Interview With Renie Ravin: Founder of IndiBlogger


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Renie Ravin, the founder of IndiBlogger.in -- one of the largest and most active blog communities on the web -- is a web architect and a serial entrepreneur based in India. In his own words @ SkeptiCity, he spends 80% of his time on his company, 10% on photography and aquariums, 5% watching movies and the rest trying to get some sleep!

Renie - Kadzilla's LoungeSome quick maths: 80+10+5=95...

So SLEEP = 5% of 24 hours = NO KIDDING!!! ... 1.2 hours ??? :O

And no black circles under the eyes! Wow! HOW?

But that's one "secret" that I'll have to dig out of him at a personal level. For our readers though, Renie has most graciously consented to give an exclusive interview to Kadzilla's Lounge! And looking at his schedule above, the act speaks volumes about how much he values you all!

So here's Renie for you! :D

(Picture Credit: Firoze Shakir)


ABOUT INDIBLOGGER

1. How did you get the idea to create ‘IndiBlogger’? What was the vision behind this dream?

Our whole team’s attitude towards life was the basis of IndiBlogger.in. A lot of the core team has been close friends for two decades now. We were never afraid to go against protocol or authority – something which got us into a lot of trouble at school! :) We wanted to encourage the community to raise opinions and talk about things that were considered taboo. This is who we were. We decided to look no further than the blogging community of India. Our product, IndiBlogger.in was a servant to this awesome and diverse bunch of people whom we all feel a very special connection to.


2. All small & big ventures see some setbacks. What were the major challenges you had to overcome during the development of ‘Indiblogger’? How did you keep yourself motivated in those times?

Setbacks were the order of every day at one point, but motivation was never a cause for concern. Our team has a tendency to lift each other up, and of course, there’s no greater motivation than the IndiBlogger community itself. The encouraging messages and feedback we receive every day play a major part in keeping us strong.

Indiblogger Team - Kadzilla's Lounge
Our challenge was a big one as many companies in this industry had fallen under the pressure of being unable to find a successful business model to stay afloat. During the last year, we saw a major shift when companies started understanding their human responsibility to the Indian blogging community. This shift also saw companies putting their personal face forward as opposed to their business face. Everyone who has done business with IndiBlogger.in has seen the silver lining beyond direct selling.

During the days leading up to now, we had some fun times going without food for days on end. The team stuck to its guns and stabbed many a business model in the dark. Along the way, we found some very loving partners who were willing to go all the way with the Indian blogging community.


3. What do YOU think, as the creator of this platform, are the major achievements of ‘Indiblogger’ till date? And how about an exclusive “sneak-peek” for our readers, into the future ‘Indiblogger’? [Please please PLEASE! :D]

Achievements? We have a long way to go before we can talk about that! :) We will achieve something when we make blogging in India a completely self-sustaining industry. That’s the sneak peak as well - there are many products and features on IndiBlogger.in that the community uses to network and promote their blogs, but we are looking beyond that right now. That’s why we have blogger meets every year at every major city. We have done 36 so far, and we learn a lot from so much face to face interaction with a diverse set of bloggers and partners. The insight we gain from IndiBlogger meets is a vital ingredient in the direction of IndiBlogger.in.


ABOUT INDIAN BLOGGING

1. Do you think that blogging can benefit India as a nation and how?

Yes it will benefit India as a country greatly! To understand this one would have to look at the effort that a blogger puts into his or her blog posts. Many bloggers take hours writing a blog post, and they spend days promoting it, getting feedback and building a community of followers. In effect, it is creating a brand for oneself and maintaining it. It requires not just technical knowledge, but creativity and dedication as well. We consider bloggers as artists; their blog posts may not make the editorials of popular newspapers because of obvious errors and other barriers. But, that’s the beauty of blogging, as anyone from a school kid to a salaried employee can express personal views with nothing to hold them back. Blogging is India’s voice to the world. The real voice!


2. What are the areas/fields in which Indian bloggers need some catching up to do?

We feel that we have to catch up to the Indian blogging community. As of today there are Indian bloggers who write about everything under the sun. What they have are radical opinions and enriching experiences. It’s really up to the rest of the world to read them. :)


ABOUT RENIE

Renie Astronaut - Kadzilla's Lounge1. What did you dream as your career when you were a kid?

I went through several, in the following order – fighter pilot, astronaut, archeologist, astronomer, wildlife photographer and marine biologist. :)


2. How old were you when you first used a computer? How was the experience?

I was five when my family got our first IBM. I think it was a 286, and we still have it at home. Like any five year old, all I did was play games on it!


3. What are your first memories of the internet? What, according to you, has been the most phenomenal change in the evolution of internet?

First memories – dialing VSNL, re-dialing VSNL, and more re-dialing. After a successful connect - I’d try to check email, upload changes to my personal website via FTP, and download pictures of a morally dubious nature (hey, I was 16!), all before it got disconnected and I’d have to start over.

Most phenomenal change in the evolution of the internet – search, and more so, Google search. At the end of a long working day, my browsing history will normally have close to a hundred searches on Google. I don’t think we quite realize how much we use it!


QUICK FACTS:

Your Birthday? - 26th May 1979
Tea or Coffee? - Coffee
Sushmita Sen or Aishwarya Rai Bachchan? - Sushmita
Daal-bhaat-sabji or Pizza? - Pizza
Chess or Cricket? - Chess


Interview Questions compiled by: Shobhit and Kaddu, exclusively for Kadzilla's Lounge.


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4 comments:

A Restless Mind With A Sensitive Heart! said...

wow! didn't know so much about Renie of Indiblogger!! psst... and I always thought she was a girl, becoz of the sweet name! forgive me for this renie!!

RESTLESS

October 2, 2010 at 7:36 AM
Kaddu said...

Oh Restless! Then I'm glad I did this interview!

October 2, 2010 at 8:13 AM
Renie Ravin said...

Thanks for posting the interview Kaddu, am honored to be on your blog! :-) Needless to say, the IndiBlogger team had a good laugh when they saw the astronaut picture!

October 5, 2010 at 9:50 PM
Kaddu said...

Ha ha ha! I actually tried a couple of pics, but the angle of your face in your actual picture seemed to go better with this astronaut outfit, so I finally settled on this one! He he! :p

October 5, 2010 at 9:59 PM

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