To the Reader
The events depicted in these pages actually occurred. But although the story is true, some of the details, conversations, and incidents have been invented by the authors in the hope of lending clarity and continuity to our tale. We have compressed some of the action for the sake of brevity, and have shortened—often drastically—many of the quoted documents. The conclusions and characterizations presented here are strictly the opinion of the authors.
We were witnesses to, and participants in, these events until the early months of 2000; the story after that time is based on eyewitness accounts, correspondence, news articles, and court records. Over 20,000 pages of such documentation were examined in the process of researching this book, and we have not consciously changed any material fact. Although much of what happened is a matter of public record, the motivations of those responsible for the Company’s demise, their closed-door maneuverings, their very thoughts, have necessarily been reconstructed from the undeniable results of their actions.
We have taken the liberty of changing the names of many of the characters in this book. Notable exceptions include the Company’s five founders and its two post-IPO CEOs. For obvious reasons, we have also used the actual names of the public figures mentioned in these pages, especially those that sought to soil the company others built for their own personal gain.
Ken Power and Craig Winn