Leaving CNET

It was just about a year ago I blogged about leaving Houston and driving across the country to join CNET. It ended up being one of the best moves of my life. Since moving to the Bay Area I’ve had incredible oppurtunities and met a whole tribe of amazing people. For what I’m passionate about, I really believe this is the best place in the world to be.

For me the last year has really been about learning. From school in Houston to CNET to the explosive growth of WordPress and Ping-O-Matic, it’s been an incredible ride. There have been plenty of mistakes along the way, but all-in-all I don’t mind because that’s when I learn the most. At CNET I was lucky enough to be surrounded by veterans of the industry whose success and perserverance through the thick and thin of creating what we know as the web had a deep impact on me. CNET also gave me incredible flexibility to work on WordPress, and has embraced WP all over their organization, it was really the ideal gig.

However in the back of my mind I was wondering if I could focus on my passions full-time, to put more daytime hours into the community and projects that have changed my life already. I don’t need much, and working on WordPress full-time is my idea of heaven. I gave notice (they’ve been incredibly supportive).

I could say this was a hard decision, but the truth is I can’t imagine myself doing anything else.

Watch this space, I’ll have plenty more to talk about in the next few weeks. I’m very excited about the things happening with,, bbPress, a WordPress non-profit, Ping-O-Matic, and a few projects so shiny they don’t even have names yet.It’s a little scary to be leaving the safety net, but nothing worth doing in life is without risks.

My last day at CNET is Friday, October 21.

If there is ever going to be a time in my life to take big risks and reach for the brass ring, now is it.

103 replies on “Leaving CNET”

Dear Matt,

I pay respect to you and your decision. Where most people set aside their own dreams and ideas because of the risk and loss of their so-called safe environment, it is only more to appreciate when one does what he believes in.

One man can make a difference and for a revolution… 1 is the magic #.

Good luck, I already look forward to what you will bring this world.


[…] Matt Mullenweg is about to leave CNET to work full-time on WordPress, Ping-O-matic and other project he got. “If there is ever going to be a time in my life to take big risks and reach for the brass ring, now is it.” Goodluck, Matt! // Used for showing and hiding user information in the comment form function ShowUtils() { document.getElementById(“authorinfo”).style.display = “”; document.getElementById(“showinfo”).style.display = “none”; document.getElementById(“hideinfo”).style.display = “”; } function HideUtils() { document.getElementById(“authorinfo”).style.display = “none”; document.getElementById(“showinfo”).style.display = “”; document.getElementById(“hideinfo”).style.display = “none”; } […]

Good luck Matt.

I to have just left a job after 10 years to go it on my own, and so I can empathise with those ‘letting go of the safety net’ fears.

Just believe in what thousands of people already know – that you are a talented little freak that will go far in what ever you do.

It’s difficult to push at one boundary without the opposing pressure having an effect, so learning from the whole experience is a necessity, and it is to your credit that you take any failings on board and grow from them.

There was once another youth who found himself in the vanguard of a revolution, a lad of great potential. His personal success, would never have been possible without good mentors. A good mentor has a lifetime of learning from the mistakes of many; find yourself a few guardian angels who understand your goals, and wring them mercilessly for every ounce of knowledge they can bestow.

Have a great last day, and on Monday, have an even better first day.

I just happened to read your post on the day you’re leaving CNET. Good luck in your future of dream catching! What a great thing you’re doing. Yes, the risks are worth taking!

Dear Matt,

Wishing you the very best !

It must have been a difficult decision to make, but.. the below quotes from Confucius very very true..

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”


Hi Matt,

You’re still in your own “flow”. That is good, Keep making the right decision and surprise the world with even more nice and usable technology. We are happy with it ( http:/ ) runs it and we hope to contribute shortly to the world with some of our own w2.0 concepts.

I wish you all the luck.

Regards from Holland!

Eelco Voogd,


Best of luck on this huge step. Here’s hoping it leads directly to more improvements in WordPress and related projects–I’m a huge fan!

[…] Ï äçìéïõñãüò ôïõ WordPress (ôçò åöáñìïãÞò ðïõ ôï áðïôÝëåóìá áõôÞò äéáâÜæåôå áõôÞ ôç óôéãìÞ – íáé ôï áðïöÜóéóå íá ðáñáéôçèåß áðü ôçí ìüíéìç äïõëåéÜ ôïõ óôï CNET êáé íá áó÷ïëçèåß áðïêëåéóôéêÜ ìå ôï ðÜèïò ôçò æùÞò ôïõ, ôï WordPress. Ôá õðüëïéðá ìðïñåßôå íá ôá äéáâÜóåôå óôï blog ôïõ Matt. […]

Hey Matt,

Best of luck! You’re right, there comes a time when you’ve just got to take that leap and go for it. If you stumble, there will always be good companies to work with (or for), but if you succeed you open up an entire new world and make your own rules. Good luck 🙂


So few people can stare at their dream and then take the steps necessary to make it happen. I too applaud your cajones and intelligence at taking the chance. Aside from running your own business – and by extension your life – you’ll never have to wonder “what if?”

As a published author and freelance writer, I’ve been doing the self-employed thing for nearly 14 years now and I wouldn’t trade away a day of it.


Good luck, Matt!

I know what it’s like to leave a decent job in order to pursue happiness. It’s scary, but sometimes you just have to make that leap of faith.

Can’t wait to hear about the trail you’ll be blazing next!


Bayarea is just the place to take risks. As Mark Andreeson puts it “[Being in tech and not being in Silicon Valley] is like trying to be in the movie business not in LA or trying to be in national politics and not be in D.C.”

All the very best for the future. Looking forward to see increased activity on your dream projects.


As long as you’re not eating top ramen every night, I’d say that it’s good to follow your dreams.

That’s wonderful for you that you’ll get to work on your passions full-time and wonderful for us (the community), because it will feed into WordPress and your other projects.

Good luck!

This is beyond creepy. Last night, I swear I was pondering what it would take to get you to essentially be a full-time WordPress “employee” and how awesome that would be for the project. That was at about 2am EST last night… about 45 minutes before you posted this. I have goosebumps, man.

The obvious question is: how are you going to eat? They may be a bit personal, but I’m just curious as to how sustainable being a full-time WordPress contributer is for you, economically, especially in SF with the cost of living being what it is. Does WordPress generate enough revenue for you to live off of? Are you going to go the Kottke route? Are you going to take on part-time gigs to make rent?

I’m really excited for you, and not just because of the benefits that WordPress and the WordPress-related projects are going to see. Doing what you love is an incredible thing.

Good luck to you Matt. I’m sure you have many exciting things lined up and look forward to seeing what you can do when you can devote your full attention to it.

Best of luck Matt, I am sure you made the right decision. I along with others can’t wait to see what you have instore for the world 🙂 Might I suggest world domination?

I’m new to WordPress. I’ve been studying PHP and MySQL over the past year and implementing into my soon-to-be-up-and-running site. I stumbled upon WordPress a few days ago, since I hadn’t seriously considered adding blogging to my site until I learned how easy it could be. I’m totally jazzed about WordPress and what it has to offer over Blogger. So the idea of someone like yourself being committed to this open source project to the extent that you are is exciting and inspiring to me. Thank you so much for being the gutsy, passionate guy that you are.

Good luck with the new ventures Matt! You’ve got a fantastic base from which to innovate further and I fully expect you to be in a position to fund the next in 10 years time 😉

Also it was great to meet you at the geek dinner a couple of weeks ago.

cheers, Richard

Good luck to you Matt! What a truly exciting adventure for you. I just sent one of my kids off to college to start her adventure and I’ll just post here what I told her – do what you love. The money will come. Maybe not as fast as some other ways, but it will come. But you get to have your life with it as you go. You get to do what your passionate about and what makes you leap out of bed in the morning and go to bed super late at night. There’s no way to measure all the good that comes from that. Sure there will be times when you become disillusioned and wonder what you are doing, but just go grab some chocolate, go for a walk, and shake it off. You’ll be glad you followed your passion. You’ve touched alot of lives already and many more to come. By the by, as an old guy using WordPress I’m very, very impressed. I started with “gee this blogging thing would be fun”, moved to playing with Typepad (a very nice piece of software), got lucky and got a account, then found myself signing up for my own WordPress hosted account and editing html on my own WordPress 1.5 site! I’m happy to have found a venue to do something I enjoy – writing (we’ll let the jury decide on how well – but at least I’m having fun) – and WordPress made that more fun and possible for me. Thx and best of luck to you in your new adventure!

[…] El Breve recorrido sobre los post de esta semana que llamaron mi atención â„¢ – BlogTelecom entrevista a Martin Varsavsky, promotor del Movimiento FON – Online y un Reproductor MP3 PEZ – Monosabio escribe tambien ciencia ficción? 😛 – La Taberna del Turco comienza una campaña para el autodescubrimiento de feeds – Halón Disparado define a los fisicos cuánticos – zonageek me hizo pensar que cuando uno hace borron y cuenta nueva en algo.. también lo hace con su portatil.. raro pero me di cuenta que yo tambien lo hago – Qué blogudo!!! y el Pajasutra – Genbeta y 100 trucos para el Google – Blogs Panamá nace – Cordósfera también – FDLog y Apple Aperture – Funk Blog Job y Google en Guaraní – Gorkaff descubre como algunos hacen plata facil 😛 – Darki ya tiene su Nano – Cobertura Digital recomienda blogs en un diario..:P – Vida Vacia 4.1 y los paracaidistas – Cristian da sus IN y los OUT de la web actual – 5.1.1. ahora es confiable – Cyberlatam y la actualizaci’pn de google – mundoPSP y el DRM en PSP – Santa Maradona y una buena reflexion – Bluelephant entrevista a Vega – Kirai y un excelente articulo sobre la computacion. – Matt se va de CNET – mildiez rediseña a Enrique Dans – ALT1040 cubrió a wilma mejor que nadie – IceBeat muestra su CSSing 1.0 […]

What they all said. And, you’re welcome back in H-town any time. Good on you for taking the leap.

(So it was CNET that injured your thumb. Now it all makes sense….)

I know it must’ve been a bit hard decision to make, but hey, its life!! Only those who dare to leave the safety of the cocoon deserve to be successful!! 🙂 There’ll be sometime, someplace in future, again to be proud of!!

Goodluck Matt in your next adventure!! *thumbs up*

[…] Matt Mullenweg ha anunciado que en algunos días dejará su trabajo en CNET. Sin duda alguna, esta ha sido una maravillosa experiencia para él, pero parece ser que prefiere dedicarse a otro tipo de trabajo, como,, Ping-o-Matic, etc. Mucha suerte para Matt y para todos sus nuevos proyectos! […]

Hey hot stuff,

I was, am, and always will be proud of you and have the utmost faith in your decisions. I won’t wish you luck because you already have the guts and heart and talent to do whatever you want in this world.

[…] PhotoMatt (ham der står bag WordPress) er nu gået så langt at han har sagt sit udemærket job hos CNET op. Han vil udvikle sine egne projekter fuld tid. Jeg kan kun håbe at han får vind i sejlene og jeg glæder mig til at se hvad han kan gøre med WordPress. Selv har jeg da flere ting på ønskelisten som jeg mener kunne være fede. Michael går helt amok med sit Invader design (link til binary). Det ser bare for fedt ud. Cris Pirillo har gang i som jeg ikke lige ved hvad jeg skal syntes om endnu men det ser spændende ud. Han mener dog også at Web 2.0 ikke rigtig har nogen betydning endnu. FeedLounge, som er en online feedreader, forventer jeg mig også en del af. Den skulle være godt gennemtænkt. Flock er den nye browser som der har været en vild hype om. Jeg skal lige notere at jeg stadig er så blank at jeg først opdagede omtalen i sidste uge. Ajax er såvidt jeg kan gennemskue en form for asynkront Javascripting. Det vil altså sige man kan opdatere og navigere inholdet uden at skulle opdatere siden (F5). Det må være sådan’s navigation på forsiden er skruet sammen. Rui har mere om det her og her. […]

[…] Yesterday WordPress founder Matt Mullenweg announced the launch of Automattic, an umbrella company for all of the various WordPress projects, including: the WordPress open source blog tool, the hosted version of WordPress:, the comment spam plug-in Akismet and the forum script bbPress. WordPress developers Ryan Boren, Donncha O Caoimh and Andy Skelton will be working with Matt at Automattic. Matt had recently left his job at CNET to work on WordPress full-time. Automattic Inc. is a bootstrapped startup from a handful of people passionate about making the web a better place. So far we’re best known for our work on WordPress and other projects but we have a lot of other interesting things in the pipeline as well. We are strong believers in Open Source and the vast majority of our work is available under licenses like the GPL. We are not seeking funding. tags: wordpress (T) , automattic (T) , akismet (T) – posted by Scott Beale on Wednesday, December 21st, 2005 Comments RSS feed | Trackback URL […]