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                                                             on Gopher (inofficial)
   URI Visit Hacker News on the Web
   DIR   Accepted and ghosted: interviewing for a leadership position at Stripe
        rafiki6 wrote 3 hours 45 min ago:
        Sounds like you were spared an awful employment experience. If their
        recruiting process is this disorganized, imagine what your day to day
        will be like. In my career I've learned two lessons:
        - verbal anything is worth less than 0
        - Don't be the chaser, be the chased
        As I've gotten older and more experienced, I've also started to reject
        interview processes I don't like or offer feedback if it didn't make
        sense. Obviously I only do this if the risk is low.
        CanadaKaz wrote 22 hours 46 min ago:
        I was a founder of a fintech startup (Kash) and I've worked with and
        around Stripe for about a decade now.
        I think I know more fintech startup founders than the average person.
        I've literally never heard any of my founder friends saying anything
        about Stripe or Patrick or John acting improperly.   They are among the
        highest integrity people I know.
        pclark wrote 1 day ago:
        My partner interviewed with Stripe (admittedly not for an engineering
        role but for an adjacent role) and had a very positive experience. They
        start in a few weeks. It's fun to idly observe companies interview
        processes and Stripe's seemed super upstanding and robust. Very
        responsive all round with a solid offer and flexibility on start time.
        FWIW they interviewed with 3 other companies at same time — all
        ~$10B-ish companies — and 2 of them were very negative experiences
        (slow to respond recruiters, written offer not aligning with initial
        salary expectations, ...)
        irvingprime wrote 1 day ago:
        I've interviewed for a number of companies lately. They don't sound
        that unusual to me.
        dang wrote 1 day ago:
        All: there are several pages of comments in this thread - to read them
        you need to click the "X comments more..." links at the bottom of the
        page, or like this: [1] [2] We sometimes prune top-heavy comments to
        balance the subthreads out, but not in cases like this, for obvious
        reasons. There are some pretty interesting comments on the later pages
        too though.
   URI  [1]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29387264&p=2
   URI  [2]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29387264&p=3
        40acres wrote 2 days ago:
        I joined Stripe over the summer.
        Sorry to hear about the ghosting, my interview experience was very
        different to yours, no re-scheduling, and my recruiter was great with
        respect to timely follow up.
        Now that I'm at the company, I've seen how much stress folks are under
        to interview. Stripe is currently exploding in HC and it's definitely
        taking a toll on folks who are being tasked with multiple interviews
        per week which include not just the interview itself but
        akramer16 wrote 2 days ago:
        Hi danrocks — I'm a tech culture reporter with Protocol, and I'd love
        to talk with you about your experience for a potential story. If you'd
        be at all interested in chatting, I'm at akramer@protocol.com and on
        Signal at 610-701-1197.
        mathattack wrote 2 days ago:
        Not taking sides on this one other than to say I’ve been on both
        - I’ve been at “we agree on comp and the letter is coming” from a
        boutique consultancy only to learn “the CEO didn’t really approve
        funding it. But can you help us understand the market we were going to
        have you help us with?”
        - I’ve been ready to make an offer for a funded position only to have
        the SVP say “Upon further consideration we have it leveled wrong”
        and then have to apologize to the candidate.  (Who then went to the SVP
        to complain about me)
        The lesson is these things happen in large and small companies even
        when everyone has the best of intentions. The situation sucks for all
        involved when it does. It’s not avoidable, but frequency can be
        managed. (Are you giving simultaneous offers for the same position?)
        My only experience recruiting with this firm is being introduced to a
        recruiter via friend of one the folks listed in the thread. I had a
        quick HR screen. After 2 weeks I got a “We are going in another
        direction” position. Just one data point. I wish it had worked out.
        european321 wrote 2 days ago:
        Obviously sucks, had a similar experience as an SWE intern and new
        grad. I even got a written offer which was then later rescinded because
        of COVID. They said they will honor it for the next cycle, but of
        course they didn't. After reaching out they wanted to do new full
        interview loop, and then at the end said "Sorry we don't have any
        headcount left for this anymore".
        bandyaboot wrote 2 days ago:
        I had something very similar happen recently with Olive (Columbus, OH).
        I received a verbal offer and was told to expect it in writing in the
        coming days. After about a week I pinged the recruiter and was told
        they had decided not to proceed because of “a change in the
        company’s yearly plans”. It was all very bizarre.
        kitd wrote 2 days ago:
        Just re. point 1, I read somewhere that most interviewers make their
        initial mind up about a candidate in the first 4 minutes, and the
        decision changes after that in only a very small % of cases. I realise
        this is for a 2nd line position, but I suspect the same holds true.
        cheshire137 wrote 2 days ago:
        I swore off Stripe after seeing how they treated a former coworker of
        mine: [1] Your experience with interviewing there does not surprise me
        after hearing similar stories about them.
   URI  [1]: https://twitter.com/jennleaver/status/1402972896184586244?s=20
          chandra381 wrote 7 hours 49 min ago:
          Hey, that account has gone private. Could you share a TL:DR of what
          happened if possible?
        BrandoElFollito wrote 2 days ago:
        > References are contacted and feedback is confirmed positive
        The references idea is really weird (we do not practically have this in
        France). Has there even been a refence who was not in awe about the
        demi-god-genius-philanthropist that they are asked about?
        The only one time i was asked for references, I send the contacts to
        good friends asking them not to do too much theater. Surprise! they
        came back positive.
        I got one true, unexpected reference, when my university was asked
        about my PhD (confirmation of title only) and they came back with
        really nice words (again, nobody was asking for a reference, just a
        confirmation of tilte - bt they added it anyway and it was genuine (and
        yes, I knew the person who spontaneously wrote it :))
          throwaway19937 wrote 18 hours 29 min ago:
          > The references idea is really weird (we do not practically have
          this in France). Has there even been a refence who was not in awe
          about the demi-god-genius-philanthropist that they are asked about?
          It happens; I gave a negative reference to someone who had lied
          substantially about their role with the company.
          dahdum wrote 1 day ago:
          > Has there even been a refence who was not in awe about the
          demi-god-genius-philanthropist that they are asked about?
          I’ve only checked maybe 50-100 developer references over the years,
          but I can think of at least 3 that sunk the candidate outright and
          many more that were lukewarm. Enthusiastic references were uncommon
          and stood out.
            BrandoElFollito wrote 1 day ago:
            > Enthusiastic references were uncommon and stood out.
            I that case I honestly do not understand how that system works. The
            applicant provided references they could expect not to be
              dahdum wrote 1 day ago:
              If you've only had 1 or 2 previous jobs it's not a given you can
              get an enthusiastic reference. Some workplaces are just miserable
              all around, and some previous bosses may say they'd be happy to
              give a reference when they're still bitter the employee left or
              they had some personal grudge.
                BrandoElFollito wrote 1 day ago:
                Sure, this is why the one time I needed recommendations I just
                pointed to friends. They explained how wonderful I am.
                This was a specific situation  though: an American company
                doing business in France and not aware of the specificities
                here: you are not allowed to contact previous employers (except
                to confirm start and end date of a previous job), and plenty of
                other things you are not allowed to.
                They had to check a mark so whatever they got they were happy
          mattdeboard wrote 2 days ago:
          Normally, in my experience as an individual contributor, the
          references aren’t even contacted. I have had one place contact my
          references and it is the place I’m starting work in 2 weeks :)
            sjtindell wrote 1 day ago:
            Yeah I think this is because for managers in particular a lot of it
            is reputation based. The higher you go, the further you are from
            the day to day work, and the more rock solid your faith has to be
            in your directs.
            LawnGnome wrote 2 days ago:
            My current employer had an interesting twist on this: they
            contacted my references, but not to get the actual references
            (they'd already decided to hire me), but to find out what sorts of
            things they could do to help me do my best work.
            Previously, I'd agree it's pretty hit and miss, and mostly miss.
        natch wrote 2 days ago:
        > I only interviewed with only technical person.
        Is a word missing? Did you mean to say only one?
        indymike wrote 2 days ago:
        The most awkward part of the hiring process for management is when they
        have a good candidate, who makes it all the way to the offer stage and
        a better candidate emerges before the offer is accepted. Most managers
        will sneak the offer to the better candidate, and hope the good
        candidate stays on the hook while the better candidate hopefully makes
        it through onboarding.
        Most corporate hiring processes are voodoo anyway. A consistent process
        based on trowing resumes down a staircase and hiring everyone on stair
        4 probably will have about as much impact on workforce quality as the
        random, inconsistent process that is used in most companies, especially
        when you factor in interview content.
        yawz wrote 2 days ago:
        I feel your easily justified frustration. In a period when we complain
        it’s hard to hire people, companies can’t afford these big
        I also have a question. Is there a reason why you didn’t do #10 as
        the first step? I think you would have benefited from speaking with
        your acquaintance before the process.
        mercy_dude wrote 2 days ago:
        I recently interviewed for Stripe for an SWE role. I went through what
        must be 3 rounds (each about an hr) before going to virtual on-site. My
        on-site had 5 rounds and I thought I did fairly well in each except one
        dedicated to a “live debugging” session where the interviewer
        insisted I install IntelliJ (me being a VIM person) and we spent
        roughly 30min together installing and setting up different things in
        Three days later I got one of those generic thank you for applying in
        Stripe emails. I reached out to the recruiter and asked for specific
        feedback and explained my interview experience but I heard nothing
        I spent about 1.5days of my personal time off which at my current
        market rate is close to 1k USD. I sincerely believe we SWE should be
        paid to do the interviews at a prorated basis of their salaries or at
        least some level of expenses. With virtual on-site companies basically
        don’t have to do anything other than employing a few sourcers to hire
        potential candidates which incentivizes these sort of poor candidate
        varispeed wrote 2 days ago:
        With labour shortage I am amazed why people even subject themselves to
        such treatment.
        I would stop the charade at 2) and said I am no longer interested.
        staccatomeasure wrote 2 days ago:
        I have no idea what the situation is at Stripe, but there are some
        trends that explain this experience in the larger environment right
        Recruiters are extremely hard to find. Comp has soared. Many have left
        old jobs to go to new jobs.
        Generally, people rely on recruiters to manage the communication with
        candidates. Very high turnover leads to very high rate of things being
        Compounding this, hiring great engineers is extremely difficult right
        now. So recruiters have a list of 10,000 things to do. It’s not ok
        that recruiters might be less effective in candidate management for
        no-hires, but it makes sense.
        Finally, add on top of this that candidates are being less respectful
        of company time as well. Candidates are ghosting and not responding
        like never before. The market and the remoteness of the experience are
        turning hiring from a human activity into a transaction, on all sides.
          elliekelly wrote 2 days ago:
          > Finally, add on top of this that candidates are being less
          respectful of company time as well. Candidates are ghosting and not
          responding like never before.
          Managers started this trend so I don’t have a whole lot of sympathy
          for those who suddenly find themselves on the wrong end of it. Even
          kindergarteners understand you should treat others how you would like
          to be treated. All of these “busy” managers who don’t like
          being ghosted better have also ceased ghosting candidates before
          complaining about the practice.
        edpichler wrote 2 days ago:
        Stripe recruiting is terrible. It's a waterfall of red flags.
        I don't know how they are managing to grow and have such a great
        After their first call I decided to do not move on.
          sombremesa wrote 1 day ago:
          Pretty sure the “such a great product” is also just PR. I had a
          much easier time integrating with PayPal (of course, they have other
          issues not related to onboarding…), Stripe does seem to be better
          than Visa’s abysmal onboarding though.
            edpichler wrote 6 hours 17 min ago:
            I really like the Stripe product. My comment is based I pure
            personal experience.
            It's such a well done and consistent designed API (at least it
              edpichler wrote 6 hours 15 min ago:
              The HR really sucks, but some things they must be doing right. If
              it's sustainable or not, this is a whole other story.
        rbanffy wrote 2 days ago:
        The first time I interviewed for Google, I went through a couple rounds
        and, then, the recruiter vanished. I tried to reach out a couple times
        over the next couple months, and had regular chats with another googler
        who's a dear friend of mine, and, when they finally decided to move on
        with it, the position was closed because it stayed open for too long.
        My friend apologized profusely, said she felt deeply ashamed, that that
        wasn't the Google way of doing it. Quite frankly, I was OK. I was never
        very invested in becoming a googler, as cool as it was at the time (not
        that it isn't now, but it was cooler back then).
        Humans are flawed creatures.
        InsomniacL wrote 2 days ago:
        I feel like there should be an open standard for companies to say they
        abide by when recruiting. 
        1) treat with respect..
        2) ...
        3) We will never leave interviewees not knowing at what stage they're
        4) We will never leave interviewees not knowing when we will next
        contact them
        agravier wrote 2 days ago:
        Hello, I have experienced something similar recently with another tech
        company, where the hiring manager, HR and myself had agreed on
        everything including me applying for a visa au my own cost (and
        naturally stopping the interview process with several other companies).
        They weren't strangely silent for a month. I applied for the visa, got
        it andOl once I announced that I had the visa, they didn't want to
        employ me anymore, citing that the role had been "reformed".
        I learnt a month later that my colleague was leaving for this company
        and position.
        djmips wrote 2 days ago:
        I've been ghosted after being offered the job before and it's a very
        uneasy situation...
        asimpletune wrote 2 days ago:
        Honestly, is this the right forum to express this? Did you try sending
        the same feedback to them first?
        DnDGrognard wrote 2 days ago:
        So they breached a verbal contract here?
        xdavidliu wrote 2 days ago:
        > For an engineering manager position, I only interviewed with only
        technical person. To me it hints that Engineering MoM is not a very
        technical position.
        OP can you correct the typo in "with only technical person"? I can
        think of two very different things you potentially meant.
        andygroundwater wrote 2 days ago:
        Damn, if that's how they treat the higher ups I can only imagine what
        they would do with IC's lower down the food chain. Stripe were on my
        "would like to someday work there" list until I read this, now it'd be
        no way I'd jump through any number of hoops to apply to them.
        pkrotich wrote 2 days ago:
        Hiring process involving multiple decisions makers can drag on- but
        there’s no excuse for ghosting.
        I used to ghost people dating-wise to avoid uncomfortable (it’s not
        you it’s your dog) conversations until I got ghosted myself. It hurt
        and got me to remember to close open conversations quickly, perhaps to
        a fault.
        throwaway1102 wrote 2 days ago:
        Adding my story interviewing at Stripe. Went for a IC engineering role.
        Flew out to one of their offices for the onsite interview. Ghosted
        after returning home.
        Reading this thread makes me realise that I'm not alone in this
        megamix wrote 2 days ago:
        I advise to check out r/antiwork. Thanks for sharing your story. Good
        to have these once in a while.
        killtimeatwork wrote 2 days ago:
        > His answer: "don't come. It's a mess and a revolving door of people"
        What isn't? I see trying to deliver value in spite of an dysfunctional
        organization a part of my job description.
        Ansil849 wrote 2 days ago:
        > but the ghosting part
        This is a huge personal pet peeve. Being ghosted after being made a
        verbal offer, or for that matter even just after making it through
        multiple rounds of interviews, is just flat out rude. I keep a list of
        companies that behave this way towards me, so that if I am ever
        contacted by them in the future, I can point to their previous conduct
        as an explainer for why I will not be wasting my time with them a
        second time.
        frozenport wrote 2 days ago:
        Don't see an "acceptance" anywhere. Positive feedback isn't the same as
        an acceptance.
        NetOpWibby wrote 2 days ago:
        Reminds me of the interview gauntlet Hashicorp had me do a few years
        I’m glad experiences like these are getting exposed, success is no
        excuse for rudeness.
   URI  [1]: https://blog.webb.page/2018-01-11-why-the-job-search-sucks.txt
        infrawhispers wrote 2 days ago:
        Sorry to hear about this OP. I had a similar ghosting experience @
        Interviewed for a Senior SWE position and they made me an offer - I
        asked for a slight increase in RSUs and the recruiter disappeared. I
        also sent two follow up emails that I supposed went into the void.
        There are a ton of great companies / opportunities out there! Since you
        can pass their loop I am sure you have the right mindset and skills to
        pass others - their loss!
        strzibny wrote 2 days ago:
        This is terrible. Tech recruiting needs some serious change.
        As a positive counter point, I got last two contracting jobs by having
        one lunch/coffee and just talking for half an hour. No grind, no CS
        questions, not even checking on references... loved the experience.
        When I was recruiting we only had a one hour interview. I did ask
        technical questions, but treated it more like a conversation and all
        questions were on point (related to the application, no CS algo).
        verve_rat wrote 2 days ago:
        I just want to say thanks. Naming and shaming does the rest of us a
        favour and, hopefully, makes the whole industry better.
        simonebrunozzi wrote 2 days ago:
        Here's my own little story. (not as bad as the OP)
        About a year ago, I was reading Byrne Hobart's excellent newsletter on
        financial stuff (no affiliation, but it's well worth its money), and I
        see an ad where they're looking for a head of strategy.
        To apply, you simply had to email John Collison (the youngest of the
        Collison brothers) with your idea about it.
        I thought I had a shot, given my experiences, and decided to spend
        several hours to prepare a memo, that I shared with them.
        Of course, I thought, after all this work, and considering that this
        candidature comes from a respected, still niche, newsletter, and given
        my resume and past experience (ex AWS - first hire in Europe in 2008 -,
        ex VMware, etc - I'm not trying to beat my chest here, just stating
        that I objectively had a good resume for a position like this), at
        least I should get one chance to interview, or worst case, a simple but
        kind "we saw your note, not interested, good luck".
        Of course, as you can guess, I've never heard back. Reached out again
        after a couple of weeks, and still nothing from them.
        Reached out to a friend who works at Stripe, asked him if he could help
        with my application. He says he will try, but then... nothing.
        Ok, Stripe, I guess you won't have me.
        Side note: compare that with how I got my job at Amazon Web Services,
        back in 2008 [1]. Completely different experience.
        Eventually, after I gave up on this opportunity, I decided to make the
        memo into a blog post [0], omitting or tweaking a few minor details. It
        might be worth a read, and I would love to hear your thoughts on it.
        [0]: [1]:
   URI  [1]: https://simon.medium.com/stripes-opportunity-reinventing-custo...
   URI  [2]: https://simon.medium.com/2008-how-i-got-hired-by-amazon-com-31...
          3x3m3 wrote 1 day ago:
          Thanks for sharing your story.
          but lol this strategy memo is so oblivious to the company's current
          strategy and just unfit. Not surprised it did't get a reply.
          It's a net negative. Zero useful thoughts in there for Stripe's
          The worst part is trying to sound smart while expressing really
          superficial thoughts. No bigger sign of incompetence.
          shrimpx wrote 2 days ago:
          So you just sent “a memo” for an ad you found on a newsletter and
          never heard back, and this is shocking somehow?
            simonebrunozzi wrote 2 days ago:
            Not exactly. The newsletter is a paid, niche newsletter, and the
            author stated that you could apply to the job by directly emailing
            John Collison. It was somehow implied that applying that way was a
            more direct track than a cold email.
            It's also stupid to pay for an ad in a "special" newsletter,
            mention how candidates can reach out to you, and:
            1) Ignore the extra work done by someone to show high interest in
            the job
            2) not even respond at all.
            You might see things differently, of course. This is how I see it,
            and I think that Stripe didn't behave nicely in this particular
            stance. As stated at the beginning of my comment, this is not
            comparable to the OP story which, assuming it's completely true and
            unbiased, is certainly worse than mine.
              shrimpx wrote 1 day ago:
              Thanks for the extra context. Still, I would imagine that an
              employer would feel free to ghost any email or application from
              an unknown person unless it came with a specific recommendation
              from someone they know.
        omarish wrote 2 days ago:
        Did it strike you that:
        * You're applying for managers of managers role
        * Which means you're probably going to need to know how to deal with
        ambiguity and difficult people situations
        * So if your response to not getting what you want is writing a 500+
        word rant on a public forum, is this also how you plan to respond when
        you run into a complex people issue on the job?
          timwaagh wrote 2 days ago:
          I also believe a bit of self reflection is perhaps in order.
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          >  You're applying for managers of managers role
          > Which means you're probably going to need to know how to deal with
          ambiguity and difficult people situations
          I wonder if organizations would be better if we all did that? The
          Internet would be a much more fun place, I believe.
        deepspace wrote 2 days ago:
        Stripe sucks so much as a company.  For one, they classify all
        businesses catering to LGBTQIA+ clientele as 'Adult Services' and drop
        them as customers.
        But even worse, they do so in a particularly destructive way.  The
        accept the business as a customer at first, and then suddenly withdraw
        service without warning, leaving the business scrambling to find an
        alternate credit card processor.
          superStarTruth wrote 2 days ago:
          yeah, well - true fact:
          Stripe does ton of Adult Services shit - they just hide it by farming
          it out through shady payment services like [1] that proxy it for them
          so it "looks legit".
          that way the various payment providers can claim legitimacy by saying
          "stripe is one of our biggest customers" and stripe can say "we dont
          do shady shit"
   URI    [1]: https://www.bankingcircle.com/
        nowherebeen wrote 2 days ago:
        I hope this discussion doesn’t get automatically down-ranked just
        because it talks about Stripe in a negative light. This is an important
        discussion to have given how common this occurs at tech startups.  It
        is rude and impolite for companies (not just Stripe) to behave in such
        a manner when hiring.  It’s almost as if they forgot what basic
        manners are and yet they demand so much of the candidate.
          dang wrote 2 days ago:
          We haven't downweighted this thread. Normally we downweight such
          threads because otherwise the front page would mostly consist of
          them, and mostly stacked at the top, too. Not that we exclude them
          altogether, but indignation routinely attracts tons of upvotes and
          one of moderation's jobs is to jig the system out of its failure
          However, we moderate HN less, not more, when YC or YC startups are
          involved in the story. That doesn't mean we don't moderate them at
          all—just less. But in this case we've not touched it, partly
          because of that core principle and partly because the thread is
          arguably more interesting reading than most of its ilk, at least in
   URI    [1]: https://hn.algolia.com/?dateRange=all&page=0&prefix=false&qu...
            sjtindell wrote 1 day ago:
            I have learned a ton about HN moderation in this thread, thanks for
            sharing. To your point about the thread itself, I think this is
            amazing content. Threads of big names showing up, debates about
            anonymity, debates about acquisition due diligence, hiring
            practices…grade A!
        civilized wrote 2 days ago:
        God, all the finance people in here backbiting each other makes me not
        want to work for any of you.
        shawnb576 wrote 2 days ago:
        Yeah I’ve been ghosted by Stripe twice after very positive “this is
        great we’ll set up next steps” meetings.
        One of which was a 1:1 with the CTO, really positive stuff. Few days
        later I emailed a thanks and “would like to talk about next steps”.
         Nothing. Sent another a couple weeks later. Nada.
        Several months later, got a reach out from a team, said I was
        interested, and the HM said ok yeah I’ll get you set up. Nothing.
        I know I’m not the only one, I know of others who have had similar
        It’s just poor form.
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          > It’s just poor form.
          This. This is what I meant with this post above. Poor form.
          Incompatible with the supposed criticality of the position at stake.
          I still think Stripe is a great company, was just disappointed at
          being ignored after all the festivities.
        rajasimon wrote 2 days ago:
        I was interviewed for the senior software engineer role and I have
        cleared the first coding interview round. It was HackerRank challenge
        and I pretty positive that it went really well. After that HR called me
        about an introductory call. I've mentioned about how I got into the
        software engineering and what are my passion in the payment industry
        and how I can help stripe grow as a company. I also mentioned about the
        indiehackers website a lot. At first HR doesn't know anything what I'm
        talking. She acted like she knows about the company. Anyway after few
        days I got the email saying that mine got rejected. I'm still thinking
        about what I have mentioned wrongly to HR that she got pissed to
        rejected me in the first place. This may Not a relevant story to the OP
        but hey just wanted to splash my story on the internet.
        colordrops wrote 2 days ago:
        I had an analogous experience with Toyota's self-driving division,
        Woven Planet.  Not nearly as bad, but some similarities.  The recruiter
        had three calls with me first, asking rote questions that were clearly
        scripted.  She asked the same questions multiple times.  Afterward, she
        had me fill out a form with my experience, strengths, weaknesses, etc. 
        She had me read the profiles of various people at the company, and
        insisted I read through the entire website as well.
        After all this, she insisted that I sift through all the publicly
        listed positions and give her a sorted list of the ones I thought I was
        suited for, along with a checklist of how I matched each qualification.
         She then asked me to only select one, even though it wasn't clear what
        each group did or which role I was best qualified for or interested in.
         Then she asked for open slots to start doing interviews.    Lastly she
        asked for a salary range.  I let her know my FAANG salary, and she
        gasped and paused a bit.  She quickly ended the discussion and said
        she'd call me in the next couple days with an interview schedule.  Then
        she ghosted me for a month.  She eventually mailed me and let me know
        they weren't ready to move forward.
        By the way, the Woven Planet website is a mess, and the company
        probably is too.  You'd never guess they are an automated driving
        division.  They have all these ideas of a "future city" they are
        building and are paving over a section of land near Mt Fuji to build
        this "future city".  They've hired Japanese speaking foreigners to do
        all these touchy-feely motivational videos that have nothing to do with
        self driving vehicles.    Complete lack of focus.  I lost a lot of
        respect for Toyota after this experience.
          mavelikara wrote 2 days ago:
          > You'd never guess they are an automated driving division.
          Woven Planet's automated driving division was acquired from Lyft
          earlier this year [1]. They probably are still going through the
   URI    [1]: https://investor.lyft.com/news-and-events/news/news-details/...
          temp67531 wrote 2 days ago:
          If it makes you feel better, you dodged a bullet there not wasting
          time with Woven Planet [0].
   URI    [1]: https://i.reddit.com/r/japanlife/comments/pi6mdk/psa_i_waste...
            colordrops wrote 2 days ago:
            Yes, it does make me feel better.  Thanks, that is a crazy story!
        bogomipz wrote 2 days ago:
        I was curious about this:
        >"I get asked for references."
        Is this still common? I thought these were such a potential liability
        in the US that nobody even asked for those any more. Is that just not
        true in SV maybe?
        de11 wrote 2 days ago:
        Had similar experiences with two companies few months back for Senior
        MLE/Lead DS role. It seems practice of ghosting after selection and
        verbal commitment to offer is widespread. It's terrible practice they
        ask you to resign and join asap saying that offer will be made in few
        days and then they ghost. What a waste of time of everyone involved !
        kottaram wrote 2 days ago:
        Easy. They were keeping you as back up. They were not sure if their
        most preferred candidate would accept the offer, so they kept you in a
        loop until the other person joined. Looks like he did.
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          That's what my wife said as well. I would still understand this,
          except the "when can you start?" and the ghosting part.
            kottaram wrote 1 day ago:
            Women also do the same thing lol. Thats why she knew.
            noisy_boy wrote 2 days ago:
            Maybe they were really serious about him until a rockstar turned up
            and then they couldn't just pass that up.
        ggfgdjfhgjsdhfg wrote 2 days ago:
        I'm posting this from a throwaway and not my regular account so not to
        incriminate myself. But my experience outlined below is 100% truthful.
        Stripe is arrogant. I have many years of solid and proven experience.
        They called me out of the blue and I accepted to speak to the hiring
        manager. The recruiter sounded very arrogant in first conversation. She
        rushed me to schedule an interview but inexplicably postponed the
        interview with hiring manager by four weeks once I accepted.
        When I reached out to an acquaintance of mine who had worked in Stripe
        in the interim, she said that they are simply in search of marquee
        brand names in your resume and it is a mess inside. As per her, the
        people who work there are simply too egotistic. Even people who just
        happened to have won the "lucky sperm/egg" lottery by joining a rocket
        ship early on considered themselves as geniuses.
        In my experience in interviewing with them I felt the same. I sensed an
        undercurrent of arrogance, feeling of superiority, etc. They deserve
        praise for what they have accomplished so far and their valuation but
        it feels like it has gone to their head for many employees who work
        there now.
        Needless to say, I didn't get the job. I'm not bitter but felt that
        they didn't treat me well in the process...
        If you are interviewing there, beware.....
        luckydata wrote 2 days ago:
        Stripe has been giving horrible interview experiences to LOTS of
        candidates over the years, and they are very unserious about how they
        treat potential employes. They are lucky they are hot, cause the voice
        is starting to spread and the pool of people willing to be dicked
        around to work at a company starts shrinking after you have a certain
        andrew_ wrote 2 days ago:
        If a process takes more than three interviews (allowing for an actually
        role-applicable take home) and two weeks, I bow out. Toss me some array
        shuffling algorithm challenge like I'm fresh out of school and I'm out
        as well. OP is just more evidence that tech hiring has been infiltrated
        by grifters lacking creativity and inventing processes to justify large
        recruiting/hiring orgs and oversized processes. It's just horribly
        broken in the majority.
        pottertheotter wrote 2 days ago:
        I had a very similar experience with DoorDash this year; I had been
        several interview rounds and met with people including c-level. The
        experience made me think the org must be pretty dysfunctional and I
        dodged a bullet.
        diebeforei485 wrote 2 days ago:
        As an individual contributor, nobody has contacted my references until
        they've given me a (conditional) offer letter and I've accepted.
        Seems like a massive waste of everybody's time otherwise.
          andrew_ wrote 2 days ago:
          In the last 15 years I've had exactly one company contact my
          references. I went to work for them. It's rare these days, and it's a
        jollybean wrote 2 days ago:
        If turnover is high, can someone chime in with data as to why?
        Are they burning people out with intensity? Firing? Quitting?
        Is it 'growth chaos' around a solid product, or is the underlying tech
        a janky mess?
        Is it just an aggressive cull of 'non working experiments' in which
        people get let go?
        Or just a poorly operationalized HR process?
          rdtwo wrote 2 days ago:
          It’s a manager manager position… like not a great place to be in
          the organizational pyramid. You either hit exec get fired or burn out
        throwaway984393 wrote 2 days ago:
        "After passing the loop ... have the hiring manager tell me they'd be
        calling me after a week"
        That's when you know you're just the backup option. If you passed their
        hiring loop, and they like you, and they have actual budget +
        headcount, you're hired. They don't need to wait a week to call you
        back, and they know that; once they have confirmed good references,
        they should be sending you an offer immediately, not after an arbitrary
        amount of time.
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          Or, in this case, an infinite amount of time :D
        temp1410 wrote 2 days ago:
        I had a pretty similar experience interviewing at Stripe for a
        (frontline) Manager position a couple of years ago.
        I get scheduled for a screening call with the hiring manager. The
        hiring manager doesn't call me. Recruiter follows up and offers to
        bring me onsite (no apology offered) without need for screen.
        I'm shared the interview loop which has about 5 people (including the
        hiring manager who ghosted me).
        Interviews were not very technical, just casual chats about management
        When it came time for the hiring manager to interview me, I got stood
        up. Again. Sat 45 minutes in the interview room with no one to check on
        me or inform if the HM slot will be replaced. Recruiting coordinator
        was unreachable.
        At the end of the last interview, I told the recruiting walking me out
        about the no-show. They shrugged (zero apology again.)
        This was followed up by 2.5 weeks of radio silence despite me seeking
        for updates.
        Ultimately they responded to my follow up e-mails with standard
        rejection template.
          nowherebeen wrote 2 days ago:
          ryandrake wrote 2 days ago:
          > When it came time for the hiring manager to interview me, I got
          stood up. Again. Sat 45 minutes in the interview room with no one to
          check on me or inform if the HM slot will be replaced. Recruiting
          coordinator was unreachable.
          Hah! After 15 minutes of waiting, I'd get up, walk out of the
          interview room, and wander around the company, talking to random
          employees, trying to learn just how much of a shit show the place
          was, if only for morbid curiosity's sake.
            davidcelis wrote 23 hours 17 min ago:
            Their office has an entire team dedicated to physical security. If
            you're walking around by yourself and you don't have an employee
            badge, they find you pretty quick.
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          Somehow this is even worse than what I went through. At least I
          didn't get stood up in person.
          rdtwo wrote 2 days ago:
          I mean that Seems like typical big company behavior. Maybe you are so
          special that you usally get treated better but a typical non tech
          engineer gets that treatment in big companies
            FireBeyond wrote 2 days ago:
            Uh, no.
            You don't get left alone in a meeting room for 45 minutes and then
            when the recruiter comes back, you say "Uh, no-one showed up", and
            they say "oh well"?
            That is not "typical" treatment.
        choppaface wrote 2 days ago:
        Companies employ the "shotgun" approach to hiring because there is
        essentially no existing feedback mechanism for panels to see the
        consequences of their decisions.  Sometimes posts like this OP or some
        Glassdoor review will bubble up, but then the company acts on the
        defensive and the people who actually screwed up likely won't even ever
        know what happened.
        Are you an IC doing tech screens? An EM or Director doing loops like
        those in the OP?  How much feedback have you gotten in the past 2 years
        about the success (or lack thereof) of the candidates you interviewed,
        whether you hired them or not?    (Here "success" is how they aligned to
        your evaluation-- could be they had _financial_ success or _career_
        success choosing some other job).
        EMs will sometimes try to keep tabs on "false negatives," and at the
        Director / VP Level there's more formal analytical effort (though a lot
        of it is trying to hit quotas, even if those quotas are bloated or
        poorly defined).  But this aggregate information very rarely bubbles
        down to the panel and in particular the individuals who interacted with
        the candidate.
        Why keep so many people in the dark?  For one thing, if results were
        disseminated, then salaries / offers would leak too, and then the
        engineering org becomes much more expensive.  (Ironically, the employee
        stock pool is tiny, and engineering salaries are often not the biggest
        cost to a Co.  The issue here is more about the C-levels having so
        little understanding of the job market.  That's why Steve Jobs wanted a
        no-poach-- he had no idea what his coveted Safari employees actually
        Moreover, panels suck. They get stuff wrong all the time.  I have never
        been on a panel that has not moved the goalposts at least 3-4 times
        between candidates as the panel tries to figure out what the panel even
        really wants.  If ICs and the panel got to know about the outcomes of
        their actions, they're going to question what happened.  And the
        higher-ups don't want to spend time having that debate.
        How can we prevent outcomes like those illustrated in the OP?
        If you're a recruiter, stop shotgunning candidates.  Try to figure out
        what your client really wants, and poke half the passives you might
        otherwise.  For actives, give _useful_ feedback, even if it's just
        verbally.  If bombing one leetcode is all it takes relative to the rest
        of the pool, that can be good for a junior engineer to know.
        If you're an IC doing interview loops, do a quarterly review of the
        candidates you interviewed and the panels you were on.    Insist to your
        manager that you want to do this as part of your 1:1s.    Think
        critically about the loops and discuss with others.
        If you're a Director / VP / C-level, stop treating candidates like
        toys.  You earn outsized compensation because you're supposed to be a
        force multiplier-- you're supposed to assemble an amazing team.  If you
        fell into a goldmine of an opportunity, be extra generous to
        candidates.  You're going to build a good team out of luck, not your
        own ability, and you'll thank yourself later for not being a sore
        winner.  If your funnel sucks (e.g. you're a tiny unknown start-up),
        expect to need to improvise, and don't blame candidates for your own
        bad luck.
        avl999 wrote 2 days ago:
        I applied at Stripe a couple of years ago through their website when I
        was looking to switch jobs. The position I applied for was on one of
        their backend teams. I had 5.5 years of work experience at a FAANG,
        excellent university grades if they care and 6 years experience with
        Java (which I believe was the primary language for the role) and within
        30 seconds of applying I got a rejection email. Obviously an automated
        email because my resume didn't have a certain keyword or keywords their
        bot was looking for. Weird company... I don't feel entitled to an
        interview but you'd think at the bare minimum a human would look at
        it... (or at the very least add a sleep(time.hours(6)) to make it look
        like a human looked at it). Made all the more funny with a recruiter
        from the company contacting me around the same time on linkedin for
          _vertigo wrote 2 days ago:
          A couple of years ago I applied with a similar resume, and even wrote
          a cover letter because I was worried that I would be auto-rejected if
          I didn’t include it. I spent far too long on the cover letter, I
          probably spent 2 or 3 hours on it, normally I’d never do something
          like that but Stripe had such a great reputation on this site I
          figured it was a solid investment. I sent my application and heard
          nothing. Figured I had been ghosted and moved on. Applied, passed
          phone screens, passed interview loops, and received offers from other
          companies. The day I accepted one of those offers, some 1.5 or 2
          months after I applied to Stripe, a Stripe recruiter reached out to
          me basically biting on the application.
          How was it that 3 other companies were able to fit and entire
          interview cycle in in the time it took Stripe to get back to me about
          my application? I turned the recruiter down and wrote it off as a
          fluke or some sort of mixup. I’ve been ghosted before, I’ve been
          auto-rejected before, but I’ve never been pseudo-ghosted wherein
          the recruiting team effectively ghosts you by ignoring your
          application for 6 weeks and then reached out to you once you already
          had offers in hand. Weird company, for sure.
          lobocinza wrote 2 days ago:
          Had that happen to me (other company). I would be less pissed if I
          hadn't to manually copy and paste my resume data into their shit RMS.
        mamidon wrote 2 days ago:
        I recently did a few interviews & was shocked at how often I would
        complete an entire loop (coffee chat, tech screen, full-day 'onsite')
        only to be completely ghosted.    I'm totally fine with rejection, I
        don't think I've ever done better than 50/50 for an offer, but it's
        super unprofessional to just ghost someone who's given you 5+ hours.
        It's not that hard to just send a "thanks but no thanks" email.
        To name names: Flymachine.io, Boulevard, and Pepper.
          mamidon wrote 21 hours 37 min ago:
          Boulevard actually reached out to me & apologized, apparently the 2
          people working with me both left the company.  If there's a good
          reason for someone to fall through the cracks, I suppose that would
          definitely be it!
          I can say that I've otherwise had a great experience with Boulevard.
          k8sToGo wrote 2 days ago:
          I once followed up and the manager invited me onsite just to explain
          me in person that I get rejected... I took a day off for that.
          jholman wrote 2 days ago:
          Naming names, AWS ghosted me after a full day of interviews. 
          Actually that entire process was a charlie foxtrot.  Not that I think
          I earned an offer in that interview, but they didn't earn an
          acceptance either.
            lnenad wrote 2 days ago:
            I had the same experience with Adidas in Europe. I went through 3
            rounds of remote interviews, then went to Herzogenaurach for an
            onsite, two days, then nothing. I understand if they didn't like me
            or they liked someone more, but ghosting at that point makes you
            feel like shit.
          nowherebeen wrote 2 days ago:
          Even an automated email is better than no reply.  Past companies that
          I interviewed that ghosts me, I would never apply again in the
          future.  It’s just basic manners.  Having too many candidates is
          not an excuse.    Especially if you want to hire senior programmers
          because we always remember. HR is usually the first impression
          candidates have with the company and it’s a lasting one.  This is
          also why HR and recruiters are viewed so poorly with many
          jp42 wrote 2 days ago:
          to name names - Microsoft, its been over a month and no response
          after onsite loop.
          auntienomen wrote 2 days ago:
          I have a theory that companies do this when they don't trust their
          own hiring process.  They're waiting for you to ring them and say,
          "Hey, I've got an offer from X?  Are you guys going to get off the
            notahacker wrote 2 days ago:
            More straightforward explanation is that the candidate is perfectly
            fine for the role so they don't want to send a rejection email, but
            then they have another candidate or idea for the role so they want
            to wait and see how that pans out first.
            A month later, they've forgotten they've still got a candidate or
            two to say no to, or figure you're probably not waiting on
            tenterhooks for an answer.
          Gortal278 wrote 2 days ago:
          Thanks for sharing the company names, I respect that!
          wombat-man wrote 2 days ago:
          hate to say it but I've been trained to assume it's a no unless I get
          a yes within a week.
            danw1979 wrote 2 days ago:
            I’ve only ever had positive responses with 24 hours (usually a
            lot less) or nothing at all.  The nothings are usually not a
            I always ask potential employers to walk me through the process
            they need to follow to make a decision on me (visualisation =
            realisation ?) and also ask for quick feedback (but not with any BS
            about competing offers).
            I think this shows them you take their offer seriously and have
            plenty of experience of the hiring process, so maybe you’re less
            likely to get messed about ?
            mamidon wrote 2 days ago:
            You're not wrong, same assumption I make too.
          op00to wrote 2 days ago:
          Never heard of any of those names, so you dodged a few turds!
            gusgus01 wrote 2 days ago:
            There are hundreds of thousands of tech companies in the US. There
            are bound to be good companies many of us have never heard of. Name
            recognition seems like a poor filter function with numbers this
        a-dub wrote 2 days ago:
        sometimes companies can be disorganized, especially at various
        inflection points during their growth.
        i had a similar experience with a company years ago... had a laugh
        about it with some friends and thanked the recruiter for their time
        anyway. six months later they came back and offered a more defined
        role, but i was already down the path with a different company.
        i think, maybe, publicly shaming the company is not the best strategy.
        if they figure out it was you, and it does damage to their reputations,
        none of the people involved will ever want to work with you.
        throwaway5592 wrote 2 days ago:
        This sort of nonsense seems to be common everywhere. A friend of mine
        is interviewing for senior product manager positions in Amazon India
        and the process is just as, if not more, broken. Multiple interviews
        for multiple positions, interviews go great, no rejections, just
        ghosting from HR.  In the most recent application,  after the initial
        phone interview, the HR contact responds to a what's going on query
        with "we are waiting on interview slots from all panelists for the
        loop".. Only a week later sends another email "The team has decided to
        fill the position internally". That is fine, the hiring manager's
        decision, but they do it by reposting the same exact same job again, I
        suspect as an end run around the hiring process since there is an
        application that is at the loop stage. All of this seems so sleazy I
        can't imagine what it would be to work in such a place.
        op00to wrote 2 days ago:
        Make this story 1/4 as long.
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          Interviewed. Passed. Congratulated. Asked for start date. Ghosted.
        kornhole wrote 2 days ago:
        I take it you are not from around here. People in this area are masters
        of flowery noncommittal. For example, you might ask somebody if they
        are interested in doing something and they say "Wow that sounds like a
        great idea." Translation: not interested.
        In reading through your experience, they did not seem to give you a
        firm offer. Sadly this is kind of typical around here though I really
        wish it wasn't. I have had to translate the SFspeak to foreign
        companies doing business here several times who were just as confused
        as you.
          nowherebeen wrote 2 days ago:
          Please write a tutorial.
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          Well, I see what you mean, having worked in the US, but this wasn't
          in the US. Maybe flowery noncommittal has become a global phenomenon?
          If so, I'll have trouble navigating it.
        kadomony wrote 2 days ago:
        Not the same, but somewhat similar to op's predicament: I interviewed
        at an eCommerce company for a role that I was very suited for. Went
        through the loop, got positive feedback, was told I'd been chosen as
        the candidate, and a week later--boom, "the business decided to table
        the job req".
        It's really taxing on applicants when the inner turmoil of a company
        affects job postings. A company should not post a job role only to
        revoke it at the final step. You shouldn't be withdrawing a req after
        candidates begin interviewing.
        It was an expensive (time-wise) lesson for me. I really admired this
        company until I had my chain yanked twice with them.
        ichydkrsrnae wrote 2 days ago:
        In your mind you imagine an HR professional planning your loop,
        interviewers that are genuinely interested in you, a hiring manager
        who's carefully read your resumé and has specific questions about your
        experience. You just (wasted|spent) five or six years and $200,000 on
        your four year degree. They better be interested, right?
        In reality, a hiring manager clicked on your resume because an
        algorithm suggested it, told HR to setup a loop, and then promptly
        forgot you until the day you showed up.
        If you're one of the lucky ones, your resume might have actually been
        read by a human.
        The interviewers on the loop are probably not even on the team you'll
        join if hired.
        There's a 90% chance they haven't even read the job requisition for the
        position you're applying for, if they could even find it. I've had to
        interview people blind without requisition or resume, and yes I did
        feel like an idiot both times, a rude one.
        The person sitting across from you asking questions probably first
        learned of your very existence 15 minutes before it began; not because
        of disinterest, but because HR assigned the interview with that short
        of a window! re: x out sick, y in important meeting, etc.
        All of this is true for at least 2 FAANGs and 1 MSFT in my experience
        as an interviewer and interviewee on over 50 loops over a decade.
        What I'm saying is there is no spit or polish to the hiring process,
        not even at competitive companies, not even at the big ones, perhaps
        especially so because the assumption will be that you actually know
        what you're doing since you were bold enough to apply and even bolder
        to attend an interview loop at one of these "amazing" companies.
        The musical chairs you experienced at Stripe, if explained at all, will
        be calendar conflicts, meeting overruns, sick employees, fire drills
        within, etc., all of those ambiguities that constantly interrupt IT.
        The show doesn't stop within because you're being interviewed on
        Wednesday. You are not the show. That $1000 suit you're wearing, the
        only suit you'll ever buy or ever wear ever again, bought you 60
        minutes (or 20 at Stripe for Mgr of Mgrs).
        The real explanation you will never know, but something as facile as
        the third guy on the loop not liking the fact that you have a full head
        of hair and he has none is actually sufficient, if you understand what
        I mean, that hiring is messy and opaque and human and, therefore, often
        Would you believe one of these companies has had for decades now, as a
        core competency to hire for,  “A tolerance for ambiguity”? I always
        loved that one.
          artpi wrote 2 days ago:
          This is the best comment of this entire thread
          grumple wrote 2 days ago:
          I think you make some good points about the human part of the hiring
          process. Things happen - and hiring managers are often in a lot of
          meetings that run over.
          But as someone who's been on both sides of the loop, I have very
          little faith in the hiring practices at them. And it comes down to
          something you said:
          > What I'm saying is there is no spit or polish to the hiring process
          This is totally unacceptable in my opinion. Devs spend months (or
          years) of prep to pass 1-2 days of rigorous whiteboarding, but HR
          can't work out a schedule and send emails / make phone calls
          properly? And don't even get me started about the shitshow that is
          the onboarding process at these megacorps. And these processes being
          total shitshows makes the failures intentional.
          These processes are exactly the kind of thing I target for
          refinement. The process should be documented, it should be robust,
          and it should make things better for everyone involved.
            ichydkrsrnae wrote 2 days ago:
            I agree with you as an engineer. I disagree with you as a human
            being. Why be so formal during the interview process when the
            actual working environment will be anything but?
            If they can tolerate the ridiculousness of the interview process,
            then they might be able to tolerate the ridiculousness of actually
            working there.
            Ask anyone who's worked at any of these companies, and they'll tell
            you it's pretty fucking ridiculous a majority of the time. Even at
            the very biggest companies, IT shoots from the hip, and boy(!) does
            the interview process reflect that.
            If we built houses the way we build software, the entire world
            would be homeless.
              grumple wrote 1 day ago:
              That is a ridiculous cop-out. Dev work is very regimented for
              many of us; we have a half dozen regular agile meetings,
              deployment schedules, etc. The process for code getting accepted
              and deployed is well-established.
              It's very easy to establish a standard response time for getting
              back to candidates or tell them when you're going to make a
              selection, and to communicate and enforce a timeline for things
              like sending and signing documents. I could literally automate
              most of the process.
                ichydkrsrnae wrote 1 day ago:
                You could. Could HR? An HR rep can't tell you what a function
                key on a keyboard is.
                Don't these HR systems like Taleo, etc. integrate tracking and
                workflow issues like this into their product suite? Surely they
          temp67531 wrote 2 days ago:
          Well it's seems like in 2021 with so much tech and automation
          resources available it should be possible to set up a process that
          does not ghost candidates.
            ichydkrsrnae wrote 2 days ago:
            You are implying this is intentional. That has not been
            established. For all we know, an essential person to the hiring
            process died from COVID, putting some real ghost in the ghosting.
            The CEO responded. He doesn't agree that this is norm, but he
            can't, can he?
            One person, one story, n equals one. 1 does not equal 10,000.
            Worse, hiring has x^n variables. He could have nailed the
            interview, astonished absolutely everybody into hiring him, only to
            be outcompete the very next day by the guy who wrote the book on
            managing managers at financial institutions.
            The attempt to amplify this as something oft-repeated at Stripe
            lacks evidence. “I've heard this” and “I've heard that”
            about Stripe is hearsay, secondary, questionable at best.
            Doesn't this post strike you as mildly disgruntled?
              csunbird wrote 2 days ago:
              >The CEO responded. He doesn't agree that this is norm, but he
              can't, can he?
              I think, the CEO responding has no impact at all, as the options
              for him is to reply exactly in the way he responded to this
              thread or not reply at all. Either way, he can not admit anything
              going wrong within his company, so it is meaningless.
              avh02 wrote 2 days ago:
              > who wrote the book on managing managers at financial
              I've been around and worked with people who have written books,
              maybe not "the" books (one of them might have been, actually) -
              and honestly, one of the people who wrote a book was one of the
              worst developers I had worked with. The other was good but
              extremely lazy.
              The one who wrote what might have been "the" book on a topic was
              (in my eyes) a fraud, he was fired shortly after he was brought
              on to consult, along with the CEO and marketing dept which
              brought him in.
              ichydkrsrnae wrote 2 days ago:
              That's not a fair response. I clearly see what you're saying. Of
              course you're right. It's only decent they close the loop, but
              the reality is it's messy.
              LCA might have a policy specifically precluding Stripe from
              communicating anything with regards to an unsuccessful interview.
          BubbleRings wrote 2 days ago:
          Spot on. And even people that normally can be counted on to put in
          effort and keep their word, about 40% of those people have fallen
          apart as workers under covid.
        unreal37 wrote 2 days ago:
        If I can take a guess...
        Recruiters are over-excited sometimes. The recruiter told you that you
        passed. The recruiter told you that you should expect an offer. The
        recruiter asked for and checked your references.
        The hiring manager may have said very little to this recruiter to
        encourage this. We don't know whether it was "we're going to hire him"
        or "he's ok let's talk to a few more people".
        So there may be a disconnect between Stripe and the agency they use to
          crate_barre wrote 2 days ago:
          My take on what the recruiter did was that most of his/her prospects
          got flat out rejections and this guy didn’t - which is the most
          positive signal the recruiter could ascertain from their shitty
          hiring managers who can’t communicate properly.
          brown9-2 wrote 2 days ago:
          This makes no sense. A company like Stripe has in-house recruiters.
          An external recruiter would never tell a candidate they referred they
          were hired without hearing it from the company first - as they’d be
          burned too many times by setting people up for disappointment, and it
          would destroy their reputation with the employer.
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          The references were checked by the hiring manager. The
          congratulations were also extended by the hiring manager. So it’s
          hard to pin this on the recruiter.
          Also no agency was used, it was all internal.
        asah wrote 2 days ago:
        everybody complains, nobody offers a solution. I'll start.
        1. when you're first contacted by a recruiter, company provides a
        written set of values/principles that the company expects from its
        recruiters and staff, contact info if you feel the company didn't live
        up to these principles, or have a suggestion for how to improve the
        2. tie x% of recruiter comp to good behavior, and y% of interviewers.
        3. automatically send surveys to candidates (both accepted and
        rejected) and check to see if you feel they could've streamlined the
        process or made it more pleasant. Capture an NPS score. Offer a cash
        bonus thank-you and another for referring friends.
        other ideas?
          anonymoushn wrote 2 days ago:
          Stripe already supposedly sends surveys to candidates, but even after
          asking for the survey on HN, having pc ask me to ask again via email,
          and asking via email, I have not received it.
            anonymoushn wrote 17 hours 8 min ago:
            Hello, sorry, this is incorrect. I really did receive it a few days
            after emailing pc about it.
          peterth3 wrote 2 days ago:
          I’d assume that Stripe isn’t trying to solve problems like this
          because of a lack of priority. Not because of a lack of ideas. A big
          company gearing up for a blockbuster IPO probably has many other
          problems to solve with higher priorities.
          Definitely agree about the excess of complaining in this thread
          though. HN isn’t a good forum for discussions like this, but
          that’s probably more a social media problem than an HN problem.
          quickthrower2 wrote 2 days ago:
          Good ideas, good companies will of course already be doing stuff like
          this. This is a story because $BELOVED_TECH_COMPANY was bad to
          interview for with a side helping of “mate says it’s chaos over
        throwaway019254 wrote 2 days ago:
        I was interviewing with Stripe about a year ago and had a very similar
        I also heard that attrition is really high and work-life balance
        So maybe I was lucky in this case.
        acjohnson55 wrote 2 days ago:
        I hear of people interviewing regularly and I honestly don't get it. I
        couldn't be motivated to go through the process without the intent to
        leave my job and take one at the new company. It's very binary for me,
        I'm either definitely looking or not looking.
          FPGAhacker wrote 2 days ago:
          Interviewing is a skill like any other. You have to practice to be
          good at it, and actual interviews are good practice.
          But I wouldn’t go out and interview a lot unless I was planning or
          willing to leave.
          But once a year it’s probably a good idea to do it to keep from
          getting rusty. It also helps keep a healthy perspective that you
          actually can change jobs if you wanted to.
            acjohnson55 wrote 1 day ago:
            I've pursued a different strategy, which I feel is more effective
            once one has built a track record. I haven't had an interview where
            I was a cold intro to the management of the company in more than a
            decade. If there's already a pretty good feeling of mutual fit
            before the interview, the interview becomes more of a formality
            than a test.
            I wouldn't be in an interview where I'm trying to impress the
            interviewer because that would imply that I'm shooting in the dark
            for the job, and I frankly don't have the time for that. Not trying
            to say my time is oh so special, but I have 4 young kids and a
            track record.
            If I had to find a job today, I would use my network to source
            opportunities and also would find ways to reach leaders at
            companies I admire. I'm senior in my career now, but this is what I
            did when I was at the mid-level, too.
          xuki wrote 2 days ago:
          Some of my friends make it a priority to switch jobs every 2-3 years,
          they think that's the fastest way to get ahead. I don't necessarily
          agree or disagree with that, but if that's one's priority, one would
          practice interviewing so one can ace the "real" interviews when it's
            acjohnson55 wrote 1 day ago:
            I switch jobs every 2-3 years, historically. Not because I
            inherently want to, but because that has historically been when I'm
            ready for a new challenge. But when I start interviewing, it's with
            a lot of intent to move, if the situation is right.
          idontwantthis wrote 2 days ago:
          Me too that's just masochism to me. Begging for acceptance in a
          constantly shifting system with no feedback is my hell. I will only
          do that when highly motivated.
            aantix wrote 2 days ago:
            The best time to look is when you have a job.
            You beg for acceptance when you need the money. Companies smell
            your desperation. When you have a job, you can be picky.
              idontwantthis wrote 2 days ago:
              I’ve had a job for every new job I’ve had since my first one.
              I have enough money saved to not work for a few years. I could
              probably be making more money if I switched, but ugh.
        hatesinterviews wrote 2 days ago:
        > There is significant shuffling of interviewers and schedules. One
        almost has to be on-call to be able to react quickly.
        This is a sign that an organization is doing too many fucking
        interviews. When you get scheduled for an interview every day of the
        week, you are quite literally forced to stop caring about the impact of
        cancelling interviews last minute. The recruiters may try to find an
        alternate interviewer, but often the candidate gets shafted. I never
        realized how common forcing the candidate to reschedule was (I had
        never experienced it while interviewing) but it happens to probably
        half a dozen candidates per day at my 600 person company.
        Stripe notoriously went through a “hyper growth” (doubling
        headcount year over year when already past several hundred employees)
        phase for a number of years. That is an unspeakable torture to subject
        an organization to.
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          I myself did 40 interviews last quarter and it was very hard to keep
          all conversations engaging and interesting. Fortunately having a
          modicum of standardizing feedback + topics to be covered helps, but I
          agree with your point that over-interviewing is bad for business.
            choppaface wrote 2 days ago:
            40 per quarter is very high. In ~2012 Twitter was doing 8 per week
            for ICs, which is also way too high.
              bigbillheck wrote 2 days ago:
              There are more than five weeks in a quarter.
          tdeck wrote 2 days ago:
          +1 to this as someone who is currently on the border of doing too
          many interviews. At worst, it can have a cascading effect because
          recruiters then scramble to find a different interviewer, scheduling
          things last-minute that then may be canceled last minute. I don't
          know what the solutions are other than inviting fewer candidates to
        dboreham wrote 2 days ago:
        It happens. In the mid 90s I interviewed with a windowing pc operating
        system company in the pacific northwest. Next day the guy calls me,
        says they're really excited to have me on board, they're discussing the
        best team for me to join. Then nothing. Meanwhile I visit my friend who
        is working for a web browser start-up in Mountain View. He suggests I
        interview there. A couple months later after I'd started work at that
        place, the first guy calls me, says they're ready to rock and roll. I
        tell him it's been a while, and where I'm currently working. He doesn't
        see too happy. Worked out well for me though.
        temp7536 wrote 2 days ago:
        For those who have worked around and at Stripe for the past decade,
        this is not a surprise. Stripe, and especially the founders, have a
        quite a poor reputation for screwing over people in and around their
        Almost every fintech startup has the story of Patrick reaching out
        about an acquisition, mining them for information playing along and
        then ghosting - same thing for candidates. They leadership team,
        specifically Patrick and Will Gaybrick are extremely smart but have
        screwed over a ton of people - be very careful about trusting.
        You don't hear anything about this online, they're incredibly effective
        at squashing hit pieces and have a huge amount of reporters and power
        brokers under their control. On HN and silicon valley Stripe and
        Patrick are a PR machine. Patrick has almost direct control over YC and
        HN, you'll notice that every single Stripe post automatically has pc as
        the first comment, regardless of anything else. Everything negative
        gets buried.
        With Patrick now living in Woodside, Will on permanent vacation in
        Malibu and John permanently in Ireland the company is definitely a bit
        in chaos mode internally. Their entire people team has turned over and
        they're having major retention issues - so I'm not super surprised that
        stuff like this is starting to leak out.
        I run a $XB fintech, and am afraid to use my name given the backlash.
          rrjanbiah wrote 10 hours 23 min ago:
          Inspired by this comment, I have created a tracker in the Open Market
          Research project [1] Please feel free to share any comments or
   URI    [1]: https://github.com/OpenMarketResearch/Labs/issues/new?labels...
          devops000 wrote 2 days ago:
          I am also a founder of a $XB fintech startup.
          richcollins wrote 2 days ago:
          He tricked me into working for a month without a contract and then
          wouldn’t answer my calls when I asked him to sign the terms we
          agreed upon. I had to show up and sit on their couch until he showed
          up to write me a check to go away. He’s a slippery character.
            stevedekorte wrote 2 days ago:
            I was also on that contract and can verify this. Here’s an odd
            wrinkle: just prior to that contract, Patrick wanted to purchase
            bitcoin from me (this was back in 2013) remotely, with me sending
            him the bitcoin first and him paying when he had time. He also
            wanted the terms to be that if the USD price of bitcoin went down
            before he paid me, that he would pay the lower price(!) and he
            would choose the time of repayment. I declined to do anything other
            than an in-person cash transaction. Later, I heard he had
            previously purchased some from another friend and then ghosted him
            for many (>6?) months despite persistent requests for payment.
              ck_one wrote 1 day ago:
              Holy crap that sounds shady. Can you point to the transaction on
          fredgrott wrote 2 days ago:
          We are approaching this wrong. We should not look at ghosting as a
          personal attack. If you want a fiend to bring to yhe interview get a
          dog, comes to mind.
          Also compare how a lowly cook handles interviews at a new dinning
          place. It's none of the entitled BS but oh a new adventure...lets see
          what happens.
          Ansil849 wrote 2 days ago:
          > have a huge amount of reporters and power brokers under their
          Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof, and all that... Can
          you list this 'huge amount of reporters' that Stripe has 'under their
          paganel wrote 2 days ago:
          > On HN and silicon valley Stripe and Patrick are a PR machine.
          That's why we still need a thing like Gawker to come back. Almost all
          of SV hated on Thiel for standing behind Trump but when it came to
          him bringing down Gawker nobody left a finger in Gawker's defense,
          and so that here we are, a multi-trillion dollar industry with no
          internal means to self-regulate ourselves.
            rchaud wrote 2 days ago:
            I'll stick to NYT and WSJ breaking real stories, thanks.
            Gawker's issues were entirely of their own making. What was their
            big scoop? That Thiel was gay? At least Gizmodo did some coverage
            on a pre-release iPhone 4 before being exiled.
            nomdep wrote 2 days ago:
            Gawker were scum. The worst of the worst in “journalism”. Their
            whole business model was based on creating outrage and division.
            They don’t deserve an inch of sympathy.
            I do miss Mike Arrington's Techcrunch, though
            pshc wrote 2 days ago:
            Gawker did come back FWIW.
            Not that I've heard a peep from them since they re-launched.
              vineyardmike wrote 2 days ago:
              Specifically ValleyWag, Gawker is the conglomerate that owned it:
   URI        [1]: http://valleywag.gawker.com/r-i-p-valleywag-2006-2015-17...
              paganel wrote 2 days ago:
              Big TIL for me, to be honest.
              > Not that I've heard a peep from them since they re-launched.
              That explains why I thought they were gone for good.
          showmeyourhits wrote 2 days ago:
          Could you elaborate what "$XB fintech" means? Couldn't google answer
            dd36 wrote 2 days ago:
            3 comma club
            omegabravo wrote 2 days ago:
            market cap or "valuation" company, x is a place holder so $1,2 or 3
            grzm wrote 2 days ago:
            From this thread:
   URI      [1]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29389350
          cm2012 wrote 2 days ago:
          Honestly to be the kind of person who runs a company like Stripe you
          have to be a bit crazy.
          To have the chance to be bought out for unfathomable sums at every
          step, and willingly go manage the headaches of a big and fast growing
          company (like this thread) instead?
          quickthrower2 wrote 2 days ago:
          OK I've saved the HTML of this page... just in case :-)
          bogomipz wrote 2 days ago:
          >"I run a $XB fintech, ..."
          I've seen this term a couple of times no in this post. Might you are
          someone else explain what a "$XB fintech" is?
            TedShiller wrote 2 days ago:
            $XB is the symbol for a new cryptocurrency called XBitCoin, it’s
            a fork of Bitcoin Cash.
              mohanmcgeek wrote 2 days ago:
              Not everything in the world has to do with Bitcoin.
              This one means a >unicorn
            emteycz wrote 2 days ago:
            Ex-Borg financial technology... Resistance is futile!
            mottosso wrote 2 days ago:
            A billion dollar fintech company, the X being how many billions.
            ggcdn wrote 2 days ago:
            “$X billion fintech” was my interpretation
          coffeemug wrote 2 days ago:
          I was fortunate to work with pc/jc/will in ~2016-18, and my
          experience has been the opposite. They were super professional and in
          the time that I've worked with them seemed like genuinely good
          people. They can be tough negotiators which hey, sucks if you're on
          the other side of the table, but that's exactly what you want out of
          a good leadership team. And a lot of stuff slips through the cracks,
          but I'm not sure what else you'd expect from a company that went from
          0 -> $100B in a decade.
          I can see how the intersection of these two properties may sometimes
          look like what you're describing, but from everything I've seen
          (which isn't too much, but it's enough) your interpretation of the
          facts really doesn't seem accurate.
          (As a disclaimer, I do have a horse in this race because I have some
          stock, but I'm pretty certain I'm being objective about this)
          TL;DR: me and you are looking at the same screen but aren't watching
          the same movie.
          mfrye0 wrote 2 days ago:
          I can't comment on Stripe, but I had a similar experience with a B2B
          $XB company, but a bit worse. So I can sympathize going anon.
          I agree that the public has a rosy view of a lot of these $XB
          founders, when in reality it's lies and back stabbing behind the
          barmstrong wrote 2 days ago:
          I'm also a founder of an $xB fintech (Coinbase!) and I have to say,
          this does not ring true to me at all.
          I've known Patrick since 2013 or so, and I have found him to be
          nothing but the highest integrity. Same for John. We are
          semi-competitors (not a ton of overlap) so you might find it strange
          for me to stick up for him like this, but I just think this
          description is wildly inaccurate. As one small example, Patrick has
          proactively told me when wanting to build competitive products, even
          when he didn't have to (very positive sum thinking).
          He has direct control over reporters and YC? I'm sorry but this
          sounds like conspiracy theory.
          People are living all over due to covid - so what. Remote is the
          future of work.
          There are plenty of more reasonable Occam's razor explanations for
          some of what is being reported in this thread (and from the OP). You
          always have to assume ignorance over malice first. For example:
          - companies often look at startups they may want to acquire, and
          decide to pass for various reasons (saying no more than yes is a good
          process), they then launch their own products (this is why they were
          looking at acquisitions in the first place), pretty normal
          - any time you have thousand of interviews going on, you are bound to
          get some bad candidate experiences, I know for instance these happen
          in Coinbase periodically, and we try to minimize it for sure, but you
          will not get it to zero (especially when growing quickly)
          - most rational explanation for OPs issue is that references were
          checked and came back luke warm/negative, so more were done which
          delayed it etc (they may not tell you this was the reason to protect
          sources btw), this is one of many potential reasons, i'm guessing,
          but benign explanations are more likely
          - also, "discussing details of an offer" is not the same as receiving
          an offer
          Anyway - if people had negative experiences, then feedback is great.
          I just hate to see HN jumping into tear downs and wild conjecture
          like this. Patrick and John are great founders we can all learn from,
          and yes human like all of us (not perfect). Let's all help each other
          improve here, and assume positive intent.
            sam0x17 wrote 23 hours 39 min ago:
            > You always have to assume ignorance over malice first
            At a certain valuation (namely, well before yours or Patrick's),
            ignorance becomes malice. With the resources Stripe has, it is
            outrageous that there have been a non-zero number of cases where
            for example references haven't been checked before an offer letter
            was sent. That Patrick is ignorant about this, as you claim, is
            even more damning, as it suggests no one knows what is going on at
            So I guess thank you for your scathing review of Stripe's hiring
            process, and for giving us the notion that Coinbase is probably an
            equally toxic workspace?
            sam0x17 wrote 23 hours 51 min ago:
            Strange that the downvote button was hidden on this post. I had to
            manually submit the GET request.
            thendrill wrote 2 days ago:
            Well now we know who is your master.
            jbluepolarbear wrote 2 days ago:
            This is biased because they are your acquaintance. Because they act
            a certain way in your circle doesn’t mean they aren’t being a
            bad actor in others.
            Your post makes it clear you’re very out of touch with the
            reality of interviewing. I’ve had this same stuff pulled on me at
            Google, Amazon, and multiple other companies. Being offered a
            position and then getting surprise interview and then ghosted.
            It’s draining and demoralizing, and a major waste of my time.
            jonpurdy wrote 2 days ago:
            I have never interviewed at Stripe, but I did interview at Coinbase
            in mid-2020 and it was among the best interviewing experiences I've
            had. The hiring manager for a TPM role (NM) was awesome, as was the
            entire loop. I didn't end up with an offer (I suspect that I
            flubbed one of the interviews) but left with a mostly positive
            experience (aside from what seemed like an implied offer from the
            recruiter, which I consider to just be miscommunication).
            As opposed to K (another SF-based exchange), which took a month to
            set up the loop in the first place, had one-way video during
            interviews (candidates on, interviewers off), and took 3 weeks
            after the interview loop to send an offer which I declined for
            another company (65% of CB's pre-offer, not that it mattered based
            on the other stuff).
            These experiences make a difference and really help sell the
            organization to a potential hire.
            latexr wrote 2 days ago:
            > There are plenty of more reasonable Occam's razor explanations
            (…). You always have to assume ignorance over malice first.
            That’s Hanlon’s razor:
   URI      [1]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanlon's_razor
            momento wrote 2 days ago:
            I know so many people who have been screwed over by Coinbase, it's
            complete lack of customer support, and dark business practices
            (it's borderline criminal at this point). The fact that you're
            associated directly with Coinbase does not benefit your reputation
            nor does it add any weight to what you're saying - it in fact does
            the opposite.
            fabiandesimone wrote 2 days ago:
            Funny that you think your endorsement works in their favor.
            Coinbase is not entirely kosher in the crypto industry so there's
            kortilla wrote 2 days ago:
            This is the first time I’ve seen a post with anything negative
            about Patrick and having a Coinbase founder come out of the
            woodwork to make a post like this defending all of this with
            nothing more than conjecture sends a completely different message
            than you think.
              hasmolo wrote 2 days ago:
              this is such a key thing people in immense power forget, once
              you’re on the inside things start looking really different and
              you can’t see it
                howdydoo wrote 2 days ago:
                I bet Patrick will never have to deal with his Coinbase support
                tickets going unanswered for months. It was nice of Brian to
                take time out of his day to come here and defend his buddy, but
                I wish he'd invest some of that $xB into building a support
                team for his paying customers.
                  danlugo92 wrote 2 days ago:
                  Bitcoin will never lock your funds, suspend your account, and
                  since it works perfectly, you don't need support at all.
                    schleck8 wrote 2 days ago:
                    How will financial crime be prevented?
                    Seriously. I am a fan of some crypto coins because in
                    contrast to bitcoin there is actually future-proof
                    concepts, but this "you will never face any consequences"
                    advertising is delusional and would only work in a perfect
                    alternative reality where everone acts in the interest of
   URI              [1]: https://xrpl.org/carbon-calculator.html
            edpichler wrote 2 days ago:
            I agree with you but after being an employee of a dozen of
            companies and founded some, I started the Stripe's application
            processe and after a waterfall or red flags I decided myself to do
            not continue. I couldn't ignore my gut feeling clearly saying me
            that there is the place to have a good salary in a very miserable,
            unhealthy and unstable job.
            PS: I don't know how they are managing to have such a good product.
            vertis wrote 2 days ago:
            > Patrick has proactively told me when wanting to build competitive
            products, even when he didn't have to (very positive sum thinking).
            I used to get very frustrated at a previous job (realestate.com.au)
            that they would treat their main competitor in such a venomous way.
            If the features looked similar then they 'copied' if they launched
            a feature first then denigrate it until you can launch the same
            feature. There are only so many ways you can do a real estate (car,
            job) ad portal. Especially if you're following best practice UI/UX
            I get being competitive, but you can be competitive and still be
            civil. Making the other company to be an arch-villain is such
            small-minded zero-sum thinking.
            Sadly there were also many things where they could have worked on
            collaboratively to make everyone's lives better (e.g. Rental
            standards and processes), but this is impossible when you frame the
            competitor in such a negative way.
              ZephyrBlu wrote 2 days ago:
              If the market isn't growing, it is a zero-sum game so this
              behaviour isn't surprising.
                ksec wrote 1 day ago:
                This. It is important to remember not everyone works in Tech.
                Many commodity markets are zero-sum game. Which is often why
                Tech circle don't understand a thing about other market. You
                cant apply the same thinking to everything.
            csomar wrote 2 days ago:
            I don't think Coinbase and Stripe are in the same business but...
            > As one small example, Patrick has proactively told me when
            wanting to build competitive products, even when he didn't have to
            (very positive sum thinking).
            I'm not sure why this is positive or signals a high-integrity
            person. If he doesn't have to tell you, he probably shouldn't. He
            runs a private company and that's what he should care about.
            Or maybe he did that, so that in the future you can kick back and
            write this comment?
              noisy_boy wrote 2 days ago:
              Sometime one does favors in the hopes of being treated likewise
              in future. It is an investment, even though not guaranteed to
              pay-off; but when done to powerful people, that off-hand chance
              can pay-off handsomely and be worth it.
                ludamad wrote 2 days ago:
                "I'm an $xB ceo and everyone you mentioned have been lovely to
                me" is a data point, but being successful means even your true
                friends are networking with you (because it's logical, not
                implying sneaky intentions)
            xwolfi wrote 2 days ago:
            You know the best you could have done is say nothing. People like
            this, best way to prove them wrong is to show there's nothing. Even
            a "oh it's true but we ll try to change" helps more than doing
            exactly what the OP did with his catch-22: if you defend here, he's
            proven right.
            danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
            > most rational explanation for OPs issue is that references were
            checked and came back luke warm/negative, so more were done which
            delayed it etc (they may not tell you this was the reason to
            protect sources btw), this is one of many potential reasons, i'm
            guessing, but benign explanations are more likely
            > also, "discussing details of an offer" is not the same as
            receiving an offer
            All reasonable things to happen, for sure. Would other HMs in the
            same building show interest after bad references? Debatable.
            I accept all outcomes - all except ghosting.
            ignoramous wrote 2 days ago:
            > any time you have thousand of interviews going on, you are bound
            to get some bad candidate experiences... and we try to minimize it
            for sure, but you will not get it to zero (especially when growing
            Spot on. Nor should anyone expend disproportionate energy in
            bringing down common causes of quality issues to zero. [1] > I just
            hate to see HN jumping into tear downs and wild conjecture like
            You must be new here.
   URI      [1]: https://apenwarr.ca/log/20161226
            xmly wrote 2 days ago:
            You TWO could be the same person?  Just a wild guess...
            hemloc_io wrote 2 days ago:
            Not to fuel the fire here, but from the startups perspective I'm
            not sure there's much functional difference between a company
            attempting to acquire a startup and then deciding to go it alone,
            and using the acquisition process for research on their future
            products other than intent.
            No matter what if you do the DD process on an acquisition you'll
            certainly apply those learnings to your future efforts.
            There's even a PG blogpost about it. [1] Side Note: I'm always
            amazed to find people that run large companies posting on
            hackernews. Doubly amazed that two companies I'm interviewing for
            are mentioned in the same post (about interviews no less.) :D
            Small world.
   URI      [1]: http://www.paulgraham.com/corpdev.html
            deltaonefour wrote 2 days ago:
            I'm too am also a founder of an $xB fintech, and I have to say I
            disagree with your assessment. The initial poster was right on all
              DonHopkins wrote 2 days ago:
              I'm working on my SECOND $billion!
              ...I gave up on my first.
                mrtranscendence wrote 2 days ago:
                I figure at this point my easiest path to becoming a
                billionaire would be to develop a time machine, go back to when
                you could buy a bitcoin for a dollar, and plop down $20K or so.
                That feels more realistic than me actually building a valuable
            metagame wrote 2 days ago:
            Have you considered that he might just avoid sharking out on people
            he considers friends, or people with too large a platform?
            Genuine question.
            ng12 wrote 2 days ago:
            Sure, but you run Coinbase. It wouldn't surprise me if people with
            less soft power than you had negative interactions.
              spottybanana wrote 2 days ago:
              Yeah, it is no wonder that a founder-CEO of a 70 billion dollar
              company is having very little negative interactions with about
              Personally I have became from poor ass bootstrapping startup
              founder to rich and successful retired entrpreneur (now investor)
              and it is ridiculous how people will treat you wildly differently
              as you get wealthier. And at times the exactly same people.
                nowherebeen wrote 2 days ago:
                > And at times the exactly same people.
                I have seen this type of behavior before even though I am not
                rich or successful.  These people act like they never behaved
                the way they did or simply pretend it never happened, while
                they continue to do it to others.  Its disgusting how people
                can be so fake.
                  ksec wrote 1 day ago:
                  Exactly. It was at that moment I understand why most
                  successful and rich people tends to be wary.
                  I wasn't even rich or successful, I only got promoted to a
                  senior position, and their faces changed the next day. Those
                  a-hole faces still makes me want to puke.
                  That was a long time ago. But I still have vivid memory of
                  Radim wrote 2 days ago:
                  I'd guess this is Prisoner's Dilemma in practice:
                  If you don't expect repeat interactions with an agent, or
                  expect the agent won't remember / weigh these past
                  interactions strongly, you do what's best for you in the
                  Which happens to be taking the counterparty's current
                  situation into account – including their wealth/power, AKA
                  how much they can do for you. Entirely pragmatic, if selfish
                  ("disgusting" in your words).
                  The way to combat this fake behaviour is to increase its
                  cost, forcing the "fake" person to interact differently.
                  But I wouldn't hold my breath:
                  1) To "increase the cost" you need something of value in the
                  first place. If you're poor and powerless, you are…
                  powerless. Your only strength is in numbers: social pressure,
                  `∑ little_power * lots_of_people`.
                  2) This "fake" personality is likely something learned in
                  early childhood. A person would probably need to experience
                  lots of negative feedback to readjust later in life.
                  3) Have you considered that their strategy ("fakeness",
                  taking into account extrinsic factors like wealth or fame)
                  may be superior to yours ("integrity", interacting based
                  solely on a someone's intrinsic traits)? You know, it is not
                  a physical law that being nice and consistent to people pays
                  off. It's a pretty wild social dynamic, evolved only
                    repomies69 wrote 2 days ago:
                    Yes, psychopaths can be wildly successful people, I will
                    start to act psychopath right away, sir. Thanks for your
                      Radim wrote 2 days ago:
                      I have not revealed my preference, one way or another
                      (I'm personally not a fan of fakeness, if you must know;
                      which is precisely the reason why I think about such
                      things and take time to reply on HN).
                      But seeing your visceral response, I'll offer one advice
                      now: don't let your biases blind-side you.
                        repomies69 wrote 2 days ago:
                        > I have not revealed my preference, one way or another
                        You have revealed your preference of evaluating
                        morality as a choice.
                        I think morality is a basic assumption for pretty much
                        all human interaction. If someone chooses to be
                        immoral, then why would I want to interact at all with
                        that person? If being fake and untruthful is a choice
                        for that person, I don't see how any interaction made
                        sense. Just the only sensible choice is to run away
                        from that person and if you have business going on just
                        try to close them as quickly as possible. Even online
                        discussions like these would be totally pointless with
                        a person who has selected to be immoral/fake.
                          Radim wrote 9 hours 56 min ago:
                          What you do and whether you "run away" or "close
                          business" is up to you. But likewise, what other
                          people do is up to them – how would you impose your
                          choices and preferences onto others?
                          You're able to do that only to the degree that you
                          hold power over them. That is what "power" is.
                          Which is precisely what is being discussed here. Not
                          the personal preferences and animosities of human X
                          (Radim, repomies69, whoever), but how social
                          interactions evolve over aeons. It is a pretty
                          complex dynamic system with feedback loops that span
                          individual interactions (the repeated prisonner's
                          dilemma from my OP), generations and even
                          Let me try another way: You can be perfectly happy
                          with your strategy Y and die content you did what you
                          thought was best. In fact, it's probably the best
                          anyone can hope for. Alea iacta est.
                          But if you're the last person believing Y, that
                          strategy dies with you. It is not a personal attack
                          on you to observe that there are people who do not
                          follow Y, and evaluate relative merits of strategy Y
                          vs Z. You can wish everyone followed Y (was more like
                          you), and still do that.
                          Interestingly, lashing out at people who observe
                          other strategies than Y even exist is a strategy in
                          itself. Proselytizing, ostracizing and zealotry are a
                          form of social pressure, and humans evolved to be
                          quite susceptible to that.
                          On a technical note, "if A then B" is an implication,
                          a form of logical reasoning. An implication doesn't
                          mean that A is true, or that the person proposing the
                          implication believes A (or B). For example, you could
                          say "if everyone is dead, money will be worthless".
                          An implication is an observation about relationships,
                          trying to make sense of the world.
                        repomies69 wrote 2 days ago:
                        Thanks for your generous advice, sir. Greatly
                    tovej wrote 2 days ago:
                    Regarding 3), how well someone's social strategies pay off
                    is completely separate from their morality. It's
                    Just as a thought experiment: if there was little social
                    cost to it, killing your competitors would probably be a
                    very successful strategy. Would you go: "sure, he kills
                    people, but it makes him very successful and we should give
                    him kudos for that"?
                    Regarding your last statement, that "being nice and
                    consistent" is a recent social norm, I call bullshit and
                    citation needed.
                      Radim wrote 2 days ago:
                      Morality certainly has its merits – after all, it's
                      omnipresent across nearly all human groups (that survived
                      to this day). So it has undoubtedly played a central role
                      in advancing humankind.
                      But please note morality is an evolved collective
                      strategy as well, a survivor in an extremely competitive
                      landscape. It's not "above" evolution (unless you're into
                      religious metaphysical arguments).
                      If all its proponents "were killed" – your words; an
                      unlikely proposition in my estimation – then yes, that
                      would be it for morality. Something else would take its /
                      our place, but the world would still go round.
                        mrtranscendence wrote 2 days ago:
                        > But please note morality is an evolved collective
                        strategy as well, a survivor in an extremely
                        competitive landscape. It's not "above" evolution
                        (unless you're into religious metaphysical arguments).
                        I don't fancy a debate right now, but I feel I should
                        point out for observers that this is a minority
                        position in the philosophy of ethics (for atheists and
                        religious philosophers alike). At the very least it is
                        possible (and common) to be a moral realist without
                        making "religious" arguments.
                  rightbyte wrote 2 days ago:
                  Well some people are just not so nice until you know each
                  other. Not like "you start to appreciate them" but "they get
                xwolfi wrote 2 days ago:
                Hello Sir, I adore your comment, could you swing a bit of dough
                my way?
            mempko wrote 2 days ago:
            Japan has a long tradition in coopetition. SV has adopted many
            Japanese traditions. Unfortunately some people seem to take
            competition too seriously, ruining the culture. It seems some are
            suggesting Patrick and John take competition too seriously. Whether
            the allegations are true or not, it can unfortunately be damaging.
            Adam Smith, on his work on competition, took many ideas from the
            Muslim Caliphate. Where markets can only work on trust. That nobody
            will do business with someone they don't trust.
            Trust is what underlies communities like this, even if people are
            jsc1986 wrote 2 days ago:
            Did Patrick message you to ask you to post this?
            The point is not that they have direct control over YC or HN, it's
            that they have massive indirect control over the organization and
            have done a wizard's job of making themselves untouchable in the
            Some context: 
            I'm a former (early) YC founder, and during my batch the YC team
            recommended that we spend time with the HN team. The HN team gave
            us edits on our posts, recommended the best times of day to submit,
            emailed us when stories about our companies hit the front page, and
            explained how the ranking algorithms worked (and thus we learned
            how to game them). And we are not the most valuable YC company ever
            -- so it's possible more was done for Stripe.
            It's not direct influence, but rather indirect impact. So again I
            ask -- Did Patrick request that you write this post?
              boringg wrote 2 days ago:
              I think you might be getting conspiratorial about this.  Here's
              my take on reading the comment thread.    I am an outsider peering
              in - no connection to the companies etc.
              1.  Your single experience doesn't represent a pattern of
              behavior - and dang comment's certainly corrected some of your
              original inaccuracies in your comments.   If you can attribute
              many cases of this happening then maybe it represents a pattern
              of behavior.
              2.  Patrick might have different relationships depending where
              you are on the power curve of importance to them (competitor,
              investor, partner, etc) - which could explain the discrepancy
              between your experience + barmstrong.  There are also a host of
              other possibilities.
              3.  In terms of barmstrong's positive comments does he have an
              investment in square either personally or through his company,
              any partnership with the organization, or is personally friends
              with Patrick.  Any of those would bias his comments in favor.  He
              might have a great relationship with Patrick.
              At the end of the day - I'm not sure where this goes.  It comes
              across like a strong personal attack from a bad situation that is
              getting a lot of response on HN.
              barmstrong wrote 2 days ago:
              No he did not. We didn’t even discuss it.
              austenallred wrote 2 days ago:
              I'm also a YC founder of a (smaller, but top ~100 in terms of
              valuation) YC company. I don't know what your experience was like
              with Stripe, but the notion that Patrick has some unduly amount
              of power to exercise over HN and YC immediately flags to me as
              untrue. I've been on the receiving end of a lot of HN criticism,
              and I can assure you the HN mods and all of YC go above and
              beyond to not tip the scale in YC founders' favor.
              Edits on your posts, recommending the best times of day to
              submit, explaining how HN algorithms work broadly, are accessible
              to everyone; these are discussed frequently on HN, and were all
              accessible to me even before I was a YC founder. I'm also certain
              the HN team wouldn't need to email Patrick about something like
              this being on the front page; when my company (~150 employees) is
              on the front page I get a bunch of messages about it from all
              sorts of different angles; certainly many of the thousands of
              Stripe employees use HN and would be capable of sending a Slack
              or text.
              To me it seems the notion that Patrick has "indirect control"
              over parts of HN is a longer way of saying he has respect. I
              think Patrick may be the most universally respected founder in
              Silicon Valley, and perhaps doubly so amongst engineers. I am not
              surprised at all that people upvote his comments, as he's both
              the person speaking from authority, and they're usually well
              reasoned - I use them as a model for how to respond well
              (something I have not always done).
              I'm not saying you're being untrue about your experience (and I
              don't think OP was being untrue about theirs), but the notion
              that Patrick as at the helm of an evil empire stealing from
              companies and manipulating folks to keep it quiet just feels
              farcically different from reality across the dozens of Stripe and
              YC/HN touch points I have.
                rossmohax wrote 2 days ago:
                > I can assure you the HN mods and all of YC go above and
                beyond to not tip the scale in YC founders' favor.
                This [0] story criticising Gitlab resurfaced on a day of Gitlab
                IPO and quickly disappeared from the frontpage within an hour
                or so.
   URI          [1]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=28857073
                  ZephyrBlu wrote 2 days ago:
                  I'm assuming this occurred because HN's "flame detector"
                  triggered (Think it has something to do with upvotes vs
                latch wrote 2 days ago:
                > I can assure you the HN mods and all of YC go above and
                beyond to not tip the scale in YC founders' favor.
                Consider [1] which was flagged dead. It was ~10 years ago, so I
                could be wrong, but I believe there was a follow-up meta "Ask
                HN" where someone asked why it was flagged (I can't find it),
                and I __believe__ PG said something along the lines that he
                didn't find the original constructive, hence flagging it dead.
                Top comment on the non-constructive OP was from spolsky with
                some insightful information on job postings...
                Definitely seemed like going above and beyond to tip the scale
                in YC founder's favor.
                Edit: found the followup/meta [2] (I was wrong, no official
                explanation was given, sorry about that). [1]
   URI          [1]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2703771
   URI          [2]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2707385
                  dan-robertson wrote 2 days ago:
                  I think hn moderation has probably changed in the last 10
                  years. For one thing, the set of moderators has entirely
                  changed since then.
              dang wrote 2 days ago:
              That sounds weird to me. There was no "HN team" before I started
              working on HN in October 2012 - just pg, and no one would have
              referred to him as "the HN team".
              The HN team originates in April 2014, when I became public as a
              mod. (That's not early in YC btw.) In that case you're talking
              about me (and possibly Scott), and while I guess it's dangerous
              to make strong claims about some meeting I don't remember,
              there's no way we would have "explained how the ranking
              algorithms worked" in such a way that you could game HN. That's
              precisely what we would not have done. I've worked way too hard
              on that shit to blab about it and see all that sand run through
              my fingers.
              I also doubt that we'd have told you "the best times of day to
              submit"—people ask us that all the time and the stock answer is
              we have no idea, there are all sorts of dodgy analyses out there,
              and you can take your pick.
              As for helping you by editing text, or emailing people when their
              stuff shows up on HN's front page, yes—I do that frequently for
              YC founders, non-YC founders, and non-founders.
                elliottinvent wrote 2 days ago:
                I can confirm that dang is a massive help to non-YC founders
                posting on HN.
                He’s helped me a couple of times to make my posts more
                appealing to readers, providing great insight into what HN
                readers are looking for.
                  DonHopkins wrote 2 days ago:
                  Me too -- dang has given me valuable feedback about what
                  kinds of things to post, and how to focus and frame posts so
                  people will find them useful and interesting, how to save and
                  respect people's time, and how not to overwhelm or tire
                  people out so much. Much of that advice applies to writing
                  and life in general, not just posting to HN! And he's even
                  done kind favors like correcting an embarrassing typo I made
                  in quote of a transcript that accidentally inverted the
                  meaning of what the person was trying to say, when I only
                  noticed it after the paint dried.
                  staccatomeasure wrote 2 days ago:
                  +1000 same here
                  dang rules
                  lukeqsee wrote 2 days ago:
                  Same here.
                  I launched a company that has grown into a mild success
                  because of dang giving it another chance and it making the
                  front page.
                grugq wrote 2 days ago:
                FWIW dang was extremely helpful when I had an issue. He worked
                with me to resolve it, rather than take arbitrary executive
                action. I don’t credit any accusation of dang playing
                favourites to YC founders. Basically, there is no level of
                assistance higher than what I received, therefore there is no
                way someone is getting preferential treatment. There’s simply
                no more that could’ve been done.
                Note: I wasn’t completely happy with the outcome at the time,
                but I respected the decision. I hindsight I agree with it too.
                jsc1986 wrote 2 days ago:
                Perhaps it was just our batch, but there was a long discussion
                about how the algo worked amongst founders. Admittedly, you +
                Scott were not there. Some partners were and the discussion was
                seeded by them, but I don't remember how much they contributed
                vs. others in the group.
                Edit: Apologies if this came off as accusatory. Was trying to
                make the point that they don't have control of the media, but
                instead are just flawless in their use of it.
                  metagame wrote 2 days ago:
                  That's not really the "HN team," though. What you're
                  describing that the partners did is scummy, but makes sense
                  when you realize that partners and dang have effectively an
                  adversarial relationship when it comes to the quality of HN.
                  People invested in you have strong reason to try and ensure
                  your popularity here; they very well could have just tried
                  throwing tips at you to get you to manipulate the site
                  Most people can't stare at the News source for an hour
                  straight without getting a headache, let alone a rich
                  investor type. They wouldn't find much of value in what's
                  been publicly released of it, anyway (the released source is
                  ancient and includes little as far as quality control goes).
                  If what you're saying is based in truth, you were probably
                  just getting tips from someone with a strong financial
                  incentive to have brute forced their way into understanding
                  the site the manual way (throwing posts at it) rather than
                  someone who had any genuine inside knowledge.
                  dang wrote 2 days ago:
                  In that case it was the blind leading the blind. The advice
                  that founders give each other about how to game HN routinely
                  backfires. Unfortunately, people are so conditioned to
                  conflate "feels like it should work" with "actually works",
                  that no matter how much we repeat the contrary it seems to
                  have little effect.
                  Thanks for the reply - you had me wondering for a minute what
                  the hell I wasn't remembering.
                    IgorPartola wrote 2 days ago:
                    This is interesting. I have not done a launch or a Show HN
                    post in some time but back in the day HN was pretty easy to
                    game: three rapid upvotes from unrelated accounts and IPs
                    got you to the bottom of the front page (I did not use sock
                    puppets ever, instead just asking geographically diverse
                    friends to upvote the post immediately after posting it).
                    If the content was mildly interesting you got to see it
                    spend some time at the top. Posting when the New page had a
                    longer delta T between the top and bottom post was also
                    helpful. I definitely got a lot of front page time for what
                    I now consider fairly mediocre content.
                      shkkmo wrote 2 days ago:
                      Voting rings aren't allowed any more than sock puppets
                    kingcharles wrote 2 days ago:
                    > Unfortunately, people are so conditioned to conflate
                    "feels like it should work" with "actually works", that no
                    matter how much we repeat the contrary it seems to have
                    little effect.
                    Thank you for this. This sentiment applies to so much
                    online, especially in the field of online content, social
                    media posting and conversion rates.
                    What feels like it should work is not the same as what
                    actually works.
                    This site was posted on here at some point and it made me
                    mad because everything the guy recommends sounds awesome,
                    but where is any proof that it actually improves sales? [1]
                    Humans are complex beasts and sometimes the exact opposite
                    of the obvious is the right solution:
   URI              [1]: https://examples.roastmylandingpage.com/
   URI              [2]: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-11573666
                eganist wrote 2 days ago:
                > As for helping you by editing text, or emailing people when
                their stuff shows up on HN's front page, I do that frequently
                for YC founders, non-YC founders, and non-founders.
                Fact: dang's helped me a few times with this when I've goofed
                with my own comments, and as best as I can tell, I'm not a
                founder of any kind.
                  hef19898 wrote 2 days ago:
                  dang offered me to do the same thing for my, now closed,
                  LegitShady wrote 2 days ago:
                  that only makes it more likely they're helping more important
                  people more frequently and to a greater degree.
                    rlonn wrote 2 days ago:
                    You mean he ought to spend his limited time picking random
                    comments from unimportant people that noone wants to read
                    and help edit those comments, so that the world becomes
                    more fair and just?
                    Sounds like a recipe for a successful forum.
                    pvg wrote 2 days ago:
                    By that logic, there's really nothing generous dang can do
                    that isn't further proof of his perfidy.
                      LegitShady wrote 2 days ago:
                      Indeed once you understand that the moderators are
                      helping people with brand management and suggestions at
                      the very least, and the extent to which this occurs is
                      hidden, they lose the ability to claim neutrality and
                      open themselves up to lots of questions about what else
                      they're doing
                      That's a result of actions taken not some kind of
                      theoretical argument.
                        afarrell wrote 2 days ago:
                        > open themselves up to lots of questions about what
                        else they are doing
                        Is there a name for this pattern?
                        1. Observe that a human is taking some action to more
                        effectively do their jobs… but in a way that has some
                        risk of being unevenly applied or also self-beneficial.
                        2. Conclude that this action is itself malfeasance.
                        3. Conclude that this person merits generalized
                        I see this all the time in comments on (for example)
                        youtube. I struggle to see how social cohesion could
                        survive in a world where more people do this: If you
                        lose trust by doing your job well, then its harder to
                        motivate yourself to maintain others’ trust that
                        you’ll do your job.
                          LegitShady wrote 2 days ago:
                          It depends what you think their job is I guess.  I
                          never imagined that forum moderation would include
                          helping brand management for forum users - in fact
                          I'd say those two behaviours are in direct conflict
                          with each other.
                          If your job is forum moderation and you do that well
                          great.    But if the same people use those same
                          accesses to give some forum users help over other
                          forum users without any transparency then there is no
                          illusion of neutral moderation and this whole forum
                          just may be undisclosed pr/ brand management whole
                          people are discussing companies/jobs/tech in a way
                          that might bias others.
                          I haven't read anything on the site providing brand
                          management to some users.  Was that disclosed
                          somewhere?  How could you trust any post talking
                          about a new company or having to do with companies in
                          general if some are getting assistance to boost their
                          reception and others aren't?
                            dang wrote 1 day ago:
                            > I never imagined that forum moderation would
                            include helping brand management for forum users
                            Me neither. That sounds like hell!
                            afarrell wrote 2 days ago:
                            I think their job is maintaining the health and
                            ambient trust within the social system that is HN
                            -- keeping HN a place people generally want to keep
                            coming back to for thoughtful conversation.
                            Assuming thats reasonably close, lets look at the
                            activities we're talking about:
                            > As for helping you by editing text, or emailing
                            people when their stuff shows up on HN's front
                            page, I do that frequently for YC founders, non-YC
                            founders, and non-founders.
                            So there are two categories:
                            1. Helping clarify each others messages.
                            2. Letting people know when something is happening
                            that concerns them.
                            Why do they not disclose this? Suppose you have two
                            friends Alice and Bob. Suppose Alice tells you that
                            about something Bob said which really upset her.
                            Would you:
                            A. Commiserate with Alice by telling her about
                            something ambiguously untrustworthy that Bob said.
                            B. Reply to Alice by comparing Bob unfavourably to
                            C. Listen empathetically to Alice and then when
                            she's vented, offer another more charitable
                            interpretation of Bob's words.
                            D. Later, let Bob know that Alice is upset with him
                            and he might want to chat with her.
                            I bet most folks would advocate options C and D.
                            Yet that is is basically doing "undisclosed
                            pr/brand management" on behalf of Bob. It is pretty
                            much the same as what dang says he does for HN. I
                            don't think HN discloses this  for the same reason
                            that they don't disclose a habit of holding doors
                            open for people -- I assume they don't remark on it
                            because it seems unremarkable to them.
                            Your words like "neutral", "give some forum users
                            help over other forum users" imply a strict duty to
                            avoid cooperative behaviour in favour of
                            competitive behaviour. I don't think that duty is
                            nearly so strict.
                            pvg wrote 2 days ago:
                            I never imagined
                            This is probably the crux of the problem, the
                            scenario you're describing is based mostly on
                            assumptions of your own - like 'brand management'
                            (whatever that is) and 'secret'. See for instance
                            [1] As with any online thing made mostly of people,
                            there are lot of not entirely obvious things about
                            HN, both good and bad. It's not the Brand
                            Management (whatever that is) Shadow Council you
                            seem convinced it is.
   URI                      [1]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29231...
                          9wzYQbTYsAIc wrote 2 days ago:
                          > Is there a name for this pattern?
                          See “Fundamental Attribution Error”
   URI                    [1]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fundamental_at...
                          cutemonster wrote 2 days ago:
                          > Is there a name for this pattern?
                          What about "assume bad intentions"?
                        pvg wrote 2 days ago:
                        There are wheels within wheels in this village, and
                        fires within fires! When Reverend Hale comes, you will
                        proceed to look for signs of witchcraft here.
            jongorer wrote 2 days ago:
            I’ve personally conducted business with Patrick, and integrity
            isn’t a term I’d associate with him. Most polite term I can
            think of would be “shrewd”.
              rvnx wrote 2 days ago:
              I don't think integrity fits into any of the metrics that you
              have to report to YC.
                dang wrote 1 day ago:
                YC has pretty strong ethical guidelines for founders and people
                have been removed from YC for violating them, so I'm not sure
                where you're coming from with that, unless it's just a cheap
                  rvnx wrote 1 day ago:
                  It's not YC specific but systemic sadly.
                ignoramous wrote 2 days ago:
                At least they ask founders to be not mean [0] and specifically
                be nice [1] but do ask them to be relentless [2] and formidable
                [3], which may come off as shrewd?
                [0] [1] [2] [3]
   URI          [1]: http://paulgraham.com/mean.html
   URI          [2]: http://paulgraham.com/safe.html
   URI          [3]: http://paulgraham.com/relres.html
   URI          [4]: http://paulgraham.com/earnest.html
                lostlogin wrote 2 days ago:
                guiriduro wrote 2 days ago:
                Then its a pity, and an opportunity to improve or move aside
                for an organisation that does (and stronger ethics reputation
                for graduates thereof.)
            eganist wrote 2 days ago:
            Props for attaching your name to your comment, something I wish the
            throwaway OP also did, though in the spirit of believing the
            victim, I can understand why they didn't.
            That said, with threads like this, there's also value in letting
            people come forward with their experiences (positive or otherwise)
            to see if there's any sort of pattern; any such patterns can then
            inform future interactions with the people or companies involved.
            My own personal experience over the last year as a manager of
            managers that may be relevant to both pc and barmstrong: seeing a
            surprising number of security resumes on the market from current
            Stripe talent suggests there may be a bit of impending brain drain
            (for reasons I can't put a finger on as I'm not inside). I've seen
            less of this with Coinbase talent.
              leephillips wrote 2 days ago:
              "in the spirit of believing the victim"
              The only kind of sense this could make is as a tautology. If the
              commenter is a "victim" then you've already decided to believe
              him or her. But what evidence do you have to support this belief?
                Gene_Parmesan wrote 2 days ago:
                I don't see the tautology. The point is, when someone claims
                they are a "victim" (I would agree the term is only a loose fit
                here), we believe them. The whole point of the statement is to
                not demand evidence.
                Obviously we're not talking about the legal system here.
                I do think this whole idea has minimal relevance to the thread
                as I really don't think the PC qualifies as a victim. Just
                wanted to clarify the idea of "believe the victim" as it's
                extremely important in potential cases of sexual assault
                (which, again, not relevant here).
                  throwbigdata wrote 2 days ago:
                  And abused as well
                eganist wrote 2 days ago:
                worth noting that the parent comment was flagged to death 4
                minutes after posting and vouched what, a half hour later?
                Anyway, I sent this to the comment author via email, but the
                best I can do in public is link to [1] Context: I run
                r/Relationship Advice.
   URI          [1]: https://www.blackburncenter.org/post/on-believing-vict...
                  rightbyte wrote 2 days ago:
                  Oh. I thought "hey, why are you not greyed out then?" but
                  that would explain it.
              luckydata wrote 2 days ago:
              there ABSOLUTELY is a pattern of Stripe doing this stuff.
          pc wrote 2 days ago:
          I don’t think some of the claims in this comment are true or in
          good faith. (We obviously don’t control HN or YC or journalists. If
          or when my comments on HN are ever ranked highly, it’s because
          they’re upvoted. The internal claims about Stripe are also
          inconsistent with the data around things like retention. Etc.)
          All of that said, I’d appreciate hearing from any founders who feel
          mistreated as part of an acquisition process. We make a fairly
          significant number of acquisitions and have never heard this directly
            choppaface wrote 2 days ago:
            I honestly do not see your participation in this thread as good
            faith. You apologized to the candidate in public—- good start,
            now do something of consequence in private.  But any further
            involvement from you (especially trying to out the OP) is simply
            fanning the flamewar.  Even HN moderation is helping fan the flames
            by adding stats and other commentary.  This is why I find YC so
            utterly untrustworthy.
            andrew_ wrote 2 days ago:
            Say "Bloody Mary" ten times in the mirror at midnight and she will
            donkleberry wrote 2 days ago:
            When you’re in top position on a Stripe-related post, that has
            nothing to do with your karma score. It’s because dang has a pin
            button that he usually uses for himself, but very often is used for
            exactly the situation you describe when it comes to YC portfolio or
            celebrities showing up or something (without visual feedback of
            such a pin, as every single other website with the capability
            provides). It’s pretty obvious if you keep an eye out for it
            This can undoubtedly be spun as “HN just trying to bring the
            right voice to the top of the discussion” but the alternative
            take is just as valid. It’s not bad faith feedback, it’s HN UX
            and practices confusing readers as usual
              Aeolun wrote 2 days ago:
              Chances are these founders are just permanently behind their
              computers and have an alert set up for whenever someone mentions
              the company/domain on HN.
              That allows you to get in first on an awful amount of threads.
              dang wrote 2 days ago:
              You got me curious to look at the data. pc has had the top
              comment in 41 threads since Sept 2007 ( [1] ). Of those, one was
              pinned to the top: [2] . I vaguely recall that had to do with
              wanting to correct the misleading impression left by an
              inaccurate headline. All the other cases got there via the usual
              ranking algorithm. I guess you guys can decide whether 1/41 is
              moderator overreach or not.
              We mostly use that mechanism for tedious moderation announcements
              ("All: please don't bash each other with clubs, even if you feel
              strongly about $topic") and for cases where project
              creators/authors show up belatedly in threads to discuss their
              work—those are extremely high-value comments that would
              otherwise get overlooked. Occasionally I use it if a thread is
              mostly aflame about some controversy and some commenter points
              out how the whole thing is inaccurate. We don't use it to
              systematically privilege high-karma users or YC founders relative
              to other users—that wouldn't be in the spirit of the site
              guidelines at all, and we take those pretty seriously.
   URI        [1]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=50377
   URI        [2]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=25073749
                choppaface wrote 2 days ago:
                This is a great example of HN moderation fanning a flamewar.
                  bovermyer wrote 2 days ago:
                  It objectively is not. I'm baffled at how you arrive at that
                eganist wrote 2 days ago:
                >  You got me curious to look at the data. pc has had the top
                comment in 41 threads since Sept 2007 ( [1] ). Of those, one
                was pinned to the top: [2] . I vaguely recall that had to do
                with wanting to correct the misleading impression left by an
                inaccurate headline. All the other cases got there via the
                usual ranking algorithm.
                > We mostly use that mechanism for tedious moderation
                announcements ("All: please don't bash each other with clubs,
                even if you feel strongly about $topic") and for cases where
                project creators/authors show up belatedly in threads to
                discuss their work—those are extremely high-value comments
                that would otherwise get overlooked. We don't use it to
                privilege high-karma users or YC founders relative to other
                Do you have the denominator (with root-level comments) for the
                41 top comments by any chance?
                Thanks for the edit with added context. Any chance of an
                indicator that a comment is pinned so that people can
                transparently see when this is done? It's predictable that your
                moderation comments would be pinned, but even pinning a
                founder's comment to apparently contextualize a potentially
                misleading headline adds substantial mass to the claim that
                certain moderation actions might be done for the benefit of the
                company or companies involved in the thread.
                Framed another way: if PC's context for the article was
                relevant, it would've achieved critical mass on its own.
                Helping it with a pin could be perceived as moving the needle
                for gain.
                A simple "pin" icon (or emoji, or however you feel is best) may
                not resolve whether this is a "proper" use of moderation tools,
                but it will at least make it transparent when it happens, which
                adds credibility to the HN platform.
   URI          [1]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=50377
   URI          [2]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=25073749
                  toyg wrote 2 days ago:
                  > A simple "pin" icon 
                  That would be theatre - they can then add a new
                  secret-pinning feature, afaik HN code is not open anyway.
                  Trust is hard to achieve and very easy to lose.
                  sp332 wrote 2 days ago:
                  Denominator: 638 comments
   URI            [1]: https://hn.algolia.com/?dateRange=all&page=0&prefix=...
                    eganist wrote 2 days ago:
                      dang wrote 2 days ago:
                      Looks like 102 root level comments.
                        eganist wrote 2 days ago:
                        interesting, that's better than 40% assuming that the
                        41 figure represents root level comments as well.
                        Thanks for digging into it; you didn't have to.
              dataflow wrote 2 days ago:
              Are you talking about posts, or comments? Do HN celebs get
              comment boosted by virtue of that fact too? I would've thought
              it's only for posts.
                dang wrote 2 days ago:
                They're talking about comments. I'm not sure what you mean by
                HN celebs but no, they don't get comment boosted.
                  onion2k wrote 2 days ago:
                  I'm not sure what you mean by HN celebs
                  I hope he means me.
                  neom wrote 2 days ago:
                  Technically, you're a HN celeb who gets their comments
                  boosted Daniel!
                    dang wrote 2 days ago:
                    I downweight them sometimes too.
                      vasco wrote 2 days ago:
                      It's common to assume the masses are dumb and hiding
                      moderation can make people do the right thing without
                      being influenced by it. For example I imagine if the pin
                      icon was visible there would be comments about it on
                      every story it'd be used in, which you may want to avoid
                      to focus on the topics at hand. With that put I think
                      transparency beats this and a transparent system is more
                      trustworthy and better understood by the users. Just 2c
                      but keep doing the good work.
            temp7536 wrote 2 days ago:
            I'm sorry but no. Patrick, we met with you once, Gaybrick and
            Claire multiple times and opened up a data room to you all. I then
            emailed you (and the others) three followups over a couple weeks
            only to see them opened but never replied. Your team then sent
            targeted cold emails to multiple people on our team. I've validated
            this experience with multiple founders.
            You also had Moritz and Sequoia renege on Finix's term sheet after
            they already had it signed and wired (I guess props to Sequoia for
            branding it as "giving it away")[1]. You've also had your team get
            diligence materials from Sequoia and nuke deals.
            You've clearly crushed it in the business and developer brand
            space, hats off to you. You want feedback - I (and the broader
            founder community) just wish you stop the dance of pretending and
            just admit you all are sharks, and it works for you! Just own it.
            But I will admit, the HN comment was a bit trolly and written in
            frustration. But you have to admit - you are documented as
            proofreading every one of PGs posts, are a huge LP in YC and are
            friends with a lot of people there. You can't believe that the
            conspiracy theories are purely in "bad faith"....
            And yes - this is out of place in HN comments, I'm sorry. But sadly
            there aren't very many other options. [1] -
   URI      [1]: https://techcrunch.com/2020/03/09/sequoia-is-giving-away-2...
              pc wrote 2 days ago:
              I genuinely have no idea what situation you’re talking about
              (not saying we didn’t screw up, though — I preemptively
              apologize assuming we did!), and a bunch of the narrow claims
              above aren’t true (we aren’t YC LPs, Sequoia made its own
              decisions without any suggestions from us on Finix, etc.), but I
              really would appreciate an email so I can figure out what
                danr4 wrote 2 days ago:
                From the TC article: "A spokesperson for Stripe who was asked
                whether Stripe and Sequoia discussed its investment in Finix at
                any point, also declined to comment."
                Your comment about Finix seems deliberately crafted to convey
                you did not speak with Sequoia but at the same time not denying
                that you spoke (made decision without suggestions).
                So to clarify, are you saying that Stripe did not speak with
                Sequoia about Finix?
                Or that Sequoia "made their own decision", while they have
                spoken with Stripe about Finix?
                BrianOnHN wrote 2 days ago:
                This seems like a good place to plug "The Billion Dollar Code
                Same SV story, different decade.
                  bigzyg33k wrote 21 hours 37 min ago:
                  Also seems like a good place to plug two posts from insiders
                  who say "the billion dollar code" was bullshit: [1]
   URI            [1]: https://avibarzeev.medium.com/was-google-earth-stole...
   URI            [2]: https://johnmccrea.medium.com/why-the-billion-dollar...
                simonebrunozzi wrote 2 days ago:
                Irrespective of whether you behaved badly or not (not for me to
                say, and unlikely to clearly emerge on a simple HN thread), I
                have always lauded your search for transparency here on HN.
                Also, we I like to always keep in mind that sometimes
                resentment dominates the desire to share a certain story, and
                without knowing anything about the transaction referred above,
                I'd say it's quite clear that temp7536 has at least some
                resentment or envy over Stripe's success.
                Final thought (not referring to Stripe nor Sequoia in
                particular): yes, most companies, and most VCs, are sharks. I
                was recently reminded of that twice, and probably lost large
                sums of money in the process (again: nothing to do with Stripe
                nor with Sequoia). I think it's a rule that have always applied
                to life, in general, and it won't stop being applied just
                because we have the internet.
                I simply hope that things like the Panama Papers, Wikileaks,
                and such, will eventually bring more financial transparency to
                the world, and make it harder for these sharks to keep feasting
                on their prey.
              austenallred wrote 2 days ago:
              > You also had Moritz and Sequoia renege on Finix's term sheet
              after they already had it signed and wired (I guess props to
              Sequoia for branding it as "giving it away")[1].
              How is it reneging on a term sheet if they wire the money? That's
              fulfilling the terms of the term sheet (despite the fact that
              term sheets aren't binding), no?
            dataflow wrote 2 days ago:
            > We make a fairly significant number of acquisitions and have
            never heard this directly before.
            Isn't the comment about things you (purportedly) did personally?
            Have you "reached out about an acquisition, mined them for
            information playing along and then ghosted", or no? You clearly
            don't deny it but you object that you hadn't "heard" about bad
            things they claim... you did? For things you're the subject of,
            shouldn't it be easy to confirm or deny them just based on your own
            memory? It's not only a bizarre defense on its own, but it's an
            especially poor one when the claim is that you ghost people, and
            your reply is that they never tried to talk to you about it!
            Wouldn't it make more sense to just reject it and say you did not
            ghost people during acquisition talks, or fish for information
            under the guise of an acquisition, etc.?
            > I don’t think some of the claims in this comment are true or in
            good faith.
            "Some" leaves a lot to the reader's imagination. Which ones are the
            ones that are true?
              pc wrote 2 days ago:
              I’m trying to not overstate my certainty. I have no idea what
              situation OP could be describing, and I have no recollection of
              anything along those lines, but I don’t want to definitively
              state that nothing like it happened over our decade of operation
              without knowing more about what’s actually being alleged.
              We obviously never intentionally ghost companies, “mine them
              for information”, etc. The ecosystem is small and we wouldn’t
              be able to invest in and acquire companies if we didn’t have a
              reputation for good behavior. (And we’ve invested in dozens.)
              But maybe some communication got dropped in some particular case
              or something? I don’t know.
                bambax wrote 2 days ago:
                I don't know anything about anything and am one of the very few
                people here who never founded a $xB fintech, but this strikes
                me as weak:
                > The ecosystem is small and we wouldn’t be able to invest in
                and acquire companies if we didn’t have a reputation for good
                If you're in a position of power (and money), people will
                return your calls, regardless of rumors. This is true in all
                fields, from recruiting to publishing to VC deals, etc.
                This is also a line of defense used by serial abusers who
                always (always!) claim that because they have had successful
                consensual relationships, there can't be cases where they
                abused the other party.
                > over our decade of operation
                Also weak. "We've done so many things. Seen so many people.
                It's been a long time. I don't recall. Things were different
                back then."
                - - -
                That said -- weak defense is just that -- it doesn't mean
                dataflow wrote 2 days ago:
                Ah okay thanks for clarifying. It's a strong anonymous
                accusation, so being clear about it on your end helps a lot. I
                imagine it'll be hard for anyone here to know what happened.
              jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
              The challenge I see with some phrases like "mined them" and
              "ghosted" is that they can be very subjective statements. The
              person on the receiving end may perceive the actions as such,
              whereas the person on the giving end may seem them differently.
              I don't know what happened, just trying to point out that it is
              possible that a person felt slighted by certain actions and the
              person doing them may have no idea the other felt slighted and
              the person hasn't told them directly. But maybe they did, I don't
              know in this specific case.
                bartread wrote 2 days ago:
                This is a valid point. I've observed or been involved in a
                number of acquisitions at various distances over many years.
                There are any number of reasons an acquisition might not go
                ahead and, of course, as the potential acquirer you obviously
                learn some things that are useful, but I've never known a
                situation where there has been a deliberate plan to simply mine
                for knowledge or whatever.
                The reality is some acquisitions are opportunistic, some are
                strategic, and even the opportunistic ones often have a
                strategic element. For a strategic acquisition, if it doesn't
                go ahead (comes down to ROI isn't perceived as being as good as
                potential alternatives), the almost inevitable outcome will
                often be (i) a different acquisition is eventually made, or
                (ii) the acquiring company decides to make an investment in
                that area themselves.
                One of the ways to avoid getting "screwed over" as an acquiree
                is to ensure you've done the work beforehand to maximise the
                chances of compatibility with the acquirer: things like
                compliance, data protection, having a poor grasp of your
                numbers and financials, and other mundane matters (or
                combinations of them) can easily trip up the process.
                When an acquisition does fall through for almost any reason
                it's pretty natural for the potential acquirees to feel rather
                bruised by the process: they've wasted their time, they've been
                screwed over, etc. Often that won't be the case although, I've
                no doubt, there are instances where it will be.
                (Btw, in case it's not obvious, I know nothing about the
                activities of Stripe or its founders, good or bad.)
                dataflow wrote 2 days ago:
                But in that case he could just deny them and then mention that
                if it came across differently, he'd love for them to reach out.
                Not just skip to the second part!
                Say if someone claims you stole their car (and the alternative
                could be that you borrowed it with someone else's permission,
                and they had no idea, so they felt it was stolen), would you
                reply with "I’d appreciate hearing from anyone who feels I
                stole their car", or would you first say "I never stole any
                car, please reach out to me if you know of any such incidents"?
                Wouldn't it be incredibly bizarre to ask them for a discussion
                session without first rejecting the premise?!
                  jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
                  I think in the example of stealing a car is more binary:
                  stole it or did not steal it. Maybe it could have been
                  borrowed the car or something, but there would probably still
                  be a more objective person in car event.
                  Whereas with ghosting, it could be not replying an email,
                  could be not replying a text, could be some other thing the
                  person missed and doesn't even know they missed. So it's hard
                  to deny if the person isn't even aware they did it.
                  With mining, it could have been asking questions either live
                  or in an email and not knowing the other person felt tricked
                  into sharing more than they had wanted to.
                  I've taught a class called Emotional Self-Defense and one of
                  the things I see the most is that the "attacker" often
                  doesn't know they're attacking and the "victim" assumes it
                  should be obvious the person is attacking.
                  What I'm saying is that he may not have any idea that his
                  actions caused that much pain to the person. I had an ex
                  girlfriend who said to me once, "and you don't respect my
                  boundaries!" And I said what? And she said "yeah, 3 weeks ago
                  when you were juggling the soccer ball and you kicked it to
                  me, I said I didn't wanna play, and then a few minutes later
                  you kicked it to me anyway." I was dumbstruck. I had no idea
                  that she felt so angry/violated by me kicking the soccer ball
                  with her the second time. If I had known, I almost certainly
                  would have stopped. I just didn't receive the signal that
                  So I'm saying that may be the case here, too. It's also hard
                  sometimes to tell someone in power that what they're doing is
                  hurting or angering oneself.
                    cycomanic wrote 2 days ago:
                    I don't think ghosting and mining is so vage in this
                    contex. It means engage in acquisition talks without actual
                    intent to acquire, but instead to gain information. If you
                    are the person doing this you will very clearly know what
                    you are doing. Viewing in this context the comment is quite
                    correct it is an odd denial, it sounds a bit like PR speak
                    to me.
                      jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
                      I'm imagining if this had been a comment from a spurned
                      romantic partner. "He cheated on me and took advantage of
                      me," posted anonymously to a web forum. If I were the
                      person being accused, and assuming I had been
                      romantically involved with many people, I may have no
                      idea who is accusing me or which specific instance they
                      meant. Maybe I'm aware that I cheated on one person, but
                      I may not even know if that is the person making the
                      accusation? If I've only been romantically involved with
                      one, then it may be quite obvious to me who it is and
                      maybe even the specific incident to which they are
                      However, I imagine Stripe has interacted with many many
                      companies regarding these things, but maybe not.
                      I think I've just been in too many conflicts where the
                      other person thinks I intentionally hurt them and I
                      didn't see it that way, or conversely, I think I did
                      something to hurt someone, apologize, and they are
                      confused because they didn't feel hurt at all.
                        cycomanic wrote 2 days ago:
                        But in your example if you never cheated on a partner
                        you could easily sy "I've never cheated on someone". So
                        if you're saying stripe has had so many interactions
                        with companies they don't know if they "cheated" in
                        this specific case, that implies they had least cheated
                        in some cases, because otherwise they could simply deny
                        that they ever cheated.
                        Because the accusation was more specific than "I felt
                        taken advantage of" it was they engage engage in
                        acquisition talks with the intent to gather
                        confidential information, not the intent to acquire.
                          jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
                          I think most accusations of intent are extrapolations
                          of actions, which one side makes and the other side
                          may not see the same way.
                          > engage in acquisition talks with the intent to
                          gather confidential information, not the intent to
                          Going back to the dating analogy, if I go on 5 dates
                          with someone and then we don't go on any more dates,
                          that person may assume I had no intention to pursue a
                          long-term relationship with them and was just using
                          them, maybe for sex or company or whatever. However,
                          perhaps I was trying to determine whether I could
                          make a long-term relationship work—maybe I
                          initially didn't think it would work but only went on
                          the next 4 dates because I really really wanted it to
                          All I'm saying is that people can glean different
                          intentions from the same action and it can be really
                          hard to know whether our actions have caused pain to
                          > that implies they had least cheated in some cases,
                          because otherwise they could simply deny that they
                          ever cheated.
                          Again, the tricky part is Stripe may _think_ they
                          have cheated in one case but in that case, the other
                          person may not have even seen it as cheating. Eg,
                          maybe I'm in an exclusive relationship with someone
                          and my ex comes into town and we get lunch. I feel
                          tremendously guilty for doing it and confess and
                          apologize to my current partner. And the my current
                          partner looks confused and laughs saying they're
                          grateful I went to hang out with my ex. A different
                          partner could split the relationship with me
                          immediately and say I'm evil for having that lunch.
                          To one side it may seem _obvious_ that a
                          transgression was committed and to the other side, it
                          may be _oblivious_.
                    jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
                    Actually, if it were me, I wouldn't deny it first if I
                    truly didn't know what I did. Perhaps I did do something
                    that I feel guilty about doing but just am not currently
                    aware of. I'd probably ask as he did to figure out how the
                    person is feeling and what they think I did to contribute
                    to that and then see whether I feel guilty about that or
                    not. I may actually feel really bad, hard to know without
                    knowing more specifics.
                    dataflow wrote 2 days ago:
                    I get what you're saying about it being blurry but I don't
                    buy that it affects the ability to reject it. He can quire
                    simply reject it and then explain it might be a
                    misunderstanding or something. Or say it might have
                    happened unintentionally. Or whatever. There are several
                    options here, and refusing to deny the claims doesn't
                    bolster his case.
                    And that's all kinda beside the point - note that the bad
                    part isn't even the ghosting itself for us to quibble over,
                    it's fishing for information under the guise of an
                    acquisition, with or without ghosting. That should be far
                    less blurry and easy to deny head-on, whatever you think of
                    the ghosting.
                      jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
                      One other story (I feel bad for blitzing with replies and
                      in a weird order, I hope that's ok)...
                      I ran a workshop with abut 35 people in the audience. For
                      about 15 mins, I had them sit quietly as I asked them
                      "how do you feel when you think about this? How do you
                      feel when you think about that?" And so on, and had them
                      reply in their heads.
                      At the end of the session, I opened up group reflection.
                      One woman shot her hand up and said "I feel like you
                      manipulated us." And i asked if others felt this way, and
                      maybe 5 others raised their hands and started talking
                      about how my questions manipulated them. And then this
                      other guy raised his hand and said how for the first time
                      in months, these questions helped him stop thinking about
                      politics and the chaos in the world and quieted his mind
                      and thanked me. A few others agreed with a similar
                      So my one action caused (at least) two very different
                      responses in the same group and I would likely have had
                      no idea if they didn't tell me how they had received it.
                      jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
                      I wouldn't say "I never ghosted you" if I don't remember
                      the interaction, because perhaps I did? Why would I make
                      that bold claim without having more info about which
                      situation it is?
                      > And note that the bad part isn't even the ghosting to
                      quibble over, it's fishing for information under the
                      guise of an acquisition.
                      Even "fishing for information under the guise of an
                      acquisition" could be anything from sending one email
                      with 3 questions to five intense 2-hr interviews over 3
                      months. One person who feels very secretive and
                      protective of their business knowledge (even some people
                      in startups who don't even have companies yet but just
                      ideas) can feel very violated by one email with one
                      question, whereas other people may not believe they were
                      being fished for info after 3 months of interviews.
                        dataflow wrote 2 days ago:
                        > I wouldn't say "I never ghosted you" if I don't
                        remember the interaction, because perhaps I did? Why
                        would I make that bold claim without having more info
                        about which situation it is?
                        This whole discussion is about intent, which you can
                        (and honestly, must) address separately from how you
                        imagine your actions might have been perceived. See
                        > Even "fishing for information under the guise of an
                        acquisition" could be anything from sending one email
                        with 3 questions to five intense 2-hr interviews over 3
                        This is irrelevant, the question is about intent. You
                        should not have a hard time making it crystal clear
                        whether that was your intent or not, regardless of
                        whether you spent 10 minutes on it or 10 days. The only
                        reason you wouldn't be able to make your intents clear
                        is if you're doing things so borderline deceptively
                        that you honestly cannot tell if they're clearly
                        ethical or not, in which case that fact would
                        sufficiently speak for itself.
                        P.S. I see you're repeatedly leaving parallel replies,
                        I don't know why you do that (can't you just edit your
                        comment?) but they drown out mine and divert the
                        conversation, so I'm not going to reply to them and
                        have 3 parallel conversation tracks, sorry about that.
                          jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
                          Ah, I think I had misunderstood what you were saying.
                          I thought you were saying to deny the action: "I
                          never ghosted you." But now I think what you actually
                          meant was to deny the intention of the action: "I
                          never intended to ghost you."
                          I would agree one could deny the intention first,
                          yeah, I might actually do that. "I didn't meant to
                          ghost you but perhaps that's what happened or how it
                          landed for you. Maybe you think it should be obvious
                          to me but I feel unclear, will you share more with me
                          about it?"
                          *edit: I'm not trying to leave the parallel replies,
                          I guess I'm more used to replying on Twitter where I
                          just add another reply to my reply if I forgot
                          something, instead of editing the previous reply, and
                          HN was stopping me from replying to my own reply. So
                          I'll try to edit here, I wasn't sure what the HN
                          preferred way was to do this, so thank you for
                          helping me adapt better.
                            dataflow wrote 2 days ago:
                            You can certainly make "intended to" explicit, and
                            it's obviously better to be clear, but it's
                            unnecessary. Keep in mind the entire point and
                            heart of the accusation is the malicious intent.
                            The accusation is clearly not "you're a horrible
                            person because my email fell off your inbox!!", but
                            rather "you saw and yet deliberately ignored my
                            emails because you were actually trying to gain
                            information while pretending to want to acquire
                            As such, you rebutting with "I never ghosted you"
                            would not be equivalent in any shape or form to "I
                            reply to every single email in your inbox" (or
                            whatever) for you to feel you might somehow be
                            accidentally telling a falsehood if you happened to
                            miss some email in your inbox. "I never ghosted
                            you" in this context would be a direct rejection of
                            the purported intent—i.e. the accusation you were
                            purposefully ignoring someone's emails because you
                            were actually trying to fish information out of
                            them—because, absent the intent, that accusation
                            wouldn't have been made to begin with. You can make
                            the lack of intent explicit if you want,
                            definitely, but it's already implicit in the
                            accusation, and so would be in implied in the
                            rejection of that accusation.
                              jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
                              I think I just tend to err on the side of less
                              certainty/conviction in how I speak. I'd probably
                              say "I don't believe I ghosted you" or "I don't
                              remember ghosting you" or "I'm pretty sure I
                              didn't ghost you." And maybe that's me projecting
                              the fear of it getting into a "you ghosted me" "I
                              never ghosted you" "yes, you ghosted me!" back
                              and forth.
                              Frankly, I'd love if someone were to extricate
                              their accusation as you did, making it easier for
                              me to parse the different actions and intentions.
                              I really liked how you phrased it: "you saw and
                              yet deliberately ignored my emails because you
                              were actually trying to gain information while
                              pretending to want to acquire us." I feel more
                              confident in rebutting different parts of
                              that—e.g., "I saw the emails and deliberately
                              did not reply to them but not because we were
                              pretending to acquire you, but actually we were
                              in a legal process where we couldn't share more
                              at the time" or something like that.
                              Sometimes if someone accuses me of something,
                              I'll even try to ask for clarification on what
                              they mean by ghosted, or I'll rephrase it as you
                              did, to try to gain more clarity. Maybe it should
                              be obvious to people what ghosted and fishing
                              means, but I find clarifying can at least help me
                              and the other person know if we agree what the
                              definition is and what we both think happened.
                              *edit: @dataflow, I really appreciate you going
                              back and forth with me on this. I think I learned
                              a lot, about how I try to pull out the intention
                              from the action, and how others may see intention
                              and action intertwined. I'm gonna let my brain
                              digest this as I sleep, if you want to continue,
                              I'd be glad to pick it up in the morning :-)
                              Thank you!
                              *edit2: ohhh and for helping me get better at
                              using the edit feature and not creating parallel
                              threads, I'm not sure if what I'm doing now is
                              more helpful, but I at least believe I'm being
                              more helpful :-D
                                dataflow wrote 2 days ago:
                                The important thing to note here is the point
                                isn't how you word your reply. Nobody is saying
                                you have to word it like I did. You can be as
                                crystal-mathematically-pedantically-clear as
                                you want in your reply about intents vs.
                                actions vs. perceptions vs. whatever, that's
                                beside the point.
                                The point is that your reply would need to
                                address the lack of ill intent no matter how
                                you word it. I find "I never ghosted you" and
                                "I never intended to ghost you" both adequate,
                                and you can disagree on either of them, but
                                that's not the point. The point is "I've never
                                heard this directly before" would NOT be
                                adequate. It comes across as a completely
                                ridiculous reply that very obviously fails to
                                deny what is clear to everyone to be the heart
                                of the accusation: the ill intent. Which makes
                                it hard to interpret an omission like that
                                Edit: Sleep well!
                                  jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
                                  I looked back at the original post to which
                                  pc replied and it seemed to have many
                                  accusations in it and I think pc did do what
                                  you're talking about, in a roundabout way by
                                  saying "I don’t think some of the claims in
                                  this comment are true or in good faith." I
                                  think, in a way, that's a counterattack on
                                  the other person's statements or intentions,
                                  yet kinda says he doesn't believe he had ill
                                  I agree he didn't directly refute the ill
                                  intent on the ghosting/mining accusations,
                                  yet, I think he tried to cover some of them
                                  in the following:
                                  > (We obviously don’t control HN or YC or
                                  journalists. If or when my comments on HN are
                                  ever ranked highly, it’s because they’re
                                  upvoted. The internal claims about Stripe are
                                  also inconsistent with the data around things
                                  like retention. Etc.)
                                  > "I've never heard this directly before"
                                  would NOT be adequate. It comes across as a
                                  completely ridiculous reply that very
                                  obviously fails to deny what is clear to
                                  everyone to be the heart of the accusation:
                                  the ill intent. Which makes it hard to
                                  interpret an omission like that charitably.
                                  But what if he legitimately had never heard
                                  such an accusation before? What if no one had
                                  previously told him, "I think you ghosted me
                                  and I think you were mining me for info and
                                  pretending to acquire my company"?
                                    dataflow wrote 2 days ago:
                                    > I think pc did do what you're talking
                                    about, in a roundabout way
                                    Or in other words... he didn't.
                                    Roundaboutness is literally how PR
                                    departments spin things to look like the
                                    exact opposite of the truth. "I don't think
                                    some of your claims are true" is not
                                    something that defends you when there are
                                    very strong, pointed accusations against
                                    >> "I've never heard this directly before"
                                    would NOT be adequate.
                                    > But what if he legitimately had never
                                    heard such an accusation before?
                                    So? The reply would be inadequate just the
                                    same. I'm not saying he can't say that, I'm
                                    saying he can't say that and then leave it
                                    at that.
                                    Btw I'm honestly tired of this
                                    back-and-forth at this point, so this'll be
                                    my last reply, sorry about that.
                                      jimkleiber wrote 1 day ago:
                                      That's OK, and I appreciate you saying
                                      that so that I know what to expect. I
                                      appreciated the back and forth
                                      nonetheless, hope you have a wonderful
          nowayjoseaway wrote 2 days ago:
          Don't forget the female engineer they fired for calling Elon "a
          little shit" on twitter. I don't know if it would be worse if it
          turned out to be because Elon complained or because he is their hero.
            rkk3 wrote 2 days ago:
            Firing doesn't seem like a proportional response... But
            representing herself as a Stripe employee after flaming on the
            internet isn't a good look for their business.
            chrisjc wrote 2 days ago:
            I'm beginning to think that we should extend Godwin's Law to
            include Elon. Just about every online conversation nowadays
            eventually deteriorates into a discussion about how terrible Elon
            Btw, I'm exaggerating, but still.
            wly_cdgr wrote 2 days ago:
            Elon is no angel, but I gotta say it would shock me if he was such
            a huge loser that he would complain about something like this
              isx726552 wrote 1 day ago:
              Here’s an example of Elon going back to a multi-year old
              Twitter thread to reply, after blocking the person who started it
              so they can’t reply back: [1] That’s the world’s richest
              person demonstrating willingness to go to some lengths just to
              get the last word in against some random webcomic author. Yes, I
              can totally believe they’d be petty enough to complain about
              online snark to someone’s employer. Doesn’t mean it
              necessarily happened, but it wouldn’t be that far out of
              character if it did.
   URI        [1]: https://twitter.com/existentialcoms/status/1464686423596...
              nowayjoseaway wrote 2 days ago:
              Huh? He does this type of thing all the time, it's a defining
              part of his personality. You only need to follow his Twitter so
              see how consistently and strongly he counters anything that makes
              him look bad. For the really nasty stuff he does behind the
              scenes you need to dig a little deeper.
              A few examples off the top of my head:
                - Called the employer of a lawyer in Wyoming to get him fired
              for criticizing him on Twitter.
                - Tried to get the student who was exposing how the
              self-driving demos were faked expelled, then tried to sue him on
              false charges.
                - Asked a reporter to investigate the cave diver on a baseless
              accusation of pedophilia because he made him look bad. When that
              didn't work, used his private security to try to plant the same
              stories in the UK.
              Never mind the stuff he does to his own employees, especially
              In fact it would be contrary to his personality if he didn't send
              an e-mail to the founders with a message like "Does this person
              work at Stripe?" with the tweet attached, making it clear what he
              wants done without explicitly saying it so he can pretend to have
              plausible deniability.
              hef19898 wrote 2 days ago:
              Well, he called a rescue diver a pedophile because said diver
              didn't like Elon's sub and had specifuc idea where Elon should
              put said submarine.
                tchalla wrote 2 days ago:
                I am not going to stand up to Elon Musk or what he said. But,
                the response generated by Elon Musk was after the British
                rescue diver said this
                > “He can stick his submarine where it hurts,” he told CNN.
                “It had absolutely no chance of working. He had no conception
                of what the cave passage was like.
                Somehow, this part gets left out from this discussion.
                  calsy wrote 1 day ago:
                  Unlike Musk, they were asked to help by officials in charge
                  because they were the best at what they do. What they had
                  just achieved was an unbelievable feat rescuing those boys.
                  The place was already a media circus but Elon decided to
                  involve himself anyway and complicate the situation because
                  he read about it in the news?
                  So when the actual heroes of the story are asked questions
                  about the annoying tech billionaire who wanted to try out one
                  of his 'new toys' in such a high pressure situation, they
                  didn't mince words. It was a stupid idea, and he said as
                  Apparently this hero (and I mean HERO, not some cliche) was
                  supposed to be more diplomatic to the sensitive self serving
                  tech billionaire who injected himself into the story, did
                  nothing but promote his own image and then slandered the
                  actual people who performed the rescue.
                  emptyfile wrote 2 days ago:
                  Yes, and? He is 100% correct. I lost the last shred of
                  respect for Elon after his Thailand photo op.
                  Disgusting person.
                  detaro wrote 2 days ago:
                  ... except the comment you reply to references that.
                  vore wrote 2 days ago:
                  And that makes calling him a pedophile somehow acceptable?
                    tchalla wrote 2 days ago:
                    I specifically wrote in my comment "I am not going to stand
                    up to Elon Musk or what he said." How did you come to the
                    conclusion that I found it acceptable?
                    dd36 wrote 2 days ago:
                    More acceptable than the absence of such a statement. It
                    makes Elon’s pedo comment look like immature reactionary
                    school yard banter. Somebody said something mean to me so
                    I’m going to say something mean back.
                      pseudalopex wrote 2 days ago:
                      Immature is a kind of unacceptable.
                      Musk made specific accusations after the victim of his
                      libel threatened to sue.[1] It wasn't school yard banter.
   URI                [1]: https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/ryanmac/elo...
                jamil7 wrote 2 days ago:
                And more recently dismissed Bernie Sanders with "i legit
                thought you were dead".
                  wly_cdgr wrote 2 days ago:
                  I like and respect Bernie but that's just an internet burn,
                  it's whatever
                  hef19898 wrote 2 days ago:
                  Oh, I totally forgot that one!
            nielsole wrote 2 days ago:
            Probably what parent is referring to: [1]
   URI      [1]: https://nitter.net/isosteph/status/1171236137932771328
   URI      [2]: https://nitter.net/isosteph/status/1459566899151396867
              fossuser wrote 1 day ago:
              I blocked that account a long time ago, if their IRL persona is
              anything like their twitter I doubt this was the only reason they
              were fired.
            nowherebeen wrote 2 days ago:
            Almost everyone at YC worships Elon, you can see it on Sam
            Altman’s face when he interviewed him on YouTube.
              Keyframe wrote 2 days ago:
              That's disgusting really, but looks like it's true.
              shrimpx wrote 2 days ago:
              Sam Altman might actually believe that Elon is superior to him.
          fossuser wrote 2 days ago:
          Their recent 1yr equity periods to screw employees out of upside
          caused me to lose interest (even though that equity will still likely
          be very valuable). I really disliked how they tried to spin this as
          something good for employees.
          Which is a shame because a lot of stuff they do is super cool, stripe
          press, increment (recently discontinued), blog posts, patio11 etc.
          It seems like a great place in a lot of ways.
            throwbigdata wrote 2 days ago:
            How did this screw people?
              fossuser wrote 2 days ago:
              If you reprice equity comp each year then you lose most of the
              Compare the two following equity plans:
              Example Year 1:
              PLAN 1
              FMV: $1
              Strike: $1
              Total #: 40k ISOs
              Vesting: 4yrs
              PLAN 2
              FMV: $1
              Strike: $1
              Total #: 10k ISOs
              Vesting: 1yr
              In the second plan you get granted new equity per year targeting
              some total comp.
              This means if the equity goes up in value a lot in the first
              year, when your new amount is recalculated it'll be way less than
              Example Year 2:
              PLAN 1
              FMV: $2
              Strike: $1
              Total #: 40k ISOs (10k vesting in year 2)
              Vesting: 1yr into 4yr period
              PLAN 2
              FMV: $2
              Strike: $2 (new grant)
              Total #: 5k ISOs (The 10k from the first year, and now half that
              # determined by new FMV for a cumulative total of 15k instead of
              20k ISOs).
              Vesting: 1yr on new grant
              This lets the company keep the majority of the upside, taking it
              away from employees. It also hurts employees that stay longer or
              have a longer term interest in the company from capturing the
              value they helped create.
              And the more the company goes up in value, the worse the trade
              off becomes.
              moneywoes wrote 2 days ago:
              I’m guessing because the equity vests at 1 year, you can’t
              realize huge gains in stock prices
          Voloskaya wrote 2 days ago:
          > Patrick has almost direct control over YC and HN, you'll notice
          that every single Stripe post automatically has pc as the first
          comment, regardless of anything else. Everything negative gets
          This sounds like such BS. They are just very reactive around PR, and
          Stripe while it might be hated internally (based on what you say), it
          is loved by external developers, so of course developers on HN will
          tend to have a positive opinion of anything related to it and vote
          accordingly. And they are quite a lot.
          I almost downvoted you for going with the conspiracy theory route,
          but I like the irony of this post being on the top 5 on the front
          page and your comment being the top comment of that post, while
          complaining about him having "almost direct control" of HN and the
            throwaway984393 wrote 2 days ago:
            Stripe is a YC company. If Stripe becomes a shit show, YC may lose
            money. How is it a conspiracy theory to suggest that both YC and
            Stripe might want to exert some control over bad PR?
            Let's not forget that HN's primary function is to attract people
            with ideas for YC to turn into companies whose equity generates
            money for YC. And we're not talking chump change like a couple
            million. More like billions. What's a little push back on negative
            comments to save a couple billion dollars?
              dang wrote 1 day ago:
              > Let's not forget that HN's primary function is to attract
              people with ideas for YC to turn into companies whose equity
              generates money for YC
              I don't know about primary function but it's one of them, let's
              say. The interesting thing is that this has exactly the opposite
              consequence to what you say. Doing things to jeopardize the good
              faith of the community would not only be wrong, it would be
              catastrophically stupid. Therefore, not only do we not to do it,
              we place the highest priority on not doing it. That follows
              straightforwardly from the mixture of your premise with raw
              self-interest, so I'm not claiming anything hard to accept. Well,
              I guess I'm claiming we're not catastrophically stupid; maybe
              some find that hard to accept.
                throwaway984393 wrote 1 day ago:
                I genuinely don't understand what you're trying to say. On the
                one hand it sounds like you're suggesting that I'm suggesting
                that YC making money off of HN might jeopardize some good
                faith. Why would it? What good faith are we talking about? YC
                is a business, and HN is a part of that business. I don't think
                that's a controversial statement...? If it is a community, it's
                the community YC owns and operates. The website's URL is a
                subdomain of YC, it's run and paid for by YC... even if HN
                existed for some altruistic purpose, if you asked YC if they
                would be happy to sever it from YC and put it completely in the
                hands of the community, I think we can safely assume the
                answer. And founders defend their companies and investments
                here, that shouldn't be a controversial statement either. Why
                wouldn't they?
              ChrisKnott wrote 2 days ago:
              > "How is it a conspiracy theory to suggest that both YC and
              Stripe might want to exert some control over bad PR?"
              Firstly, you have dramatically undersold what OP claimed, to the
              point of dishonesty.
              Secondly, what OP claimed is a conspiracy theory because it has
              no actual evidence. If it had evidence it would be a conspiracy.
          metagame wrote 2 days ago:
          It isn't dang's fault that Patrick has a Google Alert or daemon
          running for his name (or just has a lot of employees who notify him
          whenever it comes up). It's not direct control of HN, it's Patrick
          being enterprising.
          dang has done nothing to deserve bad faith, and while I don't like
          Patrick, either, it's best to keep the knocks on the right doors.
            lmm wrote 2 days ago:
            HN routinely shadowbans and apparently shadow-pins with at least
            some frequency per this very thread. It's not an organisation that
            warrants assuming good faith.
              Bayart wrote 2 days ago:
              Believe me, the people who are phased out deserve to be. I've had
              the unlucky experience of using an HN client that showed all
              comments by default, and you wouldn't believe the amount of
              deranged, vile shit that gets posted here.
              metagame wrote 2 days ago:
              HN's hellbans aren't real shadowbans, because other users can see
              them. They just have to opt-in to seeing potentially offensive
              content (it's a setting in your profile). Other users can even
              make banned users' posts visible to everyone!
              And when they pin comments, it's pretty obvious. dang often
              points it out: [1] YC isn't trustworthy, sure, but HN is.
   URI        [1]: https://hn.algolia.com/?dateRange=all&page=0&prefix=true...
          lmilcin wrote 2 days ago:
          I am not sure about "HN code of conduct" here, but personally I
          dislike serious allegations posted anonymously and without any proof
          to back it up.
          You may well be right, but posting these kinds of things this way is
          best way for HN to devolve to be unusable for any serious discussion
          on anything.
          EDIT: (I can't answer any more because I am being throttled by HN for
          posting "low value content").
          How hard do you think it is to create multiple fresh, throwaway HN
          accounts to post "corroborating" comments?
          I dislike these comments not because I think they are incorrect but
          because if this is the discussion standard we accept it is basically
          open season for trolling.
            foobarian wrote 2 days ago:
            Sorry but even if the anonymous OP allegations are all completely
            true, so what?    I don't see anything there that Stripe did that was
            illegal - only aggressive/predatory along the lines of what happens
            daily in business.  You could probably google up multiple examples
            without ever leaving the first page of results.
            If I were a Stripe investor I would honestly be validated that the
            leadership is acting so boldly in the company's favor.
            ramraj07 wrote 2 days ago:
            Disagreed. It’s clear it’s a throwaway and they’re saying
            unsubstantiated things, but the readers can make their own minds up
            about what to believe in and what not to. I like HN to get the
            insider scoop, precisely this type of comment. I’m not gonna hate
            on stripe or PC, but now I’ll know to look a little more
            carefully at someone asking questions about my future company (lol)
            to see what their intentions maybe. What’s wrong with that?
              lmilcin wrote 2 days ago:
              > I like HN to get the insider scoop, precisely this type of
              How can you treat it as "insider scoop" if there is no way to
              tell whether the facts are true or the person is what who they
              claim to be?
              Would you accept that level of journalism? We can see what
              journalism does to society when you forgo any checks on the fact
              or the provenance. Just watch Fox News and come back to tell what
              you think about it.
              If you are taking unsubstantiated, anonymous posts as facts you
              are just easy to manipulate.
                ramraj07 wrote 1 day ago:
                I am not taking these things as gospel, I’m not sure why
                it’s hard to grasp that you can hold different pieces of
                information at different levels of trustworthiness. Of course
                whatever that person said is hearsay, I’m not gonna form an
                inviolable judgement on stripe just from it. It’s another
                piece of information though.
                Perhaps for someone in a small town who’s brain is half dead
                unsubstantiated facts become reality but I’m hoping to be in
                a place where I’m afforded more freedom to form my own
                opinions on things from what others say.
                  lmilcin wrote 1 day ago:
                  Well, we would all like to think we are intelligent people
                  and resistant to being manipulated.
                  There are studies that show that most people think they are
                  resistant to marketing ads.
                  There are also studies that show that ads are effective on
                  almost everybody.
                  > I’m hoping to be in a place where I’m afforded more
                  freedom to form my own opinions on things from what others
                  It is not the problem with freedom to form your opinions, it
                  is the problem with the process of forming those opinions.
                  Unfortunately, most people form their opinions by accepting
                  "facts" that already agree with what they know, feel or
                  believe and by refusing most of what is conflicting with it.
                  And this thread shows this. People are already suspicious of
                  the person or the company and so they will gladly skip the
                  logical process and accept as facts something that is not
                  even hearsay (hearsay still requires that you have a person
                  testifying they heard something, which we don't have here
                  because the poster is anonymous).
                    ramraj07 wrote 8 hours 39 min ago:
                    All valid points but isn’t this the fundamental perennial
                    fight with freedom of speech? Of course this is a private
                    forum but from what I can see it’s at least trying to be
                    open. The benefits of letting people make unsubstantiated
                    claims (as long as they are not inciting) seems fair to me
                    is all.
            colechristensen wrote 2 days ago:
            Dislike? Sure. See the need for? Also true.
            Especially considering these are corroborating messages (two of
            them), I am quite fine with this.
            As a leader of a competing company, attaching your name to messages
            like those would be quite the bold and risky act (and likely not in
            line with duties to investors and shareholders, etc.)
            temp7536 wrote 2 days ago:
            Totally agree, it kind of sucks to have to do this. But this is
            sadly the world we live in. People like the Collison's and Stripe
            have immense power to ruin people and companies, and there are a
            lot of ruined bodies in their wake. So there is zero chance myself
            or anyone will do anything publicly.
            Hard to give proof on this, so I understand how everything needs to
            get taken with a grain of salt. The only thing I can say is to talk
            (or just email) any fintech company founder in the states and I'm
            100% sure they will privately agree with what I've posted.
              simonebrunozzi wrote 2 days ago:
              There's many other ways for you to share some of your story,
              without revealing too much.
            burnished wrote 2 days ago:
            That sounds like a pretty fair position. It does seem difficult, on
            the other hand, because I don't think we really have mechanisms to
            protect whistleblowers as a society. The options seem like stay
            silent, speak out anonymously (clearly subject to abuse), or speak
            out publicly with the threat of retribution. None of these feel
            like great options.
              jimkleiber wrote 2 days ago:
              This is a role that I think journalists have more traditionally
              played. Source is known to the journalist but anonymous to the
              public and the public then chooses whether to trust the named
              journalist who is representing the nameless source.
              However, with forums, I'm not sure how that would work. Maybe
              having verified accounts reporting on behalf of anonymous
              accounts, because the current way, I just have to trust an
              anonymous account and with how easy it is to defame people
              anonymously because of no ultimate accountability, I tend to view
              anonymous posts skeptically. With the journalist way, there isn't
              anonymity but rather veiled identity, because it's ultimately
              lmilcin wrote 2 days ago:
              Having anybody be able to create a noise of slanderous comments
              seems like absolutely worst option to me.
              I personally back my posts by my real name and I think this is
              fair. If I did not feel safe posting something important, I would
              make sure to include proofs. If I can't include either, I keep my
              mouth shut.
                krageon wrote 2 days ago:
                > If I did not feel safe posting something important
                So far so good...
                > I would make sure to include proofs.
                Why do you imagine GP's comments could be made public under
                their own name if they included proof, given the concerns they
                have put forward? Their company could still be ruined by Stripe
                afterward, no amount of proof will change that. A court cannot
                force them to accept payment traffic as long as they pretend to
                refuse them for a different reason.
                > If I can't include either, I keep my mouth shut.
                This is how dictators and other perpetrators of abuse stay in
                power. In essence, you are colluding with them by keeping what
                they do a secret on purpose.
                  lmilcin wrote 2 days ago:
                  Actually, what you defend is how dictators work today. Throw
                  unsubstantiated allegations around, make everything moot in
                  deluge of conflicting information.
                ramraj07 wrote 2 days ago:
                That’s a privileged stance that is not always practical. When
                you’re subjected to injustice (or just not-cool move) by a
                party with significant power imbalance, and known history of
                retaliation, what do you do? Just sit silently and take it?
                Be it professional or social, many people are disadvantaged in
                their ability to express their opinions freely without
                retaliation, and any “you have nothing to hide or you’re
                just a coward” attitude only comes off as insensitive to
                temp7536 wrote 2 days ago:
                Well you're a stronger person than me!
                I'm not trying to be slanderous or have a hit piece. They've
                clearly been immensely succesful (much more than me!). However,
                there is a veneer around Patrick and Stripe that needs to be
                broken. So many founders and employees look up to a false image
                that has been purposely crafted and is completely false. I'm
                not going to say that Patrick and John are bad people - but
                they're definitely not good, honest or kind. And they are
                definitely not who their online profiles, hn and the media
                would portray. Is an anonymous post the best way to show this -
                absolutely not, so down for other ideas.
                  moneywoes wrote 2 days ago:
                  Maybe speak to a prominent journalist anonymously?
                  sombremesa wrote 2 days ago:
                  Just today I was reading a post that said "Stripe is a
                  startup no one seems to hate" [0]. No matter how you cut it,
                  that's clearly incorrect based on the discussion here. So, I
                  fully believe this is a PR engine in motion.
   URI            [1]: https://pitchbook.com/news/articles/11-big-things-th...
                emodendroket wrote 2 days ago:
                If this were a standard we stuck by any number of famous
                instances of gross misconduct would remain unknown to us.
                  lmilcin wrote 2 days ago:
                  Think about this: without any proof or name to back the
                  claim, the only purpose the post serves is to (possibly)
                  slander a person.
                  As a bystander you have no way of knowing who is right. There
                  is a huge disparity between the person being slandered and
                  the person trying to post slander.
                  The person being slandered can't defend themselves due to
                  either volume of it or just impossibility of proving you
                  haven't done something.
                  On the other hand person posting slander can quickly create
                  multiple usernames and crate a lot of "content" looking like
                  a discussion.
                  An exception could be a criminal case (when it might be ok to
                  both stay anonymous and not have a proof, because of an
                  important reason like public safety). But even in such case
                  Police or whatever other official will try to confirm the
                  claim in some way.
                  emodendroket: I can't respond because I am being throttled by
                  HN (for apparently posting low value content).
                  Again: how do you know these are actually separate people?
                  Without any real name on it there is no way for you to know.
                  Do you think trolls haven't thought about it?
                    sombremesa wrote 2 days ago:
                    It doesn't really matter who you are, you could still be a
                    paid shill.
                    Or do you have some way to definitively prove that you are
                    not on pc's payroll?
                    Paranoia goes both ways, and I think it's sufficient to
                    just have the reader use their best judgement...otherwise
                    we'll just always be in an endless spiral of "no puppet no
                    puppet you're the puppet."
                      lmilcin wrote 2 days ago:
                      How can I be a paid shill?
                      I am not giving any facts or creating impression I know
                      any facts.
                      I am just discussing the general process of what is and
                      what is not ok to post online anonymously.
                        burnished wrote 1 day ago:
                        Well, for starters, what if I wanted to discredit any
                        negative opinions, so I paid a team to work on that for
                        me? Wouldn't that team want people to also post
                        arguments like you are, where in principle it sounds
                        reasonable (because your position is) but the source
                        and scale were not?
                        Like, I could see some merit in convincing people that
                        they aren't "allowed" to post anonymous criticism as a
                        means of quieting bad press.
                        emodendroket wrote 1 day ago:
                        Well, I am not saying you are, but it's not really that
                        hard to imagine that someone would pay a "troll farm"
                        to write facially reasonable concerns that cast  doubt
                        on what are actually true allegations of misconduct. 
                        It's no less plausible than a competitors paying a
                        troll farm to post false allegations.
                    emodendroket wrote 2 days ago:
                    Another possibility is that many more people come forward,
                    making it less and less plausible that it's baseless
                      lmm wrote 2 days ago:
                      When everyone's pseudonymous, how much credibility do
                      multiple allegations have?
                        emodendroket wrote 1 day ago:
                        It depends; if we started hearing from long-active
                        community members I would be inclined to think the
                        allegations are pretty strong.
            outside1234 wrote 2 days ago:
            Because of the power dynamic they have to do this.  It is sad, but
            having been in a similar situation with a billionaire, you can't
            say it with your name attached.
              SquareWheel wrote 2 days ago:
              Proof could even include some examples of stories that were
              quashed, or other examples of abuse.  I don't think they
              necessarily need to out themselves to make a stronger case.
              lmilcin wrote 2 days ago:
              Everybody can say that. Regardless of whether they are or are not
              leading a large company.
              For all I know, one insider holding a grudge could be creating
              multiple accounts claiming to be leading large companies and thus
              not being able to divulge their names.
          temp3728 wrote 2 days ago:
          +1. Also a founder of an $XB fintech. Exact same story. Patrick +
          John dangled an acquisition to get a look inside, and ended up
          re-trading on the terms. Then proceeded to target 2 of our team
          members to recruit. Fast forward a few years, and now they have
          deployed a team to directly copy one of our products.
          Amongst their L2 team, Patrick and Will are described as the
          "killers". I guess maybe a bit of duplicity is required to build a
          company of that size...
            sjtindell wrote 2 days ago:
            There are so many founders of $XB fintechs in this thread, I want
            to start one! Thanks for sharing.
              davidwritesbugs wrote 2 days ago:
              X = 0.000001B$ 
              Your side gig qualifies.
            spitfire wrote 2 days ago:
            You were brain raped. Bill Gates was famous for this. There was
            even a Silicon Valley episode about the practice.
              sneak wrote 2 days ago:
              Good thing ideas aren't property.  What a lame business landscape
              that world would have!
              danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
              This sounds painful.
            wbharding wrote 2 days ago:
            As much as the parent comment strained credibility, this
            double-down (posted exactly 10 minutes after the original) breaks
            it. Seriously, how many $XB fintech founders are out there, waiting
            to tell their salacious tales about one of the most transparent and
            accountable individuals on HN?
            It's OK, come out $XB fintech founders, it's safe for your temp
            accounts here...at least until the moderators get here and start
            checking the IP addresses.
              devops000 wrote 2 days ago:
              I do think it's a competitor too. Just screwing up Stripe.
              datavirtue wrote 2 days ago:
              I have always wondered why nothing humorous or fun
              appears/happens on HN in the comments. This post and subsequent
              comments are very telling.
                throwaway19937 wrote 1 day ago:
                Do you have showdead enabled? Low quality humor is often
                downvoted or flagged to oblivion.
                ( [1] ) is an example of well-received humor; it's one of the
                top rated comments.
   URI          [1]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2965166
              ZephyrBlu wrote 2 days ago:
              It's not that surprising there are many founders lurking on HN.
              Many people who are famous in the tech world comment here once in
              a while. It's not a stretch to imagine that a lot of people from
              that demographic are active but silent users/consumers.
                darawk wrote 2 days ago:
                Two unrelated co-founders of multi-billion dollar fintech
                making anonymous accounts to comment here within 10 minutes of
                each other seems extremely unlikely to happen organically.
                Consider that the second one is a reply comment to the first.
                What would have to be true for this to be organic is:
                1. The first person arrives organically, which is plausible.
                2. The second person sees their comment within 10 minutes of it
                being posted.
                3. Decides that they are going to respond, and respond
                4. Makes an anonymous account.
                5. Writes the comment
                All within 10 minutes. Consider further that if this were
                legit, and you were the founder of a multi billion dollar tech
                company, would you write any comment like this that quickly?
                Wouldn't you spend a while reading exactly what it was you were
                saying to make sure you couldn't be identified, or didn't say
                the wrong thing? I certainly would.
                It's not necessarily implausible that Patrick is secretly an
                asshole. But it is pretty implausible that these two comments
                were organic and independent.
                  fossuser wrote 2 days ago:
                  It's not that unlikely - a lot of us in SV are on HN all of
                  the time. It's the default 'waiting for something' site to
                  check (along with Twitter). If you saw a negative story about
                  a friend you'd be more likely to comment.
                    darawk wrote 1 day ago:
                    Ya I don't find it to be at all implausible that two such
                    people could be browsing HN. I just find it to be
                    implausible that they commented within 10 minutes of each
                    other just by chance.
                  datavirtue wrote 2 days ago:
                  If I get even remotely busy I forget all about HN. I can't
                  imagine anyone trying to run a company wasting time here.
                  dd36 wrote 2 days ago:
                  They may know each other? And have asked for support. If you
                  run a large company, you know others.
                  ZephyrBlu wrote 2 days ago:
                  I find it unlikely, but not extremely so given the
                  environment (HN). It's very plausible to me that these
                  comments are organic and independent.
                  We have already had Patrick Collison and Brian Armstrong
                  comment on this post (That I know of). I'm sure that many
                  other high profile people in tech have since seen it as well.
                  The timeframe is somewhat suss, but I don't find it
                  E: other people also corroborate somewhat similar stories
                  - [1] - [2] -
   URI            [1]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29389177
   URI            [2]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29389191
   URI            [3]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29389509
                    Macha wrote 2 days ago:
                    To be fair the others are also very low activity anonymous
                    accounts created within the last 12 months.
                      ZephyrBlu wrote 2 days ago:
                      This is not at all surprising given the dynamics of the
                      internet: [1] .
                      Longstanding, commenting users are incredibly rare in the
                      scheme of things.
                      E: active <-> commenting
   URI                [1]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1%25_rule_(Interne...
                        Macha wrote 2 days ago:
                        Active users are disportionately represented amongst
                        people actively commenting, however
                          ZephyrBlu wrote 2 days ago:
                          I don't understand your point here... Active users
                          being disproportionately represented by people
                          commenting is probably correct, but it doesn't
                          provide any useful information about the minority of
                          users who don't comment often.
                          I'm saying that an account being mostly inactive (In
                          terms of commenting) is not at all surprising.
                          Someone could have been actively browsing HN for
                          months/years without commenting, so I don't think
                          comment activity is a good indicator of credibility
                          when lurking is the default behaviour for almost all
                          I wouldn't be surprised if the number of comments per
                          user followed a power law distribution.
                            darawk wrote 2 days ago:
                            He's not saying its an indicator of credibility.
                            He's speaking to the probability of two infrequent
                            commenters commenting. The density of frequent
                            commenters in all comments is very high.
              TeeMassive wrote 2 days ago:
              Fintech is worth trillions. A trillion is a thousand billions.
              HN/YC is the de facto hub for those. These comments are doubtful
              (given the money and the strong emotions involved I wouldn't
              trust a single one of them, positive or otherwise), but this
              isn't the best arguments against them.
              InvertedRhodium wrote 2 days ago:
              By that logic, couldn't you just undermine the credibility of all
              temp accounts by creating your own temp accounts to
              enthusiastically agree with them?
                Grustaf wrote 1 day ago:
                I'd say temp accounts have exactly 0 credibility in themselves.
                webmaven wrote 2 days ago:
                > By that logic, couldn't you just undermine the credibility of
                all temp accounts by creating your own temp accounts to
                enthusiastically agree with them?
                False-flag sock-puppetry seems like an interesting combination.
                I'll have to remember that one.
                  kortilla wrote 2 days ago:
                  That was one of the tricks used by Russian trolls throughout
                  the 2016 election and Trump presidency.
                  Sock puppets obviously sock puppets agreeing with “the
                  other side” so you would convince yourself whatever
                  “side” you were on was obviously correct if the other
                  side needed sock puppets.
                    pas wrote 1 day ago:
                    Could you point to some hard data/evidence on this?
              kingcharles wrote 2 days ago:
              I'm the real Satoshi, so I have you all beat.
                vrzucchini wrote 2 days ago:
                Hi Craig!
              s5300 wrote 2 days ago:
              Lovely to know. $XB fintech founders, swimming in the money, yet
              they still end up on social media towards the middle of the night
              (US based at least)
              Hahaha. Or something like that.
                ivalm wrote 2 days ago:
                Eh, founders of coin base and lambda school both posted, people
                legit post around midnight, even founders of $xb startups.
                  aidaman wrote 1 day ago:
                  your reading comprehension is garbage
              donkleberry2 wrote 2 days ago:
              I mean considering blockchain I think it’s a safe bet there’s
              a lot more $XB fintechs than you seem to think. Technically X can
              be 1, mind you
              Note that I did not say whether this was a good or bad thing, I
              just think you’re overthinking billion dollar fintech startup
              scarcity given a single bitcoin is basically a billion dollars.
              Those folks are also more likely to identify themselves as
              fintech during an introduction in my experience, and Stripe
              undoubtedly plays in the crypto pool, so it fits
                evan_ wrote 2 days ago:
                > Technically X can be 1, mind you
                or 0.00001
                bryan0 wrote 2 days ago:
                > Technically X can be 1
                Why restrict ourselves to positive integers here? Hell everyone
                can be an $XB fintech founder!
                  Grustaf wrote 2 days ago:
                  Exactly, x tends to be a real number, if it were an integer
                  or a natural number you'd use n.
                    blitzar wrote 2 days ago:
                    I am the founder if an $ i T startup.
                      high_byte wrote 2 days ago:
                      better than $ i^2 T so dream on...
                        Grustaf wrote 1 day ago:
                        My startup is $εB.
                  mellavora wrote 2 days ago:
                  or even restrict to integers?
                  Then we can all be in the club!
                    davidwritesbugs wrote 2 days ago:
                    Let's not get us integers into your fight, we're just
                    watching, OK?
                    hardlianotion wrote 2 days ago:
                    We can be in the club with integers.  Consider 0 for
                  zibzab wrote 2 days ago:
                  I have always wanted to ask this: Is zero a positive number?
                  And do we always round up?
                  - Possible owner of a mildly successful $xT company.
                    hardlianotion wrote 2 days ago:
                    It's certainly non-negative.  Enjoy your status.
                    OJFord wrote 2 days ago:
                    Usage varies, there are a few notations for specifying
                    whether the set of natural numbers/positive integers
                    includes zero when it matters.
                    'Always round up' sounds more like the ceiling function (or
                    ceil•abs) - usually rounding means to the nearest
                    integer, or whatever we're rounding to.
            bluepirate wrote 2 days ago:
            That's sad. Sorry that happened to you. I hope you guys are still
            moving forward and building.
            kadomony wrote 2 days ago:
            This sounds like typical tech infighting, sadly. We shouldn't
            normalize this stuff, but we do. I really hope more companies hold
            their leaders to a governing, conscious culture that they actually
            follow themselves.
              quaesitor wrote 2 days ago:
              > typical tech infighting
              > We shouldn't normalize this stuff
              You literally normalized it in your comment.
                JohnHaugeland wrote 2 days ago:
                Saying "typical" does not normalize something.
                By example, if I walk through a maximum security prison with no
                power, holding ten pounds of cocaine, typically I will get
                murdered.  This doesn't mean that murder is a thing we should
                consider to be normal.
                Typical is about commonality.  Normal is about evaluation of
                Consider most topics in a theater of war to see the stark
                difference between what is common and what is decent.
                djbusby wrote 2 days ago:
                Maybe they saying it's already the pattern and want to not
                continue it? (Like, if we read the comment in best light like
                guidelines say).  And, Stripe has lied to me as well but it was
                a small issue.
                  kadomony wrote 2 days ago:
                  You read the correct message here. Thank you.
                kadomony wrote 2 days ago:
                Umm.. No? I think you're inferring one thing when I meant
                another. I'm saying that this SHOULD NOT be "the typical". Read
                the entire sentence, please: "We shouldn't normalize this
                stuff, but we do."
                And please don't write condescending, inflammatory remarks. It
                offers nothing.
        dhx wrote 2 days ago:
        Could you have perhaps been too accommodating? By being a little bit
        "harder to get"[1] you may be able to weed out[2][3] recruitment
        opportunities that aren't serious and would just be a waste of your
        time to follow through on. Neither party should be expecting the other
        to just drop everything they're doing and reschedule on a whim. If that
        happens again, you should probably call it out (professionally) and
        state that you're happy to continue discussions but only when they're
        ready and serious about hiring.
        Recruiters will hand out accolades, false hopes and more just to keep
        you engaged until the moment someone else (preferred candidate) has
        been picked by the client. Then you get ghosted because you're no
        longer making the recruiter money or because you're now the backup
        option in case the preferred person cancels before starting or soon
        after starting, and they would prefer you remain available "just in
        case you're needed". [1] [2]
   URI  [1]: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/18/smarter-living/benefits-of-...
   URI  [2]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=26408181
   URI  [3]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29071362
        jacobsenscott wrote 2 days ago:
        I can't imagine what circle of hell you are in if there is a position
        called manager of managers, but it sounds like you dodged a bullet for
          rdtwo wrote 2 days ago:
          It’s the pre executive position and it is absolutely a shit
          position you don’t want to be stuck in for very long. Work work
          balance tends to favor more work, and not even work really just
          status updates and being the whipping person at hour of the night
          avalys wrote 2 days ago:
          I don't think that's the literal name of the position. This is a
          common term to refer to a manager with an organization of ~20-40
          people, where their direct reports are primarily managers themselves
          as opposed to individual engineers. In most large companies this
          position is still called something like "Senior Manager" as opposed
          to Director, VP, etc.
            danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
            It is actually the name of the position. Engineering MoM. It's
            funny and leads to some weird Google searches.
              avalys wrote 2 days ago:
              Oh, you're right, how peculiar.
          outside1234 wrote 2 days ago:
          This is what any middle management position really is.    You are
          managing and coaching managers.
          SmellTheGlove wrote 2 days ago:
          I think it clarifies things, tbh. Managers of managers used to be
          called Directors and VPs, but now many companies have Directors as
          line managers. So at least Manager of Managers is clear in that
        readthenotes1 wrote 2 days ago:
        Them: "I will only need 20 minutes for this. "
        Me: "I only need a few seconds. Either you are more perceptive than
        anyone else I've ever met or you or as arrogant as anyone I've met.
        Either way I'm not a good fit. Thank-you and good luck in your search!"
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          I wish I had the finances to be able to deliver this burn.
            quickthrower2 wrote 2 days ago:
            Having other offers or an existing job is sufficient
        pc wrote 2 days ago:
        I'm sorry; that's bad. Can you email me with details so that we can
        investigate what happened? (patrick@stripe.com; others welcome to do so
        More than 10,000 people have interviewed at Stripe so far this year, so
        "several sigma bad" still happens to an unfortunate number of people.
        That said, we want those who interact with Stripe to come away having
        been treated professionally and respectfully, and our recruiting team
        cares about fixing our process failures. On behalf of Stripe, I
          jiux wrote 2 days ago:
          Humans make mistakes, and Patrick apologized on the behalf of this
          While there may be opinions on whether or not this “makes it
          right”, apologies in today’s world should still carry some worth.
            teachrdan wrote 1 day ago:
            The most important part of an apology is, imo, sincerity. I think
            Patrick is chiming into this thread to perform damage control, not
            to sincerely apologize.
            This, to me, is evident in the fact that OP interviewed for a
            specific, high level position, and named specific, repeated bad
            processes that go beyond Patrick's generic "We interview a lot of
            people so some people are going to have a bad time."
            Patrick has more than enough information to start fixing things on
            a systemic level. Instead, he optimizes for the appearance of
            contrition without committing to fixing any of the specific
            problems mentioned.
          tempomania wrote 2 days ago:
          I’m not convinced this several sigma explanation applies:
          - 35% of interviewers did the 20 min thing. Why haven’t you said
          you’re going to investigate this specific issue yet? You should
          have enough data to now go back to the team and find out if this is a
          real issue, rather than waiting for op’s email.
          - this was a senior manager position and already in the offer stage.
          So you can’t compare that sample size to the top of the funnel.
            dangsnightmare wrote 2 days ago:
            Spot on. Patrick and Brian Armstrong are on PR damage control 101
            and one of the multiple reasons I left this manipulative industry.
            You caught Patrick on his false argument.
            Patrick did not mention the number of Manager of Managers that
            interviewed at Stripe this year, did not address the "I will only
            need 20 minutes for this" culture and did not apologise for the
            The PR spin:
            > professionally and respectfully, and our recruiting team cares
            about fixing our process failures
            If Patrick is interested in fixing anything is up to him and he
            absolutely does not need an email from OP for this.
            The fact Patrick is asking for OP to doxx Stripe’s hiring
            managers should tell you anything you need to know about how
            Patrick operates.
            Publicly, Patrick cannot afford Stripe to begin to develop the
            slightest trace of a bad place to work and a bad reputation for
            such a niche recruiting position as engineering Manager of Managers
            at Stripe is damaging.
            Patrick is asking OP to doxx the senior leader in the office OP
            applied to.
            > His answer: "don't come. It's a mess and a revolving door of
          eganist wrote 2 days ago:
          hey danrocks, bear in mind if you discuss details of your experience
          with pc, you run the risk of outing the senior leader you consulted
          in step 10.
          You may wish not to do this. As much as the feedback would probably
          help Stripe and possibly even yourself, given the post you've
          written, it sounds like it may put someone else's career on the line.
            bigbillheck wrote 2 days ago:
            I think if they cared to look at their internal data they'd be able
            to figure out who he was without much trouble at all based on this
            thread and his recent post history here (named 'Dan', interviewed
            recently for manager-of-manager position, lives in ~~place~~,
            currently works for ~~someone~~).
              danrocks wrote 17 hours 7 min ago:
              I actually replied to Patrick via e-mail; I have zero reason to
              be anonymous.
            austenallred wrote 2 days ago:
            It sounds like it's a failure of coordination more than anything; a
            broken system not a person acting in a way that should lead to
            termination (unless they are unwilling to fix said system over
          ulfw wrote 2 days ago:
          Stripe recruiters were the worst I've dealth with in the past twelve
          Extensive talk about a position. Then ghosted.
          Then invited for an interview with the hiring manager, who then
          cancelled last minute. Invited to do an ad-hoc interview during one
          of my work meetings. Denied and asked for different time.
          Definitely dodged a bullet with these guys. Some companies think
          because they're growing they can do whatever.
            simonebrunozzi wrote 2 days ago:
            I seriously doubt they're as bad as google recruiters. I had almost
            3 job offers from them over a period of ~10 years, and I finally
            decided I will never interview there ever again.
              xdavidliu wrote 2 days ago:
              Are you saying that you had 2 job offers and almost a third, or
              are you saying that on three separate occasions you almost got
              the offer but did not? Either way, what specifically did the
              recruiters do badly?
                simonebrunozzi wrote 2 days ago:
                I got two written job offers, which I refused, and almost got a
                Main issues:
                - wrong level offered (e.g. sub-director vs director) despite
                initial agreement;
                - lowball salary offer (~30% less of what I stated I wanted to
                even start interviewing for the job, and ~20% less of what I
                was making at my then-current job)
                - confusing interview process (too many things to even list
                them here)
                - lack of preparation for the interviewers (e.g. didn't read my
                resume, wasn't aware of who else interviewed me and on which
                topics, didn't ask me questions relevant to the position, etc)
                anonymoushn wrote 2 days ago:
                The 2019 google recruitment process takes almost half a year
                and ends with a 4-day exploding offer for ~50% of market
          choppaface wrote 2 days ago:
          "several sigma bad" is really still not OK.  As a founder, you earn
          vastly vastly outsized compensation because you're supposed to be
          able to build an amazing team with an amazing funnel.  You deal with
          payments and fraud, so you know that "several sigma bad" is not
          acceptable.  Your employees and investors deserve a refund.
            onion2k wrote 2 days ago:
            you're supposed to be able to build an amazing team with an amazing
            I think it would be hard to scale a business to the size of Stripe
            without those things. It's fair to say that, no matter what else
            you might believe, pc has managed to do that. Ergo, by your own
            logic, he has earned his comp.
            RhodesianHunter wrote 2 days ago:
            I'm not defending Stripe here but this is a rediculous take.
            Perfection is unachievable.
          milofeynman wrote 2 days ago:
          Hey Patrick,
          You might look to improve y'all's process by looking at datatdog's
          interview process. I have never felt more appreciated and well
          treated than interviewing there.
          1) they always give feedback
          2) they have more generic positions, get you in the door to some
          small filter interviews, and then shop you around to find the right
          team for you, instead of the reverse approach where people shotgun
          resumes across your company trying to get in the door. The problem
          with the recruiter and multiple HMs I talked to at stripe is they
          didn't seem to care about getting people to work at stripe, only
          getting people to work in their org which didn't have open positions
          for X.
          3) incredibly quick and responsive through the process. My recruiter
          at stripe did this!
          Love what you're doing for science,
          Take care
            european321 wrote 2 days ago:
            I had a funny experience with DataDog. I applied to a new grad
            position. Few months go by, and then I receive an email to schedule
            an onsite, well that seemed odd since I hadn't done any coding
            test, recruiter call or anything else. I scheduled an on-site and
            went there. I tried asking what the normal process is, and everyone
            just kept replying "you are on the last step". So I just ended up
            going through the interviews. Then couple days after received an
            email that someone had checked the paperwork and said that they had
            thought I was someone else lol
            fafle wrote 2 days ago:
            Datadog gave me a take-home assignment, which I could have done
            sloppily in one day or done well in two days. They added "we
            respect your time, so don't spend more than 3 hours on it". Then
            they rejected my solution because I didn't guard for all kinds of
            invalid input that was never mentioned anywhere.
            jakub_g wrote 2 days ago:
            Can confirm, at least for France - the interviewing experience at
            Datadog was amazing. Everyone was very humane and very responsive.
            I accepted the offer.
            aerovistae wrote 2 days ago:
            Incredibly ironic comment - I interviewed at datadog for an
            engineering position and left feeling atrocious about it.
            They gave me a large and complex take home assignment which I put a
            significant amount of time into, and which I felt I did a very
            excellent job with. They declined afterwards without a word. We
            didn't discuss it, no feedback was given. Just unmatched on the
            hiring platform we were using.
            I am an experienced developer at a reasonably prominent company and
            I know I wrote the code well for that assignment. The fact that
            they would assign something so time consuming and then take no time
            to go over it at all and reject it so out of hand left me with a
            very very bad taste in my mouth.
            bambataa wrote 2 days ago:
            2 is such an obvious thing for a tech company to do. How can a
            candidate know the exact best team for them to apply to? This is
            the purpose of the recruiting team.
            Gehinnn wrote 2 days ago:
            Even though I did not accept Datadogs offer, I can only confirm
            this - my interview experience at Datadog for a software engineer
            position was truly amazing. I could feel they care.
          stewvsshark wrote 2 days ago:
          Talk about great HR support
          lmilcin wrote 2 days ago:
          Only some of this could be explained by "several sigma" of bad luck.
          The rest is either the candidate misunderstanding/distorting the
          process or a structural hiring problem.
          I interview a lot of candidates. I just can't imagine to make a
          hiring decision for a dev, let alone a manager that manages other
          managers, based on 20 minute discussion.
            tzs wrote 2 days ago:
            > I interview a lot of candidates. I just can't imagine to make a
            hiring decision for a dev, let alone a manager that manages other
            managers, based on 20 minute discussion.
            But what if others in their 20 minute discussions with the
            candidate ask the questions you would have asked if you had spent
            longer interviewing them?
            If the hiring decision is based on the feedback from all the
            interviewers I could see having many of those interviews be short
            interviews where the interviewer just concentrates on finding out
            one important input for the group decision working, provided that
            there are enough interviews to cover all the important things and
            if there has been some planning on the part of the company to
            coordinate who covers what in the 20 minute interviews.
            I have no idea if Stripe does the necessary coordination to make
            that work, but the fact that several of the interviewers started
            out mentioning they would only need 20 minutes suggests that it was
            some sort of organized thing.
              lmilcin wrote 2 days ago:
              You are hiring somebody who will be managing managers meaning
              they will probably have responsibility for at least dozens if not
              hundreds or even thousands of people.
              As a manager/leader of that organisation they will have an
              important role that can mean difference between those hundreds of
              people bringing huge value or huge loss to the company.
              So your responsibility is to figure out how much time to spend
              with the candidate. You can choose anywhere between "just hire
              first person to apply" and "spend a year grooming an employee to
              see if they can do the job".
              And you want to tell me that 20 minutes is the right answer here?
              That out of entire continuum of possible choices you say that the
              optimal return (performance of manager) on investment (cost of
              conducting interviews) lands at approximately 20 minutes -- less
              time than you take to have a lunch?
              I get that he had couple of these sessions but still... it sounds
              like giving the job to a first person that looks the part.
                tzs wrote 2 days ago:
                What I'm suggesting is that maybe what matters is the total set
                of questions asked by all the interviewers. Does it really
                matter if one person asks questions for 2 hours as opposed to 6
                people asking questions for 20 minutes each if the same
                questions are asked?
                The former gives more flexibility to alter the questioning on
                the fly, such as to delve more deeply into some area than had
                been planned. The latter gets more people to spend time with
                the candidate.
                A mix of this could be the best of both worlds. Have several
                short interviews mixed with some long ones. If one of the short
                ones turns up something that seems worth going in depth on that
                can be handled in one of the long interviews.
            aeternum wrote 2 days ago:
            What size org do you manage?  At some point your choice is to
            either talk to candidates for shorter times or delegate the entire
            decision to managers under you.  While 20 min definitely isn't
            enough to fully evaluate a candidate it can be enough time to
            assess potential gaps you see based upon the feedback of the rest
            of your team.  It can also be enough time to make an intro and make
            it clear to the candidate that someone very senior values their
              lmilcin wrote 2 days ago:
              > What size org do you manage?
              At what size of org it stops being important who is going to be
              heading it?
              shawnb576 wrote 2 days ago:
              Sorry this is BS and will lead to bad hires.
              Regardless of the size of the org you need 45 mins to get good
              20 minutes might work for a “what questions do you have” sell
              But any company making hiring calls on this model, that’s a
              yellow flag right there
                aeternum wrote 2 days ago:
                Op said that only 35% of interviewers stated 20min so approx 2
                out of 5?  3 long rounds and 2 short 20-30 min rounds should be
                plenty to get a decent hiring signal.
            danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
            I also hire a lot of people and I tend to agree with you. It’s
            hard to think that I misunderstood the process, however, when a
            start date was mentioned.
            hogFeast wrote 2 days ago:
            Describing your recruiting process as a random variable...wut? Does
            the hiring manager make decisions randomly? Someone calls up, the
            hiring manager gets out the lucky 8-ball, and it comes out "give a
            29th percentile recruiting interview", and the manager just straps
            on the Biggles goggles to bomb the candidate. Why even say that to
            someone who is pissed off with your recruiting process? Just don't
            say anything.
            As you say, it is very hard to attribute a bad recruiting process
            to something that is non-structural...no matter how many thousands
            of people you hire.
              perl4ever wrote 2 days ago:
              >Describing your recruiting process as a random variable
              Anyone who can do anything with zero variation should definitely
              drop what they are doing now and make it their new business.
                hogFeast wrote 2 days ago:
                The other reply explained this but imagine you bought a soda,
                and you drank it and it turned out to be rat piss. You call up
                the company: my soda was full of rat piss. Their reply: "Oh
                yes, we sell lots of sodas, you couldn't possibly understand
                how much soda we sell so rat piss soda is a seven sigma
                If you are in software, recruiting is your business. You have
                no other real assets. So categorising your hiring process as a
                random variable makes no sense. You should have processes in
                place that ensure non-randomness...again, is Coca-Cola out
                there selling tons of rat piss, and just saying: "Tough luck
                guys, this is a hard business"...no. If you don't have
                processes to ensure that outcomes in the core parts of your
                business are not random, you don't have a business (I used to
                work as an equity analyst, I have heard this kind of thing from
                CEOs over and over...I never recommended investing in such
                business, I have never seen a company that was run that way
                  perl4ever wrote 1 day ago:
                  People report even more clear cut events regarding food
                  products than your example, even. You know, like rat parts.
                  Sometimes they may be hoaxes or urban legends. Not
                  necessarily all the time.
                  I've seen odd things first hand with processed food from the
                  grocery store. I've bought sealed packages of food that were
                  all dried out and stale. Or that looked fine but gave
                  me...indigestion. The weirdest thing I've seen recently were
                  some mints where some of them randomly were solid chocolate,
                  no filling. Oh, and a frozen dessert had a sealed cardboard
                  box, but the plastic covering inside was open.
                  How does that sort of variation happen? I'd imagine that the
                  better your process is, and the less variation you have, the
                  larger proportion of your failures will be "unknown unknowns"
                  that are just weird.
                  I acknowledge the conclusion that the interview process is
                  f-ed up could well be correct.
                sombremesa wrote 2 days ago:
                I think what GP is trying to say is that your hiring process is
                within your control (especially this far in the pipeline), so
                even the worst candidate experience should fall above some
                baseline. You don't get much sympathy if you say "that baseline
                turns out to be absolute gobshite at the first percentile,
        victor106 wrote 2 days ago:
        That sucks man.
        Can you share what kind of questions you were asked during the
        interview process?
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          Standard behavioral questions not particularly challenging. The most
          striking thing is that there is no drill down: questions are
          independent of each other and interviewers don’t follow-up on the
          answers, making it hard to establish a conversation.
        PragmaticPulp wrote 2 days ago:
        This is almost point-for-point identical (minus the offer talk) to the
        other Stripe interviewing stories I've heard lately. (Context:
        Management positions. Not sure about IC roles).
        From the outside, I wonder if Stripe has reached the point of notoriety
        where they can get away with poor hiring and even workplace practices
        because nobody wants to admit getting rejected by Stripe. Every
        negative anecdote I've seen has been shared under anonymity or strict
        confidentiality. I assume Stripe knows they're a hot commodity and
        therefore can get away with negative interview practices.
          astrange wrote 2 days ago:
          The one named anecdote I've heard about Stripe was from someone who
          got fired because they said something negative about Elon Musk on
   URI    [1]: https://twitter.com/isosteph/status/1459566899151396867
            sjtindell wrote 1 day ago:
            Sounds like nonsense to me. I don’t even understand the chain of
            events that could lead to that.
              bigzyg33k wrote 19 hours 22 min ago:
              she's quite popular on tech twitter, and was/is followed by a lot
              of stripes c suite - musk was an initial investor in stripe
            danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
        a-r-t wrote 2 days ago:
        > 10) I call up a senior leader in the office I applied to, an
        acquaintance of mine. His answer: "don't come. It's a mess and a
        revolving door of people". I was shocked with the response.
        Stripe is preparing for an IPO, so naturally they will have some chaos
        in an effort to balloon it as much as possible.
          victor106 wrote 2 days ago:
          > Stripe is preparing for an IPO,
          I was thinking the same but this interview from Stripe’s CEO says
   URI    [1]: https://www.cnbc.com/amp/2021/11/23/stripe-very-happy-stayin...
            neom wrote 2 days ago:
            Based on this interview, not sure who will be able to afford to buy
            $STRP when they do decide to go public. Nice for them, sad for the
            rest of us.
              forgotmysn wrote 2 days ago:
              you can buy fractional shares on just about every platform now. i
              bought $10 worth of nvidia stock today on RH, even though a full
              share trades for like ~$250 (i didnt pay that close attention)
          stefan_ wrote 2 days ago:
          Why on earth are you making excuses for a public company?
            a-r-t wrote 2 days ago:
            I am not, I was making an observation about the "It's a mess and a
            revolving door of people" comment. The recruiting practice that OP
            described is not acceptable for any company, public or private.
            sodality2 wrote 2 days ago:
            That's not making excuses as much as providing an explanation for
            it imo
        purechi wrote 2 days ago:
        Ghosting is way too common these days. I've decided to start replying
        to many more of the cold emails I get. Even if the answer is "no" or
        "not interested". Not replying is rude except when you can't make space
        for it.
          seattle_spring wrote 2 days ago:
          I'm sorry but fuck that. I get at least 5 emails from recruiters a
          week even though my LinkedIn profile only had job titles, tenures,
          and a description that reads "not interested in a new role." I've
          disabled InMail and hidden my email, so they instead pull my contact
          info from some DB. They are beginning the relationship with an
          enormous amount of disrespect, so they can suck a fuck if they're
          going to call my non-responses "disrespectful."
          acjohnson55 wrote 2 days ago:
          Nah, I've got better things to do.
          My old boss, however, has good advice on how to make them useful, for
          those who care to respond:
   URI    [1]: https://code.dblock.org/2015/01/09/how-to-make-recruiter-spa...
          cmrdporcupine wrote 2 days ago:
          Recruiters have gotten strangely more persistent and aggressive
          recently. Somehow my corporate work email (@google.com) got into some
          leads database recruiters use and I get emails about once every two
          weeks from recruiters, which I usually ignore (or tell them to remove
          the address as it's for work, not personal stuff). Several that I
          have ignored have sent multiple repeated emails ("Just following up
          in case you missed it") and so on.
          I used to get recruiter cold emails once every 6 or 7 months. Now
          it's at least once a week. I got two the other day in the same day
          from two recruiters at the same headhunting company with 90% of the
          same boilerplate text in common. Inconsiderate, I think?
          I don't feel bad about not responding.
          Actually if it reminds me of anything, it's 1999/2000 right before
          the .COM crash. That's the last time I remember it being this crazy.
          I remember a day in 1999 when I worked at a startup where everyone's
          phone (yes, we had desk phones then) all rang in sequence one after
          another as a recruiter made their way one by one through the company
            nathanaldensr wrote 2 days ago:
            If I may: "Like flies to shit."
            crate_barre wrote 2 days ago:
            They are just playing the numbers. The dev interview gauntlet is
            tough, and even the recruiters know it. I made it past some tough
            technical screens, and the recruiter for a newly ipo’d (well
            known company) was happy I got that far and flat out told me ‘I
            have to fill 30+ roles, I have no idea where I’m going to find
            these 30 people’. I didn’t make it any further, and apparently
            I made it further than a lot his other prospects. So imagine their
            frustration. They are trying to throw as many candidates against
            the wall because very few ever make it through.
            I don’t hold anything against these recruiters anymore. They find
            decent people with good work experience, but even that is not
            enough for these companies anymore. I try to be as cool as I can
            with them because for better or worse, they might be the only
            person in that entire process that succeeds if you succeed (your
            only friend, believe it or not).
              cmrdporcupine wrote 2 days ago:
              I don't hold it against them. But there's way too many of them.
              spookthesunset wrote 2 days ago:
              I agree. In big tech companies the recruiter is incentivized to
              make sure you win. If you win, they win and if you lose they
              basically lose financially too.
              They really are your only friend in the hiring process. Knowing
              this gives you a lot of leverage.
          pgm8705 wrote 2 days ago:
          I feel bad sometimes about ignoring cold emails, but even taking the
          time to read all of them I get would require several hours a week. I
          am more inclined to reply if I can catch a hint of authenticity. It
          is usually pretty easy to tell when you're getting an automated email
          from a sales funnel.
          pram wrote 2 days ago:
          Not replying to unsolicited recruitment isn't really ghosting IMO
            not2b wrote 2 days ago:
            Agreed. Promising to meet or get back to someone and then never
            communicating again is ghosting, but you haven't promised to reply
            to every spammer who gets your contact info.
          garmaine wrote 2 days ago:
          You should have no obligation to reply to a cold email. Those go
          straight into the trash for me (or more often, to the spam filter for
          a permanent block). It's MY time that is being wasted.
        admjs wrote 2 days ago:
        To the first point, of “I only need 20 minutes for this” that’s a
        classic get out of jail free card if they’ve decided you’re not a
        good fit or things aren’t going well. It manages your expectations
        and they can end the interview early.
          cm2012 wrote 2 days ago:
          I run a fast growing, succesful business. I only schedule first
          interviews for 30 minutes anyway and rarely use the whole time. It's
          just my nature, I get to the point of things quickly.
          luckydata wrote 2 days ago:
          that's unprofessional and shitty behavior. if the interview isn't
          going well and you want to cut it short, you can find some spine and
          say so.
          avl999 wrote 2 days ago:
          That is extremely unprofessional and a bad look for the interviewer.
          I have done over a 100 interviews including some really bad ones,
          never have I ever cut one short. When you are interviewing you are
          representing the company, whenever I interviewed someone even if I
          knew it was going to be a clear no, I tried to make them feel good
          about the process as what that person is going to go out and say
          directly reflects on the company and future hires. 20 mins of your
          time is a drop in the bucket in terms of impact of getting a bad
          reputation, not only are you potentially shooting yourself in the
          foot with other candidates but leaving a bad taste in the mouth of
          the one you are interviewing who might in the future would otherwise
          reapply at a different stage in their career if/when they become a
          stronger candidate.
            christophergs wrote 2 days ago:
            I agree that ending an interview early is a no-go. However if it's
            an onsite/process with multiple interviews, I think the fairest
            approach (and I've done this in the past) is to manage expectations
            ahead of time that the full interview sequence only happens if you
            pass each one.
            This way you don't waste the candidate or your time if it's clearly
            a no after interview 1. They feel a bit bad because they obviously
            didn't pass, but if you've communicated ahead of time it's not a
            BubbleRings wrote 2 days ago:
            Yes, I'd like to order a few truckloads of people like this guy for
            the workplace please.
            And yes, I still name the company when I tell the story of my worst
            experience interviewing at a company, 30 years ago.
            throwyuno wrote 2 days ago:
            Hm, sometimes when I’m interviewing someone who I know is a
            “no” it feels like I’m leading them on if I go through the
            full interview. I thought it would be more respectful of their time
            to let them know that early, but maybe I am wrong about that?
            I’ve also heard (via HR) about candidates being surprised to not
            get the offer in cases where I kept the interview going and
            pretended things were going well.
              LegitShady wrote 2 days ago:
              Finish the interview, and provide feedback if asked why it was a
              Interviewing isn't just for fun, and even if you don't get the
              job, you can go through the interview to practice, and hopefully
              to figure out what went wrong.
              If after 20 minutes they just say 'I think this is a no so go
              home' I wasted a lot more than 20 minutes and got nothing out of
                kyawzazaw wrote 22 hours 43 min ago:
                Providing feedback is usually not a thing because of liability.
              avl999 wrote 2 days ago:
              The interviewee already has their schedule booked off during that
              window, that extra 20 mins is not saving them any time. If your
              concern is their time, I would assume they'd "waste" more time
              stewing on an early interview exit and thinking about it rather
              than if it just ended normally.
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          This was also said in the post-loop interview. After I was approved
          and congratulated. Makes zero sense in my book.
          selcuka wrote 2 days ago:
          > It manages your expectations and they can end the interview early.
          Do you mean they can end the interview earlier than 20 minutes, or
          that it actually takes more than 20 minutes but they can end it at 20
          minutes mark?
          Either case it doesn't sound good. If they said 20 minutes it
          shouldn't take much more or much less than 20 minutes.
          acjohnson55 wrote 2 days ago:
          That's unacceptable, in my opinion.
          I work at a company that grew more than 10x in under 2 years from a
          couple dozen engineers to hundreds. I personally interviewed well
          over 100 engineers. My time was valuable, but not so valuable that I
          couldn't spend an hour productively with each candidate. And
          certainly not by making them feel like it's an extended failure. On
          the super rare occasion that someone was gigantic "no", it's still
          possible to make the candidate feel valued.
          One time, I had to shut down an interview cycle because a candidate
          was abusive to one of my reports. That's the only time I've cut a
          round short.
            christophergs wrote 2 days ago:
            Yes. When I was very inexperienced I still remember being
            interviewed by an extremely big dog in the open-source world (he
            was VP of engineering at a very successful startup). I was probably
            about a 3/10 in terms of quality of interview answers, and
            unsurprisingly didn't get the job.
            Despite that, he still managed to make me feel good about the whole
            experience. At some points in the interview where I was
            close/slightly off he'd first coax "that's quite similar to X or Y,
            don't you think?" then if that didn't work he'd coach "here's how X
            works, elegant explanation, ok, let's talk about Y".
            I remember this vividly years later with a smile. Just like I
            remember all the negative experiences where people were dismissive
            or ghosted.
            WatchDog wrote 2 days ago:
            I once interviewed someone, who clearly had no programming
            They had someone else complete the screening take-home coding
            exercise for them.
            We spent the whole hour interview making zero progress on the task
            I kinda wish I had setup some kind of get-out-of-jail situation so
            that I could have saved everyone the time, but I sat though the
            whole hour just out of the embarrassment of ending things early.
              vrc wrote 2 days ago:
              I always put some “wrap ups” in my interview. Logical points
              where, when they stall or give a terrible answer, you can ask,
              “is there anything else?”, let them say something else, and
              just say, “Thanks! I think that’s a great place to stop, is
              there anything you’d like to ask me?”. I practice saying it
              with a smile, and don’t diverge from the script. Makes it much
              easier to end bad interviews.
              toast0 wrote 2 days ago:
              I interviewed someone once who refused to try my problem. I don't
              know what was going on for him that day, but after the quick
              intro to the problem, he didn't want to do it. I was the last one
              on his interview schedule, so I walked him out and got 30 minutes
            jsnell wrote 2 days ago:
            If somebody is a no-hire, what favour are you doing them by
            extending the interview loop to the end? You're just wasting their
            time at that point. (Though I've never heard of an interview slot
            being cut short like that based on a couple of questions. If the
            interviewers are habitually preparing for that, it is just insane.)
              acjohnson55 wrote 2 days ago:
              I mean, I can imagine situations where it's appropriate, but like
              you said, I think it says more about the company if it's a common
              occurrence. For the types of interviews my company does, they're
              designed not to suck, even if you're not knocking it out of the
              Most of the sessions are collaborative solution design exercises.
              The interviewer can drive the solution, if necessary, and
              hopefully it's at least educational. The remaining session is a
              behavioral interview centered on the candidates accomplishments.
              It's usually possible to set least draw out what the candidate is
              proud of from their career.
          honestduane wrote 2 days ago:
          So they start the interview by lying to you in case they need it
        ljalskjdfas wrote 2 days ago:
        I was ghosted so many times. Finally landed a job with like-minded
        It would be nice to have a curated list of companies to avoid or
        perhaps companies that have decent interview practices.
          jareklupinski wrote 2 days ago:
          Blind is still an alright forum for a gut check I think?
          bastard_op wrote 2 days ago:
          This was fuckedcompany.com back in the 90's, though companies and
          their lawyers didn't appreciate the satire.
        codr7 wrote 2 days ago:
        I went through the hiring loop recently when switching jobs.
        Decided to do the right thing for once and make a serious effort at
        investigating my options.
        I started out very sincere and honest, but two months of being fucked
        over by companies left and right in the interview process definitely
        changed me.
        In the end I found a nice position working with honest and empathic
        people, but the path that lead there was a total disaster.
        elsbree wrote 2 days ago:
        Had the opposite experience recently as an EM. Spent a few months
        trying to find a staff-level engineer. Found a great candidate who
        worked for a FAANG, worked to get our budget up to his expectations,
        sold him on the team, and he accepted our offer with a start date 6
        weeks in the future so he could have time to wrap up his work. Fine,
        I'm just happy to have filled the role after an arduous search. A few
        weeks go by, and he hasn't responded to my "we're excited to have you
        join the team, etc" email or any HR emails about filling out his
        paperwork. I call and email, the recruiter calls and emails, nothing.
        We never hear from him again..
        He's been active on social media so we know he's alive, and assume he
        parlayed our offer into a raise somewhere else. Ok, that happens, but
        to accept an offer and totally ghost? Jeez. I could have used those
        intervening weeks to interview more candidates had he just sent me a
        quick note, now I've got to backfill his position while also trying to
        fill the new ones that just opened... I guess hiring is a shitshow from
        both sides sometimes.
          strzibny wrote 2 days ago:
          Ghosting is really the worst. And it doesn't matter if it's a
          romantic relationship, friendship or professional interaction. Why
          can't people see themselves on the other side of the line?
          lordnacho wrote 2 days ago:
          It's a much bigger deal for the other party tough. The employee is
          typically more dependent on having a job than the employer is
          dependent on having an engineer. Granted a staff level engineer is
          not quite the same, especially for a small firm.
          What's lamentable is that ghosting has become part of our culture.
          People think it's the done thing, so they do it. Just as with dating,
          how hard is it really to keep track of who you owe a response and
          send them a short piece saying you're no longer interested? It's
          especially grating in your situation where you know there's no reason
          why they don't just tell you they have a better offer.
          I think that's the key actually. People don't like the icky feeling
          of negotiating, where you often keep cards to yourself. When game
          ends and you get your desired outcome, you continue to feel bad about
          it. And you certainly don't want to be called out and have to defend
          yourself, even if picking a better offer is perfectly fair.
          shrimpx wrote 2 days ago:
          A job applicant doesn’t have a hiring department with a codified
          process and team so it’s not quite symmetric.
          jongorer wrote 2 days ago:
          This is so satisfying to hear. Always happy to see management and
          recruitment  types being used up and hung to dry.
          colechristensen wrote 2 days ago:
          I had a somewhat opposite experience: went through an interview
          process, accepted and then the company drug its feet about a start
          date which ended up taking weeks longer than expected after several
          delays for simple things like ordering equipment and other things
          which pointed to "we don't have our act together".  I was committed
          and had already left my previous position and exited other
          interviewing pipelines.
          I should have persisted and ghosted them, they ended up putting me in
          a different role than I had been offered and generally were extremely
          Honestly, I think going forward if you don't have me sign a contract
          and give me something in return (say, a signing bonus that is
          actually paid upon signing instead of weeks after I start), the deal
          isn't done until I start.
          When you can't expect the other party to hold up to their side of the
          bargain because there are bad actors out there, it doesn't make sense
          to trust them or tell them what's going on until after everything is
          settled... and even then when litigation is such a concern...
            dkdbejwi383 wrote 2 days ago:
            > ... and give me something in return (say, a signing bonus that is
            actually paid upon signing instead of weeks after I start)
            Is this common in the USA? In the UK I've never been offered or
            heard of anyone receiving a bonus for signing a contract. Does
            anyone have a different experience?
              astura wrote 2 days ago:
              No, that's why the GP wanted it.
              It 100% doesn't matter either way, as those bonuses always come
              with attrition requirements - you have to pay back all or part
              the bonus if you leave the company before some predetermined time
              period. If you don't agree to the payback terms then you simply
              don't get the bonus.
              So a bonus paid before you start is more-or-less identical to a
              bonus paid with your first paycheck. You don't get to keep it if
              your offer is rescinded or you don't show up on your first day.
                dkdbejwi383 wrote 2 days ago:
                Thanks, but maybe I should have worded it better: is a bonus
                just for starting your job common? I've never heard of this in
                the UK applying myself or hiring. Only yearly bonuses for
                  astura wrote 1 day ago:
                  Not common but also not unheard of, it's simply just an
                  advance on your paycheck.
                  I've seen them be offered in jobs/industries/companies where
                  there is a labor shortage or the job is difficult to fill for
                  some reason. They might be standard-ish in some
                  like I said, you'd almost always be required to stay for X
                  amount of time - like a year plus usually, or you gotta pay
                  some or all of it back.
                  imadethis wrote 2 days ago:
                  Yes, they’re not uncommon, across a wide range of job
                  types. I recently got a signing bonus for a part time job as
                  an EMT for instance. In tech especially they can be quite
                  large to offset stock options or bonuses the employee is
                  giving up by switching jobs. If I’m about to be poached
                  right before my annual bonus of x thousand pays out, I’ll
                  want a comparable signing bonus.
              wil421 wrote 2 days ago:
              My personal experience has been that companies who give signing
              bonuses usually have retention issues and the bonus has to be
              paid back if you leave within a year. At least that was the
              experience when I graduated college. After becoming an
              experienced hire I haven’t been offered one.
                DavidPeiffer wrote 2 days ago:
                It can vary by company and culture. Tech may be different, but
                in non-tech roles where equity isn't expected in most roles,
                signing bonuses can serve a function to nudge someone to leave
                a role they're comfortable in, or to make up for other aspects
                the candidate is losing out on by leaving at a certain time
                (e.g. annual bonus with 10a 10% of salary target pays out in
                March, but the new company wants you to start in January).
              jstx1 wrote 2 days ago:
              There are signing bonuses in the UK. I think you will be very
              unlikely to get it immediately on signing though - it's usually
              within the first couple of months of employment or with your
              first salary, something like that.
            haggy102 wrote 2 days ago:
            Very sorry that you had this experience but yes NEVER consider a
            job offer finalized until a contract has been drafted and both
            parties sign. Until then it's all basically vaporware
              i_hate_pigeons wrote 2 days ago:
              Signing a contract is normally worthless too, all of them tend to
              have very lenient notices so either side can just give the 1 week
              notice or whatever and that's it
              cycomanic wrote 2 days ago:
              Interesting tidbit, in Sweden an offer over email (or verbally
              IIRC) is legally binding. It's quite common that you will only
              receive /sign the actual contract on the first day of work.
              Obviously this leads to confusion when hiring people from outside
              of Sweden.
                neuroma wrote 2 days ago:
                I'm the UK I've had multiple jobs where I don't even see the
                contract until 2 months into work. 
                Not sure of the legal frame work
                  gorgoiler wrote 2 days ago:
                  The UK splits the legal stuff into an offer letter
                  (”principal statement”) and the fine print (”wider
                  statement”.)    The latter is what most people informally
                  call the contract, including the front page of these
                  Employers must to provide you with the fine print within two
                  months of your start date: [1] Any incontrovertible evidence
                  of an agreement of the job, verbal or written, counts as a
                  contract.  Everything else is just finalizing the terms and
                  conditions, which either party can agree to amend at any
                  later date and which many employers assert they can do
   URI            [1]: https://www.gov.uk/employment-contracts-and-conditio...
                  aix1 wrote 2 days ago:
                  I'm guessing we might be in different sectors, but FWIW I've
                  never seen this in my >20 years in the UK.  To me the
                  situation you're describing would ring all sorts of alarm
                  P.S. Not doubting your experience, just comparing it with
              colechristensen wrote 2 days ago:
              Unless there's some consideration (i.e. money) changing hands,
              contracts like that are worth nothing but the paper they are on.
                lmm wrote 2 days ago:
                Simply not signing another work contract is consideration.
                  colechristensen wrote 2 days ago:
                  In the US in tech they’re basically a meaningless
            mym1990 wrote 2 days ago:
            Generally, no matter how amicable the relationship, if the terms
            aren’t in writing, then they are subject to change. Figured this
            out after a friend of mine who was renting a room in my apartment
            ghosted me for 3 months of rent heh.
          emodendroket wrote 2 days ago:
          According to the papers, candidate ghosting has been happening more
          and more often.  With such a senior, high-paid position as that, it
          doesn't really apply, but I can't help but feel a bit of
          schadenfreude at employers lamenting ghosting candidates, after
          themselves being the ghosting party so routinely.
            TimonKnigge wrote 2 days ago:
            I understand the sentiment but there is a difference between
            ghosting the during recruiting process and ghosting after
            committing to the job.
            throwaway6734 wrote 2 days ago:
            Agree. Having been ghosted in the past by potential employers I
            have zero qualms now about doing the same in return
              codewithcheese wrote 2 days ago:
              You have been treated unethically in the past, now you have zero
              qualms acting unethically? That's not cool, its very easy NOT to
              ghost people it basically costs you nothing, you might want to
              seek some therapy.
                throwaway6734 wrote 2 days ago:
                It's standard operating procedure for the hiring process
            marcus_holmes wrote 2 days ago:
            this. I recently went through the job-hunting process, and
            employer's behaviour was terrible (on average, there were some good
            I don't think they understand that if they set the bar that low,
            then we'll all accept that and behave similarly badly.
            Like loyalty - employers stopped being loyal to their employees, so
            employees stopped being loyal back. Every time I see an employer
            moan about how employees don't care any more, I feel schadenfreude.
            We mirror the behaviour we see, because game theory.
              thelettere wrote 1 day ago:
              "employers stopped being loyal to their employees, so employees
              stopped being loyal back."
              On what basis do you make this claim? It was always my
              understanding that it started with employees - because what
              changed was not that employees suddenly started working for
              multiple employers in the same field but that changing careers
              was the norm. I don't know how you point the finger at employers
              for that.
                marcus_holmes wrote 1 day ago:
                In the dim and distant past of my Dad's youth, it was expected
                that you'd join a company in your late teens / early twenties,
                and that company would train you in the skills you needed, pay
                you a living wage to do your job (enough to raise a family on
                without another income), and employ you for your entire life,
                eventually paying you a salary-linked pension until you died.
                If the company did badly, then it was still obligated to
                continue employing everyone, and in return the employees were
                obligated to remain with the company, being "company men",
                putting the company near the top of their personal priorities.
                Career advancement meant getting a promotion within the
                company. If you didn't manage to get promoted, then you stayed
                in your job, possibly for decades, until you could retire.
                Then somewhere in the 70's, that changed, and companies no
                longer considered themselves obligated to look after their
                employees (at least in the UK, this was an age of massive
                strikes, and labour relations at a terrible low). Then in the
                80's, the Yuppies took control of their careers and the modern
                idea of a self-made career where you hop from job to job within
                the same industry became popular.
                I'm old enough to have had the old ideas of loyalty taught to
                me in school, only to then discover that the world had changed
                and loyalty was an outdated concept. I'm kinda glad - I would
                not make a good "company man". But for many it was depressing
                and strange, and I know a few people who were sacked in
                mid-career and had no idea how to continue.
                dragonwriter wrote 1 day ago:
                > It was always my understanding that it started with employees
                It did not.
                > because what changed was not that employees suddenly started
                working for multiple employers in the same field
                That's wrong, that's exactly what happened (from the employee
                side, though it wasn't the start) first and most, though, and
                that remains more common than changing career fields (which, of
                course, happens, too.)
            sombremesa wrote 2 days ago:
            Sometimes a recruiter or hiring manager leaves the company halfway
            through the hiring process, leaving the candidate in a limbo.
            It'd be funny (in a sad way, I suppose) if the same becomes true on
            the other side..."sorry, my online assistant just quit so my
            resignation at the current firm never got filed."
              sidr wrote 2 days ago:
              At a company there's a reporting chain and an HR department to
              ensure that even in this situation, the candidate isn't left
              ghosted - offer to shop the candidate's resume around and switch
              teams, or at the very least inform them. There is no valid excuse
              for a company ghosting an accepted candidate.
          Lamad123 wrote 2 days ago:
          You most all the time or at least most of the time!
          bilekas wrote 2 days ago:
          I have a third pov of this, I was interviewing for a large financial
          company in an SE role, everything went well, the team seemed really
          good and projects were interesting, good quality of interviews too.
          It was through an employment agency and so I was negotiating via
          them. Recieved the offer and needed a few days just to review it and
          consider everything. I told the recruiter this. Then had a medical
          emergency which had me in hospital for 3 weeks, on the 3rd day in
          hospital however, I fired an email from my phone just to let the
          recruiter know what the situation was. Thought nothing of it.
          When I got out of hospital after a serious surgery etc, was
          distracted in fairness. I had emails from the recruiter which
          bordered on threats about how I was completely unprofessional for not
          regularly updating him, and how the city is small and the company is
          big etc.
          Needless to say I wasn't too bothered but it took me back a bit.
            1123581321 wrote 2 days ago:
            Were you not able to communicate every few days of the stay? 15-20
            days with no contact is a long time and you put the recruiter in an
            unfortunate position as they must have been advocating for you. You
            can’t have known in advance that they would send rude emails in
            response to silence.
              sofixa wrote 2 days ago:
              I'm sorry, but if I'm (not OP) in the hospital for something
              serious requiring operations and a multi-week stay, responding to
              emails is somewhere around last on my todo list.
                1123581321 wrote 2 days ago:
                No need to apologize. I'm sure you understand how that
                necessary deprioritization might still look like ghosting or
                insincerity to others, especially someone who had just exerted
                significant effort on your behalf. If I had the ability to send
                one email, I'd hope to at least be able to send a second
                regretfully declining the offer.
          doublea wrote 2 days ago:
          Think of the bullet you dodged.
        999900000999 wrote 2 days ago:
        It's how it has to be.
        This is why you don't need to give a 2 week notice, and you should
        always have your resume updated.
        Need to take an offer knowing odds are a way better one is coming down
        the pipe, do it. They can lose budget and cut your role before you
        Don't treat any job like a dream job, if you get there and nothing
        works, you have a nightmare.
        My dream right now is to work hard until I'm 40 and retire. I can't
        imagine doing this for another 30 years .
          toast0 wrote 2 days ago:
          What does this have to do with giving notice? You don't give two
          weeks notice without a written offer.
            notyourday wrote 2 days ago:
            There's no bite to the company to decide not to hire you/fire you
            even if you have an offer from them.
          dilyevsky wrote 2 days ago:
          So if you get terminated one week in now you can’t go back bc you
          burned the bridge by not giving the notice? Sounds like fantastic
            999900000999 wrote 2 days ago:
            Odds are they won't just take you back even if you give 2 weeks.
              burnished wrote 2 days ago:
              Sure that's going to happen, but think about it from the other
              side. If a good employee leaves for greener pastures and wants to
              come back later, well, they already know the work and the team.
              Wouldn't you want to rehire some one if you were in that
              position? Even if they leave again down the line it's not like
              you spent a lot of time or energy getting them up to speed, they
              were already ready from round #1.
                tfigment wrote 2 days ago:
                I think its situational.  I have only one employee that I can
                think of that I'd rehire even in the current market.  The
                relationship is changed irreparably with me after quitting or
                threatening to if it was for another job. Any trust is gone
                unless you know they were a mercenary and worth it.
                999900000999 wrote 2 days ago:
                I thought it was implied, but generally if I don't even bother
                to put in a two weeks notice I'm not leaving on great terms.
              dilyevsky wrote 2 days ago:
              Every company I’ve ever worked for except one (which folded
              shortly after me quitting) had asked if I was thinking of coming
              back. But yeah maybe with attitude like that they won’t
          hijinks wrote 2 days ago:
          dont have kids then
            danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
            As someone who had kids in their 40s: this is the correct
              hpcjoe wrote 2 days ago:
              We had ours mid 30s.  I also founded a company and ran it for the
              first 15 years of her life.
              That is stressful.  To put it mildly.
              This said, having a kid is the toughest and most rewarding job
              you will ever have.  If you don't like kids in general, sure,
              avoid them.  Some of us do.
              She's 21 now, applying to grad school for applied math, and
              (being slightly biased) is the most wonderful kiddo in the world.
              As for FIRE type scenarios, unless you have an inheritance or a
              pre-existing nest-egg of some sort, yeah, kids tend to deplete
              cash flow.  I'm 56, and if I'm lucky, I may be able to retire in
              my 70s.  Part of that is due to the company being killed by our
              bank, all assets sold off, because they panicked.  Leaving me
              with a giant hole where my retirement (and kid's college fund)
              was.  Started over at 51, at (somewhat less than) 0.   Do not
              recommend this.
                999900000999 wrote 2 days ago:
                >Part of that is due to the company being killed by our bank,
                all assets sold off, because they panicked.
                Care to elaborate.
                If I do end up FIRE, I imagine I could always have a family in
                a cheaper country. 2 million in FAANG RSUs can easily raise a
                family outside of America.
              55555 wrote 2 days ago:
              This is a reference to kids being expensive?
                gameswithgo wrote 2 days ago:
                That is one of many complications.  Less time less sleep less
                ability to relocate
        jasonladuke0311 wrote 2 days ago:
        I recently got a new job after around 6 months of searching and I was
        appalled by the practices of many well-known tech companies. Ghosted by
        multiple places, bait-and-switched multiple times (I was in secops/SRE
        and trying to move to appsec/offsec), you name it. It’s wild how
        unprofessional recruiters can be.
        I did have some great experiences though; in particular Box, Airbnb,
        and Datadog.
          mikeweiss wrote 2 days ago:
          I'm also in Cloud Security/SecOps looking to make a switch to
          Offsec/Pentesting.  Would be great to connect and learn about your
          experience switching. My email is in my profile if you are willing to
          reach out.
        sokoloff wrote 2 days ago:
        > To me it hints that Engineering MoM is not a very technical position.
        Is a manager-of-managers ever a very technical position? I am one and
        almost nothing I do as part of that job requires any differentiated
        technical ability. An Excel pivot table is as a complex as I’d need
        to get by.
        (I do technical items on the side so as to not lose my mind, but I’m
        not surprised by the hiring loop not being very technical.)
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          I’m a manager of managers at my current big tech employer and here
          we are still required to be quite technical. I’d think that a
          startup 1/25 the size would benefit from this approach, hence my
          surprise. I don’t know how to do pivot tables though.
            akerl_ wrote 2 days ago:
            Maybe a hot take: if you have a Manager-of-Managers role, you
            aren’t a startup any more.
              dilyevsky wrote 2 days ago:
              There are startups with over 50 engineers you know ;) At sr
              manager role you are for sure not technical though even if you
              did get asked coding/design questions in interview loops (there
              are exceptions)
                x0x0 wrote 2 days ago:
                You'd need more like 300+ to have a manager-of-managers who
                isn't a director or VPE.
                speedgoose wrote 2 days ago:
                A company with over 50 engineers that wants to be seen as a
                startup is a red flag for me. I usually stop reading their job
                postings as soon as I can detect this.
                  dilyevsky wrote 2 days ago:
                  Is every job posting you look at is for a company that runs a
                  version of lamp stack and 90% of workforce is sales? Then,
                    speedgoose wrote 2 days ago:
                    Of course not.
                akerl_ wrote 2 days ago:
                I disagree. If you have 50 people, you’re just a business
                aahortwwy wrote 2 days ago:
                At what point does an organization stop being a "startup" and
                become a "private company"?
                  bigbillheck wrote 2 days ago:
                  When it stops taking VC money?
                  dilyevsky wrote 2 days ago:
                  Obviously it’s pretty tricky to define but I’d say
                  anything that doesn’t have an already established or
                  rapidly growing customer base/revenue is a startup. If you
                  can shutdown all r&d and it’s still going to be viable
                  business for a while then it’s not a startup
                  arpa wrote 2 days ago:
                  when you become consistently profitable and sel-sufficient.
                  toomuchtodo wrote 2 days ago:
                  When its inertia has reached a point where it can continue to
                  succeed not because of its actions, but in spite of them.
                    samizdis wrote 2 days ago:
                    That is so nicely put. Worthy of Ambrose Bierce himself, I
                    hef19898 wrote 2 days ago:
                    Immeditely added that to my favorite commebts. Short, crsip
                    and it contains so much truth!
        suyash wrote 2 days ago:
        Welcoming to the tech interviewing world, this is unfortunately a
        common occurrence.
          neom wrote 2 days ago:
          Didn't realize the ghosting was so common. I had a leadership
          development and coaching firm approach me to join them, asked me to
          interview, spent 2.5 hours of my time and then ghosted. I thought
          this was amusing as it shows piss poor leadership skills and they're
          supposed to be high quality coaches, sent an emailing saying as such,
          no reply. In addition to our "Who is hiring?", "who wants to be
          hired?", we should add "who was ghosted?", heh.
          Shout out to Sourcegraph who interviewed me ~Q1, had a good process,
          and although it wasn't a fit, didn't ghost me.    It was one of the
          better interviews I'd had in my career.
            ergocoder wrote 2 days ago:
            It is a business convo, after all.
            Being ghosted is normal and expected.
            If I'm ghosted, I will follow up a  couple times and leave it be.
            People are busy with their own lives, so I'm not offended in any
            Not ghosting would have been nice. But being nice is not expected.
            People here are so offended about being ghosted for some reason. I
            thought HN crowd would be pretty good at doing business. Being
            ghosted is the norm.
              neom wrote 2 days ago:
              Oh I don't mind being ghosted, heck I've done it. I just didn't
              realize it was so prevalent. My example was more I think it was
              amusing the one time I did get ghosted it was for a leadership
              dev company.
        rp1 wrote 2 days ago:
        Maybe a red flag came up when checking references?
          danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
          I thought about it but the recruiter said the feedback was positive,
          so much so that another hiring manager saw it and wanted to talk
          about another position.
          Even if that had happened, ghosting would hardly be a good course of
          action, but I’m biased.
            ergocoder wrote 2 days ago:
            It is unprofessional but not surprising.
            Once you are rejected, the recruiter probably has moved onto the
            next project and forgot about you.
              mcny wrote 2 days ago:
              Before the pandemic, I did a round of interviews on site with a
              bank. Not a very senior role, just a developer. Everything went
              well or so I thought and then radio silence.
              Got a text months later from the recruiter who told me the whole
              group that I interviewed for was gone. So bizarre.
              The point though is the recruiter reached out to me, which was
                danrocks wrote 2 days ago:
                Well one of the people I interviewed for one of my manager
                openings said, when asked on the motivation to apply: “too
                many surprise layoffs in banks”. I guess he was right.
        readonthegoapp wrote 2 days ago:
        holy sh*t. pretty trippy. sucks.
        maybe they just figured, look, it's go-time now. we hire at 10x the
        ideal rate, we'll poison the culture a bit, lose at 10x the ideal rate,
        but in the end, we'll see the growth we want to see, which is really
        all that matters at this point. we think we can take on visa/whoever,
        so let's go.
        i applied to stripe, in part, based on their rep as....being big-ish
        and maybe actually doing something-ish, but still somehow not sucking.
        and maybe one or more of the founders being irish means they're not
        quite as monstrous as a typical tech company?
        i talked to this recruiter person who was, somehow, amazingly human and
        basically just nice. i was like...what?
        it was actually notable, unusual, very surprising -- not too sure how
        or why, but seemed almost unbelievable. _just_ shy of me thinking this
        person was all prozac'd up -- but it was too genuine.
        i _think_ i ended up bailing right on the call b/c of....i have no
        idea, could have been anything. this was low-level IC/technical account
        manager position.
        ...adding, i think you (and everyone) should get at least interviewing
        credit for time served.
        like, i just got bounced from a solutions engineer position. i
        re-applied to a diff position at the same company - support mgr or
        similar - and i kind of wish details of my interactions to date would
        make their way into the new application. _maybe_.
        i've talked to folks who absolutely hated my guts at some places, so
        maybe i should want a fresh start each time thru.
        and, as for ATSs, i've had more than a couple of folks get back to me
        after weeks or months saying, "sorry we didn't get back to you, obv
        this is stupid late, etc." -- for tech, process, whatever reasons.
        i wonder if any ATSs actually help you decide which hires worked or
        not, so that they could improve their process.
        like, what if your most effective hiring happened when you only pinged
        people back between 8 and 9 weeks after first receiving their
        google always bragged about how awesome they were at hiring -- to the
        point where they were at least claiming to track some non-obvious
        measures of quality, etc. i wonder where they're at now. adding, the
        obvious -- sucky is their painful-as-childbirth all-day interviews,
        their 30-day long labor-ious interviews, etc.
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