shameless rumormongering

Rumor Roundup: Softbank Gets a Panty Dropoff and Fred Durst Did It All for the Diggs

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Airbnb Is a Belieber Early this week, CEO Brian Chesky tweeted out a photo of Justin Bieber, whose startup cred apparently extends to Airbnb renter. The Instagram shot was taken by Mazy Kazerooni, cofounder of #DominateFund, Ben Parr’s still hush-hush, celebrity-focused micro-VC. Gee, wonder who their LPs are?

Friday flashback This week the revamped Digg got an unexpected celebrity thumbs-up: Fred Durst of Limp Bizkit fame (infamy?) tweeted at developer Robert Tolar Haining, “I love Digg. Great job and beautiful interface.” “Why thank you sir!” Mr. Haining replied, because what else are you going to say when Fred Durst compliments your UI? Read More


Start-Ups Silicon Valley: In Which Our Recapper Inadvertently Makes His Bravo Debut

spencer chen start-up silicon valley

Dear 20 or so religious recap followers,

You probably noticed that I took last week’s episode off. I could give you a list of reasons: it was really busy at work, I was trying to wind down for Thanksgiving, and catching the West Coast feed starting at 10 p.m. Pacific is a bitch. But ultimately, I just didn’t feel like watching it. The first two episodes left me narcoleptic and an unopened Xbox game seemed like more fun.

But Nitasha, Betabeat’s editor, convinced me to give it one last try. Well, I’m glad I did. I managed to stay awake for the entire episode! And it was definitely the most authentic of the season. It may have helped that I was getting texts from Gabe Rivera, founder of the famous tech news aggregator Techmeme, that my startup and I made an appearance in this week’s show. (Gabe was in NYC at the time and claims that he was just “flipping” through the channels). My favorite subject was going to be on . . . me! Read More


Start-ups Silicon Valley: Recapping Bravo’s Version of Startupland with a Valley Native


Last night marked the much-feared premiere of Bravo’s “Start-Ups: Silicon Alley“–a bikini clad-allegory about the startup world’s penchant for self-aggrandizing that vacillates somewhere between a light-hearted brother-sister romcom and “True Life: I Have No Fucking Clue How to Pitch a VC.” It’s your standard Andy Cohen clubhouse fare with the life cycle of an early stage company as a plot device.

But it’s hard for Betabeat, sitting pretty in New York City, to assess what, exactly, the show gets right and wrong about Valley culture. Is the primary mode of socialization really costume parties? Can you get humans to deliver room service to your dog just by saying “social media” three times? Thus we enlisted a native Spencer Chen to separate the real from the fake, borrowing from the recap format pioneered by chroniclers of that other cinéma véritée classic, “Gossip Girl.”

Last night my girlfriend and I hosted a viewing party for the premiere of Bravo’s latest reality show, “Start-Ups: Silicon Valley.” (Yes, startups is spelled with a hyphen and mixed caps and that alone should have been a signal of things to come). It’s definitely one of the more polarizing things to hit the Valley recently because this time, it’s personal. Danny Trinh, a well-known product designer for Path, captured the general sentiment: Read More