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Sean Parker: Creative Disrupter

Sean Parker rocked the music world when he created Napster; his vision and paranoia helped to shape Facebook. Now 31 with $2.1 billion, he says he is just getting started. 

What’s the Latest Development?

Although Sean Parker is only 31, he already has a long history of disrupting the status quo and finding unique solutions to where the world is headed next. His latest project is to help the Swedish music company Spotify make an entry into the U.S. Parker is also putting money into Airtime, “a site where friends can post videos and react to them—and each other—live. ‘My pitch is eliminating loneliness,’ Parker says.”

What’s the Big Idea?

Despite his depiction in Aaron Sorkin’s The Social Network as an unstable, conniving business cutthroat, a spirit of discovery and sharing has always been at the base of Parker’s business ventures. Time and again he has had a knack for seeing the future before it arrives. “As Shirven Pishevar of Menlo Ventures describes it: ‘Parker has access to trends and signals that are invisible to many people. For him it’s like hearing a dog whistle.’ Parker doesn’t disagree: ‘I find a lot of things relevant that aren’t necessarily relevant to the world when I’m thinking about them.'”


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