Everyone is chattering about the Yahoo! Peanut Butter Manifesto. Every BigCo has problems of overlap, lack of accountability, and people who think those problems are worse or better than they really are.
In this case, though, I’m a bit confused by the memo. Everyone knows that Flickr and Delicious are tiny compared to the competing Yahoo! properties. But they are undisputed #1 in their respective spaces in influential mindshare. Every company wishes that they could appeal to 50 million normal people *and* the 57,000 who read TechCrunch. Yahoo! has succeeded at this in two important categories.
I mean, is Joshua Schacter’s org *that* expensive? Are they really causing chaos with the other teams?
And while the memo lacks specificity and reads like a “phone in” complaint, there is something more disturbing about it, IMO. Why was it leaked? And why are people making such a big deal of it (no doubt the one is related to the other)?
It’s true that our industry is becoming more “Hollywood”, but it is getting ridiculous. Brad and Jen split? Calcanis dis’d Digg!! TomKat married? Diller and Murdoch are duking it out again! There’s a new bond girl? A Yahoo! VP is a straight-talking big gun taking on the establishment!
When people who are supposed to be making good technology and business decisions start playing to the adoring/ignorant public, you have to question their motives (not that Garlinghouse did this deliberately; I don’t know). It’s great for Zhang that gold-digging province girls know his name and availability — but less so for Garlinghouse. Unlike Zhang, he has bosses who look bad with a memo like this. Whether he released this deliberately to make a name for himself, or someone released it to get him in trouble, it’s not too good for him.