Liz Gannes

Recent Posts by Liz Gannes

Tech Blogger Starts a Company Around His Data Mining (a.k.a. Web Stalking) Skills

Longtime tech blogger (if there is such a thing!) Marshall Kirkpatrick is starting a data mining company devoted to discovering emerging information.

Called Plexus Engine, the start-up will target information workers such as those in marketing and PR.

Kirkpatrick had developed over his years at ReadWriteWeb and TechCrunch tools for getting scoops not by talking to sources but by tracking people online. For instance, he found geo-located tweets from a Twitter engineer in Utah that corroborated the location of a Twitter data center there, and generated instant message alerts for himself when people he was tracking made comments on any blog around the Web.

Kirkpatrick said Plexus Engine has been in testing for a year and a half. He will continue to write columns for ReadWriteWeb.


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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald