Funny enough, it was exactly five years ago this week that I decided I wanted to be a technology reporter.
I was working at a New York PR agency — my first job out of college — and knowing that I loved new technology, my friend Becca asked me to beta test a new streaming video service called Joost. (You’re forgiven for not remembering it!) A few weeks later CBS News asked to interview me about my experience with the service — remember, Hulu didn’t exist yet and YouTube was just starting to fill up with clips of dogs on skateboards. Before I knew it, CBS News’ Daniel Sieberg, the network’s technology and science reporter at the time, was sitting in my first NYC apartment, questioning me about the service in front of the camera. The segment aired on February 6th, 2007 on The Evening News with Katie Couric, and I decided then that technology journalism was where I was headed. I wanted to share my excitement about new technology directly with consumers, not with reporters behind the scenes. I began looking for a new job that night, according to my Gmail history.
The rest, as they say, is history. I landed a job at LAPTOP Magazine and was plunged into the world of technology reporting and reviewing. Within a few years I knew more about consumer tech and how our gadgets work than I ever could have imagined. I can now tell you about wireless technologies, the difference between ARM and x86 processors, and name every Android dessert codename. Oh, and I’ve reviewed over 90 laptops since 2008. Yes, I counted. And yes, I love them all equally like my own children.
Somewhere in the middle there, Josh Topolsky met me at a Starbucks in midtown Manhattan to recruit me as a writer for Engadget. It was a turning point in my career. At Engadget, I learned how to write and blog from the best in the business. Seriously, Nilay, Josh, Paul, Chris, and Ross literally taught me everything they knew. And then eight months ago, I had an opportunity of a lifetime: Jim Bankoff and Josh asked me to come build The Verge, which has with incredible speed become a leading technology site. The experience has been one of the most rewarding of my life (I mean just look at the massive thing), and collaborating with such a gifted tech journalism and development team has been beyond incredible. Few people are lucky enough to do what they love every day, even fewer get to work with a group of people they love. I have done both for the last three years of my life.
Yet since I viewed that CBS segment five years ago, I’ve continued to have a yearning to share technology stories with a broader audience and through video. So you can imagine that when ABC approached me about coming aboard and leading their technology coverage, it sounded like a pretty amazing opportunity. It has been one of the hardest decisions of my life, but I have decided to leave The Verge to join ABC News as its lead technology editor.
In addition to writing and editing technology coverage for ABCNews.com, I will be assuming some of Daniel Sieberg’s recent broadcast roles as the network’s technology contributor. Talk about coming full circle. It’s actually pretty surreal.
I’ve learned a lot about the grind of the technology writing world and have loved every minute of it (except for the minute when I mistakenly tweeted about Bieber from the Engadget account), but I’m ready for a new challenge and a new audience of readers and viewers.
It’s been an amazing journey filled with lots of challenges, but thanks to my team of mentors I’ve learned how to tackle the hurdles and keep on LLOLing. I can’t say where I will be five years from now, but I’m excited for that next chapter to start on Monday when I officially become the Technology Editor at ABC News. I hope you’ll continue to tune in.