Quoted: San Francisco old money vs. new (tech) money

“They bore the hell out of me. They’re one-dimensional and can only talk about one thing. I’m used to brilliant men in my life who leave their work, and they have many other interests.”

Denise Hale, longtime San Francisco high-society priestess, on new-money techies, with the exception of fashionable Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer. It’s just the latest diss against the tech-industry people who are settling in the city. But in a quite quotable “us vs. them” excerpt from a Vanity Fair feature called “Bluebloods & Billionaires,” we also hear the voices of those who feel that tech has been getting a bad rap in San Francisco. For example, they’re being blamed for gentrification and not caring about civic issues, among other things. Yammer CEO David Sacks on the old-money folks (Hale was reportedly married to an Italian mogul, then an S.F. department-store heir): “I probably don’t know who those people are.” And Nextdoor founder Nirav Tolia: “Silicon Valley people tend to be allergic to this notion of ‘society.’ Kissing the ring doesn’t do anything. Like, who kisses the ring? What people do is, they commit themselves to excellence and they work really hard to create that. . . . The people with privilege aren’t the ones creating the great companies. It’s the people who work the hardest, have the best ideas, and are the most passionate and most innovative.”

 

Photo: David Sacks founded enterprise social-network provider Yammer, which Microsoft bought last year for $1.2 billion. (Mercury News archives)

Levi Sumagaysay Levi Sumagaysay (3820 Posts)

Levi Sumagaysay is editor of the combined SiliconBeat and Good Morning Silicon Valley. She also helps take care of SiliconValley.com, the Mercury News tech website. Email: lsumagaysay (at) bayareanewsgroup (dot-com).