Fab.com in 2010: "I Know Absolutely Nothing About Running a Company"
When you've got a proven history of colossal failure as a startup founder, it's best to avoid silly, swaggering videos that make light of this fact—remember, you're playing with someone else's money. But three years ago, Fab.com's creators did exactly that—and with the attitudes you see here, it's no wonder they're failing again.
Behold a crushing timecapsule of undeserved optimism. The video above, some sort of promotional clip from a never-produced documentary series, is from way back in 2010, before Fab.com even had a chance to fuck itself. This was pre-pivot, before Fab was a shopping site, and still was Fabulis, a gay-oriented social network. Ego was cheap: "What I do for a living is I start companies," says CEO Jason Goldberg before a toxic waste backdrop. "This is the third company I've started," we see Goldberg telling his team in what's supposed to be a pep talk. "The first company, I fucked everything up. The second company, I did everything right, and made a shitload of money. This third one is personal." What a track record.
We're quickly introduced to Bradford Shellhammer, who Goldberg explains, almost boastfully, has no idea what the fuck he's doing. But he's the number two at the company. Or, was: Shellhammer, of course, quit the company, but not after three years of not knowing what the fuck he's doing, and eating a lot of caviar while doing it. The next hiring move: inexplicably hire Goldberg's ex-husband. It's unclear how much of this is all for the (very cheap) camera, but there's a reason you don't usually see goofy, fuck-you videos from the early days of companies that succeed. They're too busy making the thing that succeeds to preen for the reality tie-in.