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Time to Make the Paper

Time to Make the Paper

Y Combinator Grad COLOURlovers Launches an Etsy-Like Marketplace for Selling ‘Mousemade’ Designs

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If you haven’t heard of COLOURlovers, you’re probably not a design fiend. Judging by its traffic growth over the past seven years, however, it’s built a pretty loyal following among its one million right-brained registered members. The Y Combinator grad also counts community-building experts, like Matt Mullenweg from WordPress and Alexis Ohanian from Reddit, as angel investors. They joined Founder Collective, Charles River Ventures, 500 Startups and others in a $1 million seed round last March.

Today on the company’s blog, “Chief Lover” Darius A. Monsef IV (who goes by the name Bubs and founded the site while still working at Microsoft) announced the private beta launch of an Etsy-like exchange called CreativeMarket that will enable its users to share and sell their “mousemade goods” like patterns, shapes, photos, fonts, and gradients. Although the team works remotely, co-founder Aaron Epstein, the brains behind ColorSchemer.com which eventually merged with COLOURlovers, lives right here in New York. “We’ve been trying to get as many New York people as possible,” Mr. Epstein told Betabeat.

Back in December, we spoke to Bubs about the API for CreativeMarket that he and Mr. Epstein were planning to roll out, why he decided to leave Microsoft, how Twitter plays into this, and getting Martha Stewart to blog his wedding cake. Read More

Time to Make the Paper

MTV Is Monetizing Tumblr. So Why Can’t David Karp?

Hockey stick in motion.

DigiDaily’s Mike Shields posted an article essentially telling Tumblr the time for monetization is upon them and speculating on possible strategies. No surprise, people have quite literally been doing this for years. Mr. Shields quotes Edelman EVP Steve Rubel parroting the party line. “They are all about getting organic growth. This is right out of the Fred Wilson playbook. Get users, users, users and get the press on board.” Rubel goes on to suggest copycatting “Twitter’s now red-hot ad business as a model for Tumblr.”

But here’s the thing. Tumblr has already has that organic growth they’ve been chasing. First there was the hockey stick-shaped graph and then the news that number of blogs on Tumblr bested WordPress, a company twice its age. Not to mention Lady Gaga, Rich Sanchez, and big brands like MTV have all signed up. We’d also hardly call Twitter’s ad business “red-hot,” especially with the FTC sniffing around.

But buried in the article is a little detail that seems like Tumblr is sleeping on, at least right now. Read More