Archive for the ‘YouTube’ Category

Was Mark Cuban working for Google?

October 13, 2006

I was talking with some friends last night about the Google / YouTube acquisition and suddenly it came to me – Mark Cuban must have been working for Google!  Could it be true?  Does it make sense?

On September 17th (about 3 weeks ago), Cuban wrote a post titled The Coming Dramatic Decline of Youtube.  For no apparent reason, Mark Cuban started a public relations campaign against Youtube – and from that day on, he was on the attack.  He was blogging, he was doing radio, and he was doing the TV circuit – he was out to lower the valuation of Youtube.

Now when you sit back and think about it, who would benefit from such an attack?  Mark Cuban?  Youtube?  In the long run, there was only one entity that could benefit from all of this negative press – Google.

Now I am not much of a conspiracy theory type of guy – but this looks kind of obvious to me.  A few members of the billionaire club get together and discuss the fastest growing website in history, figure out a plan to decimate its valuation, and make the acquisition. 

Big businesses go to great lengths to ensure they come out on top every day…just take a look at the HP fiasco – if companies are sending spies into news rooms to figure out who is talking to who – do you think that a few billionaires could not get together and create a negative pr campaign against an acquisition target?  That would be child’s play for these guys.

Now let’s look at the Youtube founders – a couple of very young, inexperienced, highly mathematical type guys.  Very smart in many, many ways, but maybe not so smart in some other ways.  I know that if I had the fastest growing website in the history of the Internet, and all of a sudden there are 10+ news reports per day talking about how we are going to be sued out of business, I would be pretty nervous.  I would probably get so nervous that I would be looking for an exit – and I would probably not worry about leaving some money on the table…As a matter of fact, I would probably be willing to put a billion dollar deal together in three days.

I’m not saying that these guys did not get very, very, very rich.  I’m just wondering what kind of money they could have got if Mark Cuban was not involved for the past 3 weeks.  Anyway you look at it – Mark Cuban cost these guys some big money – I’m just wondering if he was compensated.

What do you think?  Could I be right?