On The Calendar
This is a guest post from Gary Sharma (aka “The Guy with the Red Tie”), founder of GarysGuide and mentor at ER Accelerator. You can reach him at gary [at] garysguide.org.
So, it was a busy week. Steve Jobs (who loves black turtlenecks almost as much as I love red ties) resigned. Twenty-five thousand New Yorkers checked into Earthquakepocalypse (and lost some respect with Californians in the process). And Hurricane Irene gave us a few gusts of wind, a few drops of water and a lot of @ElBloombito. But nothing is more important than the upcoming SXSW 2012 Panel Picker deadline (September 2). See, where I come from, we look out for our own. So I’ve put together a list of panels representing our local New York startuppers. Go show some love and vote for them and email me if you want your panel to be added to the list.
And now, here’s whats going on in your neck of the woods this week …
Users felt a sense of deja-vu when Rolling.fm, an interactive music streaming start-up, launched just over a week ago. Rolling.fm’s interface–a virtual club with DJs lined up at a laptop and a floating chat room–looks so much like viral hit Turntable.fm that users, along with Betabeat’s own numero uno Turntable fanboy, @benpopper, immediately started calling it a knock-off and questioning its legitimacy. (One Betabeat tipster claimed the app, which has 2,400 daily average users according to the most recent numbers from AppData, is populated by fake avatars).
Rolling is hardly the first pop-up app inspired by Turntable.fm’s innovation and success. But the app, made by the three ex-Google co-founders of the daily deals / social media advertising start-up Tenka, features all the Turntable calling cards: avatars of DJs and listeners, rotating DJ spots, and a “weak-hot” rating system that can get DJs points or get a song skipped.
After some initial dodginess about where the idea came from, Rolling.fm’s founders are ready to own- up to their origins. “I think it’s obvious that the initial version of Rolling is inspired by Turntable,” co-founder Tim Zhou said in an email. “To say otherwise is not accurate. We started working on our pivot in late May.”