It’s not a big secret, but Silicon Valley is filled with douchebags. Occasionally one of these douchebags will come up with something that actually does change the world, like Facebook, but more often they’ll just make some annoying and awful human being incredibly rich. Well before sports fans learned to hate Mark Cuban as the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, tech journalists were hating him as the owner of Broadcast.com. Which he sold to Yahoo! just in time to avoid the dot-com crash.
Nonetheless, these people like to pretend that they’re not there to make lots of money but because they genuinely want to make the world a better place instead. So they all must be really pissed the New York Times yanked the lid off of how filthy rich they really they are.
The Times article in question explores how much excess exists in Silicon Valley and how obsessed these people are with spending their fortunes while keeping it a secret at the same time. For us the choicest quote was this one…
At Facebook, the first 250 employees are on a highly secret list called TNR250, for The Nouveau Riche 250. They discuss things they plan to buy when they sell their hundreds of millions of dollars in stock: boats, planes, artwork, even an island. (To be fair, philanthropy is also discussed.)
By “discussed” do we mean seriously considered, or spending five minutes laughing at the idea? True, it’s not as ridiculously excessive as some of the pre-dot-com boom shenanigans, but on the other hand, these are all people, with the exception of Sean Parker, who like to pretend that they’re just normal guys doing this to help the world. I never thought I’d say this, but at least Parker freely admits he’s in it for the money.