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INTERNET SPACE
@GSElevator on way down after losing book deal
by Staff Writers
New York (AFP) March 07, 2014


Google mystery barge floats to new US berth
San Francisco (AFP) March 07, 2014 - Google's mystery barge arrived at a new home at a port in the California city of Stockton on Thursday.

Calm waters after a storm allowed the vessel to make the trip from a former Navy base in the San Francisco bay to Stockton in about 7.5 hours, port director Richard Aschieris told AFP.

"It came up here very quickly," Aschieris said after returning from the dock serving as the barge's new home.

"It is certainly a relationship with a terrific company, so we are extremely happy."

The Silicon Valley-based Internet titan has said little about the barge, which is made of shipping containers and reported to be one of four floating "interactive spaces" the company is having built on US coasts.

A state commission says the barge will be used to showcase technology and for marketing.

The barge is at the port under a standard six-month lease, with the monthly fee expected to range from $10,000 to $12,000, depending on the official length of the vessel, according to Aschieris.

"If they need to stay longer, they are welcome," he said. "If they need to leave early, that is fine too."

The vessel cast off from Treasure Island, off the coast of San Francisco, after it turned out the city didn't have permits for Google or anyone else to construct a vessel at a dock there.

Google is working to get the necessary approvals from the US Coast Guard for the waterborne creation.

The man behind a popular Twitter account that appeared to provide a rare insider look at Goldman Sachs has lost his book deal after revelations the former banker never actually worked at the firm.

Banker John Lefevre gained Internet fame through his @GSElevator account, where he posted dialogue he claimed to have overheard in the elevators of the top global investment firm, angering many at Goldman Sachs and other Wall Street executives.

Lefevre, formerly of Citibank, had remained anonymous for three years, until The New York Times revealed his identity last week.

"In light of information that has recently come to our attention since acquiring John Lefevre's 'Straight to Hell,' Touchstone has decided to cancel its publication of this work," the division of Simon & Schuster said in a statement.

Goldman responded to the news with some humor. "Guess elevators go up and down," it posted on its Twitter account.

Lefevre, who earlier this week defended himself online, said he was puzzled by the publisher's decision to cancel his contract, reported to be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.

"It's just a comical mystery to me," Lefevre told Business Insider.

"As of Friday afternoon, after all of the noise -- during which Simon & Schuster prohibited me from responding and defending myself -- they have continued to support me and stand by our project. Well, until today apparently."

In a Business Insider post Tuesday, Lefevre, 34, said that "being outed has always been part of the plan."

Vowing his book would still be coming out and to keep tweeting, Lefevre said he has been asked to write regular columns for "two of the most prestigious capital markets publications."

And in a satirical tweet, he said: "Stay tuned. Next week, I will tweet locations and times, at various bars in NYC -- All drinks will be on Simon & Schuster."

Lefevre's Twitter feed, popular with Wall Street cognoscenti and with readers who enjoy seeing it mocked, purported to chronicle the blustery utterances of gold-plated bankers at Goldman Sachs. It counts about 651,000 followers.

"The new standard of cool is hanging out with friends and not ever looking at a phone," one tweet read.

In another, "GS Elevator Gossip" wrote that he overhead a banker say: "I could watch fat people getting out of cars all day long."

Many referred to class tensions, such as this one: "I always make sure I live in a neighborhood with the champagne socialists. No one is better at keeping the riffraff out."

Lefevre worked for seven years at Citigroup in New York, London and Hong Kong and then at a startup boutique firm in Asia. He now reportedly lives in Texas.

He was offered a job in Hong Kong with Goldman in 2010, but it fell through because a former employer said he was bound by a non-competition agreement, Lefevre told the Times.

lo-oh/pst

GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP

CBS CORPORATION

TWITTER

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