413 Celebrity investment funds you need to know about

Celebrity investors are on the rise. From Ashton Kutcher to Macaulay Culkin. At Mockcrunch, it is our duty to keep you informed on potential sources of funding for your next round, or even your next startup. To fulfill that mission, here are 413 celebrities and a little a tip about what might attract some of that famous money.

  • Charlie Sheen: CplusS Fund – Sheen waits for Ashton Kutcher to make a startup investment, and then immediately invests in a competing company. Given the reckless abandon of Kutcher’s investments, you should be good with just about anything.
  • Eli Manning: Me Too Fund – Invests only in aloof founders with successful older sibling founders.
  • John Mayer: Investing is a Wonderland – Mayer’s no longer waiting for the world to change. He’s investing in companies who are doing it now.
  • Aaron Sorkin: The Social Network 2.0 Fund – Invests in companies with the potential of a dramatic break up so he can write the screenplay. Looking for founders who have been on The Real World or Cheaters.
  • Jessie “The guy who played Zuck in the Facebook movie” Eisenberg: You Know What’s Cool? Fund – “No really. Do you know what’s cool? I need some good companies.”
  • Ron Paul: Gold Standard Fund – Invests in companies with passionate grassroots users as long as they have no strategy to win their market.
  • Bill Clinton: Saxy Time – Diversity investments. Invests in mildly husky women with loose morals, that like jazz.
  • Robert Pattinson: Team Edward – Invests in Vampire Founders. Try to schedule a meeting at night or in your basement office. The sun doesn’t harm him, but he’ll probably be wearing glitter, and it’s awkward.
  • Taylor Lautner: Team Jacob – Invests in Warewolf Founders. Only takes meetings during full moons. Otherwise, how’s he supposed to know. Bring Bactine.
  • Yoko Ono: They’re Holding You Back Fund – Invests in single founder of a founding team. Start taking on side projects that your partners would rather you didn’t.
  • Flo-Rida: Flo-Funda – Invests in companies that give him a “good feeling.”
  • The Cast of Entourage: Let’s Fund it out, Bitch – Invests in Bro founders. Requires that development team is at least two-thirds brogrammers.
  • Nickelback: Will-give-you-money-if-you’ll-be-their-friend Fund – Nickelback will give you money if you’ll be their friend.
  • Michael Arrington: Conflict of Interest Fund – Invests in companies that his media outlets cover, especially if you’ve been acquired and fired by AOL.
  • Baldwins and Osmonds: Various Names of Funds – All of the Baldwin and Osmond siblings total 399, and each one has his or her own investment fund. Approach them if your family has a unique talent.

If you know of a celebrity investor we forgot, let us know about them in the comments.

Apple CEO Tim Cook at D10: “We’re doubling down on celebrity Siri commercials”

The All Things D conference is one of the only non-Apple conferences that Apple participates in annually. It is well-known for their hot seat interviews with Steve Jobs, usually conducted by Walt Mossberg, tech journalist at the Wall Street Journal. This year, Apple CEO Tim Cook took the stage to replace the late Steve Jobs, making it his first interview at the All Things D conference.

Tim Cook had a lot of interesting things to say, hinting at future products, company focuses and new policies. One of the notable parts of the interview was when Walt asked Tim if he could give away any secrets about Apple’s plans for the next couple of months. “We’re doubling down on celebrity Siri commercials”, Tim said. It seems they are intending to produce many more commercials where celebrities are shown using Siri in their daily lives. The current line-up includes Zooey Deschanel, Samuel L Jackson and John Malkovich. When asked if Tim could name some of the upcoming celebrities, Tim replied “Stay tuned.”

What can we expect from the next set of celebrity Siri commercials? All Apple has managed to do is show how little value Siri adds in our daily lives. So far, celebrities have used Siri to determine if it’s raining while a window is in viewing distance, find restaurants who deliver soup (pro tip: probably none), ask it to tell a joke and laugh before it even tells the joke, and request that it “takes a night off”. None of these scenarios sell the service. Will the next set of celebrities do a better job?

We did some digging and were able to confirm that Pauly Shore, Keanu Reeves and Mel Gibson have all signed on to be featured in upcoming Siri commercials. Through an anonymous source, we were able to get our hands on a transcript from the Pauly Shore commercial.

Pauly: Hey buuuuuuuudy!

Siri: Sorry, I don’t understand ‘Hey bud ready’

Pauly: Find me a bar. I wanna chill.

Siri: I found 20 bars. 8 of them are close to you.

Pauly: Killer. Let’s wheeze a little ju-uice.

Siri: Let me think… how about a websearch for ‘Let’s wizened little JetBlue’s?’

Pauly: Sure bro

So far, we see no improvement on the quality of these commercials. It seems that they are expecting most users to be sold simply by showing a celebrity use Siri, no matter what the context is. Regardless, the one that we’re most concerned about is Mel Gibson’s commercial, given his history of violent rants. As soon as we can dig up information on that one, you’ll get it here first.

NASDAQ fired over compromising Facebook photos

In a stunning series of events this morning, MockCrunch has learned that the SEC and FINRA plan to announce that they have pulled the charter allowing NASDAQ to work as an exchange, essentially firing him. While details are still coming together, it appears as though NASDAQ, which recently signed up on the social networking service Facebook, was photographed in some compromising situations. Many Americans will be familiar with losing their job after appearing in questionable Facebook photos, but NASDAQ is perhaps the highest profile casualty of Mark Zuckerberg’s crusade to make the world less private.

NASDAQ, who only signed up for Facebook two weeks ago, was still shocked when we reached him for comment. “I don’t know what happened. Honestly, I am a good person. I have been selling securities for over 40 years now. I have a great reputation. It’s not like I am some sort of hedge fund manager.”

When we reached Mark Zuckerberg for comment, he seemed very put off. “I am busy hunting right now. Do you know how much time it takes to hunt everything you eat? Why do you think our privacy settings are so hard to understand? Besides, it’s not my fault that NASDAQ is a slut.”

NASDAQ was seen pole dancing with escorts and call girls. That would have been enough, but he was also seen doing the 80’s stock broker salute, snorting cocaine off of a stripper’s ass.

NASDAQ, who is now working at a Brooklyn Audi dealership, shared his frustration with the privacy settings in Facebook. “They told me that it would be easy to control my privacy. It felt so good to get Facebook before NYSE, but then I lost all of my money on Facebook stock and now I lost my job. Do you know how hard it is to get a job as a stock exchange? I saw the Lehman brothers yesterday and they just laughed at me.”

NASDAQ appears to be more like an everyday slacker than his reputation suggests. “The joke is on Zuck. I wiped my ass on that bell everyday.”

Facebook isn’t making a phone, Facebook is making a pager. Wait, what? [PIC]

Facebook has been the center of attention this past week, making headlines all over the place. First the Facebook IPO launched after Zuckerberg threatened to cancel it, then it bombed, then Facebook started getting sued left and right, then Mark Zuckerberg apparently felt like it was a good time to get married to his longtime girlfriend. To top it off, Facebook decided to stir the pot by hiring Apple engineers to begin work on a project that many believe is a Facebook phone. This coincides with a long standing rumor Facebook has been working on a phone, but they heavily denied it. Well today, the rumors have been quelled. An image has been leaked showing a pager-like device with a Facebook notification message on its display. It seems Facebook isn’t working on a phone at all. We are about to see the return of the pager, courtesy of Facebook. Huh?

Why in the world would Facebook make a pager? We reached out to Tom Garwinkle, tech analyst at the WSJ for his opinion. “Sometimes I hate my job. This is one of those times. But, I suppose I’ll be as professional as I can be”, Tom said. Since Tom was no help at all, here is our analysis. We know that Facebook is lacking a monetization strategy for mobile users. A pager provides immediate notification of activity on your Facebook page, encouraging users to login to the site and view the activity. This is where they want users, on the website, so it certainly plays into their current strategy. At the end of the day, this is a roundabout mobile monetization strategy. Does it make sense? Not at all. But it’s a strategy, nonetheless. That’s a step in the right direction.

Tom did say that he feels they may have a shot at bringing Baby Boomers, seniors, and dumb phone users into their mobile strategy as well. That is, if this pager is cheap enough and people are receptive to bringing a pager back into their lives.

If introducing a whole new device into the cutthroat market of smartphones is their solution for mobile monetization, what’s next for Facebook? We’d suggest making a mobile app that works.

The death of unlimited: How Verizon and AT&T are affecting other industries

Verizon Wireless recently announced that after dropping their unlimited data tier, they will now be transitioning the customers who have been grandfathered in on these plans to limited data plans. Recently, AT&T and T-Mobile have also done away with their “unlimited” data plans. Many services are even throttling their “unlimited” data plans after a certain amount of usage has been reached. Sprint probably doesn’t limit or throttle their unlimited plans, but Mashable said they did, and if they don’t then we really don’t have an article, so let’s all assume they do. Comcast started experimenting with usage caps on their residential Internet service last year. What kind of effect does this redefinition of unlimited have on other American businesses? It turns out, other industries that offer “unlimited” services are noticing, and beginning to use the same tactics. You may find that these services you take for granted are starting to change. In our research in this new landscape, we found out that the Chinese buffet chain Happy Wok will be watching its customers more closely. Their buffet, which is advertized as all-you-can-eat, will be limited to 3 plates, including dessert. When asked if the plates included those little almond cookies, owner Harold Chen assured us it did.

Another business which typically charges a flat rate for unlimited use is Home Security. First Watch, a home security and brunch company, recently announced that it will be throttling its customers if they have too many alarms in a certain period of time. After two alarms in one month, the company will only send one cop on a bicycle in response. When asked for comment, First Watch’s Chief Operating Officer said, “We will still respond to any and calls we receive through our system, and we’re talking about a small minority here. Only a few customers who are abusing the system will see the change.”

24 Hour Fitness has said that they will be throttling excessive use of their exercise machines. After 50 miles in one month, treadmills will be limited to 2 MPH and stationary bikes will be limited to 5 MPH. Other unlimited services expected to change are Amazon Prime, monthly transit passes in various cities, and Mockcrunch. What? Did you think you could suckle from this teet forever?

FDA approves Twittera, first A.D.D. inducing drug to assist with Internet adaption

One of the many great things about the Internet is the instancy of information. Reports of events around the world are available to you in near realtime. The barrier between you and the information is no longer the time it takes to get to you. Journalists need much less time to research content to ensure that their stories are accurate and credible. The only time required is the time it takes for someone to write down the information. For the most respected blogs, this can be 5-10 minutes after news breaks. Other blogs skip the less important pieces like spell checking, grammar and proofreading. Twitter, everyone’s favorite 140 character social network reaches a level that could certainly be deemed as unacceptable by anyone other than the youth of the 21st century. The brevity and complete lack of respect for the English language would give Mark Twain night sweats.

Twitter is one of many new Internet services that encourages users to spend no more on a few minutes on any one thing. YouTube, for example has millions of videos that are 2 minutes or less in length. In fact, during its first few years of existence, the YouTube video maximum time limit was only 10 minutes. In 2010, they increased it to 15 minutes, still half the length of any short comedy television show. There is a new expectation the Internet has created for humanity. Our time is perceived as more important than ever before. We are now encouraged to consume as much content as possible in any given day. People assume others have seen every new viral video, every notable piece of news and understand every new meme. If not, you are seen as disconnected – an outsider, someone who doesn’t “get it”. This is a world where you are required to have A.D.D. (Attention Deficit Disorder) to survive.

These unrealistic expectations continue to weigh on many people. Some of us can’t adapt to a world of constant quick consumption – a world where 500+ character articles and messages require a T.L.D.R. (Too Long Didn’t Read; A 2-3 line cliff note summary of the article) in order to glean any information from it.

Today, those of us who are not lucky enough to be born with A.D.D. can breathe a sigh of relief. Today, the FDA approved a drug called Twittera, a medication that will induce A.D.D. for up to 8 hours. Those who take this medication can expect to read faster, lose attention and lose interest after spending a few minutes reading, watching or doing anything. This drug is expected to be a life changing experience for many Internet users. We are told they plan to initially market to Baby Boomers, with ads on less relevant websites such as Yahoo, MSN and Classmates.com.

Readers, would you take this new drug? Do we really need it? Sound off in the comments.

Hell Labs opens doors in Silicon Valley; plans to build startups “within an hour”

Accelerators and Incubators are becoming commonplace in the Startup world. Many cities have them. Two of the most well-known are TechStars and Y-Combinator. The goal of these organizations is to provide an environment, resources and mentors to help take a startup from idea to execution, assisting in the process along the way. Many young co-founders and aspiring entrepreneurs are turning to these organizations for the support they need to get off the ground and leave the program with a cash-flow positive business. Today, a new Silicon Valley accelerator, Hell Labs opens its doors and is now accepting applications.

Hell Labs is not your average accelerator. They plan to break the mold and truly innovate the process in a big way, using fear as the primary motivator. “We’re not f*cking around here”, said CEO R. Lee Ermey. “We plan to get some founders in here, put them in an intense environment where they are required to build an MVP [Minimum Viable Product] and get it out to customers in less than an hour. If they don’t get it done, we lock them in a dark room with snakes for the next hour. We then give them one more shot.”

It sounds pretty terrifying. More importantly, it seems unrealistic, but Ermey claims it’s not. “There are 2 key aspects to our program. The first: no planning. These days, there is absolutely no reason to plan your business before doing it. You devise a plan as you go. Got an idea? Perfect. Start building it. The second: get it live. Programming languages such as Ruby on Rails is about quick delivery. Startups spend too much time on details. This is a “no details” accelerator. Build the core pieces that work and launch it. When customers complain, improve it. When something breaks, fix it. Just get it the f*ck out there.”

We decided to test this new model here at Mockcrunch offices to see how it works. We called on 3 of our developers to each build a Delicious competitor within one hour, threatening to chop their arms off if they weren’t able to get it done. After one hour, 2 of the 3 developers were sobbing through the process and couldn’t execute. One of our developers did get a working prototype made. However, it was hardly considered functional. A screenshot is below.

We of course let them keep their arms and told them it was all for research. Boy, was that a dark hour. We’re not sure if Hell Labs is taking the right approach. We certainly don’t agree with their methods. But at the end of the day, if it helps the economy, I’m sure we can all get behind that.

Congress Demands Return of Facebook Poke Button

facebookThe United States Congress has issued a demand to Mark Zuckerberg, the new billionaire head of Facebook: “Bring back the Poke Button”. It seems, although most people didn’t really notice it was missing, that it is in fact, missing. However, upon investigation, we were able to find the elusive button. We found it buried in the “settings” menu on our friends’ pages. To find out why this has happened – out of pure curiosity and not real concern – we contacted the Director of Poking (yes, the title is real) at Facebook in Palo Alto, CA. We were surprised to receive a quick response from Andy Baldwin. Yes, the same Andy Baldwin of ABC’s The Bachelor. Here is an excerpt of his response:

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…[Mark] Zuck[erberg] pulled the plug on poking. I don’t care if I get fired over this response, but that smarmy weasel can kiss my smooth hot ass. Turns out, he made the button as a way to feel like he was poking girls. I suppose since he couldn’t get laid in real life, he would “poke” every girl who joined Facebook. He even has this wall in his office, where he puts a mark for every girl he poked. Anyway, he has essentially killed my job – I won’t be here much longer. Why did he get rid of the poke? I can’t say for sure, but it may have something to do with pressure from his investors. I saw a lot of “professional” looking women going in his office ever since he pulled the poke…

We thanked Mr. Baldwin for his time and set our sights on Congress. We interviewed a Congressman who wished to remain anonymous, so we’ll call him Congressman Bill Long representing the 7th District of Missouri. Bill said the entire congress is in an uproar over the missing button. When asked why, he stated that he and his colleagues have used the poke for years as a contest and to gauge the availability of chicks. Startled, we asked him to clarify. After reassuring the Congressman (Bill Long, 7th District, Missouri) that we would keep is comments anonymous, he gave us more detail:

079 Capitol Hill United States Congress 1993

“Around the congressional offices it is sort of a game to see how many babes we can poke. And if they poke back, then we get a notch on our desk. If you poked a honey three times, and she poked back three times, that meant you could get a ‘real’ poke – if you know what I mean. My desk looks like a serrated knife. This is anonymous, right?”

We reassured Congressman Bill Long, 7th District, Missouri, that this was an anonymous interview.

I suppose we will wait and see how Facebook responds to this demand.

Little Data is the new Big Data; 1 or 2 data points is all you need

Data is getting big. Like really big. Like do you remember what it was like to go to camp, and there were the older kids, and they were bigger than you? Like that big. No joke.

Sometimes Litte Data is really this small

One of the largest generators of big data is the Large Hadron Collider at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland. In 2010, the LHC generated 13 Petabytes of data. The easiest way to visualize that amount of data is by seeing it in number of bytes. That is 14,636,698,788,954,112 bytes. Clearly, visualizing big data has been solved. We just did it. Just now. With the 13 Petabytes visualization. Little data, however, is being left to fend for itself.

Let’s say that you’re a small business owner. Your business is small. Your data is little. You might have 10 customers. Lets call them Sarah, Jessica, James, Mike, Sally, Tim, Jerry, Keith, Mary, and Achmoot. Whoa there! Confusing right? We just don’t have a good way to deal with little data.

This doesn’t mean that no one is working on solving this problem. Sarah Jessica James is the CEO of Espresso Analytics. Her team is converging on an answer for this large market of small customers:

Espresso Analytics gives you the power of medium, and even big data, for your little data. We’re taking the latest techniques from big to small. Technologies like MapReduce, Hadoop, and room full of statisticians crunching numbers. Visualizations like mind maps, iso-surface rendering and narrated quickly drawing on a whiteboard videos.

James and her team are even working on what is currently being described as Tiny Data. Tiny data doesn’t encompass more than one or two pieces of data, but has profound implications on our lives. “We’re trying to answer big questions with tiny data, like ‘What are today’s specials?’ and ‘What time is it?’ It’s an exciting time to be in little data.”

Yes! No dick jokes.

Facebook IPO uncovered as a Ponzi scheme by SEC [BREAKING]

In 2004, Eduardo Saverin registered a business in Massechusets. The company was registered as “The Facebook Inc.” This is a story that we’re all familiar with: a Harvard sophomore Mark Zuckerberg built a website that has taken the world by storm. This is the story that was told to Savern’s investors. He said that Facebook was changing the world. He said that it was used by the hundreds of millions. There’s just one problem. Zuckerberg and the website never existed. Today, the Securities and Exchange Commision has released documents after an investigation detailing a long running Ponzi scheme that ends with valueless stock being sold to the general public.

At first the scheme was easy. The Facebook was an exclusive site. He told his investors that only Harvard students could use the site, and that’s why the investors couldn’t see it. In order to raise more money, Saverin had to convince investors that the site was growing. He continued the story, acting like it was open to other colleges, and then high schools. This ploy got him further, but at some point, in order to keep the investment money flowing, he had to open the fake site to the public.

This is where the scheme got much more complicated for Saverin. Once open to the public, his investors wanted to join the site that didn’t exist. Saverin hired a team of developers in India to put together a basic functioning website. He then used Mechanical Turk to create tons of fake users in the database. This was just enough to convince the investors that The Facebook was legit. Some questioned why they couldn’t see any information from the claimed millions of other users. He told them that they could only see content and profile information from their “friends”. This was the start of social media as we know it.

The developers had left the website open to the public and a few people started signing up for the website. Worried that people might find out that the website was only a sham, he started hiring cheap foreign labor to play the part of the new users’ friends. They would spy on the friends of the users that were joining and create fake profiles and content for those people. Even today, Facebook only has about 2,000 users, and their friends’ activity is being written by non-english speaking people, which explains all the bad grammar and misspellings.

Eduardo Saverin fled the United States years ago and continued to run this scheme. He just renounced his citizenship and his whereabouts are unknown, but the FBI would like to know any information you may have. With the release of the SEC’s investigation, Facebook’s stock is expected to plummet, as Facebook has no real assets. Mockcrunch has placed a target price of $0.01 and a SELL rating on FB.