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Did 'Silicon Valley' Star TJ Miller Turn The 8th Annual Crunchies Awards Into Cringe-Fest?

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- The audience didn't know whether to laugh, cry or cringe at the 8th Annual Crunchies Awards Thursday night, at San Francisco's Davies Symphony Hall.

It had nothing to do with the dozens of anti-eviction protesters outside, and everything to do with the man onstage.

Just hashtag 'crunchies' and 'nottjmiller.' You'll find a litany of in-show tweets and morning-after musings about host T.J. Miller's comedic rants -- a few positive; others, not so much.

Bay Area BizTalk went so far as to say the star of TV's 'Silicon Valley' turned the ceremony into "a celebratory 'train wreck.'" Nellie Bowles in 'Startups and Self-Loathing at the 8th Annual Crunchies Awards' blamed it on "an insatiable appetite for satire in the tech world, especially for someone who can make fun of all these new piles of money."

Opening the show, Miller told the audience, "You're run by money... Silicon Valley – we make fun of it on 'Silicon Valley'. That's why you invited me here. That's how fu…ked up all of you are, that you're literally like, shall we bring the jester?"

Between Miller's barbs, Marc Benioff ( took home the award for CEO of the Year, and Uber won 'Best Startup of 2014,' along with a host of others (see below).

"Now you can be wasted while you drive to work," said Miller, referring to Uber. Miller told Uber CEO Travis Kalanick he had invented two Crunchies especially for him: 'Not Constantly Stepping In $#!t' and 'Constantly Stepping In $#!t.'

And so the evening went.

"This is going WAY off the rails," tweeted Dave McClure, co-founder of 500 Startups. "Welcome to the Comedy Central Roast of Silicon Valley, by TJ Miller.

Another tweeted "Someone from Shyp is getting eaten alive by tj miller … this is why I don't sit in the front row," That someone was Kalanick's girlfriend, Gabi Holzwarth who along with her dog (that she brought along to the show) and other front row tech celebs (Shervin Pishevar, became Miller's joke fodder for the evening.

TWEET: "At one point Miller called a woman a "bitch" on stage. The audience laughed."

That woman was Holzwarth.

See for yourself:

Miller's constant references to 'Silicone (sic) Valley' elicited tweets asking if he knew it was pronounced 'con' not 'cone'?

The overall consensus: Blame it on the A-L-C-O-H-O-L.

At the end of the show Miller smashed a TechCrunch piñata filled with "Crunchies" candy and told the audience, "I really don't think they are going to invite me back."


TechCrunch 8th Annual Crunchies Awards... and the winners are:

Best Technology Achievement

Winner: Stella Solar-Powered Car
Runner-up: Apple Pay
Finalists: The Blockchain, Rosetta Mission's Comet Landing, SpaceX Lateral Booster

Best On-Demand Service

Winner: Hotel Tonight
Runner-up: Postmates
Finalists: Lyft, Shyp, Uber

Best E-Commerce Application

Winner: Casper
Runner-up: The Honest Company
Finalists: Flipkart, Instacart, Warby Parker

Best Mobile Application

Winner: Storehouse
Runner-up: Acorns
Finalists: Strava, Venmo, Yik Yak

Fastest-Rising Startup
Winner: Yik Yak
Runner-up: Slack
Finalists: Lending Club, Reddit, Product Hunt

Best Health Startup
Winner: Theranos
Runner-up: Fitbit
Finalists: Misfit Wearables, Rise, Zenefits

Best Design
Winner: Airbnb
Runner-up: Medium
Finalists: 1Password, Manual Camera App, Monument Valley

Best Bootstrapped Startup
Winner: Meadow
Runner-up: MailChimp
Finalists: Daring Fireball, Grammarly, Techmeme

Best Enterprise Startup
Winner: CloudFlare
Runner-up: Docker
Finalists: GitHub, OpenDNS, Slack

Best International Startup
Winner: Line
Runner-up: Spotify
Finalists: Citymapper, EyeEm, Kik

Best Education Startup
Winner: ClassDojo
Runner-up: Khan Academy
Finalists: AltSchool, Coursera, Kano

Best Hardware Startup
Winner: Oculus VR
Runner-up: GoPro
Finalists: DJI, Fitbit, Xiaomi

Can't Stop, Won't Stop
Winner: Kim Kardashian: Hollywood
Runner-up: BuzzFeed
Finalists: Giphy, Threes, Twitch

Biggest Social Impact
Winner: Twitter
Runner-up: Tim Cook's Public Coming Out
Finalists: FireChat, Girls Who Code,

Angel of the Year
Winner: Kickstarter Backers of Oculus VR
Runner-up: Cyan and Scott Banister
Finalists: Ashton Kutcher, Alexis Ohanian, David Tisch

VC of the Year
Winner: Jim Goetz (Sequoia Capital)
Runner-up: Aileen Lee (Cowboy Ventures)
Finalists: Marc Andreessen & Ben Horowitz (Andreessen Horowitz), Peter Fenton (Benchmark), Peter Thiel (Founders Fund)

Founder of the Year
Winner: Stewart Butterfield, Eric Costello, Cal Henderson and Serguei Mourachov (Slack)
Runner-up: Brian Acton and Jan Koum (WhatsApp)
Finalists: John and Patrick Collison (Stripe), Elizabeth Holmes (Theranos), Mikkel Svane, Alexander Aghassipour and Morten Primdahl (Zendesk)

CEO of the Year
Winner: Marc Benioff (
Runner-up: Marissa Mayer (Yahoo)
Finalists: Tim Cook (Apple), Drew Houston (Dropbox), Travis Kalanick (Uber)

Best New Startup of 2014
Winner: Product Hunt
Runner-up: Shyp
Finalists: Bellhops, OnePlus, Slack

Best Overall Startup of 2014
Winner: Uber
Runner-up: GoPro
Finalists: Snapchat, Stripe, Tinder

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