Fresh Capital

Think of All the Glue Guns and Beads from Michael’s Brit Morin Can Buy With Her $6.3 M. Series A

Brit Morin

Mini Martha and ex-Googler Brit Morin is expanding her arts and crafts empire with a fresh $6.3 million Series A, according to Business Insider. Ms. Morin, who’s married to Path cofounder Dave Morin and is known for creating colorful drawings on restaurant table cloths, raised the round from a number of bold-faced names, including Lerer Ventures and Marissa Mayer. Read More

shameless rumormongering

Rumor Roundup: Jason Calacanis Appoints Himself Obi-Wan to Michael Arrington’s Darth Vader

Jason_Calacanis

The Chat-rooming Classes Today, seemingly every tech reporter in the business tuned into Jason Calacanis‘s “This Week in Startups,” presumably in the hopes that Mr. Calacanis would tell all re: the allegations of abuse against Michael Arrington. But as familiar names chattered away in the chat room, Mr. Calacanis had little to say beyond comparing himself to Obi Wan. That would make Mr. Arrington Anakin Skywalker, of course; Mr. Calacanis said he taught him how to be powerful in media, and “I regret that.”

As for the allegations themselves, Mr. Calacanis was quick to say he wouldn’t be commenting on whether they were true, citing his lack of direct knowledge. (He did, however, openly discuss the time that Mr. Arrington called a PR honcho “the c-word,” thereby outing someone who’d never mentioned the incident publicly!) [Correction: Mr. Calacanis first mentioned the incident and the PR exec (Brooke Hammerling) by name in the comments of his Facebook post, prompting Ms. Hammerling to confirm the story, also in a Facebook comment.] All in all, it sounds like he (kinda sorta) regrets getting involved. He apparently thought writing a Facebook note wouldn’t go very far. “I thought that that would be a place where it just lived there,” he said. (Paging Randi Zuckerberg!) “I got a little P.T. Barnum in me and I feel like me commenting on all this stuff actually detracts from it,” he added. Read More

shameless rumormongering

Rumor Roundup: Ryan Gosling Loves His Warby Specs (Sent From My Night iPhone)

gosling

Morin needs a Mophie Path founder Dave Morin, he of Gosling Parker Economically conscious walking Internet meme Ryan Gosling was recently spotted looking dashing in his Warby Parker frames. The company humble-bragged about the royal sighting on its Facebook page earlier this week noting that the frame is the “Preston.” We share their exuberance. This is one piece Read More

shameless rumormongering

Rumor Roundup: When Is Alexis Ohanian Gonna Run for Office Already?

bm

Your Name Here A Silicon Valley source had the pleasure of dining near Path cofounder Dave Morin and his wife, Brit.co founder Brit Morin recently. Mr. Morin spoke about the future of Path while Ms. Morin, a DIY enthusiast, used crayons provide by the restaurant to doodle on the paper table cloth, said the source. There were rainbows, flowers and balloons, but our favorite was a drawing of the Brit.co logo, with “Morin” written underneath and an arrow pointed towards Ms. Morin (just in case the restaurant staff didn’t recognize her). That’s one way to disrupt advertising, we suppose. Our tipster was kind enough to snap a pic on their way out.

Happy Internet, Mr. President Twice this week in conversation with tech types, Betabeat was asked when Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian was running for office already. The 29-year-old credited with helping to defeat SOPA/PIPA already toured the country (in a bus once leased for John McCain’s  “Straight Talk Express”) running for president of the Internet. But with Sheryl Sandberg hot on his heels, isn’t it time to start campaigning for the real thing? Read More

Be Cool Stay In School

The Case for College: You Say Keg Stand Like It’s A Bad Thing

sarah kunst

Minority Report is a guest column by Sarah Kunst, who does business development and product at fashion app Kaleidoscope. She’s a black, non-engineer female in tech, but plans to IPO anyway.

Few founder origin stories capture the nerd mind like “Hacker as dropout.” From Bill Gates at Microsoft to Box’s Adam Levie, and of course a little-known CEO named Zuck, the allure of leaving the dorm room behind to rake in billions seems irresistible.

Recently, this middle finger to the establishment of higher education has been codified by billionaire rabble rouser Peter Thiel. This past Sunday, for the second time in three months, the New York Times found cause for a close examination of the virtues of Mr. Thiel’s 20 under 20 Fellowship as a way for exceptional teenagers to pass college and collect $100,000 to spend on changing the world. Granted, participants aren’t your typical undeclared freshmen at State College U. Rather, they’ve already exhibited Mensa-level intelligence, with a work ethic to match.

What doesn’t coordinate quite as well? Their social lives. A recent night saw several Thiel fellows–all under legal drinking age–at a San Francisco house party described by one attendee as “tech hippies doing drugs and sitting in a cuddle pile.” Read More

Visiting Dignitaries

Who’s Going to the Secret Path Party Tonight?!

Path

Path, the intimate San Francisco-based social networking app for your actual friends (no scare quotes necessary), is cozying up to its East Coast counterparts this week. On Wednesday, the startup is hosting a shindig at Macao Trading Post in Tribeca, presumably to celebrate last week’s release of Version 2.5 and smooth over any lingering privacy concerns among New York’s digerati.

But you didn’t expect an app that once limited your social sphere to just 50 people would be short on exclusivity, did you? Read More

Facebook Faceoff

Former Facebook Social Design Evangelist Says Facebook Model Is ‘Self-Serving, Egocentric’

Mr. Fisher (linkedin.com)

Branch is billed as a curated discussion platform, but we’ve also found it to be an excellent tool for eavesdropping.

Today, Josh Miller–the founder of Branch who thinks San Francisco is ‘too nice‘–started a conversation on the platform entitled, “Houses, Schools, and Town Squares – Building Next Generation Social Products.” Several tech heavyweights chimed in to discuss a  metaphor coined by ex-Facebooker and current Path CEO Dave Morin that compares Facebook to a town square–prompting Eric Fisher, who wrote Facebook’s Social Design Guidelines to help you build great social experiences, to protest that the social network is actually “centered on individuals and their friends which is a very self-serving, egocentric model.” Read More

Alley vs. Valley

Pair, Y Combinator’s ‘Perfect Sexting App,’ Sure Doesn’t Sound Very Sexy

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By the tweets of it, everyone, their mom, and Jennifer 8. Lee showed up for Y Combinator’s biggest Demo Day evah last night to watch the parade of hoodies try to convince folks they have the next Airbnb. To make sure no one got bored, the thoughtful editors of the Daily Muse even put together a BINGO card of expected phrases (that could also work well as a Mad Libs): “We make it easy to disrupt the future of ________. Please ignore the label-less Y axis on our chart of ______. So if you’re _______ come talk to us. “

But one company that seems to have emerged from the fray is Pair, an app built for two that lets couples send each other messages, pictures, and thumbkisses, which is when both users press their thumb to the screen at the same time, making the phones vibrate. It sounds like a mobile version of OurSpot, the social network (population: 2), we told you about in January, minus the good vibrations, of course. Read More