Venture capitalists think the rhetoric against them is too mean

Venture capitalists were in a frenzy online today after an article in Slate examined the industry’s impact following the collapse of the Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) this weekend.

SVB, the bank of choice for the tech industry, startups and the VC industry that helps fund it all, quickly collapsed after federal investigators began goading it over its ability to pay on Thursday.

When the bank failed, a number of prominent venture capitalists panicked, with some accused of even instigating a possible bank run as they urged the federal government to protect tech industry funds.

Now the media, which the tech industry has long despised for its unsycophant reporting, has questioned the unfavorable influence of VC kingmakers on what technology makes it out of its early stages and is foisted on the world.

In an article for Slate, writer Edward Ongweso Jr. specifically emphasized this relationship, saying, “I don’t see why venture capitalists should have such control over what technology gets funded, who designs it, how it’s developed, why it’s developed.” is deployed and where the returns are going.”

“We can and should explore alternatives to the privately run VC system, which prioritizes and commercializes technology that demeans more of our lives,” he added, “gambles on these developments with other people’s money and prompts regular threatening panics on the fly.” turning the lives of countless people upside down.”

But it was his tweet calling VCs “parasites” who shouldn’t be trusted with such scrutiny that brought them over the edge.

“Venture capitalists are parasites who cannot be trusted with the financial institution that runs their industry, let alone the direction of our technological development. Putting them to sleep is essential if we want a better world,” he said Posted.

In response, a number of prominent VCs responded to the tweet with their own exaggerated responses, accusing the author of somehow laying the groundwork for a new genocide and holocaust in Rwanda.

“That kind of rhetoric ends up with things like the Rwandan genocide,” wrote Nate Fischer, a self-proclaimed founder and inventor.

The Rwandan genocide was one of the worst cases of indiscriminate mass murder in world history, killing an estimated half a million Tutsis, an ethnic minority in Rwanda, over a four-month period.

When Fischer wasn’t comparing Silicon Valley’s few VCs to a protected ethnic minority, he denounced diversity in business and government, saying equity officials must be flushed And agreed that the worst thing you can do as a company is to hire a social justice campaigner.

Not to be outdone, Marc Andreessen of VC firm AZ16 likened Ongweso’s tweet to “Alfred Rosenberg writes in Völkischer Beobachter”.

Rosenberg was editor of the National observerthe official newspaper of the German Nazi Party, which pushed pro-Hitler propaganda.

Jason Calacanis, one of Elon Musk’s close associates and someone who has been accused of creating panic over the situation at SVB, responded to the tweet by saying, “Perhaps you should spare the word euthanasia and incitement to violence, Edward.”

Other prominent tech VCs voiced more muted criticism but still disagreed with the tweet.

For the part of Ongweso he laughed at Andreessen and other VCswho missed his reference to the famous economist John Maynard Keynes.

“Oh, he knows Nazi lyrics, but not one of Keynes’ most famous quotes? Interesting,” Ongweso wrote of Andreessen’s response.


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*Initial publication: March 14, 2023 11:09 am CDT

David Covucci

David Covucci is senior politics and technology editor at the Daily Dot, covering the connection between Washington and Silicon Valley. His work has appeared in Vice, The Huffington Post, Jezebel, Gothamist, and other publications. He is particularly interested in hearing your tips. Please turn to [email protected]

David Covucci Venture capitalists think the rhetoric against them is too mean

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