Tech Dirty to Me

Yes, There Are Cam Boys: Man Makes Bank Doing Naked Webcam Workouts

Men, amiright? (IMDb)

This column has explored a lot about cam girls — most recently, for instance, I learned that some of them are making around a million bucks a year. But with all this talk about female webcam performers, a number of people have asked me: Are there also webcam boys?

They’re certainly not as numerous as their female counterparts, but yes, male webcam performers exist. After a couple weeks of searching, I managed to track one down. He goes by the name Mike Hard, and he’s a performer on camming site Streamate. He agreed to chat with me about what it’s like to be a cam boy. Read More

Kickstart or Kill

This Is the Most Bizarre Crowdfunding Video We’ve Ever Seen

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At Betabeat, we consider ourselves connoisseurs of the Kickstarter horror story. Usually, the strange videos we’ve come across have been poorly made home videos — honest attempts by clueless civilians. Sometimes though, you find that perfect marriage of high production value and complete WTFness.

The crowdfunding video for a productivity app called Wimble looks like Barney Stinton’s video resume meets The Room. In it, a Finnish man wearing all black errthang is chased through an urban dystopia by a swarm of flying clocks before discovering the almighty Wimble. Read More

Goooood Morning Silicon Alley!

Best Tech Events This Week: Startup Dodgeball, Ignite, Startup Weekend Fashion Tech and More

sponsor_garys_red_tie_new

This is a guest post from Gary Sharma (aka “The Guy with the Red Tie”), founder and CEO of GarysGuide and proud owner of a whole bunch of black suits, white shirts and, at last count, over 40 red ties. You can reach him at gary [at] garysguide.com.

Startup Job Fair Sep 12. StrategyHack (accelerate startup growth) Sep 27, apply by Sep 06. DELL Education Tech Innovation Day (looking for K-12 focused startups) Sep 19, apply by Sep 08. West Elm $25k Small Biz Grant (artists, makers, designers), apply by Sep 09. Go for it, yo! :)

Oct 30 FunnyBizz Conference w/ Bill Grundfest (Golden Globe Winner & Founder, Comedy Cellar), Bob Mankoff (Cartoon Editor, New Yorker), Tim Lee (Scientist Turned Comedian), Peter McGraw (Author, Humor Code), Tim Washer (Webby Honoree, SNL, Conan). 2 Free Passes ($199 value)! Read More

Going Viral

Media and Tech Companies Are Weirdly Obsessed With This Team Management App

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When we think of something “going viral,” usually the first association is videos of pandas sneezing and clicky BuzzFeed listicles, not office management software. But a program called Slack is sweeping through media and tech companies, mostly because people who leave Hipchat and Gmail to try it out become major converts, and can barely shut up about it.

In only one year, Slack has become the go-to for teams at the Wall Street Journal, Airbnb, HBO, eBay, Gawker Media, Medium, BuzzFeed, PayPal, and dozens of other companies that are just as impressiveRead More

Social Network of No

Social Network Is Powerless to Prevent ISIS From Using it to Recruit, Organize

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App creators are often surprised by how people end up using their creations. Unfortunately for *diaspora, a hands-off social network that allows people to control their own decentralized groups, their software is being used by terrorists.

Terrorist organization ISIS has now fled other social networks to the aptly named diaspora*, a company that, by its own admission, can’t actually kick anyone off of their network. diaspora* has responded by publishing a blog post advising their citizen moderators how to deal with accounts that could belong to terrorist organizations:

diaspora* is a completely decentralized network which, by its nature, consists of many small servers exchanging posts and messages. There is no central server, and there is therefore no way for the project’s core team to manipulate or remove contents from a particular node in the network (which we call a “pod”). This may be one of the reasons which attracted IS activists to our network.

Read More

Internet 911

New Jersey Issues Emergency Bulletin Over Idiotic ‘Fire Challenge’ Trend

Dumb. (Twitter)

Good work, teens. Besides saving helpless people from burning buildings, firefighters now have to devote their energy to worrying about your dumb, dangerous social media trend.

The New Jersey Division of Fire Safety recently released a statewide emergency bulletin warning firefighters and fire officials about the “Fire Challenge” craze, wherein teens are covering themselves in flammable liquid, lighting themselves on fire, and then documenting it on social media. Read More

Crowd Power

Accused Indiegogo Scammer: ‘I Do Not Own a Ferrari’

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When backers of the Kreyos smartwatch Indiegogo campaign were promised a cutting edge wearable and received an inferior, junk product, they were upset and confused. When they saw pictures of Kreyos founder Steve Tan with a Ferrari, they felt totally cheated.

After seeing our reporting on the Kreyos disaster and similar dubious campaigns, Indiegogo reached out to Kreyos and encouraged the company speak out. This morning, Mr. Tan himself went to the official Kreyos Facebook page to issue his response. Read More