Dame Edna’s greatest gift, she tells us, is “My ability to laugh at the misfortunes of others.”

Who are we to argue?

We deride, lampoon, decry, savage, and belittle the concept of “convergence.” Indeed, the MogulWatch! special report pulls out the tape measure to gauge the amount of rope the TV-plus-Internet industry is spooling out to hang itself. You know this already.

Latest proof of the folly of convergence? The most pigheaded, self-impressed, and imperious new-media shop in the province of Toronto, ExtendMedia (né Digital Renaissance), a cultish bunker run by Keith “Scoutie” Kocho and his poochy, is firing staff. (Two articles: first, second.)

Juicy quotes? Oh, honey. They don’t come any juicier.

  1. “ ‘We have taken what I would characterize as a fairly aggressive gamble in positioning ourselves in the interactive television space, and the market just hasn’t materialized yet,’ Mr. Kocho said.” It hasn’t materialized yet because no one wants it and it doesn’t work, fool.
  2. “ ‘It is a case of being able to hold on long enough,” said [some kind of analyst or other]. ‘With this kind of game, it’s labour-intensive, and you have to have all those programmer guys working long hours to get product out the door. If you don’t have anybody to pick up the product, the first thing to go is people.’ ” Why not just fire Keith Kocho? It’s not the hard-working “programmer guys” who are at fault.

Longtime readers will recall a gushing, breathless, dampened-panty profile of Kocho by some hack or other in some jackboot paper or other. “Keith Kocho is central casting’s version of the E-entrepreneur: Bearded, blue-jeaned and interviewed in a boardroom beside man’s best friend, his faithful dog Scout.” Like so many “E-entrepreneurs” without a viable business, all Scoutie may be left with are his blue jeans, his beloved mutt, and of course a golden parachute twice the size of the salaries of the “programmer guys” he canned today.

Our best wishes to those “programmer guys.” May you find work in a real industry somewhere. And no hard feelings about Scoutie, huh? The world just isn’t ready for him yet.

Posted on 2000-11-08