A top story in NY Times


In Busy Silicon Valley, Protein Powder Is in Demand http://nyti.ms/1FJ1zbj

Aspen Times Soylent Article
"Protein Powder: The Hot Silicon Valley Trend That Could Be Dangerous"

I guess “protein powder” is in the lexicon because of bodybuilders, but soylent really isn’t protein powder. I mean, it has protein in it, along with the other macros, but it would be just as apt to call it a carb powder or a fat powder since it has those as well.

Rant aside, it was a good article, and great that it is in the most read newspaper in the US (world?). Thank you for the link.


Wall Street Journal is the most read newspaper in the United States.

Three separate Japanese newspapers are the top-three read newspapers in the world.


Apologies: I had just assumed.

Technically, we are both wrong, though. Looks like USA Today is highest in terms of circulation, fwiw.



In any event, an article in the New York Times is still pretty good.


The article’s as much about @axcho and his Schmoylent and Schmilk and reorganizing expanding company as about Soylent; it’s good to be available to journalists!

Rolled my eyes a bit at the venture capitalists doing a multi-day Soylent “cleanse”, though. There’s a meaningless conflation of trend terms.


Fair enough. But that includes online readership. I was thinking pure circulation.


I had not seen (or if I had, I had forgotten) the video that was embedded into the article with the sommelier and others tasting it. It was from May 29, 2014, so obviously it was a previous version. (presumably 1.0)


The accompanying article:


It’s kind of ironic that the story finally came out this weekend, just as Custom Body Fuel is all but closed down. :stuck_out_tongue: It seems to have helped sell off the leftover Schmilk though - there’s just one week left in stock now!


There are still people who read newspapers offline? Amazing.


Cool write up… (and kudos @axcho) although…
A: 6 month wait lists? That’s ancient history.
B: “protein powder”? Did the author/editor feel they couldn’t come up with a better name for a complete meal replacement powder? I’ve never been tempted to refer to Soylent or Schmoylent as a protein powder when describing it.


Wow, looks like they put up some photos of me after all. Now you all get to see what the old Custom Body Fuel space looked like! :stuck_out_tongue:

I’m guessing that’s the case. The author is not stupid, though perhaps he is concerned that some readers may be. :wink:


That panel discussion of Soylent-tasters that accompanied the article was slanted and inaccurate. It didn’t appear to be discussing 1.4. It was copyright 2014. Imagine a discussion of software that reviewed it based on a six-month old version. The panelists appeared to have been coached to wear glum, disapproving expressions, for humorous effect.


Like I said, it was likely 1.0 since it was from May 29, 2014. (almost exactly a year ago, in fact) It accompanied that linked to article from the same date.

I agree they didn’t really give it a chance. Obviously a sommelier is going to be snoody about it, so I am not sure why they had him tasting.


I thought you were asian :stuck_out_tongue:


Very relevant here, even though it’s from another topic


This is a classic example of priming. Soylent was presented almost exclusively as a way to avoid eating–because one is just too darn busy to eat, because one’s work is oh so important–and that became the focus of the analysis and, tellingly, of the comments. To be sure, that is one of the benefits of Soylent, but it’s like saying that we build houses only to avoid getting wet during a heavy thunderstorm. Houses obviously provide other sources of value, and so does Soylent. But you won’t get that from the article.

Some of us are not in Silicon Valley, unless its geographic footprint now extends into Baltimore, and most of us derive somewhat greater satisfaction from the beverage than is suggested in the article. There is no real acknowledgement that we flavor it to our liking, that it makes us feel better, or that it should be compared to the meals that it is actually replacing for those who consume it. I’m a reader of the NYT, and I found the smugness and ignorance of the comments disconcerting. But then, that’s how the readers were primed to understand Soylent. Soylent has now been widely available for a year, but the same misunderstandings, fallacies, and silly tropes that surrounded its launch clearly persist today. Of course, as others noted, there is a lot about this article that is extremely dated, so I wonder when it was actually written.


Scary comments indeed. How do I spend the extra time saved by not eating muggle food? Reading ignorant NY Times reader comments I guess. Ugh. Why do people get so defensive? You’d think the article had declared god dead?!?!


I’m half Asian. :wink:

Exactly. This article did not have to be about “tech workers are so busy that they have to drink Soylent”. Most people who drink Soylent are not tech workers. But since this is a “Tech” column, it has to be about tech workers. And so it’s easy for commenters to bundle up Soylent with all their concerns about the tech industry these days.

I’m not sure what that’s supposed to accomplish, beyond (maybe?) better numbers for the newspaper.


The NY Times article is being reprinted/repackaged to a bunch of other sites.



Amongst others…


“You are what you slurp” radio piece that is another response to NY Times.

It’s shocking. All these brilliant people, inventing amazing time-saving devices, and they don’t even have the time to eat at McDonald’s! I thought the tech industry was going to give us more leisure time.