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Net Slaves 2.0: Tales of Surviving the Great Tech Gold Rush Paperback


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Allworth Press; 1 edition (March 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1581152841
  • ISBN-13: 978-1581152845
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,242,342 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Feel the love and live the flashbacks." -- Time Out New York

From the Publisher

The dot.com rise and fall has been indelibly linked to images of money and stock value in the national memory. Overlooked in the media frenzy, however, was the most vital element: the human cost. In NetSlaves 2.0, a startling and inspiring sequel to their acclaimed NetSlaves, authors Bill Lessard and Steve Baldwin offer a behind-the-scenes account of what became of American tech industry workers.

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Timothy Bornemisza on April 23, 2003
Format: Paperback
I was in college during the madness of the dot-com boom, just aching to be part of the stock-option party. By the time I left, the bust was beginning and things were seemingly all down hill - I felt as though I had missed something magical.
After reading Netslaves 2.0, I realized something. I was an idiot. Bill Lessard and Steve Baldwin have removed looked past the facade of of 24 year-old CEOs and free-money stock-options and dreams of reinventing the world and revealed just how miserable life at the average dot-com was. The book is hillariously funny, but its comedy in the Mel Brooks sense: "Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you fall down a manhole and die." The lives and experiences of these dot-com worker-bees while on the surface had me laughing out loud, they also anecdotally reveal the systemic problems of the cheap-money craze between 1998 and 2000.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Laura M. Allen on May 11, 2003
Format: Paperback
NetSlaves 2.0: Tales of Surviving the Great Tech Gold Rush, is a must read for anyone who has risked it all in the hopes of building a better life, only to fall flat on their ... Thankfully, this book is not about 24 year old dot com millionaires crying about their lost fortunes. As Tom Petty says, "Baby, even the losers get lucky sometimes," and this is a collection of stories about hard working underdogs that are worth caring about.
Charles is a young ambitious college student who loves the idea of creating an online zine. Instead of handing out a Xeroxed packet of articles to his 10 closest friends, he knows that the Internet will give him a whole new audience of readers from around the world. His passion even leads to a job at the ultimate destination for tech-nerd-intellectuals, Wired. Unfortunately Charles falls in love with the wrong girl at the same time that the Internet bubble is bursting, so Charles must find his inner resolve in order to survive physically and emotionally.
What may make NetSlaves 2.0 a frustrating read for some is the fact that most of the characters in these stories do not find a happy ending. That may leave readers wondering why the authors have bothered to bring these stories to the page at all. The reason may be that Bill Lessard and Steve Baldwin simply want these stories to be heard. They have also chosen to use a mix of fact and fiction when telling these stories which may add to this frustration. The reader is sometimes left wondering how much of each story is fact or fiction.

NetSlaves 2.0 rings true because it highlights the willful ignorance that many had as they jumped on the Internet bandwagon. One of the least sympathetic characters in the book is Gene.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By John Cooper Clarke on May 4, 2003
Format: Paperback
Everyone who has dissed this book obviously hasn't read it. This book is fun, and puts the entire Dot-Com Bubble and its aftermath into perspective. The people profiled run the gamut from executives to regular tech workers who went from making a great deal of money to barely getting by and the dignity that they somehow muster amidst very unpleasant circumstances. (In a way, NetSlaves 2.0 reminds me of "The Shawshank Redemption, because it's about hope, and retaining one's humanity.)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on November 15, 2003
Format: Paperback
The dot.com rise and fall has been examined numerous times from the standpoint of economic impact; but its human cost has been left behind. What became of American tech industry workers in the fallout of the industry? NetSlaves 2.0 considers the lasting impact of the Internet demise on the workers, their aspirations, and others.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 10, 2003
Format: Paperback
Most of what's been written about the Internet bubble is easily summarized as ``most dotcoms were thinly disguised stock scams,'' and generally lacking in insight. Lessard and Baldwin go beyond tedious repetition of standard facts and address the question of what comes next for people who didn't take enough out of their web jobs to retire. Netslaves 2.0 is presented as a series of self-contained sections, each of which centers on the story of a representative example of nine types of former dotcom employees.
The novel expository style works well, Lessard and Baldwin are engaging writers, and they avoid longwinded punditry and ``inside baseball'' filler. NS 2.0 isn't a book about the boom so much as a look at the beginning of the Internet winter. If you're at all interested in the topic, pick up a copy.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 2, 2003
Format: Paperback
I'm not much of a fan of Internet books, I suppose both because they so typically stereotype those who use or work in the industry as a bunch of narcissistic, surprisingly narrow-minded, 20-something geeks whose desires are one-dimensional, or that they focus on totally abstract issues or arcane technology that's irrelevant outside of Palo Alto.
That being said, I read this book on the plane and really liked it. It fashions, in a 9-part, highly modularized fashion, a picture of those who work(ed) in the New Economy that is likely to resonate with those outsiders (such as myself) who have largely been spared the worst excesses of this period, but have seen many less lucky people destroyed by it. The after-shocks of the damage are likely to be felt for quite a few years in the future, i.e. I maintain with the authors that the dot-com meltdown was indeed the "leading and bleeding edge" of a larger, more catastrophic meltdown of ethics in society now written large in names such as Enron, Merril-Lynch, and even MTA. So I'd say that this is probably one of the few "important" books to be written about the period we've recently witnessed, i.e. 1995-2002.
Criticisms? Some of the stories are funnier and terser than others, and I didn't catch all of their references all the time. Still, I have the feeling that I got most of what the authors intended to lay down. Again, I'm on an industry insider by any means, nor do I think that this book was written for insiders but for the general population at large.
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