Teach Me How to Startup

Hot New Startup Trend: Trying to Make Money

Screen shot 2013-03-27 at 10.10.46 AM

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. Read More

Meme me

Goatse Email Coming to an Inbox Near You

(Photo: Indiegogo)

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. Read More

The Equity of the Crowds

Don’t Hold Your Breath for Equity-Based Crowdfunding In 2013

(Photo: James Cridland via Flickr)

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!

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Space the Final Frontier

Perhaps We Could Just Kickstart the New Race to Space?

Mr. Musk, please take my money. (Photo via flickr.com/jurvetson)

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.  Read More

The Way We Live Now

‘Kickstarter Addiction’ is Apparently a Thing Now

(Photo: Today's Picks)

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. Read More

Crowd Power

Indiegogo Bends Its Own Rules, Lowers Fundraising Goal for Hills Star Whitney Port

(Photo: Indiegogo)

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. Read More

Crowdpower

Deadspin Launches Indiegogo Campaign, Asks America to Determine Market Value of Ryan Lochte DickPic

(Photo: Indiegogo)

“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!). Read More