Monday, August 21, 2023

Fake Steve Jobs and Letters from BILL G

Matt Sephton:

On 9th August 2006, “Fake Steve (Jobs)” started blogging at The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs. The blog featured scathing criticism of Silicon Valley and the tech industry at large, a pinch of political satire, along with many in-jokes and pandering to the zeitgeist. It was, above all else, very funny. A year or so after it began the identity of the ghost writer was revealed as journalist Dan Lyons. The blogging eventually stopped as the (real) Steve Jobs’ health deteriorated, and a single posthumous post appeared the day after his untimely death. I often think about Fake Steve, some of his best lines, some of his funniest observations. It was a different time.

Anyway… imagine my surprise when, earlier this year, I discovered that somebody in Japan had done a “Fake Bill (Gates)” a decade before Fake Steve! Truly, everything is a remix.


After the column had been running for around 6 months, ramping up to the publication of the first book, a teaser/promo website was introduced featuring a selection of letters. This is cool because internet was still pretty new at this point! Both the books and the website feature letters in their “original” English as well as in “translated” Japanese (of course, this is the opposite of the real order of events).


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