Sam Altman Peter Thiel

Gawker’s Gizmodo Calls for Tech Titan Sam Altman’s Head—for Not Firing Trump-Loving Peter Thiel

By Lukas Mikelionis | 9:12 am, October 19, 2016

The liberal media smell blood after tech titan Sam Altman of Y Combinator ruled out cutting ties with his friend Peter Thiel over his support of Donald Trump – and are now calling for his head on a pike.

Gawker’s Gizmodo, which might nurse some hurt feelings after Thiel funded Hulk Hogan’s devastating lawsuit against Gawker, has called for Altman’s resignation because he doesn’t want to fire people over their support for Trump. Altman has said to do so would be “a dangerous path to start down.”

Thiel, a billionaire who also serves on the board of Facebook, has been subjected to fierce criticism for openly supporting Trump’s campaign. LGBT magazine The Advocate slammed Thiel for being “an example of a man who has sex with other men, but not a gay man”, while the infamous Ex-CEO of Reddit Ellen Pao has cut ties with powerhouse tech accelerator Y Combinator because of Thiel’s involvement.

But the article at Gizmodo is pushing further and openly calls for Sam Altman’s resignation for not complying with progressives’ demands. Article author J.K. Trotter said that because Altman didn’t “more forcefully condemn Thiel’s support of Trump”, “hire a third-party auditing firm to investigate whether any Y Combinator startups or their employees have felt threatened by Thiel”, or address their friendship and business relationship — that left one last meaningful option: resignation.

This is despite the fact that Altman actually endorsed Hillary Clinton and attacked Trump in a blog post on Tuesday:

I am endorsing Hillary Clinton for president. I’ve never endorsed a presidential candidate before, but I’m making an exception this year, because this election is exceptional. Donald Trump represents an unprecedented threat to America, and voting for Hillary is the best way to defend our country against it.

Trotter blames Altman’s friendship with Thiel for his decision to keep him as a part-time advisor at Y Combinator, a highly influential startup farm. The New Yorker has written that in the event of pandemic, “Altman’s backup plan is to fly with his friend Peter Thiel … to Thiel’s house in New Zealand.” But even Altman doesn’t hide that Thiel’s support for Trump has been “a strain” on his relationship with him and pledged to try to change his mind.

But Gizmodo denounces Altman’s continuing to work with Thiel at Y Combinator, “thereby giving Thiel, and thus Trump, the imprimatur of the company’s reputation”. The Gizmodo manifesto ends with an ultimatum: Altman must either force Thiel to resign, or Altman should resign himself.

Is this the beginning of a witch-hunt in Silicon Valley?