Southbay.jpgThere’s a noteworthy piece in the San Francisco newspaper which appears to make the south end of Silicon Valley, known as “South Bay” and comprising roughly Santa Clara County, as the center of “back-scratching” scandal.

This is notable because Silicon Valley came out surprisingly clean during the initial wave of scandal in 2002 and 2003, where the Enrons and Worldcoms took place everywhere but Silicon Valley — and despite Silicon Valley being home to most quick-moving, stock-option based start-ups where you’d think most accounting problems may occur. This is a hard-hitting story, and the first time we’ve seen someone saying the valley has a genetic-cultural problem in being loose with the rules. We’re wondering how much interviews like this one with Network Appliances Daniel Warmenhoven contributed to this view. Anyway, here’s the Chron:

These days, corporate scandal, once a foreign concept in technology circles, seems to have a temporary visa — if not permanent residence — in the South Bay…

…The backlash against the valley has been escalating since the dot-com crash. That’s when the American public first was exposed to the seamier side of Silicon Valley culture, an insular, back-scratching world that devised creative accounting methods to make companies look like they were winning more customers and making more money than they really were.

What do you guys think? Are we loose with the rules down here? Has money gone to our head? Is it quick riches over morals?