shameless rumormongering

Rumor Roundup: Zuckerbergs in Budapest, Naveen’s API and at Least One Tumblr Engineer Is Super Stoked to Now Work for Yahoo

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Yahoo! for Yahoos! We’ve found a leading candidate for the single person happiest to hear that Yahoo was acquiring Tumblr. No, we’re not talking about CEO David Karp.

Meet Tumblr engineer Jeremy Johnstone. He used to work for Yahoo, and, apparently, the company retains a place of pride in his heart. In fact, he still wears Yahoo gear so constantly that one of his colleagues (the parent of Tommy Pom, no less) has created an entire Tumblr–“Jeremy’s Yahoo Wardrobe”–to chronicle his displays of loyalty.

For example, here is the bright purple car covered in Yahoo decals that he drove in 2007. Here is his Halloween costume from 2006, when he dressed up as the Yahoo logo. And then there are his many company t-shirts. Love is a beautiful thing, you guys. Read More

shameless rumormongering

Rumor Roundup: International Defoundered Man of Mystery, Plus Alexis Ohanian Wrote a Book

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Front Page Printed Pages of the Internet Just before taking stage at SXSW to talk his crowdfunded Internet 2012 tour, Alexis Ohanian emailed out a link to his new book, Without Their Permission: How the 21st Century Will Be Made, Not Managed.

Since you asked, Mr. Ohanian, we dig the cover, but “without their permission,” sounds a little iffy in the context of Reddit’s Creepshot scandal, no? Read More

Summer Jamz

We Know What You Did This Summer

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Dennis Crowley

It’s hard to be heads down when it’s hot out. Exhortations to “just keep shipping” trigger fantasies of sailboats; Friday afternoon happy hours just aren’t as appealing as sangria on a terrace in Spain. Besides–is there any surer sign of a healthy startup sector than tech stars taking lavish vacations? Read More

Welcome to New Fit City

Naveen Selvadurai’s Next Project Explores the Quantified Self

Not pictured: Fitbit and Withings scale. (via @Naveen)

Don’t call it a startup–at least not yet–but Foursquare cofounder Naveen Selvadurai dropped some hints about an upcoming personal project at an event at Union Square Monday evening, as Erick Schonfeld revealed on Twitter.

The de-Crunched tech blogger was at the VC firm for an event about “Networked Health,” and Mr. Selvadurai’s proposition, taken straight from the Quantified Self rule book, sounded like it fit right in: Read More

Tristan Walker Leaves Foursquare to Become an Entrepreneur-In-Residence at Andreessen Horowitz


Foursquare’s vice president Tristan Walker, perhaps one of the company’s most public faces–along with Denveen and engineering lead Harry Heymann–just announced his departure from the company on his personal blog. That’s the second early employee to depart from Foursquare since Naveen Selvadurai was defoundered in March. Mr. Walker, who lives in Palo Alto and was Foursquare’s first employee in the Bay Area, will be headed to Silicon Valley powerhouse Andreessen Horowitz as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence.

We guessing this time around, he didn’t get the gig with an “awesome, awesome” fanboy letter to Marc Andreessen. Read More



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Denveen five months after launching at SXSW.

Until recently, Foursquare cofounders Dennis Crowley and Naveen Selvadurai—let’s call them Denveen—were social media’s celebrity couple. The cofounder couple had class. They had stage presence; they had starpower. They had… a ton of pictures taken of them together. But recently, the dynamic duo sustained a divorce. What happened to the good old days? Read More


How to Avoid Being Pushed Out of the Company You Founded

Mr. Crowley and Mr. Selvadurai at a photo shoot for Italian Vogue. (Based on a photo by

Until recently, Foursquare cofounders Dennis Crowley and Naveen Selvadurai—let’s call them Denveen—were social media’s celebrity couple.

The pair stepped together into the spotlight when Foursquare won best-in-show at the South By Southwest Internet tradeshow in 2009 in Austin. After that, they appeared everywhere together. They traded off for media interviews and the presentation of prizes at Foursquare-sponsored events. They finished each other’s sentences in a spot for the USA network; they posed on a snowy New York street bundled in cardigans for a Gap ad. In a spread for Italian Vogue last year, the sandy-haired Mr. Crowley appears in a black suit, his Indian-born cofounder in beige. Mr. Crowley has his hand on Mr. Selvadurai’s arm and they’re looking at each other with oversize grins—not surprisingly, as Foursquare is now valued at more than $600 million.

And yet, a week and a half ago, on the third anniversary of that first SXSW victory, Mr. Selvadurai announced he was leaving the company.

The word came down on a Sunday afternoon, so it took a few days for the tech tabloids to orient themselves. But soon enough, the rumors started. “A source close to Selvadurai tells us the Foursquare cofounder has seemed ‘frustrated’ and ‘lost,’” reported the blog Business Insider; Mr. Selvadurai was “forced out,” according to a followup story. “Dennis and he don’t hate each other—things just changed,” one person told AllThingsD reporter Kara Swisher.

On Saturday, Mr. Crowley took the stage at SXSW, and on Sunday, he and the rest of the Foursquare delegation drank and made merry at the infamous Foursquare shindig, held in a sunken courtyard bar. Last year, Mr. Selvadurai spent most of the party lounging on the top deck with Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore, or encircled by twenty-somethings on the dance floor. This year, he skipped the conference entirely. Read More


Cofounder Naveen Selvadurai Leaves Foursquare

Mr. Selvadurai at SXSW 2011.

Foursquare’s well-dressed cofounder Naveen Selvadurai announced today that he has decided “to transition out of foursquare” almost exactly three years after the company launched at SXSW 2009. The announcement comes as a surprise; Foursquare is going strong with 15 million users and a second office in San Francisco. But Mr. Selvadurai is ready for his next entrepreneurial venture, the cofounder said, and Om Malik is reporting that Foursquare investor Spark Capital snatched up some of his stock. TechCrunch’s Eric Eldon reports that SV Angel is also buying employee stock. Read More

Silicon Alley High

How the City Plans to Finance Its New Software Engineering High School

Inspirational viewing!

On stage announcing the creation of a Software Engineering Academy this afternoon, Mayor Bloomberg revealed that the high school had the support of Fred Wilson and the city’s tech community. Betabeat has learned a little bit more about how that will work.

According to Department of Education spokesman Frank Thomas, Mr. Wilson has committed to financially supporting the school and to raise money for the school from the tech community at large. We have heard from other sources that Mr. Wilson’s financial commitment will be philanthropic and that the goal is to raise around $1.25 million, although that number has not been confirmed. Read More