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TheStreet Open House

Mark Zuckerberg Should Tell the Public to Drop Dead

Stock quotes in this article: FB, P

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Facebook (FB) releases its first earnings report as a public company after the bell on July 26.

At this point, there's no word on what CEO Mark Zuckerberg will do. Will he appear on his company's conference call? Or will he leave it up to COO Sheryl Sandberg and CFO David Ebersman? Put me down for the latter. And give me another hundred on his absence triggering even more media-generated Facebook hate.

Ever since the Facebook IPO, the popular furor chided Zuck for not making a "statement" about everything that went down. The media ridiculed him for scheduling two of his life's biggest events -- the IPO and his wedding -- back to back. Of course, he's a multi-billionaire now, so Zuck should have just faxed his main squeeze the prenuptial agreement, ordered in a few pizzas and got back to work. As if the media hacks who generate all of this transparent outrage even have a clue about what a CEO like Zuckerberg does.

Let's get one thing clear: Rare-breed visionaries generally do not do conference calls.

At Apple (AAPL), Steve Jobs typically delegated the task of conference call play-by-play and color commentary to the CFO (Peter Oppenheimer) and COO (at the time, Tim Cook). You will not find Jeff Bezos on an Amazon.com (AMZN) call, nor will you hear the visionary who created Pandora (P), Tim Westergren, on his company's Webcast.

Executives at this level simply do not have time for the dog-and-pony show of a conference call.

It's a bit like the elite professional athlete. I often wonder why these guys waste their time and breath answering questions from a gaggle of nerds who never played the game or did not play it all that well. Generally, when former (and respected) players ask the questions, current players give much better answers.


It sounds a bit pompous, but if a hockey player, for example, gave anything other than talking points like, we're just going to take it one day at a time, ya know, eh, would the run-of-the-mill sports reporter or fan understand the response? Highly unlikely. Just look at how investor and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban schooled (well-known media hack) Skip Bayless on ESPN recently. (This link will take you to an outside source.)

That's classic. Even if you're not an NBA fan.

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