This is great... Hater of anyone who’s made it, John Heilemann, gets called out for his lack of fact-checking and obsession with wealth/power (and while all this goes on my Q rating goes up… thanks John!)
- Although most think the day of Internet arguments and dot com boom discussions are over, we are far from seeing the last of these epic debates. One particularly obsessed curmudgeon of the digital doomsday is John Heilemann, Wired writer and Bill Gates hater (he penned the hardcover missive “Pride Before the Fall: The Trials of Bill Gates and the End of the Microsoft Era”). The patrician pundit uses the pages of New York Magazine (“Suit 2.0,” July 3-10) to lob thinly veiled insult grenades at AOL’s newest loudmouth that would be king Jason Calacanis (creator of Weblogs Inc., a company he recently sold to AOL for over $25 million dollars). Calling Calacanis everything from a desperate social climber to a fatso, Heilemann heaps loving tablespoonfuls of scorn atop the young blog mogul’s head. “The last time I heard from Calacanis, he was royally pissed off with me for a column I wrote last year, in which I referred, en passant, to his ‘Web 1.0 flameout,'” Heilemann writes proudly. But the chest thumping is rather off key. Calacanis’ magazine, Silicon Alley Reporter did indeed go out of print, but it was far from a flame-out. After most of the New York tech companies folded in 2000-2001, there was little for the magazine to report, so Jason cleverly re-branded the media property as Venture Reporter and began publishing stories and data related to the venture capital business. After just a couple of years, Calacanis sold the company to Dow Jones Inc. (not a shabby suitor) and used the money to start up his next venture-Weblogs Inc. No one will argue that Calacanis is the easiest guy to get along with. Born in Brooklyn and just as brash and outspoken as the borough, he’s widely despised by many tech gurus on the West Coast (like San Francisco based Heilemann) who can’t stomach his arrogance-meets-blue collar grit profile. Nevertheless, Calacanis gets results. Interestingly, the dour tech scribe mentioned one other dot com magician-Marc Andreessen. Once the superstar of Netscape-eventually landing his very own Time magazine cover- Andreessen fell during the Internet blood bath of years past, and everyone piled on, slipping poison-tipped daggers into all the tender parts of his battered profile. But the real entrepreneurs never say die, and even now Andreessen is heading up a new well-funded web application venture called Ning headquartered in California and New York. So, while the real players are still playing, the benchwarmers and critics are still stewing over playing time they haven’t put in the practice hours to earn.