greemwood@sammer2001
What do you think apple will do next
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@sammer2001 Release that weird Clips app apparently??
Samuel Polat
Samuel Polat@samuelpolat · Student Creator
What's the best way to pitch you?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@samuelpolat Email! If it doesn't come in via email, I ignore it. The reason is that I like keeping all my pitches in one place. The moment I have two inboxes for pitches, I know I'm going to develop a third somewhere. So just email me. I read every single email.
Renz Bernardo
Renz Bernardo@ohitsmerenz
I see you love twitter (i follow you lol) and we hear all these bad (or good) PR regarding it being acquired or shut down. Where do you see Twitter in 5 years?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@ohitsmerenz worse off than it is today. The company continues to see significant brain drain and its major product initiative is to host live streams of lacrosse games. I love it but it's in real trouble.
Annu Wagde
Annu Wagde@annu_wagde · Customer Success Expert @ UpRaise
Hi Casey, Hope you are doing good! Have been following your posts on The Verge and I really love your writing! I work as customers Success Expert with UpRaise.io, and we are looking for editorial coverage on The Verge . What would be your advice on this? Many Thanks! Annu
Pessimist
Pessimist@pessimism
Please explain what the hell Tim Cook is doing with, at, and to Apple.
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@pessimism not fixing iTunes, I'll tell you that much
ishwarya srinivas
ishwarya srinivas@ishwaryas · Product manager
Also, how do you think or wish tech journalism will evolve in the next 10 years? Different medium? VR enabled?
Benny Giang
Benny Giang@bennygiang · Things built with color!
You've spent six years as an editor, what do you see yourself doing in the next six years?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@bennygiang I feel like I have a lot of writing left to do. One thing I admire about Kara Swisher is that she has been writing about Silicon Valley for more than 15 years. I think about how good I could get if I spent another 10 years writing about this town and get very, very excited. So right now that's where my heart is.
Sam
Sam@ohsam · Coffee, cats, corgis and other cliches
What is your hair routine? How is it always so fly?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@ohsam I blowdry it, then use a paste by Old Spice you can get at the drugstore. Basically any paste works but I can find the Old Spice one anywhere (it's called Unruly ... which is also my personal brand) so I use that one.
Sam
Sam@ohsam · Coffee, cats, corgis and other cliches
@caseynewton I enjoy all of your personal branding.
Michael Hunt
Michael Hunt@813594 · Powered by coffee.
duplicate post, nvm
Abhijeet Somvanshi
Abhijeet Somvanshi@abhijeets023 · Graphic designer @ ConceptDrop
do you think apple gonna release augmented reality in their product by end of this year?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@abhijeets023 I do not! They need more time ... still lots of science to do.
Anastasia Laskovaia
Anastasia Laskovaia@laskovaia · Entrepreneursip researcher, GSOM
Hi Casey, could you share your opinion on where is the best place to promote hardware products?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@laskovaia it seems like the hardware products that get the most attention these days all launched on Kickstarter. I don't cover hardware very much, but a successful Kickstarter seems to go a super long way in getting press attention.
Paul Booth
Paul Booth@new_user_f61ff363a1
Hi Casey. I'm based in the UK and have seen a few accelerators appear of the last couple of years that seem to be trying to emulate YC. The problem with this seems to be that startup pitches all follow the same formula in their pitches and in their approach to building a business. I'd be interested to hear your comments on this and whether you feel this is a sign of optimisation or a prolific lack of innovation?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@typeofgraphic Most accelerators are bad! Name one unicorn that came out of non-YC accelerator ... I can't! I honestly think most people running incubators have no idea what they're doing.
Paul Booth
Paul Booth@new_user_f61ff363a1
In your experience what is the difference between those founders (and companies) whose businesses emerge from a side-project compared to those who "go all in" from day one, join an accelerator and maybe even rack up credit card debt in effort to make it happen?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@typeofgraphic Either can work! It all depends.
JJ Sandgreen
JJ Sandgreen@jjsandgreen · Designer & Entrepreneur
Do you think the social media platforms aren't longer sustainable? Not able to support the billions, resulting in growing noise and cluttered content? If so, would you be interested in learning about a brand new platform that are currently being created? thanks!
Joshua Luft
Joshua Luft@jjluft22 · Co-Founder Everlasting Wardrobe
Any advice to founders on best way to provide value to journalists?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@jjluft22 Help them understand your industry, and trust that over a long enough time horizon they'll write about your company. But strive not to be purely transactional about it.
sam greemwood
sam greemwood@sammer2001
Mac or PC?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@sammer2001 Mac but Mac is not getting much better these days!
Sam
Sam@ohsam · Coffee, cats, corgis and other cliches
A more serious question: how did you get your first job in journalism and how did you carve out a niche for yourself?
Casey Newton
Casey Newton@caseynewton · Silicon Valley editor, The Verge
@ohsam I went to journalism school at Northwestern, and by the time I graduated I had a decent amount of experience. I had done two newspaper internships, one magazine internship, and been the editor in chief of my paper. I applied to 40 or so newspapers and got offers from two: the News-Star in Monroe, Louisiana, and the Times of Northwest Indiana. The Times was a 40-minute drive from Chicago, and so I picked that one. That led to an eight-year period where I wrote about state and local government, because it was the beat assigned to me when I graduated. But tech was always my first love, and when I had a chance to write about it, it made me realize I probably should have been writing about it all along.
Jeremy Bauer
Jeremy Bauer@barnabybones · Writer + Arts Instructional Designer
Chris Toy
Chris Toy@christoy · founder, @BindleChat @whatswilson
@caseynewton NU also? No wonder I like your stuff.
Craig Parker
Craig Parker@craigp123 · Cofounder @decidz
Hi Casey, I just wanted to ask your thoughts on the future of cloud tech. You mention incumbents in one of your answers - Facebook, Amazon, Google, Apple, and Microsoft. Several of those are now running huge cloud infrastructures hosting a lot of sites and dependent services. When stuff goes wrong with Amazon S3 it takes hundreds or thousands of sites down at a time. I know the last s3 outage a couple of weeks back impacted several services I was trying to use at the time. It kind of feels like these incumbent cloud providers are breaking one of the original premises of the Internet itself - no single points of failure. Sure, they will have all sorts of redundancy but even so these incumbents themselves become a single point of failure if that makes sense. Cloud stuff obviously is the way to go but still it kind of feels wrong at some level. One solution is to host across multiple cloud providers but thats not that trivial and then you would probably need to adopt another provider to direct your traffic. Anyway, I would be interested to hear your thoughts on this. Cheers, Craig.