The tech blogosphere was on fire on Friday with a flood of constantly-updated news reports and a barrage of tweets dissecting every angle of the story.

A new iPhone? Details of the long-awaited Facebook IPO?

Not quite. The object of fascination was the preceding day’s news that high-profile tech blogger Michael Arrington has launched a $20 million venture capital fund.

The move instantly triggered a debate about the inherent conflict of an influential blog editor investing in many of the start-ups that would presumably be covered by TechCrunch — a must-read in the tech crowd.

But things only got more confusing as Arrington’s role at TechCrunch and parent company AOL appeared to undergo a series of metamorphoses as each hour passed.

AOL, which acquired TechCrunch in September 2010 and is also an investor in Arrington’s new CrunchFund venture fund, initially said Arrington would become “founding editor” and that AOL would look for a new managing editor.