Comedian who called Uber CEO's girlfriend a 'b****' and made 'racist' remark at 'Silicon Valley' awards show faces angry backlash 

  • TJ Miller is being criticized for what are being called sexist and racist comments toward Gabi Holzwarth
  • Holzwarth is the 25-year-old girlfriend of Uber founder Travis Kalanick, 38
  • Holzwarth plays violin at tech parties and also works at the startup Shyp

A star of the HBO show 'Silicon Valley' is finding himself on the outs in the real Silicon Valley after he called out the girlfriend Uber's CEO during a tech industry awards show - calling her a 'b****' and making a racial remark.

Comedian T.J. Miller was hired as host to add some pointed commentary to the 'Crunchies' - referred to as 'the Oscars of Silicon Valley.' The awards show - which has Silicon Valley elite get dressed up and walk the 'green carpet' - hands out awards like 'fastest-rising startup' and 'founder of the year.'

Instead, he spent much of the night on Thursday relentlessly mocking Gabi Holzwarth - a violinist who plays tech industry parties - and her boyfriend, 38-year-old Uber founder Travis Kalanick, according to the Verge.  

Criticized: Comedian T.J. Miller has been criticized online by a host of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs for repeatedly referring to women in the audience as 'b****' and making a racial remark 

Criticized: Comedian T.J. Miller has been criticized online by a host of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs for repeatedly referring to women in the audience as 'b****' and making a racial remark 

Smith's war of words was with Gabi Holzwarth, the 25-year-old girlfriend of Uber founder Travis Kalanick, 38. The couple are pictured here in April 2014

Smith's war of words was with Gabi Holzwarth, the 25-year-old girlfriend of Uber founder Travis Kalanick, 38. The couple are pictured here in April 2014

Holzwarth wrote an essay about how she was abused and called 'little b****' when she was 13 and said Miller's comedy routine brought back fillings from that incident

Holzwarth wrote an essay about how she was abused and called 'little b****' when she was 13 and said Miller's comedy routine brought back fillings from that incident

It started when Holzwarth, 25, shouted a comment at Miller when he made a jab at Shervin Pishevar, the venture capitalist who first funded Uber, whom he called 'Sherv.'

'Is that Sherv? How are you doing, Sherv? Wait did a woman just say that’s me?' Miller replies. 

'Hey, look, Asians aren’t supposed to be this entitled in the United States.'

He then added: 'And that’s why you guys will never be as loved as Los Angeles. It’s all too precious, you can’t joke about it. She’s yelling that she’s Shervin Pishevar. 

'Are you f***ing nuts? That guy has seeded the most successful companies in the tri-state area and I’m talking about California, you bitch.'

Holzwarth shoots back: 'Did you just call me a b****?'

Holzwarth is seen here with Kalanick at the Crunchies with their dog Yobu, which she brought to the show. Photo courtesy Shaun Tai (@shaun_tai) of Oakland Digital (@ODALC), 2015

Holzwarth is seen here with Kalanick at the Crunchies with their dog Yobu, which she brought to the show. Photo courtesy Shaun Tai (@shaun_tai) of Oakland Digital (@ODALC), 2015

Miller plays a burned out tech startup mentor on the HBO show 'Silicon Valley'

Miller plays a burned out tech startup mentor on the HBO show 'Silicon Valley'

Holzwarth plays violin at tech parties and also works for the startup Shyp

Holzwarth plays violin at tech parties and also works for the startup Shyp

Holzwarth was mocked for bringing her dog Yobu to the tech industry awards show

Holzwarth was mocked for bringing her dog Yobu to the tech industry awards show

Then, Miller spotted the small dog that Holzwarth had taken to the awards show. She joked that she had used Shyp - the new app that offers to pack and ship anything. Holzwarth also works at Shyp.

She also announced to Miller that she is a 'bilateral violinist.' 

Miller responded: 'Did you press a button? A physical button or a digital button? What is this b**** from Palo Alto?'

At one point he also scolded another member of the audience for taking a photo with flash: 'That’s the perfect time to take flash photography. That shows how tech savvy you are. There’s three buttons you can choose: flash on, flash off, or auto, a.k.a. being kind of a rude b****.'

Holzwarth, whose Twitter bio says 'I was born to spread my music to the world,' blasted Miller online for his remarks. 

She tweeted: '10 yrs ago, I was called a b****...not ok. Yesterday I was called a b****...still not ok. Let's try moving away from that word.'

She also wrote an essay about the incident in which she said she was abused and called 'a little b****' when she was 13 and that Miller's routine brought back bad memories of the incident. 

Following the awards show, Katie Jacobs Stanton, a Twitter vice president, wrote an essay titled, 'My first and last time at the Crunchies.' In it, she blasted Miller's comedy routine, saying the themes were 'hostile' toward women and that she was glad she didn't bring her daughter to the show. 

Tech Crunch responded by issuing an apology and saying that Miller would not be invited back to be the host next year.

According to tech site Re/code, Holzwarth met her boyfriend through Pishevar - who spotted her busking in front of Trader Joe's and invited her to play at one of his conferences. 

She said she's only played for wealthy clients on their private jets.  

 The full video can be seen here.

 

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