In reference to my post on AOL’s Tim Armstrong firing an employee on a conference call to thousands of other employees, a reader pointed out that “Once again, life imitates Monty Python”, and kindly linked to the comedy genius’s ‘film producers sketch’ from 1969 that perfectly illustrates the sycophantic behavior demanded of employees in industries that glorify moguls:
In an update to the Armstrong story, Nicholas Carson in Business Insider reports:
Today, we learned some new information that suggests the answer to that question is “yes.”
Apparently, after firing Lenz, Armstrong went on to “[crap] all over” Lenz’s biggest project for the company, Patch 2.0.
Says a source:
“The Patch 2.0 redesign was spearheaded by Abel Lenz, at least at the beginning. He was brought into Patch from another area of AOL in the first half of 2012 when it became clear that the existing Patch web and mobile design talent was not up to the task. As to whether Abel was still leading that team, I don’t know.
But, according to people who were on the call, Armstrong called out Patch 2.0 as being awful (paraphrase, not a direct quote). … That’s why I thought it was odd that, of all the people he called out and fired on the call, it was the guy who was responsible for building and launching Patch 2.0, an update that Armstrong clearly was not happy with.
Maybe Armstrong was so quick to fire Lenz over such a small offense because he was already planning on letting him go because he didn’t like his work?”
That would certainly make Armstrong’s behavior easier to explain, if not excusable.
Either way, Armstrong is still a giant dick.
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.