Popularity of unpopular opinions

Why I don’t care about your unpopular opinion anymore.

#UnpopularOpinion (Source)

1. The Problem: Create and point out an allegedly widespread problem among your peers (e.g. other VCs) that, in fact, does not or only very rarely occur. Usually, this is done by taking highly individual situations out of context or, examples that are mostly based on a) case-by-case situations (often occurred a long time ago), b) secondhand information i.e. hearsay or, c) on completely imaginary experiences. Those are subsequently anonymized, oversimplified, overgeneralized and often exaggerated to make them “tweet-able”, easy to understand for everyone and amplify their impact.

2. The Blaming & Shaming but no Naming: Blame every other investor or “competitor” i.e. basically anyone else in the ecosystem, for being part of the problem and for doing it “all the time”. Call it out publicly. Of course, without mentioning any names or concrete examples, because we all know, you always meet twice in life.

3. Taking Sides: By doing so you exclude yourself from the problem and create a situation of “us” vs. “them” whereas you automatically take the position of the entrepreneur and become their ally (“us”). Therefore, you must, of course, be entrepreneur-friendly and thus on the right side of the story.

4. Creating buzz: That’s an easy one – particularly in a highly people-driven, competitive environment nobody wants to be associated with the ugly and bad stuff: In an attempt to distance themselves and making clear that they are not part of the problem, a lot of your fellow “frenemy“ investors and entrepreneurs will like, retweet & repost you. Your tweet or blogpost will automatically attract a lot of likes and yes-men and be trending very quickly – et voilà, you‘ve managed to get the flywheel spinning; now lean back and enjoy watching the follows & retweets coming in!

A) By doing so and potentially starting a discussion, you’re just elevating them and fueling their awareness and therefore might drive even more people to the BS they are tweeting;

B) It might backfire and turn into a shitstorm against yourself as people could take more weight on their word vs. your own – simply because they have more reach and a higher “social status“;

C) By tweeting something critical or unfavorable, you might come across as too pessimistic or too destructive i.e. the one guy or gal that is always complaining and “against everything”. Nobody likes “negative Nancy“;

D) People may interpret criticism in a way that you are feeling attacked and, therefore you are actually part of the problem that the author is trying to create. Answering to it might actually be counter-productive.

- rant mode: OFF -

I ❤️ network effects @Speedinvest X | Alumni: @Uniplaces @PointNineCap @Naspers @ricardo_ch | Passion for startups, 🏍🥋🥊 ☕️🍫🏃 | VAMO