MEGAN MCCARTHY — "Pownce is the new pink," declared Valleywag's capricious new editor Owen Thomas in assigning me to go cover a party thrown by Leah Culver and Kevin Rose, cofounders of Digg. The new pink? More like the new pot. The microblogging site, which people use to send around URLs, MP3s, and updates on their lives, is just as coveted — invitations are still up for sale on eBay — and seems to leave its users just as unproductive. So what better place to hold a party than a pink castle of a house in the Castro owned by Dennis Peron, one of the heads of California's medical marijuana movement? A list of Internet-glamorous attendees, a crime scene, and a photo gallery, after the jump.
Peron's place, which Culver is renting, is amazing. The backyard is built like a treehouse, with hidden stairways leading to the an outbuilding that doubles as a blacklight garden and hot tub. A model of the Golden Gate bridge serves as a walkway connecting the second floor to the guesthouse. Oh, and there are full-grown pot plants everywhere you turn.
The party had the feel of a high-school kegger, as if Web 2.0 High prom king Kevin Rose had convinced his venture capitalists to go away for the weekend and leave the liquor cabinet stocked. Pownce cofounder Leah Culver danced around the kitchen lip-synching to "Lip Gloss." On a screen, Randi Jayne, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's sister, debuted her latest viral video, a very clever iPhone parody. By 11 p.m., the kegs were kicked, and people stood around holding red plastic cups, hoping in vain for more liquor. Attendees included just about every boldfaced name from the San Francisco Web scene: StumbleUpon's Garrett Camp; Om Malik and Liz Gannes from GigaOm; Sarah Lane, Martin Sargent, and David Prager from Revision3; and recent New York Times profile subject David Ulevitch from OpenDNS.
And of course, there was some drama. A group of wannabe gangbangers walked into the party and, eyewitnesses say, walked out with a MacBook and at least one purse. My purse, to be exact. After I noticed that my purse was missing, three of the alleged thieves came back to the party, apparently hoping to steal more stuff. Partygoers detained one of them, who was then arrested by San Francisco police on a conspiracy charge. Good thing they didn't check out the back yard. For a glimpse of the scene, here's a gallery: