In May 2011, Tim Armstrong spent a day at work barefoot to raise awareness about barefoot children, instead of just donating money to barefoot children to buy them shoes. This is the kind of boss Tim Armstrong is: ineffectual, vapid and stupid.
Tim Armstrong’s stank feet are not the worst part of working for Tim Armstrong. He has an eminently punchable face:
And speaks with exactly the catalog of executive anti-semantics that you’d expect a guy with a quarter-zip sweater surgically attached to his abdomen to speak. Here’s how he explained today’s Verizon buyout news:
“If you look at what they’re able to do from a value-add services standpoint, I think they’re going to put more high-quality premium video, more high-quality advertising and commerce, and then the Internet of Things is going to hit, and I think you’re going to see companies like Verizon be in a very good position for the future.”
Huh! Sure. Armstrong has been at the helm of AOL since 2009, a period during which the company’s stock has surged and its raison d’etre has crumpled. Like Yahoo, Armstrong’s AOL is basically propped up by two things: programmatic web advertising, and millions of people too ignorant and confused to switch to use something else.
And it’s not like Armstrong hasn’t tried to give people a reason to switch!
Other well-liked AOL blogs have vanished into the mists in recent years; despite all his blather about being a “media company,” Armstrong’s AOL has never been as good at keeping media properties from oozing money as it has been at making sure your parents keep paying for a recurring AOL subscription from 1997 they forgot they still had.
We have a strong strategy and we need to be laser focused on execution. We are planning another video update next week with a progress report on Project Everest, and I look forward to seeing you all then.
“Two things that happened in 2012,” he said, according to a transcript provided by an AOL employee. “We had two AOL-ers that had distressed babies that were born that we paid a million dollars each to make sure those babies were OK in general. And those are the things that add up into our benefits cost. So when we had the final decision about what benefits to cut because of the increased healthcare costs, we made the decision, and I made the decision, to basically change the 401(k) plan.”
That sucks, Tim. That was shitty of you. Also shitty has been the continued employment of David “Shingy” Shing, 120 pounds of moronic Silicon Valley self-parody smothered beneath 50 pounds of hair. Shingy is the one-man show you see in hell, and a symbol of AOL as adrift; he is paid well to do nothing. Shingy is an icon. Shingy is a clown. Shingy is at home at AOL.
Tim Armstrong is a robotic and possibly sociopathic manager, the kind of guy who will fire you with a smile on his face. He is unable to talk to people who work for him in a manner that doesn’t make them wish they worked somewhere else. And now Tim Armstrong works for a phone company.