NYC Disrupts Disruptors

Hiding In Plain Sight: What Airbnb Doesn’t Want You To Know About Their New Lobbyists

Screen Shot 2014-07-23 at 4.00.58 PM

A few hundred people sat in the summer heat in Central Park last night, waiting for tickets for the Public’s opening night of their production of “King Lear,” when they were approached by a young woman with a clipboard.

“Would you like to sign a petition saying you support Airbnb in New York City?” she asked, going one by one.

“Support what, exactly?” asked the first person she approached.

“Oh, you know, like the service Airbnb provides, and just what we’re doing,” she said, obviously lacking an aggressive, prepared script.

One by one people signed a petition saying they supported “AirbnbNYC,” and why not? The vague, upbeat language — asking for an endorsement without a clear mission statement — seemed entirely unobjectionable. Read More

Office Space

Square To Open East Coast Headquarters in SoHo

375 W. Broadway (Screengrab: Google Maps)

Square, the company that makes those little white devices that enable small businesses to accept credit card payments, has just announced they’ll be opening East Coast headquarters in New York’s SoHo neighborhood, at 375 W. Broadway.

Since expanding to the city in October 2012, Square’s New York staff have been working from the offices of 80/20, the design agency Square acquired, at 121 Greene St. The new office will enable the company’s New York team to expand to more than 350 employees, a press release said. Read More

Over The Aereo

Sorry, New Yorkers: You Can No Longer Sign Up for Aereo

Out of antennas. (Photo: Aereo)

If you were thinking about signing up for Aereo before the Super Bowl, well, you’re SOL. The Internet TV startup said it’s no longer signing up New York customers to the service because it doesn’t have anymore mini antennas to rent out.

Aereo’s website now directs people to a request an invite if they want the $8 a month service, reports Variety. The Barry Diller-backed company won’t disclose how many members it has, but apparently it’s enough to run out of antennas.

Read More

Visiting Dignitaries

Good Guy Frank Bruni Returns Courtney Love’s Lost iPhone Via Twitter

Courtney Love (Photo: Getty)

Last night, presumably after leaving a séance with her coven of Instagram witches, Courtney Love left her iPhone in a yellow cab. Lucky for her, New York Times columnist and all around nice guy Frank Bruni found it, according to New York Magazine

Instead of attempting to turn a profit on the black market for Ms. Love’s iPhone photos of rudimentary song lyrics scrawled on napkins, Mr. Bruni used the rock mom’s favorite medium, Twitter, to notify her that he’d found her precious phone. Read More

Wired City

New York Needs to Up Its Broadband Game ASAP

Mayor Bloomberg addresses the crowd at yesterday's presser. (Photo: Celeste Sloman, New York Observer)

The word “broadband” is enough to send the layperson to sleep. But even the least tech-savvy New Yorker can often be heard asking “How do we not have free WiFi in the city yet?”

And for fast-growing tech startups, it’s an issue of the utmost importance.

“Broadband quality is one of the first questions any Read More

Rude

Whatever, Haters: Everlane Attempts to Lure Engineers to the West Coast by Insulting NYC

(Photo: Everlane.com0

NYC startup denizens, bust out the pom poms and the insults: Everlane, an online retailer specializing in really, really fancy t-shirts, is hosting a New York-based job fair in conjunction with Projective Space, the NYC coworking space. The point of the job fair? To convince engineers, designers and sales people that New York sucks and they should move to Los Angeles or San Francisco. (L.A.? Really?) Read More