Attack of the Venture Capitalists

Fake News written by James Baughn on Wednesday, March 3, 1999

from the beware-the-venture-capitalist-effect dept.

SILICON VALLEY -- Mention the word "portal" to a herd of venture capitalists, and you'll create a stampede. Four companies have announced Linux "portal" websites at LinuxWorld Expo -- VA Research, Red Hat, Ziff-Davis and Linux Magazine. Needless to say, the VCs are in a frenzy. VA Research and Red Hat were all but shut down earlier today as a horde of investors descended on their corporate offices.

"It was horrible," one VA Research janitor told us. "As usual, I arrived early at the VAR offices to open the doors and begin my usual janitorial chores. However, a crowd of 100 or so VCs had already congregated at the front entrance. Once they spotted me, I couldn't escape from them. They asked me questions -- a horrible, endless stream of questions. 'I know nothing about computers,' I kept trying to explain to the berserk crowd, 'I'm just a part time janitor.'"

The situation wasn't much better at Red Hat's offices in North Carolina. An employee in Red Hat's sales department told Humorix, "We had to sneak in through the back entrance to avoid the throng of zealous, portal-crazed VCs assembled in the front. I now know what the Microsoft employees in Foster City thought about the throng of zealous, Linux-crazed nerds staging a protest outside their offices."

Our source added, "In desperation, upper management frantically prepared a 'Dear Valued Investor' form letter to be distributed to all the VCs. While the letters were being handed out, one crafty RH employee announced to the crowd, 'I've just heard a rumor that Rob Malda plans to turn Slashdot into a Linux portal site...' Before he could finish the sentence, all the VCs raced to their luxury cars and sped off in the direction of Holland, Michigan."

"After what happened today, I simply can't imagine the frenzy that will ensue when Red Hat has its IPO next week... er, uh, I'm not supposed to mention that. Don't quote that last sentence please."

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