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engineering guy but didn't have any formal engineering background. He had just spent eight years bumming around the world. I think he was an English major. JEFF tlvlNcJTOX, cofounder, Achieva.com I was working as an investment banker in Atlanta at Merrill Lynch. My friend Carlos Watson had gone to Stanford Law School and was working as a management consultant in Palo Alto. Both of us

JoHN BATTELTE Let me say that Wired didn'r start in South of Market because it was this cool, warehousey neighborhood where all the artists lived. It's because real

had jobs our mothers were proud of. We were making more money than our parents ever did. But something was missing. We didn't feel the work we were doing was important, and so decided to go into business together. The decision to do it in the Bay Area was partly because itt difficult for a couple of AfricanAmericans to start a new business among the good ol'boy networks of Atlanta, and partly because the Bay Area was the place to attract investment capital.

with Wired and OnRamp, Dimension X was one of the first new-media companies in SoMa. We moved into an old Hills Bros. building. The space rented for a dollar a square foot. At the time, everyone thought engineers wanted to live on the Peninsula. But there was little value placed on creative engineering in the Valley. I was 26, and we had this brand-nevv medium and very little raw artistic talent-we had to bring artists into the blend. So it was a no-brainer to set up in the city. People needed to have places to go after work to find things to inspire and entertain them. I could never have started the companf in St. Louis or even Redwood City. >
ED

estate was cheap. KARL ,IA(OB Along

lntroducinq our cast-37 ri,ho lived to tell the

MootE,

lormer proprietor of the

toHN

EATTELLT was the original managing editor of Wired and founded New

WH8

dot-com drama

Washington Square Bar & Grill, opened Moose's in 1992. He calls himself "an amateur urbanologist." BRAD NEtttHAlt{ has been driving for Yellou' Cab since 1985. He is the author of Tafte

Dimension X; was an entrepreneur-inredidence at Benchmark Capital; and is now president and CEO of Keen.com, a live-advice marketplace. loB ,UDD, a regular contributor to Road & Tiacfr, was an auto-racing editor at sports portal Quokka.com.
cAnY KAMIYA is executive

Me With You: A Round-the-World Journey
to Inuite a Stmnger Home. tYrvla PAULL is an Internet marketing consultant who founded GraceNet, a networking organization for high-tech women, in 1998. BoB PEARL started White Rose Limousine service in lune 1999, becoming a favorite driver o[ the dot-com stars. pETER PLAIE is the author of a quartet of novels about the Mission District: Snitch Faaory, Police and Thieues, One Foot off the Gutter; and Angels of Catavrophe. vARtHA nAo cofounded Eve.com, a cosmetics site. Today, she is vice president of category management at Keen.com. TAXDY ROBERTjOx is the San Franciscobased cofounder of international investment bank Robertson Stephens. rvAN notE is a senior associate at San Francisco architectural, design, and urban-planning firm SMWM. ANDnEw Rott cofounded Salon.com and is now senior foreign editor at the Sd, Francisco Cbonicle. TIFFANY tHLAIN is founder and creative director of the Webby Awards. tTUAnf tl(gRr'tAX launched Reel.com, a movie site, and Hungry Minds, an education site. Today, he's developing
a bricks-and-mortar pharmacy.
KAnA twltHFR is the

editor of

Economy magazine the Industry Snndard. ANDnsw BEEB! is a pioneering web designer and cofounder of Bigstep.com, a webservices company for small businesses. Bltt EENroN is a vice president at CB Richard Ellis commercial real estate. He cofounded TekWork for dot-com clients. ART BERLINER is an S.E native and a general partner at WaldenVC, which invests in many high-tech companies. PATTY BERON took her pink slip from SmartAge and launched sfGirl.com, once the Net community's favorite party site. She is now studying for the CBEST. Ir{lcHAEt 3Rowil is a vice president at CB Richard Ellis commercial real estate. He cofounded TekWork.
t{lcKEY BuTTt was executive

Salon.com. Previously, he was the books editor at the San Fruncbco Exatninen Koltl KATANo is a hairstylist at Elevations Salon and a drummer for the rock bands

Exotic Lollipop and Chi Chi Palace. tEttlE KArz served on the S.F. Board of Supervisors from 1996 to 2001 and was vice president of corporate affairs at Petstore.com. Today, she's regional vice president of regulatory affairs at Sempra
Energy.

editor of

the Indusu'y Standard. He is currently a freelance editor and writer in San Francisco, ct{Rlt CARlttoN is cofounder of Processed

o o ! d ! o

!
= =
L E

World, a muckraking labor magazine, and creator of Shaping San Fmncisco, a multimedia history of the city. tY cHouDl{uRY is difector of market development at Wind Riveq an Alameda software company for consumer devices. By night, he is a lord of the rave scene. IAATT FUKUDAT a creative director, has worked for travel, rentals, and marketing
dot-coms.

of Excite, the once-popular web portal. He currently works on intellectual-property issues. sYrvlr tE lteR opened the doors to her French restaurant Ti Couz in fune 1992. They remain open. ,lff !lvlNctToN cofounded Achieva.com, one of the first education sites. tuttE l,tARlilo founded public-relations firm Marino Inc., specializing in tech and entertainment, in 1994. cHUcK I{cBRlD; is North America Creative Director at TBWA\Chiat\Day, the advertising agency responsible for the
JoE KnAUt is cofounder

"Boom Town"

columnist at the Wall Steet Jountal.

Pets.com sock puppet.
BoOTH ll.KlNNEY,

sommelier, has worked
restaurants.

at Azie, LuLu, and Zibil:bo
HAIJEY titlNoR,

He now has much more time to devote to his two children.
cofounder of pioneering technology news site CNET, was previously an investment banker at Merrill Lynch in New York. He now rides horses in Virginia.

tltA GANtltY is cofounder of Global Network Navigator, acquired bY AOL

She has been reporting on tech in the Bay Area since 1997. FELICIA vAltNT! (Al{A FLEA) worked as a cocktail waitress at Caf6 Mars during the dot-com boom. She is now finishing her teaching credentials and resides in San Diego with her pet cockatiel. REBE(CA WlltoN, a UC Berkeley grad, is

= d
E

in

1995, and Ofoto.com. She balances her

an exotic dancer at the O'Farrell Theatre. She writes in her spare time.

d

o o

time between Groxis, Get Active, Ofoto, and the .f ane Goodall Institute.
KARL JACoB

founded the first fava start-up,

April

2O02

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s:ricl rt',r,as great, beclusc it unlclshe(l pcoplc's inre.qinetions. Anrl thenk (iorl r,r'c hevc thcse pcriorls u htrr pcople c:rn clrcam encl nothing sccms inrpossible. lJesirlcs, now'l u'us st:lrtin.q k) gct $10 tips on $10 fercs! vice president, CB Richard Ellis commercial real estate I nr,,r'crl to Sun Frencisco in 1997 to join nr1,brothcrs in the rkrt-conr boonr-thcv u'orkcrl firr F,vitc rrntl lntcrshop. I.itrt I tlccitlcrl to:rlrpro:rch thc brxltr from :r rc:rl cstiltc l)crsl)cctivc. S()

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clot-corn conrpanics thut r'r'lntc(l to bc in thc citr'. We kncu tlrcv u'ere u conrplctelv neu' kincl of clientclc. Thcv tlicln't r,r'cer fincv clotlrcs encl golf i,r'ith their clicnts. \ilr'cl show' ul) to nrcct th( prcsitler-rt <,f e $l0t) million buckctl cor-rrpun\,. unrl hc'rl bc u'r'ar ing jeans en<l a T-shirt lncl u'orking right nrxt to his rccc|ti,,rrist. So'"r'c tlitchccl our shirts enrl tres enrl stertctl '"r'caring custrrrl clothes oursclvcs. vice president, CB Richard Ellis tr.l,,rr of thc tech compunics originellv rnigretcrl to Sorrth ol tr'lerkct. As:r resttlt, l:tnclkrrtls lntl rlcvcl,,Pcrs c()nvcrtc(l thcsc olrl intlr.rstn:ri builtlings into oflicc propertics. It \\'ls ll nc\\,ol)l)ortullitv firr trs to l)cnctrilte l rnarkct thrrt u'as besicelll' unteppcrl. It ."r'ls :r vcrl, ir-rccstrroLrs tintc'. Thc rclson the clot-cort-ts :rll locrrtetl in this onc ureu south of N{arkct is thrrt crcrl'1l11tru r,r'us about Pertnerships. Not to lncntion tltct' ue rt rccruitrng fiom r:ech othcr. Whcn I rves u'ritins thc busincss plan firr Ili.qsrcp in (lafli'(lentro in Sor.rth Perk, I h:rd to shiclcl nrv scrcen so tlr:rt thc pcoplc Lrchincl nrc coulcln't rcecl r,r,het I r.r'es n'riting. It

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lves like :r northern vcrsion

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Vanture capital invested in Bay Araa start-ups
reeT-'e8> $9.8 billion//reee-2ooo> $S0.1 billion April

2002

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using the lntcrnct to scll <log fixrcl or r,r'hetcrcr it gorng to sorki" general partner, WaldenVC NI.no, *.ns bcc.rrin.q so eusv to nrisc firr cmcrging Intcrnct corlpnuics that sonrc of thcr-rr !\'eren t looking et it es if it n'crc lctr.tell),thcirs. I)r:oPlc u'cre saying, "You tievc t() tlkc:l tliffcrcnt l]crsl)ectivc on llrofits. What's illrportllnt is rnerkct sherc. not proflt. Wc'\'c got to bcconre the murkct lceticr, en,l thcn ',r'c'll figurc otrt hou' to tultkc mone\' 1lt sonrc unrlcllncrl timc in thc firttrrc." cofounder, Salon.com T'hc n-regic u,ortI r'r'us .rr:r1r'. I'rrrt,morc m:rchincs, brrY nrrrrc servcrs! s() y()u cAn scrve ttrillions of rcarlcrs. Spcnrl hunclrt:tls of thousenrls of tlolllrs in lrlvcrtisnc,uV co|r-r1r:urics

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incrc:tsc Yor,tr :ttttlicttcc. Yott'r'c got to h:tvc -irz1c. Pcople tolrl us, "Spcnrl morc nronc\,, collect nrore evesj lurcl rlott't u'orr\':tlrottt profits." Thc ,tlrscncc of :r vi:rblc busrrtcss nrrxlel u us pr:tc

tcchnitlrrcs firr slecpin.g untlcr vour rlcsk: Iiccp e blenkct enrl rr pillor'r'. anrl Irere e grxrrl untlcrstuntling oluhen thcv turn ()fTthe frcetin.q in thc brriltling lt nlr^ht, s() \'()u crn bc prcpercrl. trliscrv Iot cs cott-r1rln\,, untl sri n'c ell bccurnt' trLrc fiicnrls.

[)Lrring (]hristnrls ol our flrst big t,clr, ,,ur tcchnologv lost.i.0(i{) orrlcrs. (lone.,\ ri'irc crosscrl in our

,,
ticelly' rcquirecl to r:risc vcntrlrc c:rPrt:rl. If votr ecturrllv hutl ,rrre thet maclc scnsc. \/or.r cortlcln't have bccn u rLrt-conr. cofounder, Eve.com Wc hecl no beckgrountl tn thc bceutv busincss et ell. I'irrt u'c got tirntling rn ubor.rt six rvtcks. Wc u'entcrl :r n:lnc thut tl,piliccl \\'ollrcn unrl beuut\,, enri u'e tlitln't r.r'ent u nilnre likc I-ilrstick.c()nr ()r s()mcthing tlret nlttlc it reallv obviorrs',r'hrt r,r,c',r'crc <loing. Evc r'r'us Pcrlcct. We thotr.ght of the nltnre, lrntl thcn '"\'c \\'cnt to scc n'hcr ovvncrl it as e rkrm:rin. It turncrl out to bc :r

tt
thltt, ottr u'l-rolcsalcr u es shipprng orrr Inovics in orrr cornpetitors' borcs firr u couple ln()ntlis, untl uc tlitln't knoi.v:rbout it. So tirr months, pcoplc c:rllctl. I'iut uc he,l n.r'cr tlonc firlllllnrcnt bclirrc. -l'his ues thc Intcnrct. Norrr',rius Iint's sh:rt u't u'crc tloing. editor, Ouokka.com I n:rs irr r.rr\' 50s :rntl u ntin.g tirr Ilntl i:.'l)ucl1,.rntl I tr:rrl r-rcrcr hcer,l o1-Qtrokke. Ierrircrl in thc

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six-vc:tr-olcl girl nenictl Evc Rogcrs. Shc tlicln't r.r'ant to sell thc n:rme, but \\'c ncgotietcrl. We n'nrlc a substentral cor-rtribution to l'rcr collcgc firncl :rntl trxrk the f:rmilv to l)isnq'lancl. She also srlt ()n thc lxrer<l firr six tnortths. I think it r'r'r,rke<l out rcellv rvcll lirr ell o1-trs. Wc ncvcr r.r'cnt homc. N{r, chicf

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spring of '99 and always rernember one of our first meetings. It was with a BMW marketing guy. I took him
to our conference room with its big carbon-fiber desk, and we made srnall talk about Formula One racing. Our man, a!Jement guys drifted in, as if they had just come down from cliffs. They were all pretty va!Jue about how we could help him.

The guy didn't know what he wanted either; he just knew BMW should be doing something on rhe Inrerner. Someone
from our New York office gave a brilliant presentation, and the BMW guy says, "The one thing that puzzles me is how you're gonna make your money." And there was this slight silence before our chairman said, "Franchise." And we all kinda went, fianchise? Then he talked for five minutes, and it was some of the rnost persuasive, exhilarating stuff I'd heard in a long time.
But after :r pause, I looked around and knew we were all think-

ing the same thing: "What the fuck did he just sayl" Everyone wandered out, and the BMW guy left without any deal in hand.

-KARA ly{[HER, tHE WAtt trnEEt TOURXAL

II

Two weeks later, I saw him at a desk at Quokka. They had hired hin-r. He was doing something in marketing. 5Y {!iss$t{R}r?y, director of market development, Wnd River software Business started going through the roof, and my friends and I, who were in our 20s and 30s, were making decent salaries, between $80,000 and $100,000, plus options. I had a friend who worked at Webviin, one at Critical Path, and another ar Red

(]orilla. Even my friends working at the Intels of the world were
getting great salaries, because the Intels wanted to make sure they weren't losing these guys to start-ups. And once you make about $60,000, you can st:rrt saving in the Bay Area.

ss ffiel*s*d co-owner, Moose's testaurant Herb Caen would
have liked the action, liked to see all the young people out in the city making things happen. But it was shocking, and I think it would have been shocking to him, to see 25-year-olds spending rnillions of dollars on promises, on air. I couldn't believe it. I knew a couple of guys from brokerage houses and banks who financed

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take them to anywhere from six to eight meetings throughout the day at investment banks. We had phones in the back. At that tirne, talking on a phone in a limousine was $2.50 a minute. But that was no concern to them. If I had six people in the back of my eight-pack, I would have one pe rson on my phone, and the five others would be on cell phones talking to different investors and setting up meetings. The excitement was electrifying. $Y CHO$PfiuRY Life was like a blurry movie. wrs renting

our Super Bowl ad, the sock puppet was on
rhe Today show and Good Morning America.

He was a Macy's Day parade

character.

Charles and Diana wanted to see hirn. He had become the Ronald McDonald of the Internet. iir!'riMr;lii{!-l!. From the middle of 1999 to the middle of 2000, rhe Indusny Standard had the highest number of ads-almost all from lnternet companies----of any magazine for any year in the history of publishing. That's 7,500 ads, all full pages. That's more than
Fortune, Brides, Netustueeft,. You name the magazine, we had more. i::,,:r. {ts,Fisi{f Beginning in the fall of '99, there was an IPO

I

a condo

in Potrero Hill and decided to buy a nice loft. I had

a

practically every ten minutes. It didn't matter what was going public-eGravel, Dogfood.com; people wanted to get in on it. It was a huge equity orgy. r ,r,*!]:- i?i:iirf-iil'iJtilN{ Banking firrls were rnaking a ton of tloney. It was easy to do: Put your name on a prospectus and show that it was a live cornpany. And even though it was losing money,

strategy that went like this. Monday: Decided to move out and live by rnyself. Tuesday: Decided not to look for places to rent, xs there were none. Thought, "fust buy." Thursday: Started loanapproval process. Friday: Met real estate agent I found on Somapro.com. Sunday: Walked into a new building where the units had just gone up for sale. Decided that was the place. Monday: Made offer. Wednesday: Offer was accepted. It took rne just over a week. No kidding. The tech life is fast and efficient. C{St'18" K&TA}iS I was absolutely enchanted by spending a lot of rroney. Although I was only a hairstylist, I would eat out three times a week and easily drop a hundred dollars in a bar u'ith friends. I felt really justified, because everybody else was doing it.

,,
take it public. The VCs, rather than putting money into r company with a $10 million valuation, were investing in con'rpanies at a $50 million valuation and taking ther.r-r public at a $500 million valuation. The companies then went into the after-rnarket at a $1 billion valuation. Their performance was huge, their returns were huge. ,,'':! liili:iii Our mantra at Excite was, "Don't watch the stock price." But it was in.rpossible not to watch it. At its peak, it hit $145. :.::\:ii.'.,1:"::: i\lli,t{.}il I was always talking:ibout stocks with the girls in the dressing room. Sorne of the strippers didn't know what they were doing, and their regulerrs would tell them, "Oh, buy Cisco, buy this, buy that." :rl,s F[:1rt]-, president/ White Rose Limousine We drove all the CEOs around lor their IPO road shows. We must have done a hundred road shows in 1999. I'd pick them up at SFO at seven in the morning and

,t
-CHUCK IICBRIDE, AD.AGENCY CREAIIVE DIRECTOR

S&n't K&M[Y& I can't deny I was infatuatecl and seduced by fabulous dreams of untold wealth. I had received Salon stock that on paper made me a millionaire, but only eight years before, I had been rolling pennies together to buy food. Nor,r' it was like, "l'rn going to get loaded and lord it over everybocly. I'm going to buy a faguar. No, a Reggie fackson-like stable of autornobiles!" It felt fantastic. I'd like to find some of those old envelopes I used to scrawl notes on: "When I pay off the mortgage and bu,v the caq will there be enough n-roney for a country house l" It's so funnv. STt,,*llT $KSqilAN Everything got bid up. Not just real estate. I

\

Execs whose

bg.(srornd checks in 9OOO

7 :HT:?;S :[::t 3:il:;:fJr't?::
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{rem}

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ltt F}*,:k*r*i

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lf:grry$i:i:fi,,
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liit::'r $sfeys the

name existed, Silicon Valley

wds dn dr!a of orchards and tractors. Then \(illiam Hewlett and David Packard, who'd met as engineering students at Stanford, started tinkering with computers in a garage, never imagining the corporation that was to come. Innovdtion has always been about individual passion and commitment, not money. "l was hiendly with %hoo!'s David and Jerry *hen lhey were

w*,qr When hippies, yippies, and free-love advocates flocked to the Haisht. w$?
{? {*s{E$

"Look, you fools, you're in dangerl" of

says Donald Sutherland in director Philip Kaufman's spooLy Sun Francisco remake

ffi'{uuuenrnKY

?s

${lt{D

As the heart of the hlgh-tech *orld, San
Francisco wds once

NIIMIffiN'UW

r'liii :, :li.)tri[! lii lii$r)

ffi

again the place artists.

to

be

for freethinkers and

'A

lot of art

still at Stanlord and working out of a trailer," says Lisa Gansky, whose pioneering portal was eventually bought by AOL. "When we went to AOL, the sentiment of what we were doing changed, and it became a whole different thing."

has happened here,

including a golden age of rock 'n' roll, before

it got to Ne* York,"
says

Gary Kamiya of

ffi
i

fffi.

the sci-fi classic, about aliens turning into conformist pod people.
?rllY lT CO&l!$ ?0

humans

I'tlxt The dot-com years spa*ned a second coming o[ pod people in the city. At least that's how historian Gray Brechin, author o[ lmperiol Son Froncisco, sees it: "The dot-commers were
so energetic and optimistic and just sappy, because they really belieued that the boom would go on (orever. A bus goes by and lhese creepy people are looking out at you, and you kno* they're just husLs of
human beings."

Ei - I

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April

2002

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My first iob in architecture in 1990 was for $5 an hour. sTuAnT sKoRltAN We got a big phone system at Hungry Minds. Technicians were there. I said, "How do you like all these Internet cornpaniesl" They said, "We just love Internet companies-they never ask us what our prices are." rvA* ltosc A lot of these free-spending dot-corns kept me and rny friends ernployed for a long tirne. Our attitude was, bring it on. Local architects did office improvetnents for dot-coms like Quokka, which spent millions on their improvements ar 475 Brannan. Many srnall firms did interior renovations for dot-coms or residential work for newly rich people. Architects and designers did new restaurants like Bacar, Azie, and Gordon's House of

up ordering $1,000 worth of wine and three hamburgers. Sll"l" BENTON In fanuary '99, one of our clients, eGroups, occupied 2,000 square feet on Third Street. By )une, we signed them
15,000 square feet on Brannan. And by April of the following year, we closed a deal for 125,000 square feet on Market Streeta $72 rnillion transaction. In three years, the city would add eight million square feet in commercial real estate-that's l0 percent of an 80-million-square-foot market. And six million of those square feet went to low- to no-credit dot-com or tech companies. JOI4N gA,?TStl"9 The Indusny Sandard ended up with a campus of seven buildings in a seven-block range. And with every lease, the

for

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price went up $10 a square foot. By the time we signed our last lease in early 2000, we were at $85 a square foot for ten years. There were a lot of people, including those on my board, saving,

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"That's insane. You're a moron. No one signs $85-a-square-foot leases for ten yexrs.' Well. whet were we going to dol Move to Emeryvillel We took a poll, and half of our editorial staff
would have quit.

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and in the beginning of 2000, my rent was $860 a month. The building had been owned by a San Francisco fan-rily for a long time, and at the peak of the market they sold it to these carpetbaggers who figured they could come in and make an easy killing. The new corporate owners then raised the rent to $2,600. And this is Seventh and Market. Heroin central. TlffANY 5HLAIN We had to move our office out of South Park, because the landlord raised the rent. I had seen so many things happen in South Park, and this just was like, "Shoop, shoop, out you go." At that point, it just felt greedy. {S}.lL I{ATANO I play the drums in two bands, Exotic Lollipop and Chi Chi Palace. For over a year, we practiced at Yosemite Studios in Hunters Point, at Third Street, out in the boonies. There were at least 50 studios in this one space-all musicians. One day we were practicing, and the next day we were evicted. A dot-com wanted to move in. The owners didn't care who they were kicking out-they had more money, they had more power. I always thought there was something wrong with that kind of greed. Something was gonna come crashing down. $A|{PY ROBERTION I was always saying to my old friends in the biz, "This bubble is not going to last, so don't get too far out there in hiring too many people." i0,.iX BATTILIE The bottom line is, we had to grow. I had a magazine that had grown from 56 pages to 356 pages a week. I needed more editors, reporters, designers, and salespeople. We ended up hiring people who had no business being in the iob they were in. Not because they weren't smart and hardworking; they

Fine Eats, which thrived during the boon.r.
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opened Azie at the apex
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of the dot-com volcano, because we realized the der-nand for

top-end establishn"rent. We bought the best foie gras and the best caviar we could get. The wine list was the same way, because there was demand for it. We had quite a few bottles over $1,000 and sold a couple of them a week. We sold a whole lot more $300 to $400 botdes. JoHx EATTILLE I don't know how it happened, but all ofa sudden everybody in the city was 25 to 35 years old. I think the entire graduating class of the Harvard Business School came out here. ED l*oOt{ I referred to thern as the Schlag.com. Scllag is the Gernan word fbr whipped cream. If you're in Vienna, you order coffee with schlag. So we would be having a busy night, and six or eight of these people who didn't give a damn about money

would come in. We'd sery, "Great, here they are again!" And they'd want the best. We're not a boutique wine house. But if we had any that cost $250, or if we had some Bordeaux, they'd want those; they'd always take the most expensive. They would end

iust didn't have the experience. You put them in charge of
finance or business development or web engineering and things

Ap"rl

2002

69

are going to break. The system falls apart because you don't have enough of the right components in the right places. I never slept worse in my life and felt more unsure of what the hell I was doing. PETER PLATE In 2000, the Mission must have had something

like 200 dot-com companies in a two-mile radius. We were
experiencing the highest residential eviction rates in the country. You could see that entire blocks were being completely evicted. The Mission was making news across the country and Europe in terms of the influx of dot-com companies and the impact they were having on our neighborhood. ANDREW BEEBE The bottom line is that rhere were pracrically no vacancies in the city. Bigstep moved into the Bay View Bank building in the Mission because it had good access to public transportation, cheap rents, and a lot of our en'rployees lived in the area. It's true that we didn't move there because we thought it was a great place for us to be a part of the cornmunity. That frankly didn't factor in. PtTtR PLATE I joined the Mission Anti-Displacemenr Coalirion to light against gentrification. We were a few Anglo artists who joined what was basically a Latino, working-class organization. We organized meetings and protests against the dot-com incursions. We took over the Bigstep building, which had evicted nonprofi t organizations. ANDREW BEEBE About 15 or 20 people came in and took over one of our conference rooms. The leader had a bullhorn. We tried to

Francisco really needs is rcsidential housing. But in classic San Francisco fashion, all these developn-rent issucs bccamc about politics instead c,f about policy. Thcrc was so much fighting that the city missed an opportunity to collcct fces fior-n the develc-,pers, who were the only ones who wcre doing well in all of this, ancl put the n.roncy into af'flrdablc,housing funds and iob-training programs. IVAN ROSE I'm not one c,f those peoplc who got all upsct. like, "Oh, the gentrification t-rf thc Mission" or "Look at all rhesc lofis!" That's the nature of a city. Cities grow and rcspr.rnd tu gro'"vth pressures. I agree that at a time whcn the city was so flush, I wish both the governlnent and the loud public voices had trkcn a rnore realistic look at the housing crisis. Rcnts sirnply gctt w'av too high. A lot of creertive pe<-rple-architccts, cngineers, and graphic designers-moved t<,, the East Bay or out of thc Bay Area entircly. They were part of the culture of the city, and rrow thcy'rc gonc. iLEA, cocktail waitress, Caf6 Mars SoMa wasn't secdy and cxciting anyrnore, like it was whcn I was going to industrial-goth clubs. Now, everybody secrned generic tr-r r-ne, B:uran:r Rcpublic ish. Guys with leather jackets. Girls with their lirde updos, thcir hair in a little twist. Every drink, it seemed, was scrved "up"-,not ()n the rocks, but up. Then therc w:rs the cigar cr:rzc. Rcmcrnbcr thati KOHL KAIANO At our salon, we lost a lot of our clicnts: artists and bohemians, graphic designers and illustrators-thc kind oi people who usually end up here. That kind of ficakcd nre our. It changed the whole feeling <,rf the city.

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talk to them. It was iust a media play. They got arrested. And that was it. There's no resentment; I understand these guys are political activists. The fact is, we were aggressive about proving we were good members of the community. We work with a group that empowers women in the neighborhood to start their own businesses and with the Hispanic Childcare Providers
Group, teaching them computer skills. We cleaned up parks and helped paint shelters. LEILIE KATZ Some of us at City Hall didn't want to see neighborhoods change their unique makeup. But we did want to encourage some development, because these companies were helping to keep unemployment low. Latino mothers in the Mission would tell me, "Thank goodness for these companies. They're hiring my kids, so they won't get put out on the street." PETER PTATE People were still outraged out of their minds. In the summer of 2000, we had a near riot at a Planning Commission meeting in City Hall. We went to the commission to discuss the fact that they were not listening to the problems occurring in the neighborhood and that they were encouraging illegal dot-com and live/work developments. One member of our organization got up to speak, and the Planning Commission head said, "I don't need to listen to this," and called the bailiff on him. The bailiff threw him down to the ground, twisted his arm behind his back, and whipped out his mace canister. The whole room just exploded. The next thing we knew, the place was crawling with county sheriffs, they've got their batons out, and we were just going blow to blow. It was, frankly, a very exhilarating moment. And it was on National Public Radio, coast to coast. LESLIE KATZ A lot ofnew live/work lofts had been built in the past year, and I was absolutely on the side ofputting a moratorium on their development. I was opposed to

Mr. Hyde has errrived." SYLVIE LE MtR An overwhelming naic'rity of people had this sense of entitlement. They were young. But even people who weren't in the dot-corn industry took adv:rnt:rge of that tirne tcr act however they liked. We're a fan-rily restaur:lnr. You can sir with a book for three hours with a cup of cof'fee and you'll be
welcome. But we were pushed in a corner where everything had to be quick, quick, quick. One night, someorlc erased the whole board of names in front of hirn on the waiting list. It w:rs disastrous. The person who worked the door calne to urc in tears. GARY KAIAIYA As you walked down the street, you saw dozens of cars parked on the sidewalk with complete disregard fbr civility. Some of these people literally had the sensc that if they got a parking ticket every night it wouldn't n-rake any difl-erence to them. They were like, "I've budgeted $600 a month fbr parking tickets." PETER PTATE On the weekends, the restaurant crowd would come to Valencia Street and park their cars on side streets. I would walk by and see row afier row of Lexus SUVs, Cadillac SUVs, and BMW SUVs iust scraped to shit, the paint shredded off the sides of the doors. Tires slashed. And on r-rccasion I canre across a couple of cars that had been burned. And I thought, "People are very, very angry." tutlE MARINO The animosity was painful. I lclt lumpcd in with the locustlike people who rolled into town :rs fast as thc money did and then left just as fast. That hurt. I was driving with a

There was definitely tension berwccn our industry and artists and writers. But a lot of them wcre taking dot,conr money and then going to cocktail parties and puking on the word dot-com. I'd hear that and I'd bc like, "Paging Dr. fekyll,

Mayor Brown on this issue. They were supposed to be housing for artists, but people were working in them and not living, and vice versa. What San

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speculxtive booms in history. The real estate rnarket is probably half what it

was two years ago. Dot-corn stocks are down 95 percent. You rarely see stop-and-start traffic on 280 anyrnore.

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t6n TDnn{'

And obviously, there are fewer
people en-rployed.

liAnlHO After the fall, it was like being a person who goes on
SUSIE

vacation and has a torrid love affair.
She comes back to her apartment and

goes,

"What the hell was that? What do with this experience l" It's bittersweet. It's hard to chalk it up as either regret or bliss. It's somewhere in between. 3OB ,UDD So rhe Titanic sank and left a big hole in the local economy. A lot of people had a lot of money for a little while. They're gone, and it's

do

I

gone. But they've left behind a legacy of technology that will continue to

evolve and pay off really big for people in the future.
6ARY I(AMIYA There's that great line in On the Road, "h lvas the end of the

FLOWTRS
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Re/t'norsof d)'ruters . r.SSsec,ia/ euen/.s 7(esla,,r'ani . (')u'pot'ctle . ()ffi'c,e Je.riVn ,\rtn j.arrr,r.trrr- (17/ qlttt
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continent; they didn't give a damn"the sense that being pressed to the complete end of the American myth-

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ological frontier triggers something special in us. Maybe I'm clinging to the kind of illusion you can have only after five bourbons in Vesuvio,

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t

or

searching

for the heart of

a

bohemian San Francisco that doesn't

exist. But I like to think there is something specific about the San
Francisco ethos that created the dotcor-n phenomenon. It did happen here. Not anywhere else. Cl{Rll (ARLSION There's this kind of

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shallow, blind, An-rerican ideology
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.

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for red wine better." They actually thought they were
people shop doing sornething good for humanity. How could you possibly think thatl CHUCK McBRIDE People who acted bravely are now seen as irresponsible. But I don't think you can punish everybody for having tried. Rockefeller didn't behave any differently. All the East Coast empires didn't behave differently. The whole idea of the Internet as a great tool for market expansion is real. It worked. Now it just has to be better understood. LESLIE KATZ This is an industry that was founded on creativity and got detoured by a lot of the greed. >

Emerging Artists for Emerging Collectors'

556 & 567 Sutter St. San Francisco

4L5 4344264

6s0 7s2 0250

Ap"rl

2002

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because it was a lot fun. But I got as much out of it as I could. If you went traveling to Europe for 20 months, you would look back and say, "That was so great," but you probably aren't going to do it again. Now I'm always having people over for dinner. During the boom, no one had anyone over for dinner.

lllCKEY BUTTT By the time

normal.

I

it

was over,

I

was glad to be back to

look at pictures of myself from that time and can't

believe how fat and tired I looked. tUtlE lilARll{O If I do get back into a rat race, I want to continue doing yoga every day for two hours. I'm not really smoking. I want to keep that going. FLEA I'm finishing up my teaching credentials in San Diego. It's a much different life. I go to bed at nine now instead of five in the morning. HALTEY llltlOR It's the first time in years that I'm not running a

The entrepreneurial spirit is not dead in the Valley or the city. Thank God. KARA tWltHER Mistakes were made. But come on, this wasn'r exactly brain surgery. So we shouldn't go too far in the other direction in condemning it. At the very heart of it, the Internet represents a big idea about communication, communiry and linking people around the world in a very profound way. It always will. tltA CAXTKY I've personally put money into entrepreneurial companies in the last year. I like to support people who are smiling out of context. It's self-fulfilling. HALTEY tt{IXOR The city's come full circle. There's not a lot of capital, real estate is coming down, and the economy is trying to shake out of a slump. It's a great time to build companies. It wouldn't surprise me to see another bubble in five to ten years. ART BERIINER During the boom, it didn't seem completely farTANDY ROBERTIOII

ffWe've

gained a little bit of dignity back.The same young people come into the restaurant now, but witfi humility in their voice". They say a nice little *oid. lt'seems to be true everywhere.fi
-tYtvtE tE
mEn, nEIIAURANT oliltER

I have young children whom I haven't spent as much time with as I would like. My mother is a horse breeder, and I own a horse farm in Virginia. It's a better environment for my kids than the city. And I can work remotely from there.
company.

I took an l8-month vacation. My partner and I went swimming with dolphins. Mostly in very remote places in the
TTUART SKORIiAN

South Pacific, the Caribbean, and New Zealand. I got skinny, strong, and healthy. I had failed, and it hurt. But now my ego has gone out to sea with the wild dolphins. They don't care that I failed and lost millions. They care if they can teach me how to swim, because humans are bad swimmers. They feel sorry for you.

fetched to think that the Internet would be a catalyst for San Francisco to have more innovative ad agencies and designers, to become a major creative center. It still doesn't seem unreasonable to me. All sorts of amazing people were drawn to this. They're going to figure it out. TIFFANY tHtAlX I just went ro a Wired book party and realized it was made up of all the people who were here back in'95. Now we're back with people who believe in technology and its human potential. Itt refreshing; it feels like we can all breathe again. KARI ,ACOB You have to laugh when you look back and see what happened. Because now, it's back to the old gang, the entrepre-

April

2002

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