Robert Scoble, a Microsoft technology evangelist and one of its best-known bloggers, is leaving to join a podcasting startup.

He credited his decision to join PodTech.Network Inc. as vice president of media development to the fast growth of internet media. "Because I do a videblog at Microsoft, I saw the growth of this new media," he said in a podcast on PodTech's website. "My videoblog in two years got to 3.5 million unique visitors without doing any advertising, [and] without doing any links from"

The PodTech position offered Scoble the opportunity to experiment with new forms of media, such as podcasting. "We'll probably have a show that explores the innards of the tech industry; we're still brainstorming," he said.

While working for Microsoft, Scoble's blog often promoted the company and its products, but sometimes questioned its moves. When Microsoft shut down a Chinese blogger on its MSN Spaces service, Scoble weighed in, calling the action "depressing".

"It's one thing to pull a list of words out of blogs using an algorithm," Scoble wrote at the time. "It's another thing to become an agent of a government and censor an entire blogger's work. Yes, I know the consequences. Yes, there are thousands of jobs at stake. Billions of dollars. But the behaviour of my company in this instance is not right."

Scoble remains a fan of Microsoft, despite his decision to leave the company. "Microsoft is the best big company in my mind, in any industry," he said in the podcast. "It's a company that's going to do very interesting things in the next 18 months."

The entire podcast on Scoble's decision to join PodTech is available for download here.