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Soraya Darabi Steps Back at Foodspotting, Eyes Bigger Role at ABC

foodspotting cofounders

Soraya Darabi, public face and retroactively-named co-founder for the Bay Area start-up Foodspotting, has effectively left her daily role at the company.

Ms. Darabi, who has more than 429,000 followers on Twitter and a strong personal brand as a tech-savvy marketer, was brought on to get publicity for Foodspotting. And she did it well, evangelizing the service by word of mouth, on Twitter and through myriad interviews with outlets from Betabeat to Mashable (“How Soraya Darabi Put Foodspotting on the Map”) to New York magazine.

But Ms. Darabi had little input on product, sources close to Foodspotting told us, and she seemed less enthusiastic about Foodspotting as time went on and the service had trouble gaining traction in the face of threats from competitors as intimidating as Foursquare. Read More

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Barbarian Group Co-founder and COO Rick Webb Stepping Down

Barbarian at the boarding gates

Rick Webb is ready for a roadtrip. “D.C, Richmond, North carolina, Kennedy space center, Miami, Orlando, SF, Chapel  Hill, Philly, Boston, SF, Seattle, then home a week, then Asbury park, Austin, Atlantic city, SF, LA,” he told Betabeat this morning about his plans for the next two months. “I think that’s most of it.”

Mr. Webb has been with The Barbarian Group since he helped found the company in 2001, and has been primarily responsible for developing the firms celebrated “secret-sauce”. In the last year he has become a much more active tech investor and says he’s ready for a new challenge, although he won’t say yet  what that is. “I am consciously undecided. I figure I’ve done the same thing for so long I need to decompress before I even think about doing anything else.”

Knowing Mr. Webb is an acolyte of the Four Hour Body, we wondered if this trip would be some combination of new aged mysticism and cyber quantification in search of his next big mission. “It’s not like some vision quest or anything. Mainly seeing old friends and weddings.”

We hear from sources that the search for a replacement is already underway, but probably won’t become official for a little while. Pass on any intel to tips@betabeat.com