S03E09 - Daily Active Users
No: 27 | Season: 3 Episode: 9 | Air Date: 19-Jun-16
As Pied Piper celebrates the milestone of 500,0000 downloads, Richard reveals to Monica that their "Daily Active Users" metric is much lower. After Monica convinces Richard to hire a firm to perform focus group testing, the Pied Piper team realizes they must spend more time evangelizing the Pied Piper app to regular users. Meanwhile at Hooli, Gavin discovers Pied Piper's deficiency, and then uses this information to propose that Hooli partners with Jack Barker and adopt the business model of selling "boxes" to Maleant Data Systems. The boxes, which use the Endframe compression software, are a huge success, causing the Hooli board to reinstate Gavin as CEO. Back at Pied Piper, Richard comes to the ultimate conclusion that their marketing efforts have been ineffective. However, right when they feel beaten, the Pied Piper team realizes there has been a miraculous uptrend of daily active users. In the final scene it is revealed that Jared has been surreptitiously buying paid users from a "click farm" in Bangladesh.
Director and Writers
Director: Alec Berg
Written by: Clay Tarver
Female Voice: Tables. Tables are made so a person can sit down and do something. Or nothing. Any person can sit at a table, and if the table is large enough, many people. To make jokes, eat a meal, tell stories. Tables are for people to be together and share. And that is why tables are like Pied Piper. Grapefruits, postcards, hugs. These are things people share to connect, to come closer. To open up about ideas and things that make us feel alive, like air, ballet, amazing haircuts, weird countries, three-alarm chili, mountains, continents, the Earth, life. Life is beautiful and sad and hopeful and dangerous. So maybe the reason we share so much is because we understand that without sharing, we can't survive. And sharing is tables. (whispers) Pied Piper.
Erlich: I love what you've done with the place. It's a really... nicely done place. (points to a picture) Say, is that your dog?
Laurie: It's a dog.
Erlich: You and I have never really had much of a rapport, have we?
Laurie: It's... wanting.
Dinesh: Yeah, Pied Piper's sort of what I'm known for, but I'm into a lot of cool stuff. Like, a lot. You seem surprised. I'll give you an example. A few months ago, I'm at my computer, freestyling, just kind of jammin' out, you know, before I knew it I had thrown together the greatest video-chat app the world has ever seen.
Woman: So you invented Skype a few months ago?
Dinesh: Great ideas just sort of flow through me. The platform, you know, it's sort of a group project, but, uh, the video-chat app, that's my solo album.
Gilfoyle: (to Jared) That's a lie. I can tell because you subscribe to traditional Judeo-Christian mores of right and wrong. You're made uncomfortable by untruth.
Jared: (laughs nervously)
Gilfoyle: My commitment to LaVeyan Satanism grants me certain freedoms. There is no good and evil, there's only self.
Moderator: Bernice, you say here that you were... totally freaked out by the platform. What specifically totally freaked you out?
Bernice: Everything. Just every single thing about it. Just, like, how it worked.
Moderator: Now, who else found themselves totally freaked out by this platform? Barry, Warren, Natalie, Martina, Gwen, Amy, Walker, and Clay. You were all totally freaked out.
Bernice: Is that like when I'm texting and my phone starts guessing what I'm going to say?
Richard: This goes way beyond autocomplete. Actually, all of your devices will begin helping each other in ways that we can't even design or predict.
Clark: Okay, but see, the problem is... Terminator.
Richard: What? No. No, no. No, no, no. No. I can assure there is no Skynet type of situation here. No. Pied Piper will in no way become sentient and try to take over the world.
Clark: He just told us he couldn't predict it. I'm just saying... everybody died.
Jared: After the Table ads, the salaries, recruiter fees... You know what? I haven't run the numbers. It would be irresponsible to estimate.
Richard: Okay, uh, is it less than a million dollars?
Jared: Oh, God, yeah.
Richard: Okay. It's higher than 500,000, right?
Jared: Yeah. I guess it's about $697,240. But don't quote me on that.
Dinesh: You know, I've been showing people the video-chat app that I hacked together and...
Erlich: Shut up, Dinesh! You ungrateful pricks, all of you. Your tepid response to our intrepid boss makes me ill. His plan, will it work? Mm-mm. Almost certainly not. All of you will likely look back at this time in your lives and realize you wasted a whole year with nothing to show for it. But if this company is a plane, then this is Richard's goddamn plane, and if he wants to fly it in the side of a fucking mountain, that is his prerogative and it is our duty to climb on, strap in and have a fiery death right behind him.
Richard: I don't... I don't know about that, but...
Gavin: This is intolerable. A man can only take so much. Banished from my own company? No. I'm just going to give them what they want. I'm going to resign. We can go to Haiti, build orphanages.
Denpok: Haiti? Is it not said that one should think globally and act locally?
Gavin: I'm not acting at all.
Denpok: Lao Tzu teaches the best fighter is never angry. More important than the blow is knowing when to strike. Like, perhaps, after we experience the executive white water rafting trip in Coeur D'Alene?
Gavin: Consider the possum. Nature's...
Rachel: Gavin, if you're bringing another animal into this board room, this meeting is over.
Gavin: Of course not. Don't insult me.
(Patrice and Hoover quickly exit with a possum on a wheeled cart)
Erlich: What in the name of fuck is that?
Richard: Well, his name is "Pipey" the Pied Piper Piper. He's fun and now the demo's interactive...
Pipey: Looks like you want to compress a movie file, can I help? You know with Pied Piper's revolutionary neural network optimized sharded data distribution system, It's just six clicks away, follow meeee!
Jared: I like it!
Gilfoyle: That's a fucking lie.
"Stretch Your Face" by Tobacco (Opening title music)
"Godspeed You! Black Emperor " by Storm (Background music during "Tables" advertisment)
"Oh Death" by Doyle Bramhall II - Erykah Badu (Plays during the Pied Piper marketing montage)
"Chaghaybou" by Tinariwen (Plays over the "India" scene leading up to the closing credits)
Notes and Trivia
In reference to the episode title, daily active users (DAU) is a standard metric used to measure the success of an internet product.
The Pied Piper "Tables" ad is a direct parody of an ad produced by Facebook titled "Chairs".
At Laurie's party, did you notice how the sign that says "Shoes will be taken off" is written in Laurie's style of speech.
Aside from the dog picture that Erlich comments on, there are at least three other random dog pictures seen at Laurie's place.
The woman Dinesh is speaking to at Laurie's party is actually "Silicon Valley" writer and producer Carrie Kemper, who is the sister to actress Ellie Kemper.
Did you notice Gilfoyle was the only person to keep his shoes on at Laurie's party?
"Pipey" the Pied Piper Piper was voiced by Bill Hader.
When they show the click farm guy creating a fake account, he uses the name "Jacklyn Hauser". The same name is credited as the "Assistant Art Director" for this episode. Coincidence? We think not.
This was the first episode where there was no actual end-credits music.
Although Josh Brener (Nelson 'Big Head' Bighetti) and Jimmy O. Yang (Jian Yang) are credited for this episode, they did not appear.
The director of this episode, Alec Berg, was nominated for an Emmy award for "Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series".
Near the end of the episode Richard buttons his shirt incorrectly, but when he walks out of the room his shirt is buttoned properly.
The scene at the marketing agency was filmed at the real agency "Wpromote" located at 2100 East Grand Avenue, El Segundo, CA 90245
The bike ride sequence near the end was filmed in Mumbai, India. (Reference)
The Bangladesh-based click farm was created from a rather pristine-looking National Guard Warehouse which was converted into a space that was more run-down looking. The production team covered windows, adding holes and splits to obtain fragment lighting , and cabling was added throughout, along with a random collection of tables and chairs. Computer monitors that were at least ten years old were added to complete the transition. (Reference)
|Starring||Thomas Middleditch||Richard Hendricks|
|Starring||T.J. Miller||Erlich Bachman|
|Starring||Josh Brener||Nelson 'Big Head' Bighetti|
|Starring||Martin Starr||Bertram Gilfoyle|
|Starring||Kumail Nanjiani||Dinesh Chugtai|
|Starring||Amanda Crew||Monica Hall|
|Starring||Zach Woods||Jared Dunn|
|Starring||Matt Ross||Gavin Belson|
|Starring||Suzanne Cryer||Laurie Bream|
|Starring||Jimmy O. Yang||Jian Yang|
|Guest Starring||Jill Alexander||Patrice|
|Guest Starring||Bill Hader||Pipey|
|Guest Starring||Gabriel Tigerman||Gary Irving|
|Guest Starring||Stephen Tobolowsky||Jack Barker|
|Guest Starring||Bernard White||Denpok|
|Guest Starring||Chris Williams||Hoover|
|Co-Starring||Mayank Bhatter||Click Farm Employee|
|Co-Starring||Carrie Kemper||Woman at Party (Female VC)|
|Co-Starring||Adam Newman||Wpromote Ad Exec|
|Co-Starring||Ivan Shaw||Wpromote Ad Exec|