January 20, 2008
Crunchies 2007 Award Ceremony and After Party
Yesterday I attended The Crunchies, an award ceremony to honor innovation in the tech community. The event was organized by TechCrunch, GigaOm, ReadWriteWeb, and VentureBeat.
My personal highlights from the award ceremony were:
- Live performance by The Richter Scales, singing “Here Comes Another Bubble“.
In case you haven’t seen the video before, it is must viewing. It combines melody from Billy Joel with acapella (my favorite kind of music) with technology startup themes and humor. The video opens with a line from my friend and Powerset investor and board member Peter Thiel stating there is absolutely not a bubble in technology. The song later features lyrics such as “Babies blogging in the womb” and “I sold my twenties for a worthless pile of tech stock”. My friends in the group, Tom Shields and James Currier, invited me to come sing with them sometime, which could be a lot of fun.
- Fake Steve Jobs accepting the Crunchies award on behalf of Apple for the IPod.
His speech is totally hilarious. The whole speech is like one big inside joke. I had previously read his book “Options: The Secret Life of Steve Jobs, a Parody“, an autobiography of Steve Jobs as told by Fake Steve Jobs, and this video conveys the parody well.
- A video of my friend Nova Spivak (Founder of Radar Networks) answering the question about the most important technology innovation. Given the position he has taken in recent panels we have been on together, one might have thought he would talk about the Semantic Web, but instead Nova argued passionately about the virtues of Cool Whip!
He illustrated many uses of the technology and had had the crowd rolling with laughter. This also inspired us to attempt to have a cool-whip afterparty, which fizzled out.
- Running video commentary by Sarah Meyers. Even without the platinum wig and corset she wore during her Party Crashers career (including crashing Powerset’s Series A Funding Party), she’s still adorable and very personable.
- Luke Nosek from The Founders Fund presenting the awards for “Best Business Model” and “Most Likely To Succeed”. While many of the candidates were Founders Fund portfolio companies, I appreciated that he was wearing a Powerset t-shirt (with the grunting pigeon) under his jacket.
The After Party took place in the famous Green Room. My group had to wait a little while to get into the party, which exceeded the capacity of the room. The wait itself was fun because we were joined in line by MC Hammer. The party was enlivened by a photo activity sponsored by Zivity. In his award introduction Luke Nosek had described Zivity as “Myspace for Grownups.” People took photos with props, costumes, and attitudes, accompanied by several Zivity models. I included a photo of me (in cowboy hat) with Pearl and Cyan in this post. The rest of the collection is fun.
Overall, while the event had its ups and downs, there was really a nice sense of community and cameraderie in both the presentations and in the audience. The award recipients made really brief and generally humble speeches (with the exception of Fake Steve Jobs, of course), most of them thanking their engineers and their moms. The videos shown during the ceremony were mostly sent in by nominated companies. Altogether it felt more like a summer camp show than the Oscars and it is good to see our community not taking itself too seriously. On that note, it was great to see Om Malik on stage at the event shortly after recovering from a heart attack that had left him hospitalized and the subject of much concern among his friends. When people saw him at the event there much applause and support.
I took some photos of the event myself and plan to post them here soon.