Patch editor-in-chief Brian Farnham announced today on his blog that he’s leaving the AOL-owned local news network. Farnham’s blog post is fairly detailed, and one of the first points that he makes relates that he’ll be staying with Patch in some capacity in the future :
I love Patch, and I plan on staying very connected as an active alum, most specifically as a member of the advisory board we’re continuing to build.
Farnham then went on to explain his general disdain for all of the ‘haters’ of Patch and AOL, and shed some light on how it affected him personally, as an employee of the company:
Allow me this indulgence of a paragraph: I’ve never worked for a company that has been as scrutinized, criticized, and coal-raked as this one. As Jon likes to say, you’d think we were creating toxic waste, instead of, you know, free useful information. We have critics on Wall Street, critics in the media, local critics, national critics, the business press, the journalism reviews, bloggers, etc. There are so many that I’ve come to think of them as a single large, screechy, off-key band called BI and the Haters. It’s music to kill yourself by.
AOL has struggled since it delved into media. Patch, AOL’s “community-specific news and information platform dedicated to providing comprehensive and trusted local coverage for individual towns and communities,” lost roughly $160 million in 2011. And Farnham’s departure just adds to the trend of AOL executives leaving the company. With AOL’s Techcrunch snafu, which prompted the departure of Heather Harde, it has seemingly become a cool thing to quit AOL – The company has also lost Tim Dierks, Alex Gounares, Tim Castelli, Brad Garlinghouse and Kiersten Hollars.
According to VentureBeat, Patch recently hired Rachel Feddersen as the chief content officer.
Farnham blogged that he’ll be moving on to other startup opportunities, after taking a break:
Taking leave of Patch ain’t easy, but let me try to boil down why I’m doing so: it turns out I really love creating things from scratch, and while Patch is in a continual process of truly fascinating evolution and only a toddler of a company, it has definitely left “scratch” in the dust. So I’m heading off to explore some other startup opportunities. But not before I take a good, long nap.