The Frank Peters Show

It was payback time recently for me; Frank Peters wanted his chance to turn the tables and interview me on his show. Since he had been good enough to do a video interview with me a while back (here), and because he is a great guy, I said sure, why not. We had a great chat about the angel and early stage ecosystem, crowd-funding and what the future may hold.  Tip of the hat to Frank for the excellent library of work he has built up on the show over the years. It’s Show #372; listen to it via Stream, flash player or iTunes

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If you enjoyed this post, you might enjoy: Thoughts on CrowdfundingPattern Matching Can Cause BlindspotsGetting Off The Ground; Early Formation EconomicsWhy Angels Chase ElectronsDelusional EconomicsThat Vision Thing,  Loch Ness, Unicorns & The First-Mover AdvantageAre Entrepreneurs Wild Risk-Takers?Top 20 Dos & Don’ts with Angel Groups & Early Stage FinancingWhat I Look For In An EntrepreneurThe OverturePick Your Founder/Co-Investors Carefully & Reflections on the Nature of EntrepreneursShould I Wait For A Technical Co-Founder?When Do You Need My Slide Deck?,  and 20 Bootstrapping Ideas.
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Thoughts on Crowdfunding [Updated]

This crowdfunding legislation is starting to look real. [Update: Senate just passed the bill: NYT coverage here. Obama has signed it into law.] But what the hell is it going to mean?  I have been asked about this a fair amount lately. My past background and current vantage point put me pretty close to the issues. So I figured I would sketch out some thoughts on this very complex topic. Will it be a good thing, or a slow-motion train wreck unfolding before our eyes? [Read more…]

What Publishers Just Don’t Get: Why Zite Wins

Publishers will never be able to establish successful mobile platforms. The Zite model of customized content will win. Why? Because publishers think editing means curating their own proprietary content. In the days of the printing press, limited square inches on the broadsheets, slower news cycles and information scarcity rather than information overload, they might have been right. But today, editing means [Read more…]

Where the Puck is Going

Vinod Khosla, one of the founders of Sun Microsystems, a long time partner at Kleiner Perkins, and a principal in well-respected Khosla Ventures, just published a great piece in TechCrunch on the “unhyped” new areas in Internet and mobile that interest him.  These are the areas he expects to produce the next batch of great opportunities and start-ups.  It is well worth a read, but here are the twelve areas he identifies:  [Read more…]

Two Things Crowdfunding Movement Needs to Succeed

My buddy Daniel Sullivan of Crowdly wrote me recently for input regarding his crowd funding project which is focused on driving grass roots support for the crowdfunding bill of Senator Scott Brown, Democratizing Access to Capital Act (S.1791), which allows a non-accredited investor to invest up to $1,000 in a company.  (For a bit of background on the accredited investor concept, including recent revisions to the rule, see this NYT piece published last week.)

It is an interesting project and I am supportive of the concept (though I acknowledge the potential for issues down the road.) Dan asked for some input on a couple aspects of the project, and it gave me an excuse to crystalize my thinking on the issue, so I figured I would share that thinking here.

[Read more…]

The Future Of Publishing – The Book is Dead; Long Live the Book

Is the traditional publishing model dead?

I’ve touched on this topic before (for example,  Amazon becoming a publisher; Amazon really stepping up publication efforts; ebook growth; blogcasting), but three recent events bring it back to the forefront. First was a conversation with someone at a TCN panel talk I gave last week who had just self-published her own book, second was a conversation with a friend who had just published a book with a traditional publisher and third was an interesting piece just published by Matthew Ingram at GigaOM about the value of publishers.

At the panel last week I was discussing intellectual property issues in the start-up context, and one of the participants was focused on IP questions around a book she had just published. The questions were straight-forward, but what was interesting was that when asked who her publisher was, she said that she had self-published.

[Read more…]

LinkedIn’s Snowball Effect

Am I alone in noticing a pronounced snowball effect with LinkedIn lately?  As I noted in my post on their 100M member milestone in the Spring of 2011, I was an early-adopter of LinkedIn, joining before approximately 99.8% of the current members (I was member number 231,537 out of the 100M+ current users).  I attribute this to the fact that I was working in a technology company when LinkedIn started, and I was generally interested in the nascent social networking area, so I received early invitations and ended up fiddling around with the new site.

And as a result of my joining early,…

[Read more…]

Why Google+ Will be a Big Win for Google (and the rest of us) [UPDATED]

[Originally Published July 19, 2011.  See current updates at end.]

Its always dangerous to make predictions, especially with Google, which tends to (1) garner an inordinate amount of breathless coverage for its every initiative and (2) reveal its true plans slowly while it plays for the long, long, term.  But I’ve been thinking about, reading about and messing about with Google+ quite a bit since getting my invitation a little over a week ago, and based on my observations so far, I am willing to venture that this one is going to be a biggie.  Here’s a baker’s dozen reasons why:

[Read more…]


Photo from the New York Times


I’ve never been big on crowds (or traffic for that matter – just ask my wife), but I am a big fan of crowdsourcing.  In my view, crowdsourcing has the power to catalyze very significant and positive change in the way society and business works.  There has been a great deal written about this subject in the few short years since Jeff Howe first coined the term in his 2006 Wired Magazine article “The Rise of Crowdsourcing,” including a great book by Jeff himself (“CrowdSourcing: Why the Power of the Crowd is Driving the Future of Business“), James Surowiecki’s seminal “The Wisdom of Crowds,” Don Tapscott’s “Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything,” and some of the work done on one of my particular fascinations, prediction markets.

This is an area I follow (both out of curiosity and as an investment focus), and a topic I look forward to writing more about at some point, but what brings it to mind today is the juxtaposition of two recent events.

[Read more…]

Nice Write Up of Daily Grommet in Entrepreneur Magazine

Nice write up of Jules Pieri and Daily Grommet in Entrepreneur Magazine.  Go Jules!