shameless rumormongering

Rumor Roundup: Ben Lerer Gets a Mandatory Surprise Birthday Party and Bill Clinton Makes an Accidental Coprophilia Joke

benthrillist

Happy Birthday, Ben! CEBro of Thrillist Media Group Ben Lerer celebrated his birthday this week. His coworkers reminded him what a spritely young brosefstein he is by mocking up an old fake ID on a cake. Team Thrillist was also nice enough to honor their overlord by throwing him a surprise party, but, judging by the picture, they only ordered a single cake.

His week got even better when he was one of the few humans in the world get his hands on a gold iPhone 5S. So big week for you, Ben! You don’t look a day over “21.” Read More

shameless rumormongering

Rumor Roundup: Kim Kardashian and Kevin Systrom Chill in the Dark and Sheryl Sandberg’s $11M Bunker

(Photo: Instagram)

Cooling with Kim This past weekend saw an unprecedented (but totally welcome) spike in news stories pertaining to both Instagram and the Kardashian Krew, much to our delight. Saturday night, Kim Instagrammed a candid-looking-but-probably-posed selfie of herself and Instagram cofounder Kevin Systrom, captioned “Chilling with the creator of Instagram @kevin.” Are the two BFFs now?

More importantly: Second to grandma’s talkshow Kris, the photo-sharing service was one of the first places an official photo of baby Nori was distributed. Take that, Anna Wintour.

Anyway, the pair look like they’re in a closet playing a game of Seven Minutes in Heaven. Read More

startup rundown

Startup News: Disrupting Burner Phones and Brunch With Jake Lodwick and Bre Pettis

626px-TigerWoodsOct2011

Here’s A Tip. Are you travelling outside the U.S. soon? Are you afraid of getting publicly humiliated by an Austrian waiter because you rounded his tip up to the nearest 5 percent, not 10? Well How Much Should I Fucking Tip has a goddam solution! Just type the country or city of your choice into the search bar and get the proper percent to tip at restaurants, at hotels, and in taxis. There are also convenient notes on countries with sneaky service charges, or specific parking rules. But don’t exit your browser until you’ve typed in “North Korea.” Read More

Wedding Season

Rachel Sterne and Jakob Lodwick Got Married This Weekend (But Not to Each Other)

jakob lodwick

Love must be in the sticky, humid, sweltering air this season. After three Facebook mafia nuptials in a succession, New York techies are taking their turn at the altar.

The New York Times covered Rachel Sterne‘s East Hamptons wedding to LiveStream founder and CEO Maxime Haot twice in the past two months, once in a trend story about live-streaming your special day. (Yes, they live-streamed it. No, you couldn’t watch without a password.)

However, Vimeo cofounder Jakob Lodwick, perhaps burned by the public’s response to previous displays of affection, avoided the paper of record’s carefully combed-over Wedding section. Read More

Rejiggerings

Is IAC Trying to Sell Off Half of Vimeo?

vimeo

It’s possible that beloved New York startup scene original gangster Vimeo could go the way of Seamless or Reddit, startups that spun out from their corporate owners.

IAC is seeking new investors to buy up a 25 percent stake in Vimeo, the video-sharing platform best known for being prettier than YouTube, as PandoDaily’s new ace of the East Erin Griffith reported last night. While Ms. Griffith misspelled co-founder Jake Lodwick’s name and at one point identified IAC as IAB, we’re taking this story seriously. Is IAC, the owner of a wide range of successful (Match.com/OKCupid) to dubious (The Daily Beast) to very dubious (Ask.com, still identified as AskJeeves in SEC filings), really trying to sell half its hippest property just as Vimeo launches a major redesign? Read More

Funding

Exclusive: Jake Lodwick Raises $1-2 M. To Build Elepath, a Software Studio

Who dreams of electric sheep

Vimeo co-founder and internet eccentric Jake Lodwick has just raised around $1.5 million from a gaggle of big name New York tech types including Chris Dixon, Lerer Ventures, David Karp, Bre Pettis and David Tisch. The interesting part is, he doesn’t have an idea for a product, at least not yet.

“I just don’t think it makes sense to have a product idea, THEN raise money, THEN build a team,” Mr. Lodwick told Betabeat over Gchat last night. “People need to trust each other and build up momentum as a team and once we have that, we can drop everything and focus on a great product idea.” Read More