I Got Scammed By A Silicon Valley Startup

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While this is a very interesting story, you can't help but count every single time this person should have know she was getting screwed over. Also, there are a dozen listed "red flags" in the article. Would it take twelve red flags for you to walk away from a scam job? Especially after THIS one:

Around this time, Bruce and I were sharing personal concerns and he confided in me that he had let Michael borrow $50,000 from his personal savings. Did you read that? A startup employee gave his life savings to our CEO. He wasn’t the only one. Another biz dev team bro who was crashing on the CEO’s couch, Bobby, apparently lent Michael five figures too. In disbelief, I asked why he needed money when he has $2M already committed in the company. Bruce said that Michael had his offshore money tied up with the IRS because of unpaid taxes and essentially his assets were frozen until he went to court.
 

Grimmda

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I read the entire article...

From the beginning I guess I would never fall for this because if you can't front-end my airfare for the interview, I'm totally out. Screw off. And I have flown in for 2 separate interviews before (that they covered from top to bottom).

The story is CRAZY... If she's "that" smart, why can't she land a NORMAL JOB somewhere? Wow... I mean wow. I'm an IT guy, so there's work EVERYWHERE
 

Burticus

Supreme [H]ardness
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Wow, just wow. I would like to think I would have caught on by red flag #4 or #5.... but then again I'm not selling everything I own and moving to PRK / Bay Area / SV just because some startup throws big numbers at me.

I don't know why she was bothering to "protect" their names in the article, I would be plastering names and photos all over the internet.

BUT, if I were a 20 something college grad whiz kid I might have fallen for that BS.

Douchebag CEO definately needs some jail time though.

edit - edited for facts and spelling, duh
 
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atp1916

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...we finally agreed on a $10,000 sign on bonus (relocation assistance), a $135,000 salary, equity, and a 3 month severance package if I were to leave for good reason and without cause (which was defined as role / compensation changes, office relocation over 50 miles, cease of operations, or change in the company’s market focus).

I know it's Silicon Valley, California-inflated-wages-cost-of-living style pay...but that's still a stupid amount for a non-technical role. I bet she was making more than the developers, and by a good bit.

Incredible.

All i knew is that after graduating with my software engineering degree in 2015, the last place i would ever entertain for employment would be some anonymous "startup" with a big fat 0 for company history / product lines / et all.

I'll take my entry-level high 5-figures salary (DFW area) instead, thank you very much.
 
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Burticus

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I know it's Silicon Valley, California-inflated-wages-cost-of-living style pay...but that's still a stupid amount for a non-technical role. I bet she was making more than the developers, and by a good bit.

Factor in cost of living and divide any salary for Kali in half compared to TX. PLUS they get to pay State Tax + Sales Tax + Fed Tax.

Kali is no place to live unless you're rich.
 

gxp500

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Fun @ Scammed By A Silicon Valley Startup | Hacker News
 

CommanderFrank

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If you can't screw your friends, employees and future employees, who can you screw over? :p
 

nutzo

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Kali is no place to live unless you're rich.

Or you have a decent paycheck, have lived here a long time, bought a house 20+ years ago, and are just making time till retirement.
Then you can sell your over price home, pay cash for a house somewhere else, and still have enough left over to fund a decent retirement :D
 

Cmdrmonkey

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What a moron. Anyone with any common sense would have left to find a real job the minute it became clear the thing was a scam and they weren't going to get paid. Instead she wasted time sending emails to the CEO asking for "transparency," whatever the hell that means. But she's in marketing so I guess I'm not surprised she isn't terribly bright.
 

midnightfrolic

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Dec 20, 2015
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too many red flags. Sounds like a hoax story like that it got who supposedly delete an entire company data and its backups with that simple command lime.
 

serpretetsky

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I guess I'm as clueless as she is. I probably would have done the same things she did ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ . I mean, besides the initial interview airfare (which she got reimbursed for anyways, so that doesn't really seem like a red flag...), and joining a startup that bragged about their history more than the product, I don't really understand what she did wrong. She didn't stay very long (about a month it seems), the lack of pay period was under 2 weeks, and she said during this time she was trying to stay in the bay area anyways to look for other work.
 

Exavior

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Wait... you mean it isn't normal to have an employer ask you to give up getting paid for the month of July for the government to take all your money as a birthday gift for America along with asking employees to help pay stuff for them? Fuck
 

lostinseganet

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While this is a very interesting story, you can't help but count every single time this person should have know she was getting screwed over. Also, there are a dozen listed "red flags" in the article. Would it take twelve red flags for you to walk away from a scam job? Especially after THIS one:

Around this time, Bruce and I were sharing personal concerns and he confided in me that he had let Michael borrow $50,000 from his personal savings. Did you read that? A startup employee gave his life savings to our CEO. He wasn’t the only one. Another biz dev team bro who was crashing on the CEO’s couch, Bobby, apparently lent Michael five figures too. In disbelief, I asked why he needed money when he has $2M already committed in the company. Bruce said that Michael had his offshore money tied up with the IRS because of unpaid taxes and essentially his assets were frozen until he went to court.
Hope beyond hope that you can make it through. Similar hope was for the first final fantasy and Dead or Alive series i think... >_>
 

Exavior

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Hope beyond hope that you can make it through. Similar hope was for the first final fantasy and Dead or Alive series i think... >_>

I don't think anyone gave them money. A few people might have work with little to no pay since they knew they were about to lose their jobs as in both cases these games were either going to save or be the final hole to sink the companies. That is a little different than being hired today and then tomorrow your boss saying how about you let us borrow all your savings, we kind of lost money for right now doing illegal shit.
 

Exavior

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Just went to see what the current status of this is. and the company's site is now down for domain owner verification. haha
 
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