"Wildly entertaining ... Lyons has injected a dose of sanity into a world gone mad."--Ashlee Vance, New York Times-bestselling author of Elon Musk
For twenty-five years Dan Lyons was a magazine writer at the top of his profession--until one Friday morning when he received a phone call: Poof. His job no longer existed. "I think they just want to hire younger people," his boss at Newsweek told him. Fifty years old and with a wife and two young kids, Dan was, in a word, screwed. Then an idea hit. Dan had long reported on Silicon Valley and the tech explosion. Why not join it? HubSpot, a Boston start-up, was flush with $100 million in venture capital. They offered Dan a pile of stock options for the vague role of "marketing fellow." What could go wrong?
HubSpotters were true believers: They were making the world a better place ... by selling email spam. The office vibe was frat house meets cult compound: The party began at four thirty on Friday and lasted well into the night; "shower pods" became hook-up dens; a push-up club met at noon in the lobby, while nearby, in the "content factory," Nerf gun fights raged. Groups went on "walking meetings," and Dan's absentee boss sent cryptic emails about employees who had "graduated" (read: been fired). In the middle of all this was Dan, exactly twice the age of the average HubSpot employee, and literally old enough to be the father of most of his co-workers, sitting at his desk on his bouncy-ball "chair."
Mixed in with Lyons's uproarious tale of his rise and fall at Hubspot is a trenchant analysis of the start-up world, a de facto conspiracy between those who start companies and those who fund them, a world where bad ideas are rewarded with hefty investments, where companies blow money lavishing perks on their post-collegiate workforces, and where everybody is trying to hang on just long enough to reach an IPO and cash out.
With a cast of characters that includes devilish angel investors, fad-chasing venture capitalists, entrepreneurs and "wantrapreneurs," bloggers and brogrammers, social climbers and sociopaths, Disrupted is a gripping and definitive account of life in the (second) tech bubble.
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Dan Lyons’s latest book, Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Startup Bubble, became an instant New York Times best-seller when it was published in April 2016. The Los Angeles Times called it “the best book about Silicon Valley today.”
Dan writes a monthly column for Fortune magazine about technology and transformation. Previously he was technology editor at Newsweek and a technology reporter at Forbes. In 2006, Dan created The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs, a blog that evolved into a novel and a cable TV comedy show, Icon, which never made it into production but led to his work on HBO’s hit comedy Silicon Valley, where he spent two seasons as a screenwriter.
As a journalist Dan has covered emerging technologies like artificial intelligence, robotics, and fusion energy. At Newsweek and Forbes he wrote about Apple, Google, and Facebook, producing stories on everything from supercomputing to smartphones. He has appeared as a guest on Al Jazeera, CNBC, MSNBC, CNN, BBC, Bloomberg TV, Fox Business News and National Public Radio, and has written for the New York Times Magazine, GQ, Vanity Fair, Wired and the New Yorker.
In addition to his work as a journalist, Dan has published three works of fiction. His last book, Options: The Secret Life of Steve Jobs, was a sharp satire about Silicon Valley, published in 2007 to critical acclaim. His previous books are Dog Days (a novel) and The Last Good Man (short stories). Dan speaks at conferences and events, and has been a lecturer at the University of Michigan. He has a B.A. from Bradford College and an M.F.A. from University of Michigan.