the world we live in

You Can Now Buy @GSElevator-Themed Items, Like a $3,000 Backgammon Set

Looks great on our Ikea coffee table. (Photo: Gentology)

There’s not much we know about @GSElevator, the anonymous high-brow (bordering on despicable) Twitter account that supposedly shares lurid gossip from Goldman Sachs’ elevators. Since 2011, it has racked up nearly half a million followers for giving normals a glimpse into the high-rolling, glitterati lifestyles of the assholic bankerbros at the vaunted company. Read More

Call the Lawyers

Former Goldman Sachs Programmer Back in Court for Alleged Theft of High-Frequency Trading Code

Mr. Aleynikov.

After a 2010 conviction in federal court for “theft of trade secrets,” a year in prison, and the relief of an overturned conviction in February, Reuters reports that former Goldman Sachs programmer Sergey Aleynikov is back in court today. This time, he faces state charges for the alleged theft of the code that underlies the firm’s high-frequency trading system.

Reached for comment, Mr. Aleynikov’s attorney Kevin Marino confirmed that his client is scheduled to be arraigned downtown this afternoon. Mr. Marino told Betabeat: Read More

ALL YOUR MEME BELONG TO US

As ‘Why I Left’ Letters Reach Meme Proportions, Startups Hope Goldman’s Moral Loss Is Their Gain

Letter make Lloyd sad.

If there were a more visual element (perhaps a honey badger or LOLcat) attached to the “Why I Left Company X” genre, the meme would already be cresting to the top of BuzzFeed. Former TechCrunch employees may have thought they had the art of the bomb-throwing exit letter on lockdown, but over the last couple days, they’ve been bested by the their more corporate brethren.

Yesterday, Google’s former engineering director James Whittaker accused the once-great innovation lab of devolving into an advertising machine. And today Goldman Sachs former executive director Greg Smith issued the most damning sayonara since Jerry McGuire. He started by decrying the toxic, profit-hungry culture, then revealed Goldman’s pet name for clients (“muppets”), before going on to level charges of widespread “moral bankruptcy.”

Those missives quickly spawned a parody (“Why I Am Leaving the Empire, by Darth Vader“) and a spin-off (Mr. Smith’s former intern at Goldman tried to jump into the fray.) Both “Greg Smith” and “Goldman Sachs” are already trending topics on Twitter.

The startup world—which never shies away from the world-changing rhetoric, even when it’s being used to shill for American Express—couldn’t have dreamed up a better recruiting strategy than Mr. Smith’s 2,500-word explosion of righteous indignation. Read More

Clean Tech

A Wind Energy Startup Grows…in Brooklyn?

OwnEnergy

We thought it would be fun to get off the beaten path for a second and cover a tech company doing stuff outside the consumer web. This morning Brooklyn’s OwnEnergy announced it will develop a large wind farm to power more than 9,000 homes across Pennsylvania.

Like so many interesting tech projects in New York these days, OwnEnergy is the brainchild of a former Wall Street worker. Jacob Susman worked with Goldman Sachs for several years, helping to guide the companies investment in wind energy.  Read More