How Deep Is Grouper Founder's Con?

Ryan Tate · 09/28/11 05:51PM

The wheels seem to be coming off Jerry Guo's wagon. Yesterday the internet entrepreneur admitted to misleading people during his time at Newsweek and just after. Today comes word he was fired from an AOL site over dishonesty. And it's not clear how much technology is actually behind his tech startup.

Let an Infamous Media Liar Set You Up on a Group Blind Date

Ryan Tate · 09/27/11 03:56PM

Jerry Guo's startup "Grouper" sets people up on dates with posses of strangers. That's the kind of company you need to be able to trust. Which is why it's especially relevant that Guo's history of conning people—and apparently the nation of Thailand!—has just been revealed.

Sony hopes L.A. geographic will cure's addiction to losing money

Jackson West · 08/05/08 07:00PM

Michael Lynton, can we talk? You may hope that you can manage your online-video issues by relocating the staff of, the money-losing startup you acquired for Sony in 2006, from Sausalito to Culver City. I'm sure with your experience at AOL and at Hollywood, you're confident enough to believe it's a business you can handle. But the real first step is admitting that you have a problem. We know all the cool kids were doing it when you purchased the site, then known as Grouper, for $65 million, but the $100 million you are rumored to have spent on satisfying your bandwidth cravings and making new employee and content-producer "friends" just shows how far you've sunk toward rock bottom. I can't imagine mainlining another 10-gigabit connection at a new San Diego datacenter will help. The good news, Michael, is that you're not alone. Eric Schmidt's YouTube habit has proven unmanageable as well. The note from a laid-off employee after the jump may feel like tough love, Michael, but think of it as an intervention from someone who cares.

Sony video site Crackle lays off 8 out of 60 employees

Nicholas Carlson · 02/27/08 02:40PM

Sony laid off eight people from its video site today, one former employee tells us. Crackle was called Grouper when Sony bought it for $50 million in August 2006. And though Grouper was founded a year before YouTube, the headstart didn't help much. Check out the chart below.

Oh snap! Sony to launch Crackle (to make it go, um, pop)

Nick Douglas · 07/13/07 09:04PM

Sony's $50-million mistake is reportedly relaunching as Crackle. Has-been video site Grouper, which Sony bought last August, launched a year before YouTube but never caught on as well; it's now one of several B-list video sites like the superior Vimeo and Grouper will become Crackle, according to a tipster (who also points out that while Grouper claims over 20 million unique visitors a month, comScore counts under a million). Users can at least hope the site's new incarnation looks something like the trippy placeholder page. I'd ask the company for confirmation, but last time I did that, they flat-out lied.

Grouper VP told "big fish" tale

Nick Douglas · 08/23/06 08:00AM

Now, if you were the Sales and Marketing VP of a tiny startup, and Sony was going to buy your little piece of flipmeat in a week, wouldn't you know about it?

Grouper denies Sony merger

Nick Douglas · 08/15/06 02:07PM

Online video startup Grouper (pictured) denies any impending deal with Sony, despite an e-mailed rumor that one was buying the other.