Teach Me How to Startup
Yesterday, Y Combinator (Silicon Valley’s ur-accelerator) hosted its biannual Demo Day at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View.
As cofounder Paul Graham announced last fall, YC downsized both the number of startups and the size of the investment in this current class. And fears that the accelerator bubble is about to pop were not lost on the 47 startups who presented, nor the 500 or so investors in attendance.
Angelina “Trash Bags” Pivarnick, the Jersey Shore cast member who left the show in the first season after only three episodes, wants a second chance at the spotlight. On Monday, Ms. Pivarnick launched a Kickstarter page called “The Comeback,” which aims to raise $8,000 to help her get her own reality show called–yes–The Comeback.
In November of last year, Gawker reported that the notorious gross-out site “Goatse.cx,” which showed an old man splaying open his anus for all to see, was being transitioned from a nostalgia-laden ’90s meme to an actual email service. The site’s new owner, an Australian IT consultant who goes by the moniker Jonathan, planned to offer Goatse vanity email addresses for $5 a pop.
The Equity of the Crowds
As soon as the JOBS Act passed back in April, would-be equity-based crowdfunding platforms were crawling out of the woodwork, ready to be open for business as soon as the S.E.C. handed down the rules governing this wild financial frontier.
But it seems they might be all dressed up with nowhere to go, for now at least. The New York Times reports that the S.E.C. is most likely going to blow its end-of-year deadline. In fact, it might be 2014 before equity-based crowdfunding is a reality. Hope your startup wasn’t depending on selling shares to average Internet joes!
XXX in Tech
Back in August, we told you about Offbeatr, which aims to be the Kickstarter for porn. Four months in, the site boasts five successful projects, which have raised a total of $60,934. And as the blog Flayrah recently noticed, all of them are furry-themed.
Space the Final Frontier
Yesterday, before venturing forth to the casting call for Bravo’s Start-ups: Silicon Valley spinoff, we made a rather wonkier stop, at this month’s meeting of the MIT Enterprise Forum. The topic of the panel? Space, the final frontier, and aerospace investing in particular.
As we arrived, a brief SpaceX video with a Top Gun-style soundtrack was wrapping up. Adam Harris, the company’s VP for Government Affairs, let slip a little, “Yay!” as it came to a close.
The Way We Live Now
There’s already email addiction, Facebook addiction and wholesale Internet addiction. Next up on the psychological disorders docket? Kickstarter addiction: people who are “addicted” to the rush of finding and backing fledgling projects on Kickstarter.
The notion of “Kickstarter addiction,” as defined by VentureBeat, encapsulates the do-gooder rush and risk-averse anxiety rooted in crowdfunding. Throwing money at half-formed ideas and projects is kind of like gambling, argues VentureBeat, except you don’t have to be situated on a sketchy boardwalk and coated in cigarette smoke to get your fix. There’s just one snag in their theory. The only evidence of this “growing number of people” addicted to Kickstarter is a single thread on the Geek and Sundry message boards.
On the heels of a harshly worded blog post earlier this month, ruling that refunds from anyone other than the campaign creator are simply not in the cards, the Kickstarter cofounders are once more clarifying what users can and cannot realistically expect from the platform. This followup reminds everyone that backing a project Read More
A few weeks ago, Betabeat wrote about an Indiegogo campaign started by Whitney Port, star of The Hills and The City. Ms. Port began the campaign to raise $50,000 so that she could show her fashion line, Whitney Eve, at New York Fashion Week Spring 2013.
But today, when we went to check up on the campaign’s progress, the funding goal had mysteriously dropped by $40,000. Now, Ms. Port is only soliciting $10,000.
Betabeat has learned that Indiegogo agreed to change the fundraising goal for Ms. Port’s campaign. She is an Indiegogo partner, which is why both parties agreed to lower the goal.
“How Much Would You Pay To See A Photo Of Ryan Lochte’s Alleged Penis?” begs a headline on the irreverent sports blog, Deadspin. The post, which went up a little over an hour ago, is illustrated by a photo of Gawker Media employees clustered around a computer screen looking (and laughing) at an alleged photo of Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte’s penis.
The pic, which is “a neck-down bathroom-mirror self-portrait, in which the tip of the penis almost but not quite reaches into the sink basin,” was provided by a source, who is demanding a fee. Deadspin has decided to start a fundraising campaign on Indiegogo, probably because Kickstarter doesn’t consider dickpics “art” (subjective!).