Getting to know the GigaOm team

Just got back from a great visit to San Francisco (that’s it in the embedded photo), where I spent a few days with the rest of the GigaOm family in their funky loft-type office near Mission and Howard in downtown SF (just across the alley from CNET’s offices). I wish I had had more time, since it was nice to walk around without a winter coat — although all the native San Franciscoans were wearing big furry jackets and wool hats.

Pretty much everyone from the various GigaOm network blogs was there for the meeting, as well as the business side of the network. It was great to meet everyone and to get to know the different teams, including Stacey Higginbotham and Liz Gannes (GigaOm), Ryan Lawler, Janko Roettgers and Liz Shannon Miller (NewTeeVee), James Kendrick and Kevin Tofel (JKontheRun), Katie Fehrenbacher and Josie Garthwaite (Earth2Tech), Simon Mackie (Web Worker Daily) and Josh Pigford (The Apple Blog).

We had some presentations about the events of the past year, and some looking forward and goal setting, along with some great meals and a few drinks to boot. And people only made fun of my Canadian accent a few times, which was nice 🙂 Thanks to editor-in-chief Sebastian Rupley and managing editor Carolyn Pritchard (also Canadian) for all their help in getting used to how things work, as well as CEO Paul Walborsky — and of course my thanks to Om for bringing me on to the team.

Has Amazon won or lost the e-book war? Both.

Amazon’s battle with book publisher Macmillan was a valiant attempt to retain control over pricing in the rapidly changing world of e-books, but its weekend display of brinksmanship was short-lived. The online retailer yanked Macmillan books from its virtual shelves — both e-books and regular books — on Friday, triggering an online flame war with Macmillan authors and many of their supporters, but by Sunday night Amazon had capitulated and agreed to accept Macmillan’s new pricing model.

The unseen actor in this little mini-drama, of course, was Apple. With the launch of the iPad, the consumer electronics giant tilted the balance of power in the e-book market decisively away from former leader Amazon, even though Apple’s device isn’t shipping yet. The company also negotiated a new payment structure with publishers like Macmillan, which is being referred to as the “agency model.”

Please read the rest of this post at GigaOm