Startup U, Episode Four: Do you even whiteboard, bra(h)?

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“Anybody here need a bra?”

Last week, I almost threw in the towel on StartupU. It seems I am not alone. On his Facebook page, Tim Draper offered to give $ 1 million to charity if more people would watch it this week. Yeeeeeeeesh. Sad trombone disruption.

All my early hopefulness was diminishing week on week– both that this show could teach anyone anything about entrepreneurship or that it could be good TV.

More frustrating than Tim Draper’s weirdo antics — which can be entertaining– or the absurd business ideas– which can also be entertaining– is the structure of the show. It’s sort of a competition, in that one startup will get an investment from Draper at the end. But unlike the tried and true format of Project Runway, Top Chef, American Idol etc, no one ever gets kicked off.

That everyone-gets-a-trophy — or, rather, everyone paid thousands of dollars to come to this “university” and we have to pretend they are all great disruptors– mentality seeps into every nook and cranny of the show, like a friendly, pink, sparkly poison. It renders the show useless in those two goals: That anyone would learn anything about entrepreneurship or that it would be good television…

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