Boy in the Hood(ie)

I had no idea that Mark Zuckerberg’s hoodie would be such a big deal. I bet you even he didn’t think it would be such a big deal.

Now don’t get me wrong: thanks to Mark, coders/hackers all around the world have proudly incorporated hoodies into their uniform. Even wannaprenuers started toting hoodies to look like their boy-hero. Even grown-ups are not immune to wearing one in public as a symbol of their geek-cred. A few months back, I spotted a Russian Internet Investor (take a guess, who) wearing a super expensive cashmere gray hoodie over a really nice white shirt and pinstripe pants when sipping cappuccinos with another Internet star.

The hoodie, by now is as much part of Zuckerberg’s persona as black turtleneck was for Steve Jobs. And perhaps that is why I was surprised by the harsh reaction from Michael Pachter, an analyst for Wedbush Securities.

“Mark and his signature hoodie: He’s actually showing investors he doesn’t care that much; he’s going to be him. I think that’s a mark of immaturity. I think that he has to realize he’s bringing investors in as a new constituency right now, and I think he’s got to show them the respect that they deserve because he’s asking them for their money.” (via Bloomberg)

His comments prompted me to write this on my personal blog.

This analyst is smoking stuff that is outside the realm of legality. Now if you were looking for a problem with Zuckerberg’s hoodie, then you should see it for what it really is: a fashion abomination.

I didn’t think it was a big enough business story for me to waste your time with. Anyway, my comment has been since picked up by the New York Times, CNN, The Atlantic, and bunch of other publications. The New York Times actually is astute when it writes:

The hoodie in Manhattan prompted, as Mr. Zuckerberg may have expected, a gush of approval and disdain. Hoodiegate, it came to be called, and it began to show signs of a culture war between the two coasts – Wall Street versus Silicon Valley.