There are few industries in the world in which public and private interests align as much as they do when it comes to our creators. It’s in and through media, that the arts, entertainment, and communication converge, painting a picture for all industries of what it might look like to fully realize what many today aspire to, in rethinking the role of capital in our communities of entrepreneurs.

“Social impact investing, which combines the tech/ Venture Capital (VC) startup funding model with the need to deliver against social goals — could be a way to address structural challenges and increase…


Last week, a bit of a controversial, but thought-provoking, perspective about Venture Capital caught the attention of a lot of my readers and followers.

There has been a horrific rash of *VC Bad* propaganda and misinformation lately, sparking my thought that people are being misled about the what Venture Capital is and does. That, entrepreneurs are frustrated because VC isn’t meeting *their* expectations, when what’s actually happening is that people have expectations of VC that are misplaced.

True or not, is the role of venture capital clear? Does a lack of clarity fuel frustration and misalignment of advice and expectations…


The conversation recently had started, “ Why do venture capitalists invest in startups if many of them are losing money and destroying value? “ and I had to pause when I heard the point of view because I couldn’t even rationalize how someone thinks that way. Then of course it dawned on me that lately there has been a horrific rash of propaganda and misinformation; truly, take a look:


I found myself at Hewlett-Packard, some 15 years ago, as desktop and laptop computers still dominated our lives and the iPhone was merely a sparkle in Apple’s eye. With my PDA in hand, and Microsoft Zune spinning tunes, HP’s marketing team released a brand campaign designed to reposition the company and remind consumers that the computer is the one device in your home that’s intimately yours.

The Computer is Personal Again

The Personal Computer, the PC, ubiquitous throughout the world thanks to Dell, Acer, and so many others, had become a commodity, as technology is wont to do.

A thought tickled in the back of my brain, that losing the personal touch in our lives, whether in the technology with which we work, or the relationships we develop, HP recognized and tossed a Hail Mary pass to hold tight, the fact that if we don’t put people first, we’re likely to lose the humanity in our lives.

Following my time in Palo Alto, I had the great honor and opportunity…


Hosting a Show in the era of Podcasts, Clubhouse Rooms, and Livestreaming

“On the air,” whether recorded video, live, producing a podcast, or a dialing it in, you are a “host.” In this era of Clubhouse, podcasts, and Livestreams, “hosting” is a skill more important than ever; and thus, arguably, increasingly important that you hone that skill since so many of us are connecting online and beyond the copy of an article.

Ted Cohen, live in his MediaTech Ventures’ show, connecTed, is evidently a master of the story and narratives woven through incredible relationships and experiences. I was asked today, “How do I speak confidently and attractively at the same time for…


Dell is a name synonymous with Austin and Texas Innovation. While our startup scenes are booming, now, the history and experience in this part of the world with technology, in entrepreneurship, is astounding — Texas Instruments invented the calculator here back in the ’60s, the integrated circuit (which led to microchips), and did you know, 3D printed is a Texas invention? Thanks to a UT Grad Student who invented laser sintering in the 80s.

It was about 20 *years* ago that Dell did far more than usher in the personal computer and ecommerce, Dell was an early adopter of online…


Highly risk tolerant and constantly fixated on doing things better, entrepreneurs tend not to be found running companies.

That’s not remotely a knock against entrepreneurs. Operating a company is a management skillset, it’s operational, it’s project based, it’s plan and execute…. and these are skillsets that, while valuable to a founder, are not typically consistent with Lean, Agile, Pivot, and other notions prevalent in a startup.

As a founder, as the entrepreneur, the most difficult transition you’ll make in your professional career is from early venture to operating company. …


In the U.S. (at least), for now, companies are protected from what other people post on their site, thanks to Section 230. Unfortunately, it is being attacked by Congress so we're at risk of losing that protection; and it's concerning that people don't really realize or appreciate the implication of losing that -- politicians are spinning that it's about "social media" (which is loosely define) but that fact is that it applies to everything online, every site. Meaning, losing that protection will cause every site, every business, to be liable for anyone else anyone says. …


In 2018, some, in the U.S. Congress, proposed an Internet Bill of Rights that though well intentioned, was essentially a set of regulations proposed to adhere companies to obligations with regard to data, security, and privacy. At the time, I thought little of it; the notion didn’t get a tremendous amount of attention, but nagging me, in the back of my brain, was that a U.S. politician was proposing an industry regulation under the guise of “ Bill of Rights.”

What is a Bill of Rights?

The first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution became known as the Bill of Rights; protections which still stand as…

Paul O'Brien

CEO of MediaTech Ventures, CMO to #VC, #Startup Advisor. I get you funded. Father, marketer, author, #Austin. @seobrien & @AccelerateTexas. https://seobrien.com

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