On walkabout in life and technology

VC Tries to Sell a Con

In Startups Are Hard. So Work More, Cry Less, And Quit All The Whining, Michael Arrington uses the 1994 post by overworked engineer Jamie Zawinski to make his point that startups are hard, Silicon Valley is awesome, you must work long hours, and if you do, the rewards are worth it. He states

But you also know that there is nowhere on earth like Silicon Valley. Nowhere else that is structurally designed to help you make whatever you can imagine into reality. Nowhere else where there are so many like minded people who are willing to sacrifice and work hard to create something new.

Jamie’s response is classic, in Watch a VC use my name to sell a con, he points out the real truth:

What is true is that for a VC's business model to work, it's necessary for you to give up your life in order for him to become richer.


So if your goal is to enrich the Arringtons of the world while maybe, if you win the lottery, scooping some of the groundscore that they overlooked, then by all means, bust your ass while the bankers and speculators cheer you on.

I love his final paragraph:

Instead of that, I recommend that you do what you love because you love doing it. If that means long hours, fantastic. If that means leaving the office by 6pm every day for your underwater basket-weaving class, also fantastic.