In defense of Silicon Beach
As much respect as I have for Brad Feld and Mark Suster, I politely disagree with their points on the Silicon Beach discussion (here and here). The actual name of the brand matters much less than what the brand has grown to symbolize. Does anyone really associate Coca Cola with the coca plant? Or Coke with cocaine? And wtf is Pepsi? True Ventures is a great name, but the reputation they developed is much more significant to the value of their brand than the name.
Personally, I don’t associate “Beach” in Silicon Beach with “not working hard”. It’s just a nice place to live WHILE working hard (somebody should do survey on people’s perception of the term.) I also don’t associate “Silicon” with “hey let’s be like Silicon Valley”. It’s catchy, and it conveys the message brilliantly - we’re a tech hub that’s located on the beach (or 30-60 min away, depending on traffic).
Naming conventions are like nick names. They develop organically, and it makes no sense to fight them. I don’t think it’s a good use of time to continue talking about this. If you don’t like the term - don’t use it. But people actually seem to like it. There are over 600 members in our Silicon Beach Facebook group, and the name has really become something people rally around. However, if tomorrow the name of the LA startup community changed to “Bob”, there would still be a ton of awesome entrepreneurs living here and working just as hard (while having as much fun doing it).