Year in review: Quotables

GMSV’s first installment of 2010’s notable quotes focused on Apple and Steve Jobs. Here are some more from others about or in the world of technology.

• “Zuckerberg is clearly the worst thing that’s happened to our industry since, well, spam.”

That’s Jason Calacanis, founder of and blogger, on Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. The post, written in May, also contained the following: “Facebook is officially ‘out,’ as in uncool, amongst partners, parents and pundits all coming to the realization that Zuckerberg and his company are — simply put — not trustworthy.” In July, Zuckerberg announced that the Palo Alto social networking company had grown to 500 million users worldwide. In October, the Wall Street Journal reported that apps on Facebook were transmitting users’ information to advertising and tracking companies, a practice Facebook says is against its rules.

• “I don’t believe society understands what happens when everything is available, knowable and recorded by everyone all the time.”

That’s Google CEO Eric Schmidt, in an interview with Wall Street Journal editors in August, during which he reportedly said that young people might want to change their names when they get older to avoid their past online indiscretions. Schmidt later said during an appearance on “The Colbert Report” TV show that “it was a joke. It just wasn’t very good.” In September, advocacy group Consumer Watchdog put up an animated billboard ad on New York’s Times Square that featured a character resembling Schmidt as a creepy ice-cream truck driver who drives around stealing people’s personal information. (See Ice screaming for Google’s head in Times Square.)

• “I didn’t want any of those (e-mails) to be mine. The problem is that if you were to read some of my e-mails today you can read anything you want into them.”

That’s former President George W. Bush during a November interview at Facebook, according to an Associated Press article about how 80 terabytes of electronic archives will be included in Bush’s presidential library, but none will be e-mails he wrote. Perhaps Bush understands what Schmidt was referring to in the previous quote.

• “I’ve been at this company 16 months, … I’m supposed to have an iPod, an iPad, an iBlah. … I don’t want to hear any crap … about something ‘magical’ that the fine people of Yahoo are supposed to do in this short time. So f-ck off.”

That’s Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz in May during an interview with TechCrunch’s Michael Arrington, during which he asked Bartz questions such as “Are you being a hypocrite by giving (bloggers) advice when you say you don’t want advice?” and “You ever hear the saying, ‘a camel is a horse designed by committee’?” and “Is your pitch kind of BS, though?”

There’s speculation that Bartz is on her way out — including from the Merc’s Chris O’Brien — as Yahoo continues to struggle to please its investors. But Bartz, who was hired as CEO of the Sunnyvale company in 2009, reportedly has the support of Yahoo’s board, at least until her contract expires in 2012.

• “The Internet’s completely over. I don’t see why I should give my new music to iTunes or anyone else. … Anyway, all these computers and digital gadgets are no good. They just fill your head with numbers and that can’t be good for you.”

That’s Prince, formerly known as The Artist Formerly Known as Prince, in a May interview with the U.K.’s Mirror.


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  • Darryl

    The Prince quote is especially dismaying when you consider his innovations and (currently impaired) vision. It reminds me of an interview with Van Morrison where he stated that he’s not a “download artist;” whatever that means.

    I tend to think a direct channel between artists and fans/customers is the best thing that could happen for musicians, but who knows…