Good morning, All,
We’ll get to that.
In case you missed it, Gurbaksh Chahal, CEO of Radium One, ended up pleading to a couple of misdemeanors after having been charged with some 47 felony counts for allegedly having battered his girlfriend 117 times over a period of half an hour. He hired a good lawyer – and he appeared on Oprah, after all, who called him an eligible bachelor. As did Extra. Yes, just make sure you have 911 on speed dial. This was all after the allegations and it’s all bad behavior – as is Jason Calacanis’s basically calling for mob justice, and offering the hacker group, Anonymous, money if they could get the video tape that was thrown out in court. Do we really need to see the video? Calacanis would have made his point had he taken that $10k and donated it to a women’s shelter – or at least matching funds. That’s a statement, too.
It took days and a huge industry outcry before there was a response to the verdict, meaning, one that would/could potentially affect the company’s bottom line. TechCrunch did drop Radium One as a Disrupt sponsor, and the all-male Radium One board finally did relieve him of his duties as CEO – but not immediately, in either case. The votes aren’t in from Conde Nast yet, as of this writing. He is a majority shareholder at Radium One and a very successful serial entrepreneur – we’ve no doubt not heard the last of Chahal. In fact, he did publish his own response, and remember: he did plead guilty to two misdemeanors.
And there’s a lesson in here for you, entrepreneurs, besides that a) committing a felony is generally counter-advised and b) not a good idea to call yourself a humanist, then refer to your girlfriend as a prostitute. Be careful what you name your company. Names have meaning. We remember in the days of web 1.0, that there was an interactive agency called Avalanche. We asked the founders why they’d chosen that particular name, considering what an avalanche is. Their answer: because it’s something huge. Yes, and it’s also something that comes crashing down, which is precisely what happened to that company.
Radium is an element found in uranium ores in trace amounts and has adverse health effects when incorporated into biochemical processes because of its radioactivity and chemical reactivity. For the record, Chahal’s first company was Blue Lithium (sold to Yahoo!), as in Lithium, which is used to treat bipolar disorder. Names have meaning. Choose wisely. As for the ‘Blue’ in Blue Lithium, we have no idea why ‘blue,’ nor is it worth expending any more grey matter on it. In the case of Chahal, OJ Simpson and Joran van der Sloot also both come to mind. Got off the first time. A leopard never changes his stripes (sic). They both had the same problem as Chahal: hubris. Money buys a lot of things. Unfortunately, a conscience and ethics are not among them. Not to mention that Simpson went on to commit other crimes – and we got stuck with the Kardashians. Onward and forward.