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Double or Nothing on That Bubble Bet?

Sam Altman lost a wager about the startup valuations, but says he won “in spirit.” 

Sam Altman 

Sam Altman 

Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

Half a decade ago, people watching Silicon Valley obsessed over whether technology companies were overvalued and out of control. Instead of Facebook Inc. political ads and monopoly power, we were worried about how many unicorns it took to make a bubble. If there was a startup bubble, it’d only be a matter of time before investors came to their senses and valuations plummeted. 

Fortune’s Adam Lashinsky wrote in May 2014, “Yes, we’re in a tech bubble. Here’s how I know it,” and then continued to make the case the following year. Nick Bilton worried in Vanity Fair that the industry might go “Kaboom!