Unicorns and Black Swans in Silicon Valley
Unicorn, a start-up with a valuation of more than $1 billion, is a hot concept in the investment world which has rapidly become popular in Silicon Valley. Black Swan refers to an erratic and unexpected event that typically has a slim chance of occurring but could have harmful social ripple effects. Silicon Valley is well known for having excellent yields and unpredictably great dangers, with some of its unicorns and black swans. In Silicon Valley, which also has the most significant concentration of current high-tech enterprises. As a result, Silicon Valley has developed into a high-tech industrial development model studied and copied by many countries. At this time, Silicon Valley has developed a unique “Silicon Valley culture” due to political, social, and economic ideas.
Politics and Silicon Valley
The initial goal of the Internet was to create a free digital space where people could express themselves freely. The emergence of high-tech in Silicon Valley is beneficial for heritage liberal politics, Silicon Valley has grown to be a significant political power in the United States (Halpin & Nownes, 2021). Of course, Silicon Valley’s prosperity cannot be separated from the involvement of the United States government. A well-known American media figure Gregory Ferenstein also penned an article in which he analyzed American Internet entrepreneurs’ political ideologies and claimed that Silicon Valley residents were evolving into a distinct ideological subgroup in the country’s political ecosystem (Ferenstein, 2017). Ferenstein regards the Unicorn founders as idealists. People in Silicon Valley can develop better alternatives that are in the best interests of most people and minimize disputes. Entrepreneurs are often opposed to the notion of national sovereignty, and they embrace liberal ideas on free markets and are concerned with their personal interests.
Because the Democratic Party in the United States tends to be more liberal than the Republican Party, employees of Internet giants Google and Apple provided more than 90% of their own financial support to the Democratic Party during the Obama presidential election in 2012 (Silver, 2012). That is to say, a handful of liberal Democrats represent the dominant political ideology in Silicon Valley. Big capitalists often dominate Silicon Valley and need the government’s firm backing to rule the market. In this approach, a large government with considerable power is preferable to a small one with little authority. The Democratic Party prioritizes centralization and increases the federal government’s control, aligning with powerful alliances and money objectives. These entrepreneurs share capitalists’ solid support for liberalism (Halpin & Nownes, 2021). Executives from Silicon Valley are increasingly inclined to voice their opinions on social and political concerns in America. Giving their views and perspectives on critical challenges is also an expression of political participation, even if it may not influence politics for Silicon Valley people. Although it cannot change the complicated political environment in the United States, the Silicon Valley culture in the United States is demonstrating its social and economic strength in an unprecedented way.
Silicon Valley Culture
Since capital follows people and technology is developed by people, Silicon Valley’s social culture is prosperous because of the collection of skills and economic power. People are willing to travel to Silicon Valley for various reasons, including its wealth and favorable environment as well as its humanistic and social atmosphere. In fact, a phrase that is frequently used today civil society can be used to characterize the humanistic social atmosphere in Silicon Valley. Adam Ferguson, a Scottish thinker of the Enlightenment, is credited with coining the term “civil society” (Hu, 2021). In actuality, civil society is one in which citizens govern themselves. Contrarily, Silicon Valley adheres closely to Ferguson’s book. Economic wealth, political freedom, and social and cultural prosperity” are the three exterior manifestations of civil society, all of which Silicon Valley has largely attained.
There are numerous issues with diversity and inclusiveness in the workplace as the Silicon Valley civilization develops. Former Facebook manager Mark Luckie once claimed to have seen multiple cases of racial discrimination while working there. Even though the content members of the black community shared on Facebook complied with its terms of service, non-black people complained and deleted it (Mangalindan, 2018). Diversity in the technological sector benefits workers and the general public. Still, it is detrimental to the privileged white males at the top who now hold a monopoly on money and power. Therefore, Silicon Valley leaders and managers are urged to be held accountable for the deficiencies of diversity and inclusive work since they will use their influence to prevent such a thing. Civil society does not imply anarchy in society; instead, it suggests that everyone should modify their interpersonal interactions and resolve their disputes amicably and legally so that everyone may live peacefully and concentrate on getting things done.
Silicon Valley has seen a boom in the number of Internet businesses during the dawn of the Internet era. This technological liberalism is based on the belief that the limitless cyberspace of the Internet is distinct from the real world and not subject to the same laws (English-Lueck, 2020). With a US $128,308 yearly GDP per capita, Silicon Valley would be the wealthiest nation in the world if it gained independence (Pulkkinen, 2019). This would be almost double the GDP of all other countries. Innovation is the growth engine of Silicon Valley and perpetual invention is the key to success in Silicon Valley. Innovators in huge numbers have flocked to Silicon Valley, creating novel ideas and ethos, innovative systems and environments, and the distinctive culture of Silicon Valley, few start-ups, though, have been able to compete with these large corporations in recent years (Lusoli & Turner, 2021). Silicon Valley is currently transitioning gradually from a youthful, passionate state to an increasingly stable, less vigorous middle age. Today, technological giants like Apple, Facebook, Google, Twitter, and others have the right to speak when addressing innovation and technology. They all act similarly, first purchasing firms in their core industries to solidify their hegemonic positions, then spreading their tentacles and making acquisitions in other markets to boost income streams and outmanoeuvre rivals. A recent analysis by the “Washington Post” of the acquisition histories of four technological behemoths, including Apple, Google, Amazon, and Facebook, clearly demonstrated the dictatorial growth of the industry’s titans during the previous two decades (Alcantara et al., 2021).
For instance, Google acquired Writely and Tonic Systems and changed them into Google Docs and Google Slides to compete with Microsoft in office products, progressively building Google’s online office ecology (Alcantara et al., 2021). Most invest in small- and medium-sized start-ups with excellent growth prospects or patents, many of which are “rising stars” previously on the unicorn list. Few firms have managed to avoid the urge to reject in the face of capitalism and major takeovers by digital titans. It is challenging to prevent the strain of being outflanked by giants and even becoming black swans, even when some businesses bravely refuse. After Snapchat rejecting a $3 billion takeover offer from Facebook, Facebook swiftly created a nearly identical Stories concept on Instagram, which dealt Snap a significant blow to its long-term commercial development (Alcantara et al., 2021). Outsiders view Silicon Valley as a sacred site for advanced technologies. However, neither the government nor anybody else has ever defined what high-tech is or entails (English-Lueck, 2020). From processors and software to the Internet now, Silicon Valley has transformed. Competition is fierce in Silicon Valley, plenty of businesses have gradually turned into black swans while very few people have become unicorns. The founders of companies are treated with the utmost respect in Silicon Valley culture, and technological advances rather than financial success are essential indicators of social standing.
It is a rare and challenging “Silicon Valley model” globally because of this miracle that Silicon Valley built. Several factors have contributed to Silicon Valley’s high-tech success, but the most deserving is its innovation-friendly culture. The preceding that significant changes have recently occurred in Silicon Valley’s entrepreneurial ecosystem, both in terms of the technology environment and entrepreneurs themselves. With the largest concentration of scientific and technology businesses, the finest venture capital firms, and the best talent, Silicon Valley is still the global hub for research and technology. The market will continue to grow regardless of whether you run a start-up or an established business. The Silicon Valley business model may offer some helpful insights for entrepreneurs looking to improve their businesses. We are look forward to the appearance of the next Silicon Valley superstar.
Lusoli, A., & Turner, F. (2021). “It’s an Ongoing Bromance”: Counterculture and Cyberculture in Silicon Valley—An Interview with Fred Turner. Journal of Management Inquiry, 30(2), 235–242. https://doi-org.ezproxy.library.sydney.edu.au/10.1177/1056492620941075
Halpin, D. R., & Nownes, A. J. (2021). Silicon Valley Firms in American Politics, The New Entrepreneurial Advocacy: Silicon Valley Elites in American Politics (pp. 27-66). Oxford University Press, Incorporated.
Ferenstein, G. (2017). A deeper look at Silicon Valley’s long-term politics. Brookings. https://www.brookings.edu/blog/techtank/2017/10/04/a-deeper-look-at-silicon-valleys-long-term-politics/
Silver, N. (2012, November 28). In Silicon Valley, Technology Talent Gap Threatens G.O.P. Campaigns. FiveThirtyEight. https://archive.nytimes.com/fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/11/28/in-silicon-valley-technology-talent-gap-threatens-g-o-p-campaigns/
Hu, C. (2021). Why is Silicon Valley a model of civil society? Www.linkedin.com. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/why-silicon-valley-model-civil-society-chier-hu
Mangalindan, JP. (2018). Silicon Valley’s racism problem is bigger than Facebook. Yahoo Finance.https://finance.yahoo.com/news/silicon-valleys-racism-problem-bigger-facebook-160224034.html?guccounter=1&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly9zZWFyY2gxLm1lLw&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAAKlQet79jZ2DmZtHXbJVzT8K4lnd2OxsPTbmEImGnBrLIYIJCMrGriaFV5yBUsYEU9MRhl8ln440c03yxppH0cIRvGeUYzcGduCrh2yPcgIarmU86XfOE14Qf-pBGKTSfhSbKwfumAYolvXQ67Jg3W6jAfvO2MC17f7zz6bEcnN7
Pulkkinen, L. (2019, April 30). If Silicon Valley were a country, it would be among the richest on Earth. The Guardian; The Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/apr/30/silicon-valley-wealth-second-richest-country-world-earth
Alcantara, C., Schaul, K., De Vynck, G., & Albergotti, R. (2021, April 21). How Big Tech Got so big: Hundreds of Acquisitions. Washington Post. https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/interactive/2021/amazon-apple-facebook-google-acquisitions/
English-Lueck, J. A. (2020). A TECHNOLOGICAL PLACE, Cultures@SiliconValley : Second Edition (pp, 7-106). Stanford University Press,. https://doi.org/10.1515/9781503602991