Farrah, Late Night Ratings & Anderson's Mea Culpa

cityfile · 06/25/09 12:55PM

• ABC and NBC will face off on Thursday night with competing tributes to Farrah Fawcett, who died today. But you probably expected that, no? [NYT]
David Letterman beat out Conan in the ratings last week, the first time the Late Show has dominated the weekly ratings since 2005. [THR]
Rosie O'Donnell will debut a new show on Sirius XM this fall. [NYDN]
• Rumor has it Ben Silverman's tenure at NBC may be ending soon. [DHD]
• Fox News now averages the same number of viewers as CNN, MSNBC, and HLN combined. Cue an evil grin across Roger Ailes's face. [THR]
Wired editor-in-chief Chris Anderson's new book contains material he ripped from Wikipedia. But he's really, really sorry about it, okay? [NYP]

What's Caterina Fake's Hunch?

Owen Thomas · 07/31/08 12:20PM

After Yahoo bought Flickr from the wife-and-husband team of Caterina Fake and Stewart Butterfield in 2005, then-executive Jeff Weiner charged Fake with "building the next Flickr at Yahoo." It never happened — though one result of those instructions, the ill-managed Brickhouse incubator, did provide some entertainment along the way. Fake is now joining a New York-based startup called Hunch. "It is a consumer Internet application, it will have a lot of user participation, and it is more than a little fun," she writes. It is the next Flickr, in other words, or so she hopes. But not at Yahoo. Jeff, shouldn't you be asking for half of Yahoo's money back?

Yahoo exec stars in Bollywood-themed propaganda video

Owen Thomas · 07/23/08 01:20PM

"Nicki is editing one helluva an inspiring video," read Yahoo corporate-blog editor Nicki Dugan's Facebook status last night. Sounds like it was a hit. A tipster writes: "You are gonna love the Ash and Venkat lovefest video just shown at Y's all hands to the tune of the Friend's theme song! It's like Bollywood meets typical vacuous Yahoo! propaganda, yet still makes you laugh. Enjoy!" The "Ash" in question is Ash Patel, the famously do-nothing executive recently put in charge of Yahoo's products group. I'm just impressed that Dugan got Patel off his duff twice in a row.

Jeff Weiner's new bosses laugh about his funny name

Nicholas Carlson · 06/19/08 12:20PM

Want to know how seriously venture capitalists take their entrepreneurs-in-residence, those CEO-wannabes they toss a paycheck at to keep them off the streets? Ask James Slavet and David Sze of Greylock Partners. In this clip, they get a good giggle with BoomTown's Kara Swisher over new hire Jeff Weiner's funny name. (Confused? Pronounced weener, "Weiner" is a homonym for the schoolyard word for penis.) Swisher: "This is the pair that sucked Weiner away from Yahoo. Not that it was hard." Sze: "Hah! It was enjoyable! I may do it again!"

How Jeff Weiner botched the top job at Facebook

Owen Thomas · 06/18/08 03:00PM

Yahoos are still buzzing about Jeff Weiner's departure for the world of venture capital. Before he left, many of his coworkers thought he was a shoo-in for a CEO gig at Facebook. Now that he's an entrepreneur-in-residence jointly at Accel Partners and Greylock Partners — both investors in Facebook — the conspiracy theorists have changed their patter: Weiner's just in a holding pen until Accel and Greylock can boot founder Mark Zuckerberg, install Weiner as CEO, and take the company public. "Zuck is definitely out ... it's just a matter of time. It's clear as day," one tipster writes. Clear as mud, rather. It makes sense that Yahoos, bitter at Facebook's success and eager to have one of their own deliver a comeuppance to Zuckerberg, would be circulating this rumor. But here's what they don't know about Jeff Weiner and Mark Zuckerberg.

Yahoo's Sue Decker on Jeff Weiner's departure: Mission Accomplished!

Nicholas Carlson · 06/17/08 10:20AM

It's as if Yahoo president Sue Decker hasn't heard of a thing called Web search. How else to explain her mealy-mouthed memo to Yahoos on EVP Jeff Weiner's departure? Any one with any reason to care knows or will quickly find out that Weiner left Yahoo for a sweet gig spotting startups for VC firms Accel Partners and Greylock. But in her memo, Decker asked her charges to believe Weiner is leaving to spend more time with his family.

Jeff Weiner to two-time VCs

Owen Thomas · 06/16/08 04:20PM

As expected, Yahoo content chief Jeff Weiner has left the troubled firm to serve as an "entrepreneur-in-residence" — read: wannabe CEO of an as-yet-undisclosed startup — at Accel Partners and Greylock. Working at two VC firms is unusual, but both have invested together in companies such as Facebook. [Accel Partners]

Bleeding purple

Owen Thomas · 06/12/08 02:40PM

This is the week to leave Yahoo, it seems — not because something's happening. But because nothing is. Jeremy Zawodny (badge pictured here) and JR Conlin, two Yahoo veterans with 18 years of tenure between them, both took pains to say that their departures had nothing to do with Microsoft or Carl Icahn's bids for the company — believable, since an expected Yahoo-Google search partnership seems to have put both of those overtures into a deep freeze. Higher up the chain, reports confirm the departure of Usama Fayyad, Yahoo's chief data officer, and Jeff Weiner, head of Yahoo's Web-content properties.

Report: Weiner leaves Yahoo, accepts VC offer

Nicholas Carlson · 06/12/08 11:00AM

Scratch another name off ex-Yahoo Bradley Horowitz's list of Yahoo's doomed and departed. Yahoo exec Jeff Weiner, the man in charge of core products like, Yahoo Mail and Yahoo Messenger has resigned from the company, a person familiar with the situation told the LA Times. He's accepted a new role as an entrepreneur-in-residence shared between venture capital firms Accel Partners and Greylock Partners. That means he'll get an office (or two), a big paycheck (or two) and a charge to think up big ideas — a great gig for a new dad. It's an unusual arrangement, but both firms are stuffed full of ex-Yahoos who probably see an angle in helping Weiner out. The LA Times's source says Yahoo will not immediately replace Weiner, but instead delegate his responsibilites to group of execs. Kind of the way you spread peanut butter over toast, you know?

Who will replace Jeff Weiner at Yahoo?

Owen Thomas · 06/11/08 05:00PM

If Jeff Weiner, head of Yahoo's search, community, and media properties, leaves the company, who's left to run things? An outside hire seems unlikely, Michael Arrington points out, given Carl Icahn's fight with the Yahoo board. That leaves a battlefield promotion for one of Weiner's direct reports, shown here from left to right: Brad Garlinghouse, Scott Moore, Vish Makhijani, and Tapan Bhat. Here's our handicapping of this horserace:

VC firms offer Weiner a chance to bail on Yahoo

Nicholas Carlson · 06/11/08 11:40AM

Venture capital firms Accel Partners and Greylock Partners, both laden with ex-Yahoos, and with plenty of consumer Internet startups in their portfolio, have offered Yahoo's Jeff Weiner a chance to bail on the company. Kara Swisher cites VC sources, who say Weiner could very well turn his extended paternity leave into a departure from Yahoo altogether. Unusually, the firms are said to be offering Weiner a chance to split his time as an entrepreneur-in-residence at both firms.

New daddy Jeff Weiner takes a hit

Owen Thomas · 06/09/08 01:20PM

Jeff Weiner, head of Yahoo's network division, recently became a father, and he's taking some time off. Mazel tov, Jeff, and well deserved! Nothing surprising about a new dad spending time with his child. What's got us interested is the way his underlings are buzzing about his paternity leave, which he extended from two weeks to a month — a move which may have prompted the cancellation of a planned press dinner, says AllThingsD's Kara Swisher. It's atypical for the hard-charging, micromanaging Weiner to spend so much time detached from work, says one, who wonders if it's a sign Weiner has a foot out the door. Another Yahoo thinks Weiner is just indulging in the joys of fatherhood. Heard any other whispers about Weiner? Send them in. (Photo by Yodel Anecdotal)

Ready to update your Yahoo profile?

Nicholas Carlson · 04/30/08 11:20AM

Yahoo is not building a social network, EVP Jeff Weiner promised EconSM conference-goers yesterday. "The world doesn't need another social network," he said. What the world needs instead, Weiner explained, is a network of social exchanges over the Yahoo platform. Specifically, it needs Yahoo to combine its "25 different profile experiences" into a single user profile and for Yahoo to monitor "the social exchanges" between users and then "monetize that intention." To us, that sounds like a social network. But it's not, Weiner assures us. Good thing he's familiar with bombs.

Why is Yahoo cofounder David Filo getting hit by a ball? Faceball, that's why!

Nicholas Carlson · 04/18/08 05:20PM

Let Google and Facebook play ultimate frisbee. Yahoos like balls, and they like them in the face. Their game is called Faceball. How it works: Two players sit in chairs ten feet apart and take turns throwing inflated beach balls at each other's faces. One point per facial, and no ducking. This goes on for five rounds. John Allspaw and Dunstan Orchard developed Faceball in April 2007 and ever since, Yahoos — from CEO Jerry Yang on down — have loved it. When it came time to plan the launch of Flickr Video, there was little debate as to what to do. A Faceball tournament was held on April 9, 2008. In the picture above is your winner, cofounder David Filo. Below, a video (on Vimeo, not Flickr, oddly) from Faceball creators Allspaw and Orchard describing their game, as well as more photos (on Flickr) from the tournament.

Yahoo's Digg clone gets three months to prove its worth

Nicholas Carlson · 02/25/08 08:22AM

Yahoo plans to launch its Digg competitor, Yahoo Buzz, tomorrow. After that, a tipster tells us, Yahoo VP Tapan Bhat and his Front Page/Front Doors group will have three months to prove the project's worth. If it's not driving significant traffic to publishers in Yahoo's ad network by then, EVP Jeff Weiner will shut it down. (Assuming he's still with the company.) Our source isn't optimistic, telling us "Buzz will launch with all hat but no cattle."

Who's in, who's out at Yahoo after a Microsoft takeover

Owen Thomas · 02/01/08 12:16PM

This morning, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer made the usual polite noises about "integrating" Yahoo's management into Microsoft. The reality? Come on. They're all fired, except for the geeks. If Microsoft had any respect for current management, they would have negotiated a friendly deal instead of launching a takeover. Most of the executive suite will be gone, I bet, within six months if the takeover succeeds. Here are the details on who's in and who's out, starting at the top.

The return of Terry Semel

Owen Thomas · 01/09/08 01:12PM

Terry Semel is still Yahoo's chairman, but the company is rapidly erasing his mark on the business — chiefly any push into original content, a business Wall Street views as expensive and unrewarding. He's clearly not interested in carrying on that argument in the Yahoo boardroom. Instead, PaidContent reports, he's reviving his old company, Windsor Digital, the investment vehicle which carried him between Warner Bros. and Yahoo.

Yahoo Media holds all-hands as new boss "prioritizes"

Nicholas Carlson · 12/05/07 01:10PM

If new Yahoo Media czar Scott Moore leaves his underlings short of breath, his boss, Jeff Weiner, doesn't seem to mind. Weiner told PaidContent that during an all-hands meeting today, Yahoo will centralize control with Moore so "he can prioritize. This is the best way to leverage." When the big boss talks about "prioritizing" and "leveraging," that can only mean one thing: Update your resumé.