A displeased Yahoo employee sent us the following.
It’s satirical employment offer letter, sent to Tumblr CEO David Karp from Yahoo HR boss Jackie Reese.
Karp sold Tumblr, a blogging platform, to Yahoo last month for $1.1 billion.
The employee who sent the letter asked us not to reveal his name. We were able to verify that this person has been sent memos intended only for Yahoo employees.
Here’s the letter, which we’ve annotated to provide some context around the jokes.:
Employment offer letter to David Karp, Tumblr
Welcome to the bloated Yahoo family.1
1. You will receive a 10% increase in your most recent base salary at Tumblr, when you join Yahoo. (As you may know, Marissa has put a cap on salary increase for any external hire. Sorry about that. We normally pay exorbitant remuneration through the “acqui-hires”route, as it is great way to leverage our balance sheet & not hurt our short term EPS that the shareholders are so fussed about. I guess your earn-out through the purchase price of Tumblr will keep you happy.)2
2. You will be entitled to an annual bonus (MIP) equal to 50% of your base salary. In the past, this bonus was as good as fixed and everyone used to be paid this amount. After Marissa joined, this is a discretionary and arbitrary payout & we pay this only if we feel like it.
To make it look fair, we have an elaborate process called Quarterly Performance Review (QPR). All people managers at Yahoo spend more time with this QPR than doing their jobs and you are expected to do the same as well. Typically, the quarter is over by the time we are done with this damn QPR and the next QPR starts all over again. I hate this too but Marissa asked me to implement this.3
3. You will be designated as Director. Please don’t confuse this with directorship on Yahoo board. Practically, everyone in our product org is a director. Goodie!
4. Your cube is located next to the nursery of Marissa’s son.4 Of course, we expect you to babysit as needed, in addition to your normal responsibilities.
5. Now comes the best perk of being a Yahoo and I am just so excited. You are now entitled to and iPhone5!5 Wonderful, isn’t it? Please get rid of your ugly Motorola phone and get on the iPhone. If you need any help from our IT team on how to use a touchscreen, please let us know and we will set up a training session.
6. You look quite starved at Tumblr. From now on, your lunch is free!!! Eat as much as you want at office (worth $4.99 buffet) but you are not allowed to carry food home for your dinner as we noticed some employees do. 6
7. You agree to work 5 days /week at our office (We do check your attendance records, VPN logs7 and sometimes we peep into your mailbox as well). You need to get rid of your Tumblr habits as you are no longer entitled to working from home (except for an hour to attend to the cable guy). We would much rather have you in office to constantly remind us of the billion dollars we paid you. By the way, this work-from-home ban was my idea & my memo but sadly, all the credit went to Marissa.
8. Our IT policy strictly prohibits access to any porn sites such as PornHub, YouPorn, Dailymotion, Tumblr. Any violation of this policy may result in termination.8,9
9. Either party can terminate this agreement with a one month notice. I will have a cup of coffee with you at a bar, a week before your earn-out is due and explain to you exactly what happened with Michael Katz.10
EVP (all kinds of “Development”)
Footnotes, provided by Business Insider:
1 Yahoo has about 14,000 employees and a couple thousand contractors. Many people, including famed venture capitalist Marc Andreessen, believe it could get away with have half as many or fewer. Mayer has managed to reduce headcount by 1,000 since joining a year ago.
2Mayer has acquired about a dozen small, failed startups over the last six months. These have been “acqui-hires,” made for the sole purpose of hiring entrepreneurial engineers and product managers. They cost about a $1 million per engineer. Most people think this is a smart way for Mayer to hire, but there are some sceptics who say it’s bad for morale.
3According to Reuters reporter Alexei Oreskovic, Mayer managed to cut Yahoo’s headcount by 1,000 “through a combination of attrition and ramped-up performance management, with staffers now getting reviewed on a quarterly basis instead of every year.”
4Marissa Mayer built a nursery into her office at Yahoo. This came up a lot when Yahoo banned employees from working from home earlier this year. Some employees said the nursery showed out of touch Mayer is with the needs of less-privilege working mothers. Mayer later doubled the amount of paid time new mothers can take during maternity leave.
5 One of the first things Mayer did at Yahoo after joining last summer was get rid of employee BlackBerrys and replace them with Android phones, Windows Phones, or iPhones. The joke here is that someone like David Karp has obviously been using an advanced smartphone for some time now.
6 Another early change made by Mayer was bringing free food to Yahoo. Free food is a standard perk at most rich Silicon valley companies these days. People suspect that companies like Google, Facebook and Yahoo offer free dinner in order to stay later at the office.
7 Mayer only decided to ban working from home after checking Yahoo’s VPN or “virtual private network” to see how active remote employees actually were on the network. They weren’t very.
8 This is a clever joke about how a TON of Tumblr’s traffic and usage is thanks to porn hosted on Tumblr blogs. When Yahoo bought Tumblr for $1.1 billion, Mayer addressed the porn issue, saying: “I think the richness and breadth of content available on Tumblr — even though it may not be as brand safe as what’s on our site — is what’s really exciting and allows us to reach even more users.”
9 Dailymotion is on this list because it is also full of porn and a company that Yahoo tried to buy.
10 In December, Yahoo HR boss Jackie Reese (to whom this satirical letter is addressed) took a Yahoo ad tech executive named Michael Katz out for a drink on a Sunday night. Over their first beverage, Reese canned Katz. She did this only a couple weeks before Katz was due a multi-million dollar retention bonus. He sued.
11 This is how David Karp signed off his note to Tumblr users announcing his company’s sale to Yahoo. The idea was to show that Tumblr was still Tumblr.
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