I am reading this one right now. Doing a little bit of long overdue psychological rehabilitation.
I am getting some help from the mortal man known as John Wooden who was made immortal by his accomplishments in a job where he was called Coach John Wooden.
This book is the reason why I came upon such unexpected inspiration to create a Mother's Day poem for my wife on her first Mother's Day.
I had no idea that this book would contain poetry. It's not Williams Wordsworth, but I find it to be a profound discovery when a man such as Coach John Wooden along with co-writer Steve Jamison, decides to speak to the world using poetry of their own and poems from others that have inspired them. It's completely unexpected.
One very small section describes what Coach Wooden says about #trust. To paraphrase from page 16:
A man has the choice of living his life by trusting or by doubting. Choose trust. Because it is the higher form of existence. Living in doubt of others is easier and a lower form of existence.
I would like to add that because the business world run by humans and unfortunately since it is filled with betrayals and backstabbing, that if someone has broken your trust, then you owe it to yourself to protect yourself against another loss if it is within your control.
And that brings me to another huge theme of this book that pervades the lives of certain people who have a knack at life: you can't control how other people react, but you have 100% control of how you react to what happens to you in this world.
It's Hatching Twitter, y'all!. I read it a long time ago. Well, at least a long time ago in Internet time. And the subtitle of the story is very fitting to what the book describes about how #twitter was invented, how it evolved, and what it formed into as of early 2014: "A true story of money, power, friendship, and betrayal."
Full disclosure: I was a shareholder. I bought shares on the open market in March of 2014. I'm not a baller, shot caller like @sacca who was involved in the early days. He was so passionate about the company he wrote this novella blog post about it. Well, that wasn't enough and there was yet more passion about the company so he wrote this sequel.
Anyways, I lost my ass in $TWTR (> -25%) after they had a shitty earnings report in late April 2015:
I cut my losses a couple of days after the cratering. And I'll probably never trade it again. It's too damaged and too dysfunctional. All companies are dysfunctional, BTW (a note to self about future blurb I'll do).
As of this writing, Jack Dorsey (one of the co-founders, aka @jack) was recently placed into the CEO position again, and the stock is showing some life, but I still think it's totally a #POS stock. Ironically, I have grown very fond of the service in the last couple of years. I am @LuggageDonkey. My fondness is very, very, EXTREMELY, inversely proportionate to the performance of the stock, haha. Okay, enough of my "I lost money in twitter stock" crybaby rant. Twitter is probably going to be around for a very, very, very long time in some way, shape or form. If you status on #fb, but don't do tweet, you probably will some day.
So to get to the true meat of this post, above is what I visualized as I read the book. The way the formation of and evolution of it was described by Nick Bilton, it showed all kinds of friends and colleagues stabbing each other in the back, attacking each other, and defending oneself whenever possible as they struggled like crazy to keep the hyper growth site up and running and away from the #FailWhale. In fact, #FailWhale is now a permanent part of the interwebs lexicon.
I appreciated his opening remarks about the definition of "history".
I used a single arrow to depict "attack/coach/undermine/manipulate" all at once because that's the way it is... in some ways it shows the essence of the old phrase shit rolls down hill.
Double arrows shows attack and defense simultaneously between parties. It's a battle.
The business world can be war sometimes. It can even be hellish. In the early days of Twitter there were lots of tears shed, and barf puked by grown men.
It was a hyper growth power struggle amongst some very smart ambitious young guys, and some very smart ambitious investor guys in the formation of one of the most critical social media companies of our time whose story is ever evolving as we speak.
Thanks Nick for a great read!
p.s. I am WAY behind this month in production. I think I am still meeting my blog-at-least-once-per-week goal. But it's getting harder lately to produce product. I have NO IDEA how some guys do this every single day. I am confident that I'll finish the year blogging on average at least once per week. And by then it will have become such a #habit that I'll be doing it for a very, very, very long time.
The recent oil spill in Santa Barbara, combined with the simultaneous consumption of Guns, Germs, and Steel got me thinking...
1. Not again. Exxon Valdez, Deepwater Horizon, and many, many, many more... we're basically going to keep having oil spills as part of killing ourselves into oblivion.
2. From the book, I was somewhat shocked to learn that human-kind, as it has been existing for the last twenty thousand years or so, has been annihilating tasty animal species this entire time.
3. So then if we've been killing off animal species this entire time, then what's the big deal if we keep extinctifying everything?
4. Well, simply put, if we overfish all the oceans, and eat all the land animals, and eat all the edible plants, then we won't have anything to eat. Except each other. #cannibalism
And then I was trying to figure out a graphical way of representing where we're going. And here it is: