Archive of UserLand's first discussion group, started October 5, 1998.

Re: Marc Andreesen

Author:Dave Winer
Posted:9/11/1999; 4:44:55 AM
Topic:Marc Andreesen
Msg #:10917 (In response to 10914)
Prev/Next:10916 / 10918

I wish the man well but I will be quite shocked if Andreesen turns out to be anything more than a younger version of Paul Allen, spending his net billions on start-ups and remaining in the limelight because of his wealth and not his talents.

I've been emailing with Marc this morning. Here's what I said in the last email. "You may not know this, but I've been thru a similar grinder to the one you just went thru. Young founder of a young company. Acquired. On his own after a few months. The ups and downs on this path are huge. Everyone who doesn't have brilliance, fame and riches assume that's all there is to life, and it can be really isolating. Anyway, you get a clean slate now. Maybe not with everyone, but with me you do."

I think it's important to separate the person from the myth. Marc Andreessen, like you or me, is a person. I think you can write reviews for software products, you can love or hate a company for its competence or generosity. But you can't review a *person* that way.

Especially with young people, and to me, Marc is a young person, keep the space open for him to do great things. Why not?

Another lesson -- no matter what it is, if not everyone does it, assume it's hard. There were a lot of people telling him what to do. OK, he didn't listen to everyone. But he was in the eye of the storm. How could he have listened to everyone?

Netscape blew it, I've said that over and over. But to give that to Marc is unfair. It was a complicated situation. Save some of your ire for John Doerr and Jim Clark, and all the MBAs they hired. And give them another chance too, because what they do is also hard.

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