Trashing Tumblr

So Scott Galloway thinks Tumblr was nothing more than a “porn site.”

I think that is a ridiculous comment coming from someone who says ridiculous things.

Tumblr was, and still is, a vibrant social media platform. Just talk to the tens of million of people who have had Tumblr blogs and have gotten tremendous value out of them.

I am one of them.

I just hate jerks who want attention by saying crazy shit, like the current Republican nominee for President.

So I am calling bullshit on Scott Galloway and standing up for Tumblr, which I love and have always loved.

Phew. Now I feel better.


Comments (Archived):

  1. JimHirshfield

    Haters gonna hate.

    1. Pete Griffiths

      It’s not just hating. He is making a substantial point about the value of the asset that Yahoo bought and relating that to the quality of the site.

    2. Richard

      Stop picking on Fred 🙂

  2. Justin Fyles

    It seems unfair to judge an investment, which has calculated risk by definition, in hindsight.Learning from it is one thing, but bashing it puts you you on an undue pedestal.

  3. Joe Lazarus

    Tumblr circa 2007-2010 was the best online community I’ve been a part of.

  4. William Mougayar

    Intellectual integrity is hard (and rare). Spittballing half-truths and exaggerations is much easier.Instagram and Pinterest have their share of porn too, then so what.

    1. pointsnfigures

      So does Twitter. If you want to find porn, you can find it anywhere. Even the corner news stand.

      1. sigmaalgebra

        FYI: For our discussion on portfolio risk, in…I wrote out and posted the algebra for a simple but, still, significant case.Result: Adding an investment to a portfolio lowers variance of that portfolio, that is, lowers risk.I’d welcome mention of any errors in my algebra!

        1. pointsnfigures

          Error in assumption. Works for stocks, doesn’t work for startups.

          1. sigmaalgebra

            Where do the assumptions fail?Just read: You have an investment today. Each dollar you invest in that investment today is worth X dollars in, say, 1 year where X is a real valued random variable.Investment X can be from stocks, bonds, real estate, old paintings, options, futures, Aunt Martha’s cookbook, Aunt Betty’s cooking blog, Aunt Sandra’s Fidelity IRA account, Tom’s mechanical apple peeler, or any startup with funding from friends and family, a crowd, a VC, a late stage deal with Silicon Valley Bank, Goldman Sachs, KKR, or the Saudis.Similarly for another investment with return random variable Y, in the same Silicon Valley VC firm or in Western China, or North Korea for that matter.Bluntly the result holds for any two random variables at all, with the E[X] = E[Y] and Var(X) = Var(Y), in investing, arrivals of thunderstorms or asteroids, number of cancer cases X and average temperature Y, etc.All we are talking is just two random variables X and Y. Such random variables are wildly general things, for investing and much more. Cooking up something that’s not such a random variable takes considerable ingenuity.Where did I assume too much?

          2. pointsnfigures

            Assumption is wrong because what’s the residual value of a startup on failure? There is residual value even in other illiquid investments. Most likely 0 in startup. Also variance doesn’t get smaller.

          3. sigmaalgebra

            The set up handled that: Again, once again, over again, one more time, it’s simple, just dirt simple: Today you have a candidate investment. For each dollar you invest, in, say, one year, the investment will be worth (however you define it) to you X for real valued random variable. I assumed next to nothing about X. X could be positive, 0, or negative. Similarly for a second investment that returns random variable Y. To make the two investments at all comparable or competitive, and to make the work simpler, we believe that their averages, their expectations, E[X] = E[Y] are equal. Similarly for their variances Var(X) = Var(Y).That’s about all we assume. X and Y don’t even have to be from investing or in investing from the same VC firm. X can be from Joe’s trip to Vegas and Y from Martha’s next lottery ticket. The algebra still works.For the money invested, there is less variance investing in both X and Y than just in X. The proof is just simple algebra.

  5. rich caccappolo

    Well said. I like it! Good to see the emotion. There are times when such statements need to be made.

    1. fredwilson

      it made me feel a lot better

  6. awaldstein

    Good–expression is an action. Trust me I know this recently!I will admit that my community has moved off of Tumblr but so have I a bit even though I have loved it long and true.But the other expressions of porn is simply as your say, bullshit. Blogger shock jocks.

  7. Tom Labus

    Good morning!!!

  8. reggiedog

    Did he say anything factually incorrect?I know we are all attached to our offspring, but it’s hard to argue that it was a good investment for Yahoo.Examples of “it looked like a good idea at the time” abound, when in hindsight it seems that they weren’t all that in the scope of history. You can say that Yahoo mismanaged an opportunity, but that seems more speculation than data.

    1. fredwilson

      I don’t know because I didn’t talk to him. I just read what was reported. But when we owned a piece of Tumblr the porn category represented about 5-10% of the content and the company made it hard to find it inside of the community and network. Search and discovery were optimized away from that content. Plus porn is in the eye of the beholder. Much of that kind of content was what might be called erotica vs porn.My meta point is that Tumblr was, and is, a UGC site. And a damn good one. And way way way more than a porn site

      1. kevando

        …with the best CG tools.

      2. mariapetrova

        Galloway says a lot of things that are hard to take but true. It’s all backed up with data. In the interview that the BI article summarized (Radiate FB Live), he said 40% of Tumblr is porn. Makes more sense when you hear that vs. how it was summarized in the article. Other estimates are 25%. In my experience, totally true — I’m a designer & like some of the geometric images there, but I’m always running into soft porn.In my experience, Tumblr is definitely not a UGC site, in the strict sense of UGC. It’s a reposting of found imagery site. This is its crucial difference to Instagram — far less personal & dynamic. There are other barriers as well that make it mostly a site for millennials, moody teenagers and soft porn, and not for brand building. If you look at lifestyle, you’re guaranteed to run into soft porn. Erotica / porn, no difference to Ford & other conservative companies. Galloway’s data team at L2 is top-notch. I’m afraid he’s spot on.

        1. fredwilson

          that is factually incorrect. and spewing bullshit like this is irresponsible. how would you know????from the blog post linked to in the Galloway piece on BI, is this third party data:”According to an analysis of Tumblr’s 200,000 most-visited domains, 22,775 of them are adult – or 11.4 percent. The analysis was performed by web measurement firm SimilarGroup”and that is the “most-visited” domains.the internal numbers we saw as investors and board members was lower, in the 5-10% range

          1. mariapetrova

            I see you feel strongly about this, as would I if I were invested, in any sense of the word, in something. I see how it looks so easy for an outsider to say a few bombastic things and dash something to pieces. One thing about Galloway is he takes data very seriously. He doesn’t pull numbers out of thin air. I trust your data, but I also trust his. He has a data analytics firm. He’s not casual with numbers.I’d get into conversation with him. He actually really welcomes disagreement and is surprisingly fast to admit he was wrong. “We get it wrong all the time,” he says. I’d love to see where the dialogue goes.

          2. LE

            I tracked down your website you do nice graphic design work Maria (I used to be in that business some time ago).

          3. fredwilson

            that doesn’t interest me

          4. ShanaC

            that may have changes since the sale to yahooand, as a note – I’ve run into porn there too, which I didn’t run into when tumblr was independent. which does make me wonder

          5. John McDonnell

            The same blog post also says “In addition, 22.37 percent of incoming referral traffic from external sites to Tumblr is from adult websites” which is precisely what Scott said in his article.Dunno if TC was right on this one but Scott is faithful to his source and it is sort of bullshit to claim that this hasn’t hurt their ad revenue.

        2. TeddyBeingTeddy

          Porn solves a problem, and probably reduces crime. I don’t see the problem, even if it were largely know as a place where you could tumble across a bunch of porn…

      3. RichardF

        Yahoo buying anything is the kiss of death. Great for visiting the “pay window” just like AOL, “history doesn’t repeat itself” I’ll call bullshit on that

    2. Alex Murphy

      What do you think about hotels, cable companies, and Sat TV providers? Are they porn?In the early 2000s, porn represented 10% of the hotel revenue stream, at a much higher Gross Margin than any other revenue category.That has been eroding for the past 10 years, but it still is a hefty part of the “video delivery” market into the hotels.The profits are moving from Adult video rentals to “high speed” internet access … and why do people need high speed internet … well, to watch their HD porn of course.

      1. Richard

        Have a source for that 10% cite?

      2. Ciaran

        The point Galloway was making though was the enthusiasm of mainstream brands to put their ad dollars into areas where there is a high chance of encountering adult content, whether one deems that porn or erotica. And I’d suggest that you won’t find many ads for Kellogg’s, Ford or any other blue-chip company on the porn channels distributed via any of the channels you mention.

        1. Alex Murphy

          I agree with this. And Scott’s core point, that Yahoo made a bad decision to buy Tumblr is playing out in the actual outcomes. Taking the write downs is accepting this as the reality.

    3. ShanaC

      my bet is they probably did. they have a habit of writing down acquisitions heavily, especially ones they feel they need. there is something wrong with that, if that is the case

      1. creative group

        ShanaC:Any investor in Yahoo (Or any publc traded company) should have an issue with talent acquisitions via purchasing companies beyond their actual market value to capture talent. That at the very least is mismanagement and not fulfilling a fiduciary duty to shareholders.

        1. ShanaC

          It’s just Shana. My last name is carp. I like goldfish and koi in real life….

          1. creative group

            Shana: We use the user ID when directly addressing or replying to a contributor. Our modus operandi will be consistent.If you have an elaborate fish tank can you post it? In response to your admission liking fish.https://uploads.disquscdn.c…DISCLOSURE: Not our fish tank.

          2. ShanaC

            I don’t own a fish tank 🙁

  9. Mike Zamansky

    “I just hate jerks who want attention by saying crazy shit, like the current Republican nominee for President.”Unfortunately, it seems like the Republican party has fast tracked, mainstreamed, and made even more commonly acceptable such behavior.

  10. Brandon G. Donnelly

    I have been writing a (daily) long form blog for 3 years using only the Tumblr platform.

  11. Matthieu Bonnard

    I love Fred ( or what you say rather).Trump and friends are such minuscule but dangerous bouffons.Phew. feels good too

  12. Brook Shepard

    You sir, are on a tear these days.

  13. jason wright

    what percentage of the total number of Tumblr pages have porn content?my perception is that Tumblr does have a reputation for soft porn. the “nothing more” is the point of debate. obviously there is more than just the porn.Trump says crazy shit because he’s not a political insider and needs to crack open the undemocratic system of political and media patronage. if he becomes POTUS he will change his tune. Hillary Clinton is a hawk, a war monger, and one of the most deeply disingenuous people i have ever seen in public life across the Western world. her public persona is utterly fake.

    1. TRoberts

      “Too much adult-site traffic: A quarter of Tumblr’s inbound traffic was estimated to come from adult sites at the time of the acquisition. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it hurts its advertising value, Galloway says.”

    2. sigmaalgebra

      > crazy shitI’ve paid fairly close attention to Trump, would very much like to know about any at all significant “crazy shit” he has said but haven’t seen any.You gave no data. Neither did Fred.Without good data, I can’t swallow “crazy shit”.Got any good data, e.g., with primary sources and solid references, that to any significant extent Trump says “crazy shit”?Uh, unsubstantiated opinions in the NYT and WaPo and on CNN and CBS don’t count.Why not CBS? E.g., in the 60 Minutes interview last Sunday at…the CBS interviewer Lesley Sthal said some serious “crazy shit”:(1) Sthal said that Trump said that “McCain was not a war hero because he was captured”. Wrong. Lies. “Crazy shit”. Nonsense and lies passed out over and over in traditional propaganda style by Trump opponents.Here’s the rock solidly documented truth:The Trump comments on McCain were onSaturday, July 18, 2015with transcript from the Federal News Service and video at…Here’s what happened: As in video…on Saturday, July, 11, 2015, Trump gave a rally in Phoenix, AZ.Then on Monday, July 13, 2015 in his Senate office Senator McCain told journalist Ryan Lizza that he (McCain) did not like what Trump did, that Trump had “fired up the crazies”.Then as at…on Thursday, July 16, 2015, Ryan Lizza published an article about what McCain said in,Ryan Lizza, “John McCain Has a Few Things to Say About Donald Trump”, ‘The New Yorker’, July 16, 2015.So, clearly McCain was insulting both Trump and his audience.So, McCain threw a punch at Trump.It appears that Trump does not want to be a punching bag for politicians and newsies and, instead will “counter punch”.As athttps://thefamilyleadership…there was, again onSaturday, July 18, 2015″The 2015 Family Leadership Summit July 18, 2015, Stephens Auditorium, Ames, Iowa.”Trump appeared there and was interviewed by Frank I. Luntz.For the interview, can see the video at…with the transcript from theFederal News Service Transcript, July 18, 2015.There Trump is explaining to Luntz and the audience about McCain’s attack that Trump “fired up the crazies”.Then Luntz interrupts Trump more than once, once with, e.g.,”Referring to — to — John McCain, a war hero, five and a half years as a POW, and you call him a dummy. Is that appropriate in running for president?”Well, here Luntz is wrong: In the US military, being a POW is not sufficient to be a war hero.And Trump explained that McCain was commonly regarded as a war hero because he was captured: That is likely correct, e.g., is what Luntz believed.Trump went on to say “Maybe McCain is a war hero.”But the reason McCain is a war hero is not just because of his time as a POW. In asserting that McCain’s time as a POW, the time alone, made McCain a war hero is wrong — there Luntz was wrong. In pushing back againt Luntz, Trump was correct.Sthal wants us to believe that Trump said that McCain’s being captured made him NOT a war hero, and Trump never said any such thing.Well, McCain is a war hero and has the medals to prove it. And at least one of his medals was from some of what he did that was heroic when he was a POW.But Trump was just pushing back at McCain’s remark that Trump had “fired up the crazies”.There on 60 Minutes, Sthal was just passing out propaganda from Trump opponents.(2) Also there on 60 Minutes, Sthal accused Trump of being “protectionist”. Sthal gave no data or references but just made the accusation.Sthal’s “protectionist” is just a nasty claim, without support, without data, without details, ambiguous, at least significantly wrong, insulting propaganda.Instead, IIRC Trump has claimed that now the US is running a trade deficit of about 800 billion a year with about 500 billion of that with just China.In response, IIRC Trump wants to negotiate good trade deals that will bring our foreign trade back in balance, bring jobs back to the US, improve the standard of living of US working people, get US manufacturing going again, keep the US from being taken advantage of by classic predatory marketing practices, stop foreign countries from blocking imports from the US, etc.If Trump’s claims are correct, then what we are doing now with our trade deficits is shooting our country in the gut and just plain stupid. What Trump wants to do is responsible and smart. The claim that Trump is being “protectionist” is just deliberate, mud slinging, lying propaganda.For “crazy shit”, an example grand in all the history of the US, is what FBI Director Comey said, e.g., at…on July 5, 2016 about what Hillary did sending and receiving US classified information, then classified and marked as Top Secret and above, on her unsecured, home-based e-mail server.That US Attorney General Lynch declined to prosecute is failing to enforce the laws of the US. That President Obama put up with this lack of prosecution is violation of his oath of office and his responsibilities under the US Constitution, impeachable, and “crazy shit”.What Hillary and Obama did in the Iran negotiations and importing ISIS soldiers from Syria were “giving aid and comfort to the enemy”, high treason, impeachable, and grand “crazy shit”.And there is a lot more really serious “crazy shit” from Hillary and Obama.

      1. LE

        Donald Jr. hit it out of the park with his convention speech last night.

        1. sigmaalgebra

          He was better in both content and delivery than I expected, really gave one of the best speeches. Maybe Jr. is better than Eric.But tough to beat the females! Melania, Ivanka, Tiffany!There have been a lot of good females on the stage, e.g., last night the head of Trump Wineries in VA.Melania’s speech raised my pride in the US by at least the height of Trump Tower.Then, on the financial district street corners of the world is Bill shouting “Hillary for sale”!Gee, Hillary as First Lady (what an insult to all other women who deserved to be called ladies) throwing things, breaking things, stealing the furniture and kitchen items, messing up the First Lady office, acting like a total BITCH to everyone on the White House staff. Some of her sense of clothing style was grotesquely, outrageously bad — e.g., one dress she wore to a state dinner where she tried to look like the bow of the battleship Iowa. The battleship looked better, but she was close to the same. Otherwise, it was pantsuits.The Hillary she is not even a woman.And now we will be getting as First Lady Melania — WHAT difference.

          1. LE

            And the ‘plagiarism’ was intentional in Melania’s speech. In order to plagiarize in that way (and I actually don’t even consider it plagiarism) you’d have to have the source material in front of you or a computer like memory. So taking into context how Trump does things this was just another manufactured event to get attention. Which worked. Merit badge to the first media guy who milked this one into a story.

          2. sigmaalgebra

            Look at it this way:First, clearly a lot of newsies want the worst stories they can cook up with distortion, quotes out of context, misquotes, etc.Second, that Melania “plagiarized” is about the worst they can come up with.With Hillary? As very carefully listed by the Director of the FBI, massive violations of the Espionage Act. As well documented, Clinton using her office as Secretary of State to do favors, often against the interests of the US, for money. Making huge mistakes in Libya. In the Benghazi matter, lying about a silly YouTube video face to face with the families of US people killed in Benghazi. Using her position as Secretary of State to get non-public information on the future of Greek bonds and, then, passing that information to her son in law who was taking positions in those bonds.She lies — nearly all the time. Her judgment in US foreign policy totally sucks. She has taken bribes in the hundreds of millions of dollars, often against the interests of the US. She has seriously violated the US Espionage Act.And, then, the knee jerk media is worried about some common wording in a speech, likely at least partly written with the aid of speech writers who got their words from wherever?So, that’s the worst the media can do against Melania, and for Hillary they ignore bribery, murder, treason, insider trading, etc.The media gets people to pay attention to that garbage?To watch the Republican Convention, I tried CBS and PBS and couldn’t take the self-serving garbage of either and just went to C-SPAN. Thank you C-SPAN — you played it straight with a quite good video feed.Somewhere, somehow you will have to explain to me how anyone with two working brain cells could be for Hillary and why apparently most of AVC is. I’m not getting it.It’s for the unions, right? Last I heard, the unions are out’a here, e.g., Detroit and nearly sll of the rest of the Rust Belt, down to less than 10% of what they used to be.It’s left over from the times when a lot of Eastern European immigrants sympathetic with at least a lot of socialism and often Soviet Communism got into the US, especially NYC, media business. That’s the rumor, but I don’t have details. But “media bias” is astounding.I very much like Trump, but I’m no fan of much of the Republican Party. Paul Ryan, Ted Cruz, and some of the others make me cringe.Every time they say conservative or Reagan I cringe and suspect that they just lost another 1 million votes in November.Just how in the heck the Republicans believe that their nonsense about abortion and Planned Parenthood will actually get them votes is beyond me. Abortions just will NOT go away — Mother Nature won’t let it. If abortions are not safe and readily available, then there will lots more use of coat hangers, women rendered in infertile (e.g., Jane Russell), quacks, bundles left on church steps, and dumpster. None of this is news.Abortion is an ugly thing but has little chance of going away: I’m no expert, but as bad as I was in high school and college with the girls, too often I had opportunities to knock up some. The girls were just wildly irresponsible.As bad as abortion is, it should be left to the person most concerned, the woman, with help from her family, religion if any, and her medical advice. Net, abortion should be safe, legal, rare, confidential, and inexpensive.If the Republicans were successful in getting Roe reversed, then there will be some just horrible things, e.g., babies in dumpsters and much worse, and a lot of unwanted children with really bad parenting and, thus, some really bad, and expensive, social problems. Somehow too many Republicans just will not see this obvious stuff.But, I get to f’get about the nonsense, the wedge issue, because, really, the chances of reversing Roe are slim to none for any responsible POTUS would nominate for SCOTUS.Trump turned around the Republican Party far too much of which would rather spout “crazy shit” and lose elections than wake up and pay attention.

        2. Richard

          Solid schooling, clearly good parenting.

  14. Ana Milicevic

    It’s unfortunate Yahoo hasn’t been able to do much with Tumblr and its fledgling monetization efforts. The ad industry had great hopes for Tumblr and its perceived ability to deliver attractive new formats especially on mobile – but that potential has not yet materialized. I do think it was a bad acquisition for Yahoo but mainly because I continue to think that Yahoo’s role should have been more that of a media company and less and less as a technology one (still Team Levinsohn).In my fantasy M&A a united Twitter & Tumblr made a lot of sense right around the time of the Yahoo acquisition. Alas.

    1. pointsnfigures

      Yes!! Just because Yahoo couldn’t figure out what to do with Tumblr doesn’t mean it was nothing more than a porn site. They paid $1B in an arm length transaction. Unfortunately as we see over and over again, the acquiring culture upends the acquired culture. There was no way Tumblr was going to change the course of Yahoo-that was the CEO’s job.

      1. creative group

        pointsnfigures:great point. No CEO with exception of Jerry had added any substantial value to Yahoo’s bottom line or decline. Yahoo had and has an execution problem.

    2. creative group

      Ana Milosevic:Levinsohn had his self inflicted issues. Can’t overlook that. Or can we?

    3. ShanaC

      i also think Yahoo doesn’t know how to play well with media oriented engineers and figure out the needs of those kinds of companies – so they defect early and oftenQuality then drops

  15. Mike Chan

    I took Scott’s marketing class when I was an MBA student at NYU Stern. Total blowhard but he knows his stuff.And while he is exaggerating, it does seem like Yahoo botched this acquisition, kinda like they botched many others, no?

    1. kevando

      I’ve been trying to recover my geocities password for years now.

      1. PhilipSugar

        That one stung but I was thinking about that as well. The amount of value that Yahoo has provided to USV and the amount they have written off is stunning.

        1. Richard

          This a point that I’ve thought about. Few if any speak about on this forum (and understandably so). More broadly, if you look at the exits of USV, profit has eluded almost all of them.

          1. PhilipSugar

            Not defending Fred as I agree some people don’t like taking about it but I don’t know if I’d say it that broadly. You’ve got Twitter, Etsy, Behance, Zynga and others.I’d also say Yahoo has screwed up many an acquisition not just USV acquisitions.…So if you have to assign blame…….

          2. Richard

            Net income? Not about blame, just putting things in perspective.

    2. Ian Garmaise

      Mike, if botched acquisitions were a crime, a lot of well-known firms would have to plead guilty as well.

      1. Mike Chan

        I hear ya. But man, I just don’t understand how Yahoo botches big acquisitions over and over again. And how they can’t better monetize their massive audience. It’s a mystery to me.

        1. PhilipSugar

          I think Yahoo is a classic company that wants to grow but isn’t. Therefore they resort to acquisitions.Acquisitions are really hard, and Yahoo always seems to pay at the peak.

          1. Mike Chan

            I’m sure they are hard but I wonder why they haven’t learned their lesson from past acquisitions. There must be something inherent in their org structure or culture that prevents them from doing so.

          2. PhilipSugar

            Its called people want to keep their jobs. If they stop doing stuff and just say they are going to milk the business they would sell out and gut the executive staff.Hmmmm. Sounds like what they are doing.

          3. JamesHRH

            No, CEO is completely incompetent.

          4. JamesHRH

            Fred can’t say it, but one of the key value delivery methods of a VC is to get you an exit when you are likely not exit worthy.Another way to put it – a really good VC keeps good relationships w the worst tech CEOs.

          5. Mike Chan

            Ha. True.

          6. PhilipSugar

            No doublt.

        2. Richard

          The assumption here is that the Yahoo botched the aquisition vs just overpaid.

          1. Mike Chan

            You can certainly separate those two apart. But would they have to write off those amounts if they extracted enough value from the acquisition?

          2. Richard

            In the end compnaire acquire future Free Cash Flows (earnings) and discount them to the present.

          3. ShanaC

            there are other issues at play – like amount of porn before vs after aquisition

          4. Kirsten Lambertsen

            We need a chart 😉

        3. cavepainting

          New CEOs of companies (especially those with lots of cash or over valued stock) often use acquisitions to manage perceptions of progress and buy time with the board and shareholders.When they work – which is more the exception than the norm – it validates the vision. When they do not work out, a few years have passed, the company has typically moved on to other things by that time, and written off a big part of the purchase price.Unfortunately, hardly do we see the CEO or the board being held accountable for acquisitions gone wrong. Most corporate boards simply do not apply sufficient rigor for M&A due diligence.PS: Acquisitions like Instagram and whatsapp have also muddied the waters as people have a hard time figuring out strategic assets with very high intrinsic value that are game changers vs. impostors. Often, they support outrageous valuations weighing the upside a lot more than the downside.

    3. LE

      Total blowhard but he knows his stuff.Proves the point I made in my other comment. Stop focusing on how he says things but rather what he is saying. I’d rather have a professor that was “a blowhard” that was interesting to listen to than one that was not.You get more with a gun and a smile than a smile alone (per Capone).

      1. Mike Chan

        Totally. His class, Brand Strategy, was one of the best classes I took at Stern. You can’t help but say “God, he’s a dick” but you learn that most of what he says is really smart. In this case, I don’t know much about the porn angle, as I’ve never been a huge Tumblr user.

        1. Richard

          What text did he use? Have a syllabus?

          1. mariapetrova

            The text is David Aacker, “Managing Brand Equity.” It’s an incredible class. He definitely says some outrageous stuff. I left several classes angry, but mostly I left hugely motivated & inspired. He definitely means to help & push students, a tad military style. Like a harsher Tony Robbins, caring, but tough. The rate of delivery & the amount you learn each class is staggering. Never seen a better presenter. Generous with students in ways other NYU profs aren’t, with internships, gym passes, dinners. Does multiple-digit math in his head (82×13) in 2 seconds. (“I took drugs in college.”) I don’t think I know a smarter person. Or anyone more set on improving — themselves, other people, companies. If you’re in NYC, come visit. Usually on Mon or Tues nights.

          2. PhilipSugar

            Does he have an open lecture??? That is cool. I thought his letter to the student was point on.

          3. mariapetrova

            It’s not an open lecture, but there are usually a few spots in the class. If you email him (email is easy to find), he’ll probably connect you with his TAs to arrange. Totally try it if you’re in the area.

          4. PhilipSugar


      2. Alex Murphy

        “How” one does things does actually matter.

    4. ShanaC

      what do you mean by blowhard but knew his stuff?

      1. Mike Chan

        He says a lot of obnoxious things but in the end, he knows a ton about marketing, branding, strategy, and how to build a company.

        1. ShanaC

          eh. dealable

  16. creative group

    Fred:When we initially read the title and entry we thought to ourselves we didnt trash Tumblr. Yahoo trashed Tumblr. When Yahoo made the Tumblr acquisition we stated in a post that Marissa Mayer was talent buying and the Tumblr integration with Yahoo would be written down and a failure. Any Daytrader with experience and market watcher had the ability to read those same tea leafs.We route for women CEO’s to succeed with the built in obstacles being apparent. Yahoo’s previous male CEO’s have been unable to fix Yahoo and if Jerry Y didn’t make that incredible investment in AliBaba Yahoo would have been toast earlier.Yahoo’s historical lack of timely execution is to blame. Yahoo’s former market value had enabled it to be the buyer and not the seller.

  17. ThatOtherOtherGuy

    You say that like there is something wrong with being a porn site???

  18. vijayvenkatesh

    From a meaningful outcome perspective, does it make a difference? I’ve had to perform diligence reviews on many acquisition targets, and the acquiring entity often bought them for varying reasons – defensive, market pen., talent etc. But it’s not always assured that they can see the ROI on their investment, or specifically their WACC. Sometimes the merger worked, other times it didn’t. Lots of complicated reasons why – everything from earnouts to corporate identity to other issues.Regardless, that the acquired entity, Tumblr, generated value in the original case, and hence was acquired could never be in doubt. The acquisition wouldn’t have occurred, or the internal business case at yahoo wouldn’t have been built, otherwise. Having been thru a few M&A outcomes, my view on this is that Tumblr provided value, and the acquisition didn’t work or hasn’t yet worked. Think those can both be true.I asked a few ppl on twitter whether this meant that they thought that NYC didn’t have it’s large outcome, but didn’t get many takers. Curious what people think here?

  19. John Pepper

    I can’t blame Tumblr for this, but when I post on my Tumblr site I can say almost anything I want and know that it won’t be noticed… which isn’t the case for nearly any other social media site in which I participate. I was a latecomer to Tumblr, so maybe to longer standing users it acts as an open forum. To me it seems analogous to renting an apartment in one of those buildings with nicely designed hallways but for some reason all doors are closed and will remain so. You will never get to know your neighbors.Again, this is more likely a function of poor content versus anything to do with Tumblr. That said, as a curator of apparently poor content, these are my observations of Tumblr.In summary, Tumblr most definitely is not a porn site :)Also, for what it’s worth, I would never have known who Scott Galloway is and probably wouldn’t have caught the trashing at all (nor cared about it if I had ) were it not for this post.Onward.

  20. kidmercury

    lol very fun post today fred!1. i know you have a strong emotional connection to tumblr but i think most would agree it has made missteps and the acquisition by yahoo did not help. the company is just another version of “the geocities problem” — lots of users, failure to monetize and clearly communicate a unique value proposition. 2. trump is no doubt a fool saying ridiculous things, but i hope the democratic trump bashers will look at hillary’s track record. trump is annoying, brash, and unproven. hillary the record will reveal is quite evil and is basically a neocon. she is the female version of dick cheney. from that perspective i think trump is actually better (of course i’ll be voting for gary johnson since i have a “don’t vote for fools or evil people” policy)

    1. fredwilson

      I was a major investor in Geocities in the web 1 era, Tumblr in the web 2 era and I hope to be an investor in whatever the leading UGC network turns out to be in thr blockchain era

      1. sigmaalgebra

        I see little hope, with/without block chain, for significant businesses from silos of UGC. Instead, what is important now is content discovery, recommendation, etc. across all such silos.Discovery is in a catbird seat over all of content.E.g., now likely just Google, actually not very good at discovery or recommendation and for maybe 2/3rds of Internet content not very good for search, is worth more than all the content publishers combined.That is, in total finding the stuff is more important than the stuff. Really, stuff that can’t be easily found is, both comparatively and, due to the competition for attention, absolutely, not very valuable.

      2. kidmercury

        i’m sure you’ll succeed in the next phase, whether it is blockchain-based or not!

    2. sigmaalgebra

      > trump is no doubt a fool saying ridiculous things,A “fool”? With his success in business? Where for his first effort in politics he took on the 16 best the Republican Party had to offer and beat them all like “rented mules”? Where he got more votes than anyone else ever in the Republican primaries? Where he got a lot of early support from Sessions, Gingrich, Guiliani, etc.?See also my post here today at…

      1. Stephen Palmer

        Paul Ryan didn’t run, so not sure how he took on the 16 best. To this point, he’s not leading in any swing state against the weakest Democrat candidate in decades.

        1. sigmaalgebra

          The general election has just started.Hillary has enough baggage to keep Trump’s 757 from getting off the ground. The Director of the FBI made totally clear that Hillary is guilty of massive violation of section (f) of the Espionage Act. Baggage? ‘Nuff said.Likely a huge fraction of the voters just have not paid much attention yet. A common remark is that the campaign begins on Labor Day. And IIRC there will be three debates, and there Trump can point out Hillary’s baggage point by point.For Paul Ryan, it’s got to be ambiguous if he is in the 16 best. Same for Carly. Hard to think of Ryan as one of the best for the office if he didn’t run. I won’t quibble about Ryan — I really dislike the guy, cringed at his Convention speech last night, like him less the more I know about him, but maybe he is among the 16.Just to brief, ballpark, Trump beat the best 16 Republicans that tried. The amazing story is that !Jeb got, what, three delegates for, what, spending $150 million?So much for the Paleo Diet — we’re finding out why the Neanderthals went extinct?

          1. Stephen Palmer

            The same director of the FBI who had no clue what he was talking about in the Apple encryption case a few months ago.As for Ryan, you have the right to dislike a guy who actually has ideas for improving people’s lives (as opposed to Trump who just finds scapegoats), but I’ll go with the guy with a positive vision for the future.

          2. sigmaalgebra

            I can’t seriously support Comey’s competence. From what little I know about him, at times in the past he did some courageous, good things.Whatever he has done in the past, there’s seems to be a good chance that this time the FBI, with or without Comey’s influence, did a good job on what the FBI is supposed to do, investigate and gather facts.Being Director of the FBI, his term is 10 years — that helps put him above politics. Of course, in strong contrast, the Attorney General serves at the pleasure of the President so is deep in politics.Looked to me like Hillary grossly violated section (f). Then Comey said so, too. So, I believe it.I’ve held security clearances at least as high as Secret. My father, at least as high as Top Secret. My mother, secretary for a high Poobah at the Institute for Defense Analysis (IDA), analytical support for the Joint Chiefs, likely higher than Dad’s. So, I know something about security clearances. Hillary’s actions were one of the worst security leaks in the history of the US. From section (f), she should be locked up.For Ryan, we will have to disagree. To me, Ryan looks like a dedicated water carrier for the open borders people who want another case of slavery to make money and leave the social problems and costs to the rest of us. No thanks.

          3. Stephen Palmer

            Section f has been hardly used bc noone knows what it means in the age of email.What social problems? Crime rates are down, divorce rates are down.

          4. sigmaalgebra

            IIRC, Comey said “extremely careless”, and Guiliani said that that means the same as “gross negligence” which is the criterion in section (f).What social problems? Just as I said, those of slavery. We’ve had plenty of examples, including the Civil War, since before 1776.

    3. LE

      trump is no doubt a fool saying ridiculous thingsThis is a bit like someone criticizing Burger King that is used to dining at French Table. Oops it’s French Laundry. [1] It’s not recognizing that the people that don’t care about that type of speech matter as much as anyone else in this country. Not everyone speaks the Kings English. You know my wife has a relative that is a teacher (with a masters so she can get that extra pay thing) in Staten Island and she pronounces “ask” “axe”. Prior to when I met her, I thought that was a mark of only low class people. I am not saying that she is high class. She isn’t. But I didn’t expect that off a NYC Teacher. And guess what? We always make fun of her. Not to her face of course. Behind her back. That’s the high-er class way to do things. That’s probably what Hillary does as well. Says all sorts of shit behind others backs. Maybe even occasionally to Bill if they are ever actually together.Look, plenty of those Indian rituals (and Jewish or Christian rituals) are bizarre and stupid to me and a waste of time. (I loved Moonsoon Wedding it was so entertaining). However I recognize that not everyone is me and has to like what I like. And don’t even get me started on UFC or fake Wrestling etc. Or even real wrestling for that matter.This is an excellent takedown of Hillary, WSJ Opinion Piece yesterday. [2]Start with the economy. There is zero reason to believe a Clinton administration would be any improvement over the past eight years, from taxes and spending and regulation to ObamaCare. If elected, moreover, Mrs. Clinton would be working with a Democratic Party that has been pulled sharply left by Bernie Sanders….When presidents enter office, they bring with them about 6,000 people. From the head of the Environmental Protection Agency and White House assistants down to the lowliest Justice Department lawyer, Mrs. Clinton would fill her government with people who get up each day looking to tax, spend, regulate—and use the federal government to stomp on anyone in their way. Hillary, Great for business, eh?[1]…[2]

      1. kidmercury

        i don’t say trump is a fool because of his manner of speaking, i say he is a fool because of the underlying intent of his datas, and his clear obliviousness to either their impracticality and/or their illegality.

        1. Richard

          Maybe, but at least it’s easy to recognize his limitations.

        2. RichardF

          C’mon kid he’s not oblivious to anything, he’s just dangerous on a scale the world hasn’t seen since Hitler

      2. Richard

        Staten Island is a great example of what happens when public schools fail to educate even intelligent people. These people remain intelligent on the inside but often rough and ignorant to the outsider.

        1. LE

          This is really also the fault of the collective of other New Yorkers as much as anything. In particular people in Manhattan who make everyone else (not in “the city”) think they are substandard in some way culturally and intellectually and perhaps even financially.

    4. ShanaC

      hi kid!

    5. Alex Murphy

      “… since i have a “don’t vote for fools or evil people” policy)”That is a great policy Kid!

  21. aminTorres

    hehe. love it, someone woke up on fire today.We need posts like these from time to time.(Sorry to do this again, double “of” in the third paragraph. )

    1. fredwilson

      fixed it. thanks!!

  22. Jess Bachman

    Anyone who thinks Tumblr is mostly porn is probably using it solely for that purpose.Just saying…

    1. Alex Murphy

      Self Selection Bias

    2. Kirsten Lambertsen

      Ha ha! Pretty much what I thought as soon as I read the post.

    3. mariapetrova

      What do you use it for? If I try to look for cool design / geometric stuff, I often run into porn & dark Satanic imagery. Like openly dark magic stuff. I’m not looking for it, but it comes up ALL the time around other things. If you look for lifestyle, you’re guaranteed to run into soft porn.

      1. Jess Bachman

        I don’t use Tumblr or anything any more. I used to use it as a publishing platform but switched to wordpress. I also used to use it to find gifs, but the quality is low.

        1. Pete Griffiths

          Game set and match.

  23. jfieds21

    With that said you just gave him all the attention he could have asked for…

  24. BillMcNeely

    Still hope for Tumblr. My gf’s 13 year old daughter uses it.

  25. LE

    I just hate jerks who want attention by saying crazy shit, like the current Republican nominee for President.There have been and are many people that play that game that end up going places as a result of that behavior. You have to recognize that as a valid “business model” for them. Anyone old enough to remember Muhammed Ali (during his fight interviews) is aware of this (and I am sure others can point to countless sports heroes and other celebrities who use the same play book). It’s a valid way to get attention and get people to listen to what you are saying. That doesn’t mean you have to like it. But in all honesty you have to recognize it for what it is. As far as Trump what he has achieved (in being nominated) is not open to discussion. It is a superb accomplishment and despite what you think of him personally you have to recognize that he played a great game and, for the most part, he played by the rules. (In other words if he did lie he didn’t lie any more than any other person playing the same game.) It’s no Russian doping scandal.As far as Galloway try not to focus on how he says things but what he is saying….

  26. Jamyn

    As a colleague of his at NYU for many years, I know Scott personally, and he has taken time to guide and help me progress. He is very smart, very informed and yes, very provocative by design. It’s a mechanism to have your voice heard above the noise and it’s effective. The media need headlines (and he’s on Bloomberg every week, which is likely the impetus for this statement).While I understand it is personal to you – and probably a misdirected assertion on his part – I would wager that you two would get along famously over a drink. Or perhaps you can come to my class and debate this issue face to face. Now THAT would be an education worth paying for by the students here.Wishing both you good gents a super day. Smile, it’s a beautiful day in NYC … 🙂

  27. James Ferguson @kWIQly

    To ignore the *hate-bait*, and not aware of a reason to care for what Scott says…I have enjoyed some pretty good articles.The rest is so much * in the eye of the beholder* but I care more about whether innocents are protected.If people produce porn there will be consumers and victims IMO the distributees and producers need to be held to account.However even to define the boundaries of taste and porn is subjective and difficult. I wonder if some tech consent mechanism could be developed to restrict abuse.As for those that consume – they are impoverished but also party to procuring and should reflect on it.

  28. Kirsten Lambertsen

    I saw a reply to him on Twitter that went something like, “You mean *Yahoo* is worth less than what it paid for Tumblr.”Tumblr is extremely popular with artists and creatives. Quite a few “internet famous” people got their start there. Calling it a porn site is just silly. Frankly, if it *was* mostly porn, they probably wouldn’t be writing it down today. Porn’s a money maker.A lot of people cringed when Yahoo acquired Tumblr, because they anticipated exactly what’s happened – stagnation. Sadly, it looks like Tumblr hasn’t been able to escape the fate of so many acquired companies. Never underestimate the power of suffocating corporate bureaucratic bullsh*t.I’ve had my personal (for family) site on Tumblr for years, and still do 🙂

    1. LE

      Stories like this should be required reading for anyone who wants to understand how the media works and how PR works and how people think. Brilliant on Scott Galloway’s part. Look at all of the attention he is getting for calling Tumbler a Porn Site. Maybe next time he shouldn’t do that. That way he won’t get any attention at all. And nobody (including me) will know who he is or pay attention to him.

      1. Kirsten Lambertsen

        While it works, I wouldn’t call getting publicity the easy way, “brilliant.” Sorta like taking a laxative every day if you need to poop – wouldn’t it be better in the long run to take a look at your diet? ;-)For his brand I think it would be better, long term, to have shared something more insightful and analytic.

        1. LE

          But you see, that’s why it’s brilliant. Even when people know the results others still think he is doing the wrong thing and should change his approach. This is a true “lead a horse to water” type situation. And why business is so interesting. It’s all out there to reverse engineer.It does take talent to recognize an opportunity. Easy is standing naked in Times Square and shouting “Yahoo Sucks” to get attention. This is not that.

          1. Lawrence Brass

            Reputation matters, and it trascends a single event or negotiation.Hard players and loud mouths usually get this wrong.

  29. Tom Maxwell

    It’s sad though how Yahoo has botched the Tumblr acq. I use Tumblr as the CMS for my blog and love it, but think it might be best to just move it to WordPress soon.

  30. creative group

    Contributors:Yahoo earnings call will be its last.The incredible career of Michael Dell and how he returned to transform the company he founded to the 62 Billion Dell Technologies after merger with EMC.

  31. creative group

    Contributors:The largest acquisition of a privately held company for one Billion dollars is Unilever acquisition of Dollar Shave Club. That is a great job by Dollar Shave Club CEO Michael Dublin.According to Dan Primack Data Sheet the following seed rounds on DSC are as follows:_________________The VC returns are staggering. I’ve seen a spreadsheet of the seed round (from early 2012), in which DSC raised $900,000 on a $4.5 million pre-money valuation. That round’s bigest checks were $250,000 a piece from Forerunner Ventures and Kleiner Perkins, while Andreessen Horowiz, Shasta Ventures and Felicis Ventures each put in $100,000. Venrock would lead the Series A and Series B, the latter of which had a $57 million post-money valuation. Technology Crossover Ventures led the final two rounds, which included a $630 million post-money on last fall’s Series D. Board seats went to Venrock, Forerunner, Shasta Ventures and TCV (plus Science Inc., which helped create DSC in the first place).___________________Incredible! Get in! Get Out!

    1. Lawrence Brass

      Unilever and P&G are just fighting to mantain their price fixing cartel. Good for Mr. Dublin for cashing out but I don’t see anything soul saving in selling to a monopoly. Harry’s will have a hard time now.

      1. Girish Mehta

        Buying Dollar Shave was probably not an option for P&G because they need to defend their huge Gillette bussiness. Unilever did not have that business to defend. External acquisition aspect of the Innovator’s Dilemma.Overall this will more broadly drive margins lower in the blades business, and about time that happens.

        1. Lawrence Brass

          It would be great if this generates real competition, sadly Unilever and P&G are known for their bad practices. I hope they are not ‘working together’ on this one.

      2. creative group

        Lawrence Brass:Harry’s will not have a hard time only if P&G doesn’t purchase them.Dublin is going to stay on to run DSC as an independent.

  32. Pete Griffiths

    I don’t think that was his key point. IMHO he was saying that it was one of the worst acquisitions and a disaster for Yahoo. In light of the write offs that isn’t an insane proposition. A secondary point was that it was a quasi porn site by which I took him to mean that it wasn’t a high quality social platform that can compete with market leaders. The fact that you (and others) find value in it is great, but I don’t think that obviates his point.

  33. Dorian Benkoil

    Fred, “whatever the leading UGC network turns out to be in the blockchain era.” … Intriguing. Steem? We’ll see.

  34. peteski

    There’s porn on tumblr?

    1. The Sanity Inspectorن​

      Do a Google search of “Tumblr” and “[your kink here]”. Site’s overflowing with the stuff…

      1. fredwilson

        do the same search on Pinterest and Instagram and you get the same thing. your critique is a critique of UGC photo heavy content sites

        1. Alex Murphy

          My favorite is Linkedin.Go to the advanced search and start searching on any curse word … 1000s of those accounts.If you have LI recruiter and search for sales, you will get 2m results. Says that their 300m+ number is probably not accurate

  35. JustSayNoToScottGalloway

    Some of what Scott Galloway says is insightful however much of his pseudo-analysis is so pathetic that’s it’s not worth bothering to rebut. He would probably be a good writer for a reality TV show. It’s as if he’s decided, “Why bother with facts when I can make stuff up that sounds better!”Also he’s throwing a bunch of stuff at the wall hoping some of it sticks. 5 to 10 years from now many of his failed predictions will seem ridiculous. Scott Galloway is an arrogant, loquacious, hipster enjoying his 15 minutes of fame. Please don’t sully with links to posts from similar charlatans.

  36. Jon

    You kidding? Tumblr is THE worst Yahoo investment. It almost feels criminal. SEC should investigate.

  37. george

    Everyone has a right to an opinion, whether right or way wrong. The reality (based on actual percentages) is, most M&A doesn’t really work out. Unfortunately, Tumblr was rolled up into a broken business and Marissa was dealt a really tough hand; appears unfair to generalize one’s performance or evaluate product value based on a singular measure (marketing hype).

  38. Alex Murphy

    While not Tumblr trashing … I can say I am not a big fan of the way Disqus sends users to Disqus when clicking on emails rather than back to the original comment. 😐

  39. Alex Murphy

    The disturbing part of this discussion is that you have many reasonable people supporting a person that is in the public eye, with an agenda, using a data point from someone else that does not have a statistically significant basis, making up things as “truth” and using false data to support a false claim. Those people become believers because they have their own personal experience bias, and “want” to take one side of the arugument and then won’t let it go.People, this is not about being right, it is about exploring, discovering, doing some critical thinking, and then trying to “adjust” your thinking. We all need to be less defensive, and more supportive.

  40. Scott Galloway

    Fred Wilson writes:–“I just hate jerks who want attention by saying crazy shit”–“A ridiculous comment from someone who says ridiculous things”–“I’m calling bullshit on Scott Galloway”So, that I have this straight, I’m the one similar to Donald Trump? Really, Fred? Any bite behind that bark? Please see end of email re challenge/proposal on this point (who is more like The Donald?).So, I’ve been called crazy/ridiculous/jerk before, but not in one post though (well done). While I don’t claim to have your skills of perception (you’ve clearly got me figured out), my impression of you, after a brief review of your blog and Twitter feed, is that you are uber successful and thoughtful.We don’t know each other, so I won’t take your suggestion that I’m a crazy jerk personally. However, comparing me to Donald Trump…I take real issue with this Fred, real issue.I am the self-made son of a single immigrant mother who lived and died a secretary. Without family planning, pro-immigrant policies and the generous hand of big government (e.g., Unversity of California, Pell Grants, etc.) we would have lived in poverty with scant opportunity to escape it. Donald Trump is trying to destroy everything I am about.But back to Tumblr. I don’t dispute that for many people, Tumblr “was, and still is, a vibrant community.” So is Reddit and my dog park. My argument is that Tumblr, similar to these communities, has been unable to monetize the asset nor warrant a $1.1bb payment from a responsible buyer. Yahoo’s $712mm write down validates this.I’m sure you “love and have always loved” Tumblr. My understanding is you registered a $250mm payday on an initial $400k investment on the sale to Yahoo—easy to understand your goodwill. It’s telling that the other person to weigh in aggressively on Tumblr’s behalf was, similar to you, a board member (Bijan Sabet—awesome name) who, like you, sold all his Tumblr shares 4 years ago ($75mm). No current Tumblr (i.e., Yahoo) shareholders, who still have skin in the game, seem to be “calling me on my bullshit.”One of the reasons Yahoo/Tumblr is unable to secure big ad dollars is, I believe, the amount of porn. My number is 23%, your number is 5-10%, but the proof is in the ad buy. Or lack thereof. To be clear: cookies, the NSA, Facebook, Google and anybody unfortunate enough to have been in a relationship w/me can confirm…I have absolutely nothing against porn. But I’m pretty certain we’re not going to see a Honda Oddysey ad on the page. The prevalence of adult content on Tumblr impairs the platform’s access to the largest pools of ad dollars. Not true? Yahoo, has hundreds of sales reps, decent ad tech, and relationships w/every major advertiser and (despite this) anemic revenues for Tumblr. I don’t think my argument can fairly be characterized as crazy.Quick side-note,,,I am REALLY enjoying writing this. I haven’t had this much fun since,,,well,,, since I was on Tumblr earlier this am. But I digress.Some of the comments on your blog claim I don’t understand Tumblr (e.g., their dashboard technology, UGC vs. blog, etc.). That’s a fair criticism; I don’t have deep domain expertise re the platform. But this lack of understanding of Tumblr’s value plagues the ad community as well, as the poor results confirm.Finally, I believe that faith in markets requires holding boards and CEOs accountable. And with $2bb in (widely reported) failed acquisitions, substantial decline in revenues (as search and digital marketing sector grows), massive decline in ebitda, $100mm+ severance packages due to poorly structured employment agreements, and a CEO comp package that may result in Ms. Mayer walking w/a quarter billion in the face of poor performance, doesn’t the board–as representatives charged with the “care and duty” of shareholders–bear some responsibility for this destruction in value?So,,,Let’s see if this can be something other than a pissing match between a prof and a vc — I believe there is more that unites us than divides us (#clinton). I sense we both find Mr. Trump’s misogyny, xenophobia and racism disturbing. My proposal/challenge:–We each post our profiles (no airbrushing) from USV and NYU with one question: “Who is more like Donald Trump?”–The loser (who voters decide is more like Donald Trump) allocates 10% of their average annual income (last 5 years—per tax returns) and starts an anti-Trump PAC that leverages digital marketing tools/techniques to keep America great. We can partner on this, or not (see above: any bite behind that bark?).I look forward to your response.Yours in nothing like Trump, Scott Galloway

    1. Alex Murphy

      I just saw a Honda ad …. but that was probably retargeting. 😉

    2. fredwilson

      that is exactly the kind of attention grabbing stunt that degrades you in my opinion and the opinions of many in the community. you should stop doing it. and i don’t want to be part of anything like that.

      1. creative group

        Fred:You have presented a measured temperament that this room hasleaned on in difficult and memorabletimes. Can this really be this serious?This is definitely not defcon 5. Not onany measurable footing to Bill Ackman of Pershing Square shorting and trashing a company to benefit financially. What is really going on?Rhetorical! Not expecting a response.Someone had to be the grownup!You are better than this Fred! We expect better. To whom much is given much is expected. If what you stated is true about Galloway you now provided him a larger platform to be just who you said it was. We just jumped lightly off the PSA soap box.Scott Galloway is who you thought he was.

    3. mariapetrova

      And this is what happens when Galloway gets stepped on.Guys, may I propose — can we take the portrait comparison off the table, and could both of you pledge however much you can, however you can, to defeating Trump.The comparison to Trump was so overblown that I didn’t even respond to it, but I can see how it can be triggering to be on the receiving end of it. And I see how having your company trashed in a strong statement can be hard to take.We know you’re both tough people, fighters — please can this calm down now. There are differing data sets. So be it, not the first time it’s happened. We have some words spoken in anger on both sides — not the first time this has happened with successful men, either. Anger is strong and weak at the same time. You’ve each had a vent — it feels good, but it’s not constructive. Fred, it’s got to be insanely triggering to read this, but please take the high road & don’t respond with more anger. Let’s all measure our words & fight for the right things, not against each other. We need calm & reason more than anything in this country right now. Let’s make it happen.

    4. sigmaalgebra

      Let’s see if this can be something other than a pissing match between a prof and a vc — I believe there is more that unites us than divides us (#clinton). I sense we both find Mr. Trump’s misogyny, xenophobia and racism disturbing. Good grief: There is a rumor that you admit that you are a B-school prof. Gads: That must be true since who else would admit to such a thing?At least you convinced me you are a B-school prof since I have some understanding of that affliction since for a while, having to do with caring for my wife, I was one. Waste of time. Throwing life away. Time second by second, like blood drop by drop, life going away. Horrible situation.But at least on the surface, B-schools try to be applied social science, and, thus, there should be at least some interest in rationality.So, for your quote with Trump’s misogyny, xenophobia and racism you gave no evidence. That’s not rational.For your pejorative, disgusting, despicable trilogy, I believe that I’ve seen that so often it looks like the main Clinton campaign paid, classic propaganda effort — just repeat it often enough and enough weak minds, including B-school profs — will believe it.E.g., athttp://www.businessinsider….isPamela Engel, “Thousands of Wharton students, alumni, and faculty sign open letter opposing Donald Trump”, Jul. 11, 2016, 10:39 AM.with”Although we do not aim to make any political endorsements with this letter, we do express our unequivocal stance against the xenophobia, sexism, racism, and other forms of bigotry that you have actively and implicitly endorsed in your campaign.”Yup, sounds like B-schools are especially vulnerable to irrationality!So, in part, the subject is “bigotry”. We don’t like bigotry. So, prof, we will be looking at your irrationality that has led you to your bigotry.For your Without family planning, pro-immigrant policies and the generous hand of big government (e.g., Unversity of California, Pell Grants, etc.) we would have lived in poverty with scant opportunity to escape it. Donald Trump is trying to destroy everything I am about. again you gave no evidence. That’s not rational.So, bottom line, apparently you are afraid of Trump. You have no evidence, but you are afraid. You might get yourself checked out for some case of anxiety disease. More generally, pursue rationalism over emotionalism.Maybe the source of your anxiety is easy to understand: You read the NYT and took some of it seriously? Gads. No one able to type or tie shoe laces should ever do that! Or maybe you got the anxiety about Trump from CBS, NBC, or CNN (a.k.a. the “Clinton News Network”); again, paying any attention to those has to conflict with the ability to type or tie shoe laces.Now, oh, erudite one, Herr Doctor Professor Geheimrat, shut up, sit down, listen up, and I will give you a first grade lesson — maybe you skipped that — on rationalism and paying attention to actual information.Let’s start with the easiest one, your claim of racism. Gee, tell most of Manhattan to watch out for the ball, because it’s just trivial for me to hit this one way out of the ballpark.Did I mention that taking the NYT seriously can lead to your bigotry? Well, athttp://www.washingtonexamin…is an article that lists 11 times the NYT published accusations that Trump is a racist. If look at the 11 times, then see that, again, there are just accusations with no support.So, the NYT is just part of the Clinton campaign classic propaganda effort — repeat a lie often enough and some people, including B-school profs — will believe it.Gee, if B-school profs could believe this Clinton propaganda, what other reeking, fuming, flaming, bubbling, sticky toxic intellectual sewage might they believe? Gee, I have a lot of respect for NYU Courant Institute, e.g., R. Courant, F. John, J. Schwartz, H. McKean, M. Avellaneda. Sad that it looks like the NYT B-school should be a superfund toxic waste site.For your anxieties about racism, in rock solid, granite hard, iron clad, A+, #1 rebuttal, there is the amazing…documenting when Trump strongly fought deeply entrenched racism in the private clubs in wealthy Palm Beach, FL. It was a big fight including with a law suit. And Trump won and defeated the racism in those Palm Beach clubs.In that effort Trump worked successfully to admit Blacks, Hispanics, and Jews, at least.Misogyny? We can knock that one into orbit: Your favorite highly self-esteemed NYT tried that with a hit piece, front page, top of the fold, centered, and got excoriated, eviscerated, humiliated as the women quoted came forward and claimed the opposite of the hit piece. If it was possible for the NYT to lower their credibility, then that failed hit piece would be it.That such an air ball, strike out, fumble the ball, drop the ball, trip over the ball, fall in the mud hit piece was the worst the NYT could do does give Trump a quite clean review.Then there’s your anxiety driven, delusional, xenophobia thing-y: Absurd. Wildly absurd. We can knock this slander directly into the sun for the purification it deserves:Uh, first, Trump has said at dozens of rallies that he is (A) for stopping illegal immigration and (B) for legal immigration. The wall he wants to build, IIRC, “will have a big, beautiful door for legal immigrants”.Then for launching this thing-y into the sun, just go to C-SPAN and watch Melania’s convention speech and see some of the very best evidence that Trump is very, very much for legal immigration!Right away, much of the media concluded that Melania is in line to compare with Jackie Kennedy as the best US First Lady ever.With that speech, she raised my pride in the US by more than the height of Trump Tower or the flight level 410 of Trump’s 757 (uh, for B-school profs, that’s 41,000 feet).For more evidence, I know, mostly beyond profs, there is…Any man with at least two red blood cells will conclude that Trump really, really, really, really likes legal immigration!Apparently the alternative is Hillary.Okay, first the Director of the FBI just made very clear that Hillary was “extremely careless” in handling US classified information above the level of Top Secret. According to Mayor Giuliani, Black’s law dictionary defines “extremely careless” as the same as “gross negligence” which is the criterion in section (f) of the Espionage Act. Hillary belongs in jail.Of course, the decision to prosecute is up to the office of the US Attorney General who serves at the pleasure of the President who likely does not want the prosecution to proceed.Next, it is totally clear that the actions of Bill and Hillary taking money for their foundation and/or personally while Hillary was Secretary of State meet the criteria of accepting bribes. She could go to jail for that.Hillary also used her office to get non-public information about Greek bonds and passed that information to her son in law who was taking positions in those bonds. That’s insider trading, and Hillary could go to jail for that.Hillary is an accessory after the fact in some of Bill’s rape crimes. She could go to jail for that.It is quite clear that on Benghazi, Hillary lied under oath to Congress. That’s perjury. She could go to jail for that. That case may yet be brought.Hillary also lied to the faces of the families of US citizens killed in Benghazi — nasty, lying Hillary. Her lie was her claim that the violence was about a YouTube video clip when she had already told her daughter the truth that it was a terrorist attack.Hillary wants to increase immigration from Syria by 550% over what Obama is planning, by thousands of people. The FBI has stated that there is no way to vet these people. ISIS has made fully clear that some of these immigrants will be ISIS soldiers. So, here Hillary would be giving aid and comfort to the enemy, and that is high treason.And you want Hillary?For your anxieties about Federal support of UC, Pell grants, etc., who the heck put that nonsense in your hat? One of Trump’s strongest issues is education and that for another of his strongest issues, a strong economy. The Federal funding of high end US research universities goes way back to J. Conant, V. Bush, D. Eisenhower, etc. and is not at risk at all.One final question: Where do B-school profs at NYU get the really strong funny stuff they have been smoking?

      1. Alex Murphy

        Are you referencing the speech where the writer lifted multiple paragraphs from Michelle Obama?

        1. sigmaalgebra

          Gee, you couldn’t be trying to change the subject could you?LE thinks that was a publicity effort. There were hours and hours of coverage by the liberal media carrying Pampers, Depends, or whatever for Hillary.The latest is that Melania talked with one of her speech writers telling her in Melania’s own words some of what she wanted in her speech. But the speech writer had also had collected some samples of speeches. Then the speech writer was sloppy and, if only from memory or otherwise, got too close to some earlier wording.I feel very sorry for Melania — apparently she worked really hard on her speech. The speech writer offered her resignation to Trump and his family but was turned down.Melania greatly increased my pride in the US.The flub that Melania’s speech writer did was not even a dot on a hair on a flea on a puppy compared with what Hillary does with her lies all the time.And the more direct comparison would be Melania and Bill, and Bill’s a rapist, pure and simple. And Bill was with Hillary in taking bribes while Hillary was Secretary of State.And you are worried about some common First Lady remarks about family?And, Hillary? There’s no way she could be the left’s coveted first lady President. She never was First Lady. She’s no lady. She’s not even much of a women. She’s a hugely bad example for US women and a huge embarrassment to the US around the world.As I outlined, Hillary very much belongs in jail.Where else in your life do you have such serious problems with proportion?Just what the heck is it why you so hate the US? Got someplace better in mind?

          1. Alex Murphy

            Hate the US, quite the contrary.Donald Trump is the worst possible choice of all candidates to ever run for the Office, ever.He is a bully. His behaviour is horrible. It is disgraceful.He went to Military Academy in High School. Why? Because as he put it, his parents couldn’t handle him. (that’s not a good thing by the way)His father was arrested at a KKK rally. Hmmm, seems the apple is on the tree there.He is on his third marriage. Sorry, but where is he showing commitment there?One of his primary criticisms of Clinton is her vote for the Iraq war. She made the same vote that his running mate made. Alternatively, he has never actually made a vote. He didn’t even have a horse with respect to where he made donations, he gave donations to everyone. That doesn’t sound like conviction.Have you noticed the name he puts on “ALL” of his projects? Its Trump. And do you know why? Because its “ALL” about him. He is pursuing the path of king making.He is delusional. He thinks he will get other countries to go to fight our battles. He thinks he will get Mexico to build our wall. He is spewing make believe like a 5th grader promising a coke machine in every classroom while running for Student President.He has a very passionate following from people that are very angry. We understand that. And the wonder of our country is that all of those people who feel like they have been left behind have an opportunity to retool, learn new skills, and change the trajectory of their lives. But putting the US into an Isolationist position on the world stage will not help them.We are experiencing the longest period of economic expansion in the history of the US. Right now.More people have healthcare than ever before. Right now.Medical inflation went down with the ACA, not up.Our country is so wrapped up in fear that it is paralyzing. Trump is stoking that fear using false statements, making up stats, and by verbally assaulting all of those around him in every possible way. He does not have any positive growth oriented policy suggestions. He does not have any inspiring qualities. He breeds hate. He is solely focused on himself and what this means for him. He seeks to tear down the media, judges, justices, and the most respected members of Congress such as McCain. He is terrible, and he not fit to be President.

          2. sigmaalgebra

            If you care anything at all about the US, then you have been totally taken in, as a classic “convenient idiot”, by the Clinton and liberal media propaganda machine.I urge you just to ignore the NYT, WaPo, CBS, NBC, CNN, etc. and, instead, go only for original sources at YouTube, C-SPAN, actual statements, transcripts, interviews, Trump’s Web site, of what the heck Trump actually, in reality, actually, really said, which usually is a long way from what the media distortions, lies, etc. about what he said.Lies? Sure, watch the “60 Minutes” interview with Sthal where she accused Trump of saying that McCain was not a war hero — a lie. To show this, just watch the actual video and read the transcript of the actual F. Luntz interview — I give more details below.Sthal also said that Trump is “protectionist” — she just tossed that in there. She gave no evidence. Moreover, it’s an insult and a gross distortion, wildly wrong, basically a lie.Looks like Sthal is either an idiot or in the pay of the Chinese who want to keep their illegal behavior and their $500 billion a year trade surplus with the US.I go for the idiot part: Sthal doesn’t look very bright, but she looks like a good candidate for a groupie in the NYC-NYT liberal media, formerly heavily influenced by the Soviet Communists, cocktail party circuit that believes in the Democrats no matter what.Lies? What the NYT said about Trump and women and Trump and racism.You are more interested in some sloppy work by a Melania speech writer than in Hillary’s massive violation of the US Espionage Act — looks like you have been totally taken in.Somehow you have come just to hate Trump; you can’t voice good reasons, but your hatred is total.You made no case:For a lot of what you said, you talked about essentially just style. Trump’s style is fine with me and fine with the many tens of thousands of voters who waited in line for hours just to get inside the building at one of his rallies. Apparently they believed that he was talking seriously about serious, real issues, and so do I.He’s a “bully”? You gave no evidence. He’s determined? Yup. When he is attacked sometimes he attacks back? Yup.To take seriously this bully stuff, you have been taken in and lost perspective. You are straining over gnats and forgetting elephants. E.g., you are really totally blind to the reality — fully bluntly, frankly, and literally, Hillary belongs in JAIL, and you just don’t get that.What is it? You hear that Hillary massively violated section (f) of the Espionage Act, can’t believe that anything so bad could be true, and just discount it. The FBI director said “extremely careless” and that’s the same as “gross negligence”. Your excuse about the role of “email” did not stop Comey. Why, you took two dozen Hillary groupie pills?What is it, you are a paid Clinton Internet troll? How much did you sell your country for?”You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.”There’s nothing that will convince you.Was Trump a bully to Cruz last night? Nope: Cruz refused to honor his pledge to support the nominee; Trump knew that well before last night; and still Trump let him speak. A bully would have drummed him out of the hall and the party.On McCain you are wildly wrong, are just following the usual slander by Trump opponents. All in a few days, (A) Trump gave a rally in Phoenix; (B) McCain in his Senate office told a reporter that Trump had “fired up the crazies” and more, huge insults to both Trump and his audience; (C) the reporter published a story on what McCain said; (D) Frank Luntz at the Iowa family thing-y interviewed Trump; (E) Trump was pushing back against the McCain attack; (F) Luntz interrupted Trump a few times at least once saying that Trump should not criticize McCain because McCain was a war hero due to his years as a POW; (G) Trump explained that McCain is commonly regarded as a war hero just because he was a POW and that that is not sufficient to be a war hero, and Trump was correct; (H) Trump continued pushing back against McCain for his “crazies” insult; (I) at the end Trump said “Maybe he is a war hero”. Again Trump was correct — McCain got at least one of his medals for some of what he did as a POW. Luntz was wrong: McCain is a war hero but not just because of his time as a POW. The person here that was seriously wrong was McCain, not Trump. Trump pushed back on the attack — I would hope that any US President would be ready, willing, and able to do that.For references, I’m in the middle of cooking dinner, but, quickly, Trump’s speech is on YouTube; the McCain comments were published by the reporter in some magazine; the Luntz interview video and a Federal News Service transcript are at C-SPAN. I have all those references.Of course, the deliberately deceptive, distorting, disgusting media headline hungry, scandal eager media has repeated lies about the McCain-Trump dust up, and too many people believed the lies. Apparently you did also. Just go to the original sources. What Trump did was fine.I see no evidence that Trump is in any serious way a bully, and you gave none. About the worst Trump did was at some of his early rallies where he shouted something about getting disrupters out of the rally — I can’t seriously object to that. The disrupters were the bullies.Many of your objections are just vague opinions, without good support, of just trivia.The rest that you have is unsupported and, IMHO, IIRC, wrong.E.g., his use of his name: A common explanation is that he uses his name as a brand, and apparently that tactic has helped him make a lot of money. E.g., also it likely helped him get the publicity that put him in the center of the stage at the first debate and all the rest except the one he passed on to raise money for vets. You want to turn his brand tactic into some psycho problem — it’s not.Then there is Hillary …. As I outlined, she should be in jail.Hillary actually is the worst, in some quite significant ways so far worse than even Obama, by far the worst POTUS ever.For the ACA, that’s a bad joke: Apparently it will expire next year. Pelosi and Frank wanted the ACA to pass just to make a political point. Obama’s campaigning for the ACA was wildly incompetent and got him a big slap down by the American College of Surgeons. Obama never took the ACA seriously.Trump has outlined his ideas for a replacement, and his ideas are much simpler and much better. Trump’s trying actually to do something about health care, and Pelosi and Frank were just tying to push some politics. E.g., Frank said that the goal was “single payer”. The US doesn’t want single payer, at least not yet.Net, you made no case.

    5. george

      I may not agree with all your summations but I also, do not agree with all the assertions made towards you.Respect for firing back!Teach Tolerance and Viva Open Forum.

    6. creative group

      Scott Galloway:We are amazed an academic would use their valuable break from instructing courses to bless or demon a blog verses allow their assessment of an acquisition stand on its merits. The telling part of this pissing match oh excuse us dialogue promoted a former student to double down not only on your competency but also your character flaw of being an outright obnoxious a hole. Our only question is why not just be a good person that teaches great courses. Why do you find a need to be a lifelong a hole?(Based upon your student and responses assessment)

      1. mariapetrova

        The word is asshole. You can say it. He’s been called that before. He gets called that because he gets angry. He gets angry because he cares about some stuff. I’m not sure what you care for, because I don’t see your name. You’re hiding. I’m not applying an epithet to you; I’m talking about your actions. You’re hiding. If you want to call someone asshole, have the guts to show your face. Galloway would.Did you see Mike Chan said Galloway’s class was one of the best he took at NYU? Do you see what that means? That people have sides to them, but that we grownups don’t summarize an entire person with a word. If you were willing to step out of mega-absolutes and epithets, you could allow that maybe a reaction is a reaction. That someone can get angry when something they care about is threatened, but the vast majority of their interactions in class & online are generous, constructive, and welcoming of dialogue. Have you actually met him? Have you taken a class? Or do you prefer to form “lifelong” opinions based on internet comments? In that case — by all means hold your rock-solid opinion. See how it serves you. Galloway is willing to have his mind changed.Look, if you’re not into the whole vibe, fine — there are many out there who inspire. But calling someone a lifelong asshole behind a moniker, makes you look like something you don’t want to be, either.

        1. creative group

          mariapetrova:there is apparently a reading comprehension issue or a language barrier preventing you from understanding what was written. We will attribute it to a combination of youth, language barrier and reading comprehension. A trifecta. Now run along and finish your studies. We will implement the block function for you.

          1. mariapetrova

            English is my fourth language. Clearly I write and speak it much better than you.

  41. xa

    @fredwilson:disqus Can you argue on metrics Let’s assume 5-10% is all Tumblr has in porn site but — what about adtech dollars?- what about value right downs?- Technology ? There is competitive technology from medium/linkedIn. Is/Was Tumblr making any licensing revenue?@disqus_dvYJsP8uOQ:disqus may be overtop in putting his argument. May be attention grabbing. Thats the medium of conversation but he has a point on value of Tumblr (per me).

  42. exTumblr

    I’m a former senior Tumblr employee with great respect for Fred Wilson. That said, it’s a bit inaccurate to call Tumblr a UGC platform. In fact, 90% of the content shared on the platform is created by 10% of Tumblr users. Meaning, Tumblr is far more a discovery and consumption platform than it is a UGC platform. This is why Tumblr leads the social web in time spent per visit. As far as porn is concerned, it’s certainly there, but if you’re seeing porn in your dash, you put it there, or you follow a blog that posts or reblogs porn content. Getting rid of it is as easy as unfollowing that blog. You only see what you elect to see on your dash.

    1. Alex Murphy

      The laws of thermal social dynamics are 1-9-90- 1% hyperactive- 9% contribute- 90% voyeurYour 10% could probably be broken into 90% of the content was produced by just 1% of the users, 10% by the next 9%, and the rest just watched. Porn or otherwise.

  43. creative group

    Thank this forum for the block feature. It really has us thinking if a poster (not much of anything submitted we read is contributing anything but diatribe) has a life beyond posting. The longest useless treatises ever seen posted.

  44. James Ferguson @kWIQly

    And why?

  45. LE

    It’s a new game that everyone is playing.