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Jason: Hey, everybody. Hey, everybody. It’s This is ThisWeekIn Startups. It’s been a big week of news. We got YouTube launching subscriptions. And, the tragic death Jody Sherman, from Ecomom. We’re going to talk about all these issues and more, today, on ThisWeekIn Startups. Stick with us.
TWiST title sequence.
Jason: Hey, everybody. Hey, everybody. Welcome to ThisWeekIn Startups. It’s episode #326. You know, one of these days it’s going to wind up being episode 500, then wind up being 1,000.
Kirin: That means you gotta keep doing it.
Jason: I know, I know. I don’t know. I think this is the last year. I think this is the last year.
Kirin: You know the fans want more.
Jason: I know. It’s just exhausting. The show is so exhausting. Then, every time after the episode and after I get the feedback, I ride a high on it. I’m very… I don’t want to say bi-polar on it, cause we got some tough topics. But, maybe that is a good segue. We’re going to talk, today, obviously about the death of Jody Sherman, of Ecomom. The suicide. I’ve just had sort of… The nature of being a founder. We have Gina Bianchini, is going to be on the program. Which, if you’re wondering how it’s not Bianchini, which is sort of how it looks like its spelled. It’s Bianchini, which is like zucchini.
Kirin: There you go.
Jason: There you go. And, Marshall Kirkpatrick is with us. We’ll have them on in just a second. Before we do, let me let people know that this friday… Why am I telling people about next friday, if it’s sold out?
Kirin: We are also accepting people on the wait list.
Jason: There’s got to be a lot of people on the wait list.
Jason: 34 people on the wait list? How many tickets did we…?
Jason: That’s basically only gonna fit 150.
Kirin: Well, we will have to ask people if they’re still able to come.
Jason: Oh, I see. Cause, you always get that last minute stuff. OK. That’s fair enough. Listen. This is becoming very successful, this live ThisWeekIn Startups. The next one is on friday, February 8. It’s going to be Dave McClure. Which is going to be him cursing and making rap references and being a potty mouth.
Kirin: I don’t know if we have a swear jar big enough for Dave.
Jason: No. That’s going to be the bit. I want you to bring the regular swear jar up. Then, I want you to have a giant mason jar. Put, ‘The Dave McClure Size.’ Then, I’m going to put his credit card in it. That’s going to be like a funny bit. Where we just pull it out. Like a little bit.
Kirin: Alright. Let’s do it.
Jason: See, that’s why I need a comedy writer, for the show. But, anyway. This is going to be great. Go to twistlive3.eventbrite.com and you’ll get to sign up for the wait list. Sorry. Hey, why don’t we make some money off of this. Why don’t we put 10 tickets up for $500 a piece. We’ll make some money.
Kirin: Do you think people would pay that much?
Jason: Sure. Why not?
Kirin: If they come support the show? Not just to see Dave. If they get guaranteed front row seats.
Jason: The problem is, I’ve been telling everybody the show makes about a half million dollars a year and this and that. Now, if I ask for money, it’s going to seem like I’m greedy. Why don’t we do this? Why don’t we sell 10 tickets for $500 a piece and we’ll give it to charity?
Jason: If anybody wanted to be a mensch. If they do buy the tickets… That’s it. Use EventBrite to make tickets $500 each. It’ll go towards a scholarship for a disadvantaged kid, in Brooklyn. My home town, at Bayridge Prep. We’ll put it towards a scholarship. That’ll be a cool thing to do, right?
Jason: I’ll read the names of the people who paid the $500 donations.
Kirin: Right. You’ll give them a special seat in the front?
Jason: Front row seats. Good idea, Kirin. Nice punch up. Good punch up.
Jason: OK. So, there you go. If you want a guaranteed seat, $500, you donate to Bay Ridge Prep. It’s a school I’m on the board of in Brooklyn. It does great stuff for challenged kids, in my home town of Brooklyn. At the end of the program, Sourcebits is going to show us the latest update to the crowd funding app to the Launch Festival, which will be fantastic. New Relic. Boy, New Relic has really saved the day for us. They do real user experience monitoring, code-level app performance and server resources. We use it for the Launch Ticker and for ThisWeekIn. It let’s me know, who do I scream at when something’s not working right? Is it the network, is it the web application? Should I be calling the people who provide the bandwidth, etc, etc… speed is critical when you’re launching these web applications. Having an affordable, reliable solution like New Relic is critical. It just works so great. I get all these emails and stuff like that. This is the monitor email I get. Let me just check right now, this week. 100% up time, good. But, the page load, not so good. We have to make the thing… We’re going to rewrite the Launch Ticker. It’s just too slow, cause of my stupid idea to do the live typing.
Kirin: You thought it was pretty brilliant, like 6 months ago.
Jason: Yeah. See, that’s the thing about being an entrepreneur. You think you have some brilliant idea and it turns out that your idea is not that brilliant.
Kirin: Even your idea is not always brilliant.
Jason: Most of my ideas are not brilliant. Do you know what my career is? This is what I’ve determined, at this point in my career is. My career is, I’ve tried so much sh… Aw, fuck it. I tried to so much shit.
Kirin: $20 man. $20.
Jason: $20 is going in. But, that’s the thing. I’ve tried so much sugar, relentlessly. Then, once in a while something hits. Then, you look like a genius. That’s it. That’s the nature of entrepreneurship. Anybody who thinks you bat 1000%… Steve Jobs made the goddamned Newton. That thing was terrible. And, the cube. He made a lot of bad stuff. And Next.
Kirin: But, New Relic.
Jason: Thank you. Back to the commercial. New Relic, customers, SkullCandy, Spotify, Nike, Zillow, Vonage. They let me know when I have a bad idea. The bad idea was, I wanted to have the live editing. It just makes it too slow. That’s why I’m getting all these complaints. “It’s too slow. It’s too slow. I try to log in, it’s too slow.” I hear everybody. I get it. Thank you, New Relic.
Kirin: And, it takes a while to download the earlier posts.
Jason: It does. It’s too slow. We gotta fix that. Thank you, New Relic, for helping. NewRelic/ThisWeekIn.com to get one of these free t-shirts. Oh, I finally got mine.
Kirin: You finally got one.
Jason: About time. Look at that. New Relic plus TWIST. Thank you. That’s a very nice shirt. With the samurai sword. As I always say, “Be a samurai, not a rice picker.”
Jason: Fast, easy, no credit card required. Hey, welcome to the program, Marshall Kirkpatrick. Welcome back, I should say. How are you doing?
Jason: You’re good?
Marshall: Yeah. Life’s good.
Jason: The beard is out of control. A sure sign that you’re working hard on your startup. How is LittleBird going?
Marshall: It’s going really great. We’re making a bunch of things happen. People are coming in, testing it out, everyday. We’re getting great feedback. So, we’re living the startup dream.
Jason: This is such a great product. Weren’t you going to give me a free account or something like that? Don’t I get a free account? What’s the pricing on this? Cause, it’s really powerful. You can go in there and you can see all the people who are in your vertical and bond with them.
Jason: But, I think you’re making it expensive, so that only a certain group of people have it. Is that the philosophy?
Marshall: Well, it’s a B to B service, for sure. If I felt like millions of people would be able to use it and get value out of it, or hundreds of millions, then we might price it differently. This is something for really ambitious, smart people that want to jump in and win at their respective field. So, we’re selling it accordingly.
Jason: What does it cost, per month? What does the pricing start at?
Marshall: It depends on the size of the company.
Jason: Let’s say a startup company, a 50 person company or something like that.
Marshall: It starts at $250, a month.
Jason: Oh, OK. That’s not so bad for what you get. The idea is, I would use LittleBird to find the socially influential people in my vertical.
Marshall: Yep. Or any vertical you’re interested in engaging with. We can help you find out who the top people are you’re already connected to, so you can reach out to them. Sort of leverage your own community. Search inside their archives of content. Find hot news to engage with, share and add value to and build social capital.
Jason: Well, that’s awesome. Congratulations, on the success of it. Gina Bianchini is here. Did I get it right? Bianchini.
Gina: You did.
Jason: God. I hate when people miss pronounce my name. Someone called today and people were saying Calacanis. I was like, “How the hell did you get Calacanis?” How are you doing Gina? Long time, no talk.
Gina: I’m great.
Jason: How’s everything at Mightybell?
Gina: Mightybell is rocking and rolling. We’re about 6 weeks away from launching some new stuff, that I’m pretty excited about.
Jason: Oh. Awesome. Perfect timing for the Launch Festival.
Kirin: I was going to say, I didn’t know that.
Gina: Except, I’m out of town.
Jason: Oh. See, I know the Allen and Company thing is going on at the same time. They booked… I can’t say that Gina is going to the Allen and company thing but, I’m pretty sure that’s what it is. Maybe, you go one day late. You show up monday night. Come monday. Anyway, Mightybell, some new stuff coming out. Great. Can’t wait. Everybody go check that out. Hey, let’s start the news.
Kirin: Alright. You said you want to talk about Jody Sherman first.
Jason: Yeah. We gotta get that out of the way. This is a real bummer.
Kirin: Jody was found dead on monday. The victim of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was one of the leaders of the Silicon Beach movement, here in L.A. He relocated his startup, Ecomom, which is selling great family products, very safe products, to Las Vegas. Lots of people have come out with great pieces about how great Jody was. Sarah Lacy, you, as well as Mark Suster.
Jason: Mark Suster wrote a great piece.
Kirin: Exactly. So, I guess you know the question is, what can be done to help with the stresses of being a founder?
Jason: Well. I’m obviously… Jody was on the show.
Jason: I looked back and I did a search for emails. It’s all very new to us, when something like this happens. I’ve never actually known someone who committed suicide. This is like a first for me. I’m 42 years old. I guess I’m very lucky. I knew Aaron, as well. Aaron Swartz, who tragically killed himself. I didn’t really know him. Like, he wasn’t ever on the show. I didn’t have dinner with him. I did a search. I had like 100 emails back and forth with Jody. I realized we were friends. I wasn’t a close friend of his, but I was a friend. I’m kind of disturbed by the whole thing. Then, it’s like do you talk about it, or not. So, Sarah Lacy and I had this whole discussion. I wrote a piece about it. I was like, I don’t really want to publish the piece, cause I don’t know if I have a place in this conversation. If we are seeing a trend or not. Sarah was like I don’t want to think about a trend. I just want to think about the person. Which I respect. I told her that I respected that. I did want to talk about is there’s a trend here? Because, we have 3 of them. Ilya of Diaspora, Aaron and Jody. I don’t know all of those folks well enough to look for a trend. Then, nobody was talking about the fact that it was suicide. Even though… I had like 10 people email me, “What happened?” I said, “I don’t know what happened.” This is what I told people privately. “I don’t know what happened. But, the fact that we don’t know what happened…” When a young person dies suddenly and you don’t immediately know, it usually goes somewhere dark. Like a drug overdose or a suicide.
Kirin: It could have been a horrible drunk driving accident.
Jason: Well, if that happened, you would know. Because, then they would have said, “He died in an accident.” In this case you don’t know. The whole thing is sad. I started doing some research on this. Even doing the research is depressing. Cause, I do wonder, now that I’ve been an angel investor and I’ve worked closely with a couple dozen young entrepreneurs, it is very stressful. Does the amount of entrepreneurship going on + a wider group of people + mental illness = that we might see more suicides? Or, is there something in our community that people are so driven that they feel like they’re a failure compared to like Facebook or Twitter that…
Kirin: That there’s some shame?
Jason: Yeah. Then, I started looking at the statistics. Suicide is a male thing, mainly. It’s like twice as many men. I think it’s like the tenth cause of death. Low percentage point, but still it’s the tenth. It just seems so unavoidable. Then, a good friend of mine, Mark Pesci, was like, “The reason that you’re disturbed by this…” I’ve got to admit, I am disturbed by it… “is because you look at it as something that could have been avoided.” In some cases, he said, “Suicide is a disease that somebody has. It’s just going to play itself out.” I don’t actually want to believe that, but maybe he’s right. I don’t know. Gina, when you look at this, what do you think? You’ve been a serial entrepreneur. You’ve had your ups and downs. What do you think?
Gina: Yeah. I mean, it’s a tragic situation. I think so many of us saw Jody in October, at the Lobby. He was full of life. He was himself. Just a total character. I didn’t know him super well. But, knew him, knew of him and had a tremendous amount of respect for him, as well. I think this life is hard. No one should feel sorry for startup founders or startup CEOs, whatever you want to call it. At the same point and time… I saw somebody write this and I thought it was really thoughtful. Which was one of the most insidious pieces of the startup culture is the fact that everybody has to be killing it, all the time. When, as we know, the way these services get built is crickets, crickets, crickets, oh we’ve really done something wrong, Oh shit this is great. It’s a game of inches in terms of making improvements. What this all is, you can go from something very dark to very wonderful. Or, it just stays dark. I mean, one of my favorite expressions that a friend of mine uses is, “It’s darkest right before it goes pitch black.” It’s just hard to tell. Yet we have this culture that celebrates success and mythologizes success, that it makes it a lot lonelier at times.
Jason: Yeah. That’s very well said, Gina. Marshall, what’s your take?
Marshall: Oh. I was unfamiliar with Jody, in particular. I hesitate to extrapolate much into the general situation. Life is hard and everybody deserves more empathy, help and care, than most of the people in the world get.
Jason: Yeah. Life is hard. Life is complicated.
Kirin: Nobody wants to look weak.
Jason: I think there is that. Yeah. It’s very hard to show weakness. I’ve had this conversation. If you’re the CEO or founder of a company, you have a team of employees. If you show weakness to them. They might get rattled and want to leave the company. Go somewhere that they feel is more stable or growing. Right? Then, you have your board. Your board might start to feel like… Can you go to your board of directors and say, ” I feel pretty weak and vulnerable at this time. I feel like this is all going to come apart.” You’re sort of stuck. You’re trapped as a founder. It doesn’t need to be that way. I think, Brad Feld and some other folks have chimed in like, “Hey, it’s OK. You’re a better leader if you’re vulnerable.” I’ve tried to be more and more honest with my teams about where we’re actually at, how things are going and what concerns I have are. But, you know… I don’t know. I don’t get suicide, because… I’m just not wired that way, I guess. I look at all this suicide and I think , there’s so many safety outlets. You can go join an ashram and go do yoga for a year. Take a year off. Just enjoy life. But, I guess for some people they don’t see it that way. They don’t see that possibility. Overall, I’m just super bummed out about it. God, if anybody who is a friend of mine… even not a friend of mine is thinking of doing something like this… For the love of God, these startups are not as important. I’ve made starting companies my life. Founding companies my life. I can tell you, it’s not as important as life itself. Life is wonderful and beautiful. It’s not as bad as you think it is, if you actually think it’s that bad. The thing that matters most is how you conduct yourself in pursuit of your dreams. Not if you hit them or not. It is the journey. I know that sounds super corny, but I can tell you, every person who I know who is successful has had very dark moments. Very… Read the biography of Steve Jobs. Read any biography of somebody who’s done something great. Talk to people who’ve done something great. They’ll tell you, many times it looked like they were going to be complete failures. Failure/Success, there’s a lot of randomness to it. But, really, it’s how you conduct yourself. I don’t know if I can say anything more about it.
Kirin: So, if somebody who is listening now, is in a really dark place…?
Jason: Call one of those hotlines, number one. Number two, go talk to your friends who are founders. Tell them how their feeling. We just had an Ask Jason about this the other week. This person was feeling isolated and alone. I said, “That’s typical. You will feel isolated and alone. You need to go get 5 or 6 people that you trust and have dinner with them. Talk about what are the worse, horrible things going on.” Gina and I have gone and had coffee before. She’s had ups and downs in her career. I mean, your career is not measured in one project or one week. It’s the whole entity of your career, you know? I don’t know. Is there anything more to say about it, Gina? I don’t know if you have anything else to say.
Gina: I don’t think so.
Jason: Yeah. The whole situation… My heart goes out to his wife and family and the people who loved him. He’s certainly going to be missed. Let’s go to the next story.
Kirin: Alright. You want to talk about YouTube’s paid subscriptions.
Jason: Sure. Yep.
Kirin: First round of paid channels will cost reportedly somewhere between $1 and $5 per month. Which channels will be the first to offer the paid subscription is unknown, but sources are expecting companies like Machinima, Maker Studios and other media companies that have been successful in building subscribers. Channels will also have the option to play ads on their channel. So, how will this change the quality of the videos that we’re seeing? Will subscribers actually pay?
Jason: This is a big trend. Gina, you were very much for people getting to pay for Ning. I assume Mightybell will have a paid option. I don’t know if it does already but, what are your thoughts on people paying and subscribing on YouTube? Do you think that’s going to be an actual trend?
Gina: I think that it has a lot of potential. I think, the big thing to pay attention to is what kinds of people and/or verticals pay? As I was reading this… I don’t really see gamers and people who just love YouTube videos paying as much as when you look at politics. Especially, extreme politics and faith as well. Being two areas that actually probably have the highest probability of paid subscription success. So, it would be really interesting to see which categories start off with premium subscriptions. Then, what those price points are going to be. Also, how it evolves over time, obviously. I think, when you look at things like the Glenn Beck experiment, this is not necessarily 18 year old guys paying for Machinima content. It’s much more about premium content on the extremes.
Jason: Yeah. I think that’s very insightful. One of the biggest growing categories, education, on YouTube. Obviously, my company’s involved with YouTube. We’re one of the funded partners. So, I’ve known about this discussion going on. We’ll obviously try it with ThisWeekIn Startups. I think, with the archive at some point. I’m wondering where iTunes is in all of this. Why can’t you pay to subscribe to a podcast? You can pay to buy everything else on iTunes.
Jason: Apple really needs to get that going. It will make things sustainable. Obviously, this show has donations. Leo’s show has donations. I think, what you’ll see is the top 5%… 1-5% of people who have large subscription bases… Politics is interesting. I immediately thought of the Young Turks. Cenk, who runs that, he’s got 573K subscribers. If he gets 1%, 5,000 people to pay $5 a month, that’s now $300K a year.
Kirin: Not bad.
Jason: That’s meaningful production. He’s probably got a 5 person, 6 person team. That could mean he could ad 50% more people to the team. Very significant money.
Kirin: More people might come on to YouTube if they know they can charge for their content.
Kirin: Existing stars.
Jason: I think, there’s a bit of debate inside of YouTube as to is this the right way to go or not. But, the way I look at it is, why not?
Kirin: It’s not going to be mandatory.
Jason: No. Marshall, what are your thoughts?
Marshall: Well, Vimeo’s been doing this for independent films now, since November. I can imagine that’s a place that people would pay for high quality independent film. But, big… I wonder how the overhead and the potential revenue works for content producers when the price is $5 or less, per month. That was part of the coverage. Does that mean that it only works out for people with little overhead? Or, is this something that’s going to be a big win for professional content producers and big media brands? I know every time YouTube does anything, people complain that it’s a move further away from its user-generated content roots. I wonder if this will be that.
Jason: That’s an astute point. I think this helps the smaller folks. I think this is going to be such a small amount of money. I don’t see Disney and Sesame Street necessarily embracing this. They should. But, I don’t see them embracing it immediately. But, could you imagine if Disney Princess had a $5 a month subscription? Cause, my daughter loves going on there and…
Kirin: You’d pay for it.
Jason: Of course I’d pay for it. Yeah. I would let my daughter borrow my password, once in a while so she could watch Disney Princess, as well.
Kirin: Jason’s secret obsession.
Jason: God. I am… The fact that I know who each of the… you know, Tiana and Ariel. I know the back stories now.
Kirin: Who’s your favorite?
Jason: I think, at this point I’m big on Pocahontas.
Kirin: Oh, really. I wouldn’t have guess that.
Jason: Well, it’s because I like the whole back story of like, what’s around the river bend? There’s a superior narrative to it than some of the other princesses. Like, waiting for their prince to come.
Jason: As opposed to, “I’m going to go out and find out what’s around the river bend.” Anyway. What people don’t realize is, even at $5, programs are so cheap to make. So, when we started this program it was just me and Tyler and two microphones. We just hit record. The costs were pretty low. You know, $500 an episode or something. You know, it’s gotten more expensive as we increase production value. But, if you get 1,000 people to pay $5 a month, that could be enough for somebody to start a show. Enough for 1 or 2 people to have spending money to do it. So, it will make things… just like KickStarter has… Everybody underestimated KickStarters impact. I think this could be Kickstarter like in it’s approach.
Kirin: Interesting. So, what kind of…
Gina: The other thing that I would throw in there is, it seems like one of the missed opportunities is to bundle. And, to actually create bundles of programming. Just like the cable companies have done very successfully. It’s just interesting to me that I would think you would want to start with bundled experiments to then move to a la carte. As opposed to starting with a la carte and trying to move to bundles.
Jason: Yeah. That’s a very astute point. It’s interesting, we’re watching everybody trying to unbundle cable, so people can buy a la carte. But, here it does make sense The Young Turks and 5 other political folks can make a $5 a month subscription.
Kirin: Like a humble bundle for $10. But, how about this. What if YouTube did a thing that said, “If I get to 1,000 subscribers, I’ll start the program. If I get to 10K subscribers… The demand base would be incredible. Which you can actually do on IndieGoGo. You can say, if I get this much…
Jason: I’m fascinated by this. Independent media… I was just talking to a director friend of mine, Austin Chick. He’s in a couple of independent films. He’s looking at this space. My friend Nick Jarecki, who just did Arbitrage, with Richard Gere. They’re really making big money on VOD. Arbitrage made $10M on VOD or $20M on VOD. It set all the records. That’s becoming viable as well. What we’re seeing is this whole new way to make sustainable media. The budgets are going to go from $500 a minute to $5K. Then, the budgets that are coming up from YouTube, I think will match the budgets that are coming down from TV and independent film.
Kirin: So, what kind of things are going to work best?
Jason: I think Gina knocked the ball out of the park, there. You have to have a passionate audience that believes in the content. So, if you look at ThisWeekIn Startups, it’s like, “OK. I’m into startups. I really believe in this.” But, religious nuts… religious people… Gina didn’t say nuts, I did. There’s religious people who obviously would be, obviously, very inclined.
Kirin: Political folks.
Jason: Political folks. I think is a really good one. Education.
Kirin: How about comedy? Cause, Aziz Ansari and Louis C.K….
Jason: Absolutely. I mean, Louis C.K. has done it already. So, if Louis C.K. said… Yeah. Louis C.K. could make it work too. If he said, “I’m going to do a 30-minute stand up bit every month, for $5.” Yeah. He’d get a ton of people.
Jason: Now the question is, why would he give 45% or 30% or whatever it’s going to be, to YouTube? Right? Cause, he’s got an email list.
Kirin: Right. He can still do it himself.
Jason: Let’s do the next story. Marshall, anything to add there?
Marshall: I can imagine a YouTube Prime sort of experience. You know, you pay for a premium subscription level and gain access to premium content, where the revenue is split. You get next day delivery of all of your videos.
Jason: Let me ask my two guests here, Gina and Marshall, are you guys going to watch House of Cards this weekend? Do you know what that is?
Gina: Yes. I know what it is. I think, I’m going to watch it. I love binge watching, but I’m kind of into the Downton Abbey Season 3. I’m catching up on that. So, that might actually be my weekend. But, it’s actually making me want to get Netflix. Give it another try. I got rid of my subscription about 6 months ago. In part, because On Demand was working so well for me. So, I might try it again.
Jason: What about you, Marshall? Do you even know what we’re talking about, I wonder?
Marshall: Oh, yeah. I heard some interviews with those folks on NPR. I find these kinds of things pretty interesting. All my TV is over the web now. It’s either Hulu or Netflix or other means. We’ll see just how different it feels. It does drive me crazy to have to watch one episode of Homeland a week and not be able to watch more than that till the next one comes out.
Jason: Binge is what it’s about. Clearly. Binge viewing, if you don’t know what that is, that’s a term I heard for the first time this week.
Kirin: You just sit there and watch everything.
Marshall: Did you see the news, Jason, that Amazon swiped Downton Abbey away from Netflix, this week.
Jason: Huge. Huge news. I’ve seen all of season 3. I just want to put it out there. I saw all of season 3 in December. Cause, I got the hookup.
Marshall: I’d love to see that kind of competition for great content.
Jason: Absolutely. So, Gina, you’re watching season 3?
Gina: Yeah. I just finished episode 3 last night. Unfortunately…
Jason: No spoilers.
Gina: There’s spoilers. I go to my Twitter feed on sunday night and the next thing I know, I know what happens. I’m like, OK, that’s not what I was looking for this evening but, it’s not going to ruin it for me.
Jason: My favorite is when the Dowager Countess says, Matthew is like, “I could work on it on the weekend.” She looks and she goes, “What’s a weekend?”
Gina: What are weekends?
Jason: Or she tells him, “Don’t be so down. It’s very middle class of you.” She’s the best. It really is like the best show on TV. Oh, but, I got the total tip for everybody. Sherlock is another BBC series. Have you seen it, Gina?
Jason: Oh, my God. It’s like, if you took Law and Order SVU and you just had another group of writers spend a month on every episode, then made every episode 50% longer, it would be Sherlock. It’s like a movie. There’s only like 3 or 4 episodes per season, but my God is it amazing. It really is this great competition now. But, for those who don’t know, House of Cards is the…
Kirin: It’s a new Netflix original drama. A political drama starring Kevin Spacey. It’s the first show made specifically for Netflix. It’s going to be released in it’s entirety so it can allow for binge consuming. As we were just talking about.
Jason: The budget for that was $100M or something like that, something crazy?
Kirin: I don’t know exactly, but…
Jason: I just read, Amazon Studios, which we’ve been monitoring on the Launch Ticker, Amazon Studios optioned Zombieland as a TV show. Zombieland was originally supposed to be a TV show, but they made it a movie. Because, they said nobody wants a zombie TV series.
Kirin: Now, you can do it.
Jason: Now, The Walking Dead. They’ve optioned. That’s Amazon. What I’m trying to figure out is where is Facebook and Yahoo in all of this, and Apple? Why isn’t Facebook, Yahoo and Apple funding original content? Do you think they’ll ever do that, Marshall?
Marshall: I can imagine Yahoo. They’ve done little experiments with it though, already. Remember Kevin Sites’ War Zones?
Marshall: That was cool. I don’t know how far and wide it went. Netflix is pouring gas on the fire. They said today that they were going to do some debt financing to stack up the coffers for more original content. But, I can’t imagine Facebook doing that.
Jason: What do you think, Gina? Are we going to see Facebook or Yahoo jump in?
Gina: It’s such a different DNA from a technology company. I look at it and Netflix specifically has been experimenting in content and production. Not original production like they’re doing with House of Cards, but they’ve been experimenting with this for 10 years. So, I think the idea of a… When you’re building a technology, especially a platform company, day in and day out your mantra becomes, “We’re not a content company. We’re not a content company. We’re not a content company.” So, to become on overnight, I think is extremely dangerous. Especially, when there’s so many people in LA and New York that actually want to actually be content companies. It’s more about, I think, those partnerships. Another example would be look how long it has taken YouTube to get comfortable with the idea of even funding content.
Gina: These are DNA shifts. It will take a long time.
Jason: That’s a very astute observation. YouTube is… That was a big philosophical thing for Google. “Are we going to fund content? We’re not a content company.” But, now it’s like, YouTube is a content company. Hello. What do you think it is?
Kirin: You can’t deny it.
Jason: Sure, there’s an infrastructure under it. It’s a content company.
Marshall: It’s a search engine.
Jason: It’s a search engine. Right. Then, the CNN debates that they host and the Red Bull jump they did form space. Obviously, these are all platforms.
Kirin: Well, then there’s the Google X type projects.
Jason: Yeah. I think they’re getting more comfortable with it. Next story. Let’s keep the train moving.
Kirin: Do you want to talk about RIM has rebranded itself BlackBerry? Also, unveiled the BlackBerry 10. US sales of the BlackBerry 10 won’t begin until March, with the Z10 touchscreen. The Q10 keyboard model will come in April. Now, despite the unveiling, the stock has fallen quite a bit since then. 12% on wednesday alone. It’s about $13 a share right now. It was about $16 earlier in the week. A commercial promoting BlackBerry 10 will be shown during the Super Bowl. Alicia Keys has been named the global creative director. So…
Jason: Those last two things will change everything.
Kirin: Those last two things will change everything?
Jason: That’s how people buy their phones. Right? Based on which musician is the creative director and the Super Bowl commercial, clearly.
Kirin: So, do you think that these moves are going to bring BlackBerry back? How much do the developers matter in making sure this is a success?
Jason: I’ve played with it.
Kirin: I know. You’re a fan.
Jason: It’s very well done. Walt Mossberg said he liked it. Everybody said it was a solid project. The question is, is solid enough to compete in the land of exceptional. Marshall, what do you think?
Marshall: Well, it does seem to be about user experience, apps and developers. I did some analysis on Littlebird on the BlackBerry developer channels audience and found that of the top 500 most influential mobile developers on Twitter, only 10% are following the BlackBerry dev account. It’s not a potentially influential 10% even in that spectrum. More influential in that community are startups like Flurry and Test Flight and Portland’s Urban Airship all have more caché amongst top mobile developers than the BlackBerry developer channel does right now.
Jason: Wow. That’s irrefutable evidence. Wow. You actually analyzed with Littlebird… GetLittleBird.com, put a little plug there… the mobile developer community and who they follow. They don’t follow the BlackBerry account. Which, either it means they don’t care or that account doesn’t do a particularly good job of tweeting stuff. That’s a very good proxy, I think. Gina, what do you think? BlackBerry DOA? Any chance of survival?
Gina: I think this market is moving so fast and it’s hard to come back after so much bad news. I think, without skipping ahead to Yahoo, I think it’s a great example of when you lead with a Super Bowl commercial and Alicia Keys, rather than product exceptionalism, as you say. Also, getting people on your team who actually have reputations for building great products. Which, is not Alicia Keys. Despite how awesome she is. I think, it’s kind of putting lipstick on a pig.
Jason: Yeah. They did catch up. I feel like. They haven’t leap frogged.
Kirin: Maybe, it’s a good time, if people perceive some weakness with Apple.
Jason: Yeah. But, I don’t think people buy their phones based on perceived weakness or strength of the platform.
Kirin: More people are interested in switching to a Galaxy Note 2.
Jason: That’s because the Galaxy Note 2 is a unique product. It’s big, it’s got great battery life, it’s got a fast processor, it’s the size of your head. There’s a lot of great things about this goddamned device. Which, I went and bought and played with. So, yeah, I feel like they haven’t differentiated yet. What that means is they hit a single or a double. Which means, they have to hit a couple more, in a row. Why they led without the keyboard, makes no sense to me.
Kirin: Everybody loved it.
Jason: BlackBerry is synonymous with keyboard.
Jason: So, they went with a non-keyboard version? So stupid. Just a terrible idea. Go with the keyboard first. What they really need to do is open source their operating system and make it available for free to everybody. Because, I believe that BlackBerry is not in competition with iPhone. I think, they’re in competition with these two, which is Windows and Android. Windows is closed. They got the ecosystem. I’ve been playing with the windows stuff. It’s really good. Android’s really good now. I can tell you, people like Samsung want to have multiple operating systems. So that they’re not locked in. So they don’t have a situation happen with their hardware, like BlackBerry had. Right? Samsung wants multiple players in the market. So, give Samsung the operating system. Let them make some money off of the operating system. Right?
Kirin: They put it in a beautiful package.
Jason: Exactly. Samsung is making the best hardware, clearly. Let’s do the next story.
Kirin: Alright. Since, Gina brought it up, the Yahoo earnings call this week, it was the first full quarter with Marissa as CEO. Revenue was up 4% year over year to $1.35B. The search revenue grew 14% in the 4th quarter to $427M. It was $1.6B for all of 2012. That was up 9%. I thought it was interesting that the price per ad on core Yahoo properties increased about 7% over Q4 2011 and 15% over Q3 2012. Now, the stock has been up and a 26% gain in six months, actually. So, that’s pretty good.
Kirin: Marissa has identified 3 key challenges: the increasing usage, growing international presence and appealing to a broader demographic of users. How is this going to go now that the honeymoon is over?
Jason: 26% gain is probably not that much greater than the stock market itself. It’s probably double the stock market.
Kirin: In six months.
Jason: It’s definitely a Marissa factor in increasing the stock price. There’s no way anybody could expect her to have any impact on the 20 year revenue story of Yahoo, in one quarter. Right? So, I don’t really look at it based on that. I look at it based on who is she getting on the team?
Kirin: And that’s been a big…
Jason: What companies has she bought? Then, as I said, the 3rd, 4th, and 5th quarter that she’s in charge, some products need to come out that people go, “Oh, that’s a very interesting product. That has promise.” Gina, what’s your take?
Gina: I think she’s working on all the right things. I believe that Silicon Valley and people who are watching want Yahoo to win. It’s good for the ecosystem. It’s good for startups. It’s good for big companies. It’s just good for everybody if Yahoo is a legitimate player in the market. So, I think that the market will forgive missteps. More importantly, they believe in Marissa and they believe in Yahoo. They just want it all to work out.
Jason: What do you think of her new, stated adobo she said, they want to aggregate content. We want to be the place where you go to consume personalized content. What do you think of that, as a vision for Yahoo?
Gina: It’s fine. I don’t think you can go in the first quarter or even in the first 6 months and try to totally to change the boat’s direction. I think that everybody is just happy that there is someone at the helm that they feel gets the consumer internet. They get technology, they get products. I think it’s less about trying to dissect what is always going to be a general stated strategy upfront but, what everybody I know is looking at is the execution. The hires, the acquisitions, the changes within the company… Everybody wants Yahoo to win. It’s good for everybody.
Jason: It’s pretty universal, I think, the support that Marissa has. I think she’s got a pretty good runway. I don’t think people are going to look… If she keeps having great hires and buying a couple of interesting companies.
Kirin: She’s doing a lot of content deals too.
Jason: Yeah. I think, she’s got a decent… I think she’s earned through… she’s got a lot of credibility. She’s earned up, through the credibility bank. Based on her performance over her career. People are going to give her the runway. Marshall, what’s your thoughts?
Marshall: Well, we had a key API over at Yahoo get deprecated recently. So, I’ve got a chip on my shoulder.
Jason: What is that? Like the Yahoo boss search stuff?
Marshall: Place Maker geocoded. So, that kind of thing keeps happening. Which, is a real bummer. But, I look at the fact that broadening the audience in one of three main goals, seems… That really surprises me, because I thought that Yahoo was already about a really broad mainstream audience already. If they think that aggregating news, giving personalized streams of content, is a way to go… That’s a place where Facebook already starting to go, quite some time ago. Jason, I’d be curious if you’d ever used Time Hop. Wonderful app. Funded by the FourSquare guys. They show you what you did and where you went 1, 2, 3 years ago. Three years ago, today, I wrote an article about who Facebook was going around to all the major media companies, pitching themselves as the news reader of the future. The place where mainstream people would come to get their news. I think that they’ve made huge progress in that. It’s really late in the game for Yahoo to say they’re going to go after that kind of market.
Jason: It does seem that people are getting their news from their social feeds. Whether it be Twitter or Facebook first. Then, falling back… not even to a reader but, typing in domains and looking at the top 5 or 6 things out there. It’s a pretty good starting point. Twitter or Facebook. It really has changed how people look at things. I liked her… I do like them admitting they’re a contact company. I always tell the story, Brian Alvey and I went there when we were doing Weblogs, Inc. We had like literally 4 or 5 meetings, with different groups.
Kirin: What year are we talking?
Jason: 2004. No, 2003. One meeting was with the RSS team. One meeting was with the My Yahoo team. One was with the ad sales group. One was with like the content group. It was like, literally we met with everybody. We were hot at the time. People wanted to meet with us. So, I said, “Watch this. We’re going to go into this meeting and the ad sales group, that’s doing this ad stuff, is going to say they’re not competitors. They’re not in the content business.” So, we go in. “We’re not in the content business.” Unsolicited. I go in the next one. I said, “Now, I’m going to ask them if they’re in the content business. Watch them stumble over it.” So, I asked the RSS people, “Are you in the content business?” “No, we’re not in the content business or whatever.” I’m like, “Oh. OK. Cause, you guys hired like 5 bloggers for these different things. You guys called our other 5 bloggers. It seems like we’re in the same business if you’re trying to hire the people who work here at Weblogs, Inc.” They’re like, “No, no, no, no. You’ve got it totally wrong, Jason. We just want one blogger per vertical. That blogger is going to write one piece. It’s like a tiny thing we’re going to do.” They’ve always, always… as Gina sort of eluded to… All these tech companies begrudgingly don’t want to be in the content business. I don’t think what any of these people realize is, the platforms are becoming, in a way, parity is reaching the platforms. If they reach parity, what’s the differentiator? It’s going to be content. It’s going to be games. It’s going to be the community. There’s a smaller subset of things that matter once the platforms… Which we see in phones. There’s no difference between the iPhone, the Android Phone and the Windows 8 phone. I’m sorry. They all are exceptional products. I’ve been using all three, trying to figure out which one is the best. They’re all exceptional. So, then if they’re all exceptional, then what makes the determination is, which one has best content? Which one has the best apps, if you will.
Kirin: Well, for you, which one is it?
Jason: I don’t know. I honestly don’t. It’s hard to tell.
Kirin: Do you like the content on the Windows Phone?
Jason: In all honesty, I haven’t been using the Windows Phone. I’ve been using the Surface tablet and the desktop. So, I just actually have it with me cause I’m going to try to use it. I just logged into my email. So, too soon to tell on Windows 8. But, I have to tell you, the Android experience now, is greatly, greatly caught up to iOS. I don’t see a difference between iOs and Android.
Kirin: I love my Nexus 7.
Jason: There is no difference between iOS and Android, right now. It’s just 10%. It’s under the just noticeable difference. What do you guys use? Gina, what are you on? You’re on Android or iOS?
Jason: Yeah. Have you used Android in the last 6 months or year?
Gina: I haven’t.
Jason: See that’s the thing. A lot of people… Gina’s in the industry… a lot of people, you know you get a phone and you change it every year or two. You may consider changing. So, that’s where the iOS people might have a big surprise coming. Because, I think the loyalty that people feel towards iPhone 5, could be shaken by the different form factors and hardware and creativity that’s going on in the Android ecosystem.
Kirin: I have to tell you, my horrible AT&T contract is up in about two weeks. I was like, I’m going to buy an iPhone 5 and move to Verizon. Now, I’m like hmm.
Jason: Maybe, something else. Yeah. There’s a lot of good buzz going on. What are you on, Marshall?
Marshall: I’m a dedicated iPhone user, for sure. Jason, I was just looking at this report of the top 500 mobile developers, I’ve got in front of me. Looking at Marissa Meyer, who’s an active Twitter user, she’s following 300 people on Twitter. Not a single one of them is among this group of leading 500 mobile developers. So, if mobile is the future, it seems that at least on that platform, that is not where she is engaging.
Jason: Interesting. She’s busy.
Kirin: Insights from Marshall.
Jason: It’s interesting, actually. The statistics are pretty amazing. I just unfollowed literally everybody on my Twitter feed, then started over from scratch. Any of my friends that I’m not following… I’m literally adding like 10 people a day.
Kirin: Marshall, do you have an analysis of Jason’s followers?
Jason: My followers?
Marshall: It might break the machine.
Jason: I have 160K followers. I don’t know who my followers are.
Marshall: Yes. Give me a couple of minutes.
Jason: Alright. Next story.
Kirin: Lyft had…
Jason: He’s going to be like, “By the way, you’re being followed by all of these stripper accounts.” Cause, this is what happens when you have a generic name. I watch my incoming, sometimes. I had to turn off that email cause so many people are like just… I’m like what are all these spam accounts on Twitter… I guess it’s like… What was the football guy who got… Catfish?
Kirin: I don’t know his name.
Jason: I don’t remember his name. Toey. T.O.
Jason: Manateo. There’s all of these fake stripper, bikini model folks following everybody, all over Twitter. How does Twitter not have spam accounts under control, at this point? We’re in like year 8 of Twitter. Can we please get spam under control on Twitter? Next story.
Kirin: Lyft had a huge week. Now, has moved into Los Angeles.
Jason: Oh, yeah.
Kirin: It’s starting zone is west of the 405. Which, includes Santa Monica, West LA and Venice.
Jason: Brentwood. Woohoo!
Kirin: Exactly. It’s going to expand to downtown Silver Lake and West Hollywood.
Kirin: Lyft also reached a deal with the California Public Utilities Commission. These are the folks who say that Lyft was basically illegal. They’re waiving previous fines against Lift and allowing it to continue to operating while it’s figuring out the future of ride share regulations. Also, Zimride, the parent company of Lyft, raised $15M raised by Fonder’s Fund. Also, including Mayfield, K-9 and Flood Gate. So, how do you think Lyft will perform, here in LA? What are we looking for in terms of regulation?
Jason: Well, Gina, what are your thoughts? Do you use Uber, Lyft, Sidecar, any of these?
Gina: I use Uber, occasionally. I haven’t used Lyft yet. I haven’t used Sidecar. I don’t do a lot of moving away from my desk. So, I may not be the best person to ask.
Jason: That’s pretty honest.
Gina: I do think that in California, there is so much momentum around experimentation. We have less entrenched private transportation options and interests, than you do in, say, New York. That’s just the reality of California. I think, even politicians that live in San Francisco would agree that there needed to be a better solution than the cab system in San Francisco. Now, did we need like 10 ride sharing services? Probably not, but that’s cool. I think this kind of experimentation is great.
Jason: I agree. I’m glad to see that we’re doing more experimentation. I will say, I almost died in a Sidecar. I told the story on the program. The guy was just… This was a really beat up car. What I like about this new regulation is that now, as part of this, they’re saying you have to do background checks on the drivers. Make sure they’re not serial killers. You gotta make sure… I don’t know if they could be a felon and be a driver. I think some of these companies had their own.
Kirin: Well, Lyft does interview the drivers before they’re allowed out.
Jason: Yeah, but interview is one thing. Screening is one thing. Like, checking their insurance, inspecting the car. They should have to go get their car inspected every 90 days. They should have to go to a lift, have it done. Lyft or Sidecar should have like a garage where they subcontract. The cars get checked. That’s the fear here. Somebody’s… We have this in New York with the Gypsy Cabs. There are all those Dollar Cabs, Gypsy Cabs, kind of stuff. Where, you just pay a couple of dollars and you can go as far as you want to go. You don’t know… It’s just a person in a car.
Kirin: You don’t know.
Jason: You literally don’t know. It could be very dangerous. What I found most interesting… obviously, full disclaimer, I’m an angel investor in Uber… Uber is saying they’re going to go up against… or they’re going to have their own car sharing. What’s really great with this car sharing is, the cost is so much less. Like, it will be less than a cab ride because the people are just taking a donation.
Kirin: Sure. But, you know what was interesting? I used Lift, like 4 times this week in San Francisco.
Jason: Oh, did you?
Kirin: Each ride… they were all city rides… were all ten dollars.
Jason: That’s pretty good.
Kirin: Which, I thought was interesting. Now, the interesting thing is…
Jason: Is that a donation?
Kirin: It just says…
Jason: Suggested donation?
Kirin: It basically gives you the donation suggestion price and, of course, they want you to rate the driver like they do on Uber. The intreating thing to me was when I took an Uber, because there were no Lyft drivers available one night, I was like OK, I’ll go to Uber, the Uber ride was actually $5.
Kirin: I don’t know…
Jason: That’s a mistake cause there’s a $15 minimum.
Kirin: Oh, you know what? It’s probably because I had a $10 credit.
Jason: Oh, you had a $10 credit? So, it was $15 per minimum. Right.
Kirin: So, that was… But, still it seems like a pretty low price. I don’t know… Uber has also recently announced that it is lowering its prices.
Jason: Oh, yeah.
Kirin: There must be some feeling that there’s some more competition in the market, here. Lyft drivers are actually more fun. i mean, an Uber driver definitely comes across as more serious.
Jason: Well, they’re professionals.
Kirin: They’re professionals. You know you come into the Lyft car, they give you the fist pump. Right? There’s the pink mustache on the front of the car.
Jason: Yeah. It’s fun and zany.
Kirin: Exactly. All of them I spoke to were really happy as drivers.
Jason: Just think about how many people are unemployed in the country. This is like a great way to make everybody’s lives better and maybe get some people some jobs.
Jason: What do you think, Marshall? Do you use any of these services?
Marshall: My wife uses Car2Go. Which has taken Portland by storm. I think it’s all just killing time until the driverless cars come. Right? So…
Jason: I never even heard of Car2Go. What is Car2Go?
Marshall: It’s a german company… It’s a Daimler subsidiary. They’ve got programs in 7 or 8 cities around the world.
Jason: Look at that.
Marshall: They’re these little bitty smart cars. There’s no membership fee. There’s a great iPhone app, where you can find them. People can just leave them anywhere inside of the roughly city limits. There’s hundreds of them scattered all over Portland, at any given time.
Jason: Maximum is $73, a day, plus tax. So, call it $80. Maximum is $16, an hour, $17 an hour with tax. 38¢ per minute. It’s like a bike? You can just take them for a ride? And, you don’t have to return them.
Marshall: Nope. Just inside city limits, basically.
Jason: That’s so genius.
Marshall: It’s terrific.
Jason: Wait a minute. You live in Portland?
Kirin: Of course he lives in Portland. You didn’t know that?
Jason: Like, Portlandia Portland?
Marshall: I’m here, in the offices of Wideman Kennedy. Where the Portlandia episode about the crazy creative agency taking off, and stuff like that. That’s this place, where Littlebird was incubated.
Jason: Oh, God. Now, I remember all this. My God, Portlandia is on fire. They had this great episode. Like, they go for raw food. They’re like, “My God, I have to fart so bad.” It’s like raw food is terrible. The woman is like, “Listen. We have a lot of complaints about you guys farting at the table. Why are you not using the fart patio at the raw food place?” They’re like, “The what?” Then, they go out and it’s like a fart patio, they hand them two fans. They just sit there and there’s like ten people in the back, old hipsters farting and blowing their farts with a fan. It is riotly funny. But, is it anything like that?
Marshall: The rest of the country considers it comedy. In Portland, it’s seen ore as documentary.
Kirin: I have heard that from another Portland person, that it is somewhat…
Jason: The dream of the 90s is alive in Portland. Next story.
Kirin: Alright. I know that this is a story that interests you. Marc Andreessen predicts the demise of traditional retail.
Jason: Of course.
Kirin: So, Marc Andressen has said, “eCommerce 2.0 is really going to hit stride in the next 3 to 4 years. The real retail killer isn’t an out-of-date business model, but experience that sites like Fab and Shoe Dazzle can offer, now. The most successful online retailers are in New York and LA. As to why the Valley hasn’t had that kind of success he said, “My core theory is that the best software companies will win at retail. So, it will become increasingly important that these companies to have the best software programmers in the world. There are a lot more of them in the Valley. So, how far are we away fro the death of the traditional retailer? What can retailers do to make themselves more relevant?
Jason: What do you think, Gina?
Gina: I’m not in retail. I build different kinds of software. I would say that Marc is wonderful at making dramatic statements that are thought provoking and interesting and generally over long periods of time tend to come true.
Gina: I don’t think if you think about a ten year time horizon. Just what’s happening right now, in terms of show-rooming, that it’s outside the realm of possibility. At the same point and time, I think, there’s a lot of time and energy that is going to go into experimentation, in terms of retail in the physical world and what the integration of what online and offline is going to look like. So, general trend, sure. Yet, I think we have a lot of time to figure this all out. In the same way that a you saw the emergence of big box retailers. They’re not as relevant today. That’s OK. I think there’s interesting opportunities that are going to come as we continue to see a drop in cost of creating new and interesting kinds of retail experiences. I think that’s a really good thing.
Jason: It’s pretty clear that… Gina’s right. Marc is being hyperbolic. He tends to do that sometimes, make a big grand statement like newspapers are going to die. But, obviously, newspapers haven’t died, they’re changing. Right? Change is really what this is about. If you think about it, the experience of the Apple Store was transformative. I’m not sure, I don’t think Marc has kids, but now that I have a 3 year old, retail is not going anywhere. I can tell you that we’re going to the Disney Store again. You know. Guaranteed.
Kirin: It doesn’t get old.
Jason: It’s not going away. There’s a social aspect to shopping, which I think might accelerate. Cause, when I had Jason Goldberg of Fab, on the program, he is obsessed with doing a physical store. He wants to do a physical store.
Kirin: You saw the Makerbot Store when you were in New York.
Jason: And, the Makerbot Store. The reason to do it, yes, they’re highly inefficient. We’re going to see this collapse of the idea of the mall. The mall is getting redone. Obviously, there’s going to be this massive contraction. Here is the quote from Jeff Bezos, in a conversation with Charlie Rose. If he was ready to take on WalMart. “We would love to but only if we had a truly differentiated idea. I don’t want to do a me too offering. When I look at the physical retail store, it’s very well served. The people who operate physical retail stores are very good at it. The question we would have before we’d embark on such a thing is what is the idea? What would we do that would be different? How would it be different. We don’t want to be redundant.” I have heard form people that Amazon is actually working on this in a major way. There will be Amazon stores. I can almost guarantee that. What would they be? I think they will be the best of Amazon. Where you go in and you see the highest rated products. I’ve written about this. They should do something like that. Fab should do the best thing. That is experiential commerce. It’s a place to go to experience the products.
Kirin: So, it would be like the Apple store?
Jason: Or, like the Tesla store.
Jason: You know, just try to make an experience. You don’t need as many store as we have. It is ridiculous the amount of square footage for retail. I have to tell you. The economy is definitely back. Two saturdays ago, I took London out, my 3 year old. We went to the Disney store, we went to have dinner. Everybody was walking around with shopping bags. I would say, 1 out of 3 people had a shopping beg. They weren’t like tiny shopping bags. Multiple shopping bags, in some cases. There were lines at every restaurant. We had to go to like three restaurants. This is Santa Monica, in January, three weeks after the holidays. This is not prime time. It’s cold here.
Kirin: It’s cold here. You better be careful when you say that.
Jason: Comparative thinking. Marshall, what do you think?
Marshall: I wonder if retail will see more like what medicine is going through. You know, there’s an increasing number of medical treatments and exams that are going to happen virtually, if not by mobile. A big part of the infrastructure, like appointment setting or low level medical interventions are being done in these new little tiny clinics. Like, we got a place called ZoomCare, next door to our office, where you make a reservation on line… just like on a Google Calendar type interface. You drop in, a registered nurse or nurse’s assistant sees you, you plunk down $75 and you’re out the door. I can imagine retail going through something like that, something like the Apple Store kind of ethos, and changing a bunch. But, not going away. Especially, for people with kids and other high end experiences. It should be real interesting.
Jason: I think, that’s very astute. I was just made aware… I’m not exactly sure how. Maybe it was somebody for an angel investment of this One Medical.com group. I went to their website. Look at this. It looks like you’re going to the W Hotel or a spa. Nice furniture. It looks like it could be in Portland or something. Guys probably have those big hoop earrings. I guess they started in Noe Valley or something. You sign up. I think you pay $149, a year. Then, the pricing is on the website. You become a member. You can pay with your health insurance. They have a membership. They have the fee schedule, I guess, is published here.
Kirin: It just makes it a delightful experience.
Jason: It makes it like, you’re not going to get ripped off. It’s just taking out all the pain.
Kirin: Just some doctor’s offices are so dreary. The people that work there aren’t happy. There’s always these sad, old magazines on the tables. The furniture looks dated.
Jason: Oh. Here’s the other thing. They start the appointments on time. That was like in their thing. Same day appointments that actually start on time. Talk about understanding your customers. What is the most annoying thing? It’s like the wait at the doctor’s office. Why is there a wait there? I would wait in line for the Dalai Lama. I’m not waiting in line for a doctor. Come on. Lawyers start the meetings on time. Why can’t a doctor start the meeting on time? Crazy.
Marshall: Jason, here in Portland, we have another company called, Meridian. They call themselves indoor GPS. They’re working with retail companies to augment the offline retail experience. Where, you walk into a store, pop open your phone and the store knows who you are, where you are, all your shopping history. Walmart is doing some of that same kind of work with their mobile app. It’s not for when you’re at home, it’s for when you’re in the store. To make the retail, in-person shopping experience a richer, more fun, more efficient, more effective kind of experience.
Jason: That is pretty slick. I have to say, I just had this experience at a mall. I was at that mall… again, with my daughter, looking for the Froyo place in the mall, in San Francisco, the West Field Mall. Where is this Froyo place? It’s making me crazy to find this place. She wants her froyo. I can’t find the froyo. Smart idea. Smart idea. Ok. Let’s do a final story.
Kirin: OK. I think we have to talk about Nick Denton bringing ValleyWag back.
Jason: Oh, kill yourself. I hate Nick Denton. I gotta stop using that term.
Kirin: Yeah. Not appropriate in this episode. So, it’s a gossip blog that was started in 2006. It was the first site to question Steve Jobs’ health, credited with breaking news on Twitter’s birth.
Kirin: Nick has said, he’s looking for an editor or two to run it. It won’t necessarily be a stand alone site. It will have some writers, but most posts will be on Gawker as well as ValleyWag.
Jason: Exactly what we don’t need.
Kirin: Also, to test Gawker’s new discussions platform, Kinja allows users to add photos, video and start their own thread with unique URLs. Is this a good time to bring it back? How should it be different than before?
Jason: It would be a good start, if it was actually, factually correct and it didn’t bring civilians into the mix. So, I’ll tell you the story. You want to hear the story?
Jason: They put my wife on there, in a picture. I called Nick Denton. I said, “Hey, you put my wife on there.”
Kirin: When was this?
Jason: 5 or 6 years ago.
Jason: He goes, “Oh, yeah, yeah.” I said, “Take that down.” We’re sort of friends. Then, I had lunch with him, in person. I said, “Listen. Let me explain something to you. I’m not going to sue you or get into a fight with you. If you do this again, I am going to punch you in the face. I’m from Brooklyn. You don’t mess with people’s wives or their kids or their families. If you want… you can take me to task all day long. I don’t know if you’ve ever been punched square in the face, but that is what I will do to you if you do anything like this to my family.”
Kirin: Had he said anything in particular about her?
Jason: Nothing. But, they were starting to buzz around her. They took a picture of her. It was like, she was in the background of a picture.
Jason: I said, “She’s a civilian.” He agreed. We don’t need to go into the civilian thing. Then, they started getting into my friends’ personal lives and stuff like that. I said, “This is not appropriate.” I said, “Nick, do you want people following you around, in your personal life?” He’s got a pretty robust personal life. Let me tell you. I’ve heard the stories.
Kirin: You should publish them.
Jason: Yeah. That’s exactly what I want to do is publish stories about Nick Dentin’s crazy sex life.
Kirin: It’s all about the page views, babe. It’s all about the page views, right?
Jason: No. Not for me. Anyway… Dentin’s a really smart guy. Listen. He’s like a genius publisher. But, God I hated ValleyWag. It was like… I watched my friends… they just rode some people, so unfairly, for so long. It was like so inaccurate. You know, it’s all owed to Owen Thomas, who was a complete troll and would completely write stuff that was factually inaccurate. Did they ever go after you, Gina?
Gina: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. That was fun. It was a good time. It was nice.
Jason: Oh, you’re a female founder? Wow. Let’s pile on that. Any weakness that they can sense or any angle they can get. Owen Thomas is just a piece of garbage. I told him too. I said, “Owen, you were such a talented writer when you wrote for Suck. Now, he writes for Business Insider. I think he realizes, he was in a dark place. He was so obsessed with getting page views and stuff like that. These people are just hard working business people.
Kirin: You could argue Business Insider is still obsessed with page views.
Jason: Right. But, I don’t think Henry Blodget is going to take apart somebody’s personal life. You know? In that kind of way. Like, report on people professionally. Not the…
Kirin: Link bait the headlines, sure.
Jason: Link baiting headlines, “Jason Calacanis’ 7 Biggest Mistakes”. Sure. Go for it. But, I don’t need you to talk about my family or other stuff. It doesn’t make sense. Marshall, you’re really thrilled with this, I’m sure.
Marshall: Oh. It’s a car accident with the people rubber neck out. It doesn’t seem like a very considerate, empathetic, responsible thing to do. Whatever.
Jason: What drives Denton is he likes to… I actually think Dentin has a higher moral calling, at times. Which is, he hates hypocrisy. He likes to take down anybody he thinks is a phony or deserves to be taken down. In Gawker, you do see that at times. They’re railing against the gun nuts, right now. They’re doing such a good job of it. Like, it’s really great.
Kirin: You’re not going to have a complain about that type of coverage.
Jason: Well, it’s sort of like, they’re pointing out the hypocrisy, right? So, I applaud that. If somebody is Mel Gibson, you know…
Kirin: Or, Lance Armstrong.
Jason: … or, Lance Armstrong. There are people who are asking for it. They’re anti-Semitic. They’re lying cheaters who attack people. Sure. Or, gun control nuts who are fighting for unreasonable gun control, like the same day people are getting shot and killed. Of course, these are good targets. I think you can put them in ‘Good Targets.’ They should be challenged, right? But, you don’t need to challenge somebody on their private life, who’s a civilian, about their sex life, about their dating life. It just doesn’t make sense. I think, that’s where he missed the mark on ValleyWag.
Gina: Yeah. I think the one other thing that I would observe is, when you’re on the inside of things you see different things happen. Most of the time, what gets recorded in blogs, even more salacious stories, has some kernel of truth to it. The interesting thing to me about ValleyWag is whether it was… I’ve never seen, either before or since, stories made up, absolutely, out of thin air. There’s absolutely no basis of truth…
Jason: Yep. That’s correct.
Gina: … in what it was. Still, it was reported as such.
Gina: That is what I think is the difference. The other thing I would add is, I actually think the place of ValleyWag was taken by Quora, of all places.
Gina: I think, what’s nice about Quora, for like the place to go for people asking a question, typically anonymously and anonymous answers and all that. At least you have a choice to respond in a, I would say, a more thoughtful way, in a more thoughtful community. So, I’m also just wondering if it is going to see any up tick. Because, I think, if the show on Bravo demonstrated anything is that people really don’t give that big of a shit about what’s happening in Palo Alto or San Francisco.
Jason: I think that’s really another astute point. Somebody asked the question, “Will Mahalo ever make up for the $20M in capital that has been committed to it?” Jimmy Wales, of all people, comes to my rescue. “Never count Jason out. Yes, he’s arrogant, he’s irritating and he’s often wrong as he is right. But, when he’s right, he’s right. When he’s wrong, he kick’s his own ass.” That’s pretty nice. I wrote a big, long blog post. But, this is obviously like a disgruntled employee or somebody who is just a hater is like, “Ahh.” You know?
Kirin: Well, it could have been a serious question.
Jason: I guess it could.
Kirin: Color blew how many millions of dollars?
Jason: I guess so. But, this company has made a lot of money and we’re still here. We’re still making millions of dollars a year. Anyway. But, the point is, I do think they could like… You’re right, Gina, ValleyWag would paint a certain picture of that. Then, I can come in and answer it. I answered it honestly. “Listen, we made this amount of money from SEO. We’ve made eight figures worth of revenue from search traffic and all this kind of stuff. It worked out very well, but it wasn’t personally fulfilling for me. Now, I’m on to other stuff that is personally fulfilling. It’s working. We have millions of dollars in the bank, millions of dollars in revenue, we’re almost break even. It’s all good.”
Kirin: I think, Nick also said, as far as Valley Wag, that he kind of thought it was the right time because he thinks there’s a bubble about to burst. There’s going to be some kind of bloodshed. He has some kind of delight in that.
Jason: I don’t think there’s… I don’t know. Marshall, what do you think? Is it going to be like some massive blood bath coming? I don’t know.
Marshall: I hope not. I don’t think so.
Jason: Says the first time entrepreneur in the first year of his business.
Jason: Good timing, Marshall.
Gina: I would also say, if people don’t think there’s a correlation between that kind of snarky, gosh, let’s pile on the blood bath in the first story we started with. I mean… This stuff is difficult for anybody. The idea of having blogs dedicated to schadenfreude, just seems like a really unfortunate idea.
Jason: Yeah. That’s a very good… You should host your own show, Gina. She’s good.
Kirin: She’s great.
Jason: She just threaded the needle, there. She threaded the needle for me. It is true… I do think this public chiding of people, this like… when you invest in companies and when you start companies, we all know the majority case is failure. If the majority case is not failure, then to save these companies. Right? So, just to go full circle, it… Marshall, you’re starting a company. You’re a first time entrepreneur, congratulations. You got Mark Cuban to invest. Everybody’s talking about your startup. There’s still the majority case that you’re going to fail, Marshall. 70-80% chance. You realize that, right?
Marshall: You better believe it.
Jason: He’s still doing it. If you do fail, Marshall, no big deal. I was just talking to someone who is failing. They’re like, “What do you think?” I’m like, “Wrap everything up, in a classy fashion. Give everybody a great amount of severance, do the acqui-hire thing or do this or whatever. Immediately start… do not disappear… Go out there, write blog posts, talk about it, talk about the failure, what you learned from it…”
Kirin: Is there somebody we should have on the show?
Jason: We’ll talk in three months, four months. “Just embrace it. You tried. It was an epic try. It wasn’t an epic failure or an epic success. It was just a single or a double or whatever. You struck out. Who cares? Embrace it. Make it part of who you are. You are now part of the group of people who know how to deploy capital, knows how to raise venture capital, knows how to deploy it, knows how to run a board meeting, knows how to do all this stuff.
Kirin: How to hire.
Jason: And know how to close a transaction. You have all this stuff, now. Congratulations. Now, people are going to look at you, “Oh, you got 90% of it down. You just gotta get that last part, scaling a business right. So, let’s give you another shot at bat.” It’s a better bet.
Marshall: Ben Horowitz said, “It’s good to know what an entrepreneur has done before because, everything else is going to take a long time to learn.” You can count on them doing the things that they’ve done before all faster.
Jason: Yeah. I agree with that. Alright. This has been an amazing episode. Everybody check out…
Marshall: Jason, do you want to hear about mobile developers and you, Jason.
Kirin: Yes, please, Marshall.
Jason: Just, me in general.
Marshall: You are being followed by 65 of the top mobile developers on Twitter.
Marshall: Which is substantially more than the BlackBerry developer channel is.
Jason: There you go.
Marshall: The most recent is the co-founder of Temple Run.
Jason: Oh, really?
Marshall: Natalia Luckyanova. No. She was the first one to start following you. The most recent is Dave Johnson, the co-founder of Phone Gap. That Adobe acquired, recently. You, however, are not following any of those top 500 people back. They’re listening to you, though.
Jason: That’s the way it should be. There you go.
Marshall: Meanwhile, as the adult content…
Marshall: … there’s no intersection at all, between our repot and adult content and your account. You’re not following them and they’re not following you. You can go forth, in peace.
Jason: I can tell you Path is starting to scale, right now, because I am getting like russian or chinese, obviously looking for husband accounts or phishing accounts. They’re can be one of those two things. It could be legitimately like…
Jason: Path is private. How… They must be typing in first names or whatever and just randomly adding people. It’s really going international. I’m getting people from Singapore, China, Russia.
Kirin: You can’t be adding more friends at this point, can you?
Jason: I can’t say that I have a special account that allows me to have a couple more friends than the average person.
Kirin: I was going to say.
Jason: I’m not allowed to say.
Jason: But, I may be able to have more friends than you.
Kirin: That’s fine. None of my real friends and family are on it.
Jason: Can I get… What’s the story, Marshall? Will you hook me up with an unlimited account so I can start doing these incredible queries on GetLittleBird, myself?
Marshall: Sounds good.
Jason: Ahh, there you go. You see that? I plugged the sugar out of that. Everybody go check out GetLittleBird. For $255 a month, you are going to become a genius. Everybody follow @marshallk. Everybody follow @ginab and check out MightyBell, her startup. She’s in there rolling up her sleeves. I met the team over there. Smart group. She’s got some big announcements coming in 5 weeks. From the stage of the Launch Festival, of all places. Thank you…
Kirin: Nice try.
Jason: We all know it ends on wednesday. Nothing happens wednesday morning. You just come back tuesday night, on somebody’s private jet. Then, you could Launch on wednesday. They’ll forgive you. They’ll forgive you. Come on. Do we have enough women judges at this point?
Kirin: We could definitely use more. Gina would be awesome.
Jason: I’m always trying to make sure there’s some gender balance.
Gina: Always happy to fill your quota.
Jason: No. It’s not that. You’re brilliant.
Gina: I’m kidding. I’m kidding. I’m kidding.
Jason: You know what? I’m really becoming… You have a daughter, you obviously become more aware of these things. I’m on a personal jihad, right now, to get people to stop calling women girls.
Kirin: That’s a good thing. You know, I went to a women’s college. People are like, “Oh. You went to an all girl’s school?” I say, “Yes. I went to a women’s college.” Thank you.
Jason: We hired to people to work at Launch. Somebody kept saying, “Ask the girls to do it.” I’m like, do we have interns or something, from a high school or something?
Kirin: They’re names are Emily and Beth.
Kirin: I got to meet them this week and they’re real people.
Jason: Somebody said to me, “What do we call them?” I was like, “Their names.” Their names or women. Can you imagine if you hired two men and you started calling them boys? “Oh. Why don’t you give it to the boys to do?” I’m so hyper aware of it now. I’m hyper aware of it too because I’m a white guy. Like, we don’t have…
Kirin: You have all the privileges.
Jason: Yeah. The biggest thing I deal with is, “Oh, my God. I’ve been invited to too many private clubs to be a member. Which one should I pick?”
Kirin: First world problems, man.
Jason: Which golf club should I be a member of? Which private club should I be a member of? That’s what white guys deal with. Then, my wife is asian. I had no idea what asian people… Asian people are one of the last groups that you can just outwardly make fun of.
Kirin: Well, like the make me asian app that got pulled from the Google Play Store?
Jason: Unbelievable. Imagine if you had Make Me Black app, Make Me African American. Make Me Jewish app. Like, oh yeah, let’s put Hasidic curls on people. No, we could totally make a Make You Asian app. Approved.
Marshall: Jason, I’ll send you an email with the 5 most influential women in the tech incubator scene.
Jason: Yeah. Actually, that would be helpful. You know what the other thing is, with the tokenism, is like, everybody is like, “Oh, here is the VP of Marketing or a PR person to put on… You know we go through this. We’re not really… We need people like Gina, who have actually built businesses or Marissa or somebody who’s actually built a business. OK. Thank you, Gina. Thank you, Marshall. We will see you next time. Hey, stick around cause Sourcebits is going to show us the new Launch Festival app.
Gina: Alright. Thank you.
Marshall: Thank you, Jason.
Jason: Thank you, Gina. I’ll let you go. Marshall, thank you for everything. Those are great, great guests, huh?
Kirin: It was amazing. We gotta have Gina back soon.
Jason: Gina thread the needle on that. She’s smart man. She doesn’t get enough credit. I wish she blogged or something man. Just smart. Smart cat. Alright. Everybody knows the Launch Festival is just 30 days away. You’ve been seeing all these great companies. You were just in the Valley.
Kirin: Oh, my God.
Jason: I’m sending you back up next week, right? You’re going to go back up?
Kirin: I will probably go next week again.
Jason: Yeah. Just go up for the whole week. Let’s just lock this down. How many companies did you see when you were up there? About.
Kirin: I saw, in 3 days, at least 25.
Jason: Oh, good. Of those, how many do you think I would accept? Ten?
Kirin: I would say, at least half.
Jason: Oh, good. Awesome.
Kirin: It was really, really high quality stuff. So, I just need to get you all that stuff so you can take a look.
Jason: Let’s work on it over the weekend. Just email me as we go.
Kirin: I will do that.
Jason: I’ll just one off and say thank you.
Kirin: Jason, maybe we can talk about what the app is going to be, for those who don’t know yet.
Jason: Ah, yes. So, we had this concept to have crowd funding occur live at the event.
Jason: We wanted the people to look at the companies on stage and say, “That’s a great idea. Here’s how much I would invest in it.” Crowdfunding or otherwise. Obviously, crowd funding is not a reality yet. The SEC is still working on it. This is going to be a simulation, if you will.
Kirin: We will ask people to identify themselves as accredited investors, if they are.
Jason: Right. Basically, we’re going to pass all this information on. Look at that splash screen. MicroVentures Presents. We’ve got a sponsor who is in the micro finance space, who is helping sponsor the event. Launch Live Crowdfunding. Oooh. Look at that. Where’d you get that stock image? That’s beautiful. Well done, David.
David: It’s a great looking screen.
Jason: Where’d you get that from? What is that? Did you guys take that picture? Is that a stock image or something? It’s gorgeous.
David: It’s a stock image that we had put together.
Jason: Gorgeous. I love it. So, you got the Launch logo coming to life. Then, here, live funded, this is Launch dollars. We put the ‘L’ there, right? We’re going to say Launch dollars, so Jason doesn’t wind up in jail. But, we’ll see what’s crowd funded so far. Super Startup. We have their domain. That’s great. So, the domain is there. We have the Twitter account. You’ll be able to go right through those. Ah, here we go. Oh, this is the intranet, here? Tell me what I’m looking at, here. Can you guys see it?
David: No, Jason. I can’t see you’re screen.
Jason: Oh. So, I’m looking at I guess what is the companies, the intranet for adding a company.
David: Correct. You got on the screen?
Jason: This is going to be great. We add companies, then we unlock them. I guess, when they’re on stage, we just click the unlock button, then they’ll magically appear on everybody’s app?
Jason: Wow. Look how beautiful… I didn’t realize you guys did such great intranet designs as well. Look how beautiful that is.
Kirin: That’s beautiful. Cause, we’re the ones who’s going to have to use that.
Jason: Yeah, yeah. You would think that would be like an after thought, but it’s not. Not by my friends at Sourcebits. How do you guys ensure that design gets build accurately during the engineering process? There is my first question.
David: OK. Just as during the design process, we had engineering present to make sure what we designed could be built. We just kind of flip roles. I’ll hand edge it. All the graphics, development then takes those to implement and we just take a back seat and help them match up and make sure everything is implemented correctly.
Jason: Got it. And, we made some late changes. How did that impact the project? Did we slow you guys down a little bit?
Sourcebits: I think, I’ll take that question, Jason. One of the approaches to engineering we take is the agile method. So, what that does it basically help us build those features that are not really closely defined. So, in situations like these, I think there is a perfect example of a challenge in really tight deadline project, where there’s something else that you need in the app. But, since we work in an agile fashion, we are able to take that as a requirement and then add that as the next trend of our development. So, in terms of the timing itself, it doesn’t have a major impact. Because, I think, thanks to the design guys we have accounted for some . So, I think it just and we’re still on track.
Jason: Man, here are the beautiful… Man, the wire frames are gorgeous. I almost feel like the wire frames are so good-looking that it could be the app. Good looking wire frames here. Are you an accredited investor? Yes or no. What does that mean? First name, company name, email and phone number. What is an accredited investor? We, sort of, explain that to people. You can see. Here are all the companies as they’re getting unlocked and what time. You’re going to be able to do live crowd funding, if you will. Now, the money is not going to transfer this year. I’m thinking next year, we should be able to have the money transfer. We’ll have our friends at Sourcebits actually build that as part of the engineering challenge for the 2014 event. Or, even if we were to do an event in the fall. Which, I’m not saying we’re doing or not. But, if we did, you could actually use that as well. So, this is very interesting. Was this technically challenging for you guys? I get the sense that this was an easy app to build, technically, and that the technical challenge wasn’t the issue here. It was the design and making it beautiful. Am I correct?
Sourcebits: That’s fine. I think, I’ll take that question. The way we operate at Sourcebits, we do have the design-led engineering concept deeply rooted in our DNA. What that means is that the design guys, David and Cary, they’re all knee deep in the face of the project at the start. Then what happens is this flows down to the engineering team, where we are responsible for the execution of their creative ideas. I think there is a way to balance between design and engineering. So, if you actually see the final output… We just want to define what exactly Sourcebits has to offer. So, it was a technical challenge on both regards.
Jason: Awesome. We’re going to limit people to $10,000 Launch dollars (L$10K). So, even if you’re not like a real investor, like accredited, if you’re non accredited, you’re a civilian, you can pick up to L$10,000. Cause, we think, if you’re there you’re probably somewhat baller and have access to 10 dimes. Everybody gets one high society on J Cal to invest. Very good. Yeah. This is going to be awesome. I’m super siked about it. Where are we next Kirin? Do you have any idea of where this is next? We have to tell the companies about this too, right?
Kirin: I have been mentioning it to the people I’ve spoken to.
Jason: Good. What’s the reaction? They’re pretty interested?
Kirin: They think that it’s cool. Especially if it means that they can find out who those accredited investors are, who are interested in them.
Jason: Cause they’re going to be able to follow up.
Jason: That’s what we’re going to do. Do we have that piece done guys? How we get the information to… my God, this is looking gorgeous. I’m so excited to
Kirin: I do have a link to test fly this.
Jason: Oh. Here, it is. Here, it is. Look at this. This is… You got a link to a test flight of this?
Kirin: I got that from Demant, this morning.
Jason: Oh. Whoa. How about me getting a test flight. Look. Here is the valuation. So, you have… at a 300, 400, 500K valuation. Then, how much is committed in that area. So that’s that histogram I wanted to make of investors and non-accredited investors and showing how much people would commit. That’s pretty interesting. if we could just get L$100K committed per company, that would be very awesome.
Kirin: That would be really cool.
Jason: I think, we might want to mix the numbers.
Kirin: Just, to see both.
Jason: Or, one histogram, actually guys. One histogram with both numbers on it. Just two different colors. So, green is like accredited and blue is Launch dollars (L$). Does that make sense guys, on the histogram?
David: Yes, it does.
Jason: Instead of separating it. So, instead of that toggle here, where you say, ‘Investors/Non-Investors’, I would just get rid of that. Just say, ‘Accredited/L$’. You know? One is green and one is blue. That would make it easy. Green is real money. Blue is the Launch dollars, L$. Perfect. What are the next steps? You guys going to send me a test flight, I see. Then, I’m going to play with it and tell you what I think?
Sourcebits: Yeah. That’s what we’re going to do. I think, as part of the next phase, we’re going to have a few features that need to be ironed out. Such as the event’s floor plans and the upper section, and so on. I think it’s going to be a pretty busy next week or next two weeks, with a lot of action happening. Because, everything that we’ve been doing so far in the past few weeks is just going to come to a close end. App Store release.
Jason: This is going to be awesome. We have to get this… Well, we have some friends at Apple, I guess, if we needed to email them. But, we’re trying to get this out ten days before, so we don’t have a problem?
Jason: Alright. 30 days and counting. Which means, 20 days and counting. This is going to be epic. You guys have done a great job. I’m very proud to have Sourcebits as a partner on this. What an amazing job everybody has done. Everybody follow @sourcebits. Everybody say, thank you to @sourcebits. Really, I have to tell you, if you’re building something… for mobile, especially… a mobile app, you’re journey begins with Sourcebits and it ends with them. These guys and gals over there are fantastic. They people over there are fantastic. The process has been delightful. The wire frames, everything very professional. They brought a lot of ideas to the table. They listened. I also found it very efficient. That, to me… A lot of times I work with folks… I’m going to show some of my internal people how you guys work and say, “This is how I want stuff presented, from now on.” Just a clean organized Go.
Kirin: And, you’ve had this feeling the whole way through. It’s not like…
Jason: I’ve felt great. I don’t want to stump for the guys too much and make you feel like I’m making this stuff up. This has been a delightful process. These guys… You know we’ve had 4 or 5 people who watch the show, use them. They’ve had a great experience. I’m very delighted to have you guys as a partner. That makes it easy. As you know, those who listen to the program, to our regular audience, we pick our partners based on the quality of them. We’d have no partners on the show if we didn’t believe we could stand by them. That’s the biggest…
Kirin: In deed.
Jason: That’s the biggest… That’s just being true baller style. I could just not have ads on the program. Not have partners at any of the things I do. I could just do it. I was doing it. So, when you see somebody who’s a partner, you know you can trust J Cal. Cause, I’m not going to accept an e cigarette company to be a partner of ours. Not a chance. Or, somebody who does bad work. We’re trying to level up here and do great work on the program. That’s why… Kirin, you’re doing a good jobs.
Kirin: Thank you.
Jason: But, getting up there was, I think, key for you. Right?
Kirin: Just huge. It’s such a difference to talk to people in person. I mean, I walked around a couple co-working spaces at a hardware place. That was really awesome.
Jason: You gotta get back there, next week.
Jason: Your husband’s going to hate me.
Kirin: You know, it’s only for a couple more weeks.
Jason: OK. Good, good. He should just go up there and spend a week up there with you. Tell him to go up with you. There’s enough room.
Jason: Yeah. Maybe, it’s good to get a little break. Just get some work done.
Kirin: No, no. I actually was incredibly productive, up there.
Jason: I know. It must be… To just get out of the office and stuff like that. The Launch Ticker is doing great. Even though you’re not on the day to day of it for this week. I assume you’re
Kirin: I tried to train folks well.
Jason: Yeah. Alright. We’ll see everybody next time. Thank you, Sourcebits. Thank you, New Relic.
Sourcebits: Thank you, Jason.
Jason: See you, next time.
Sourcebits: Thank you.