Founder Stories Presented by Johnnie Walker
The way we connect with our friends, fund our businesses, shop online, and catch up on the latest news have changed dramatically in the past decade. Founders on the cutting edge of social media, crowdfunding, e-commerce, business services and online publishing are radically changing the way we behave online — but how much do we know about them? How did the people altering the digital landscape get their start, and where will they go next?
In our second installment, we talk with Indiegogo co-founder Slava Rubin about his early days as a fundraiser, Indiegogo’s no-judgment philosophy, and the future of funding. Read More
XXX in Tech
Justine Tunney is a New York-based software engineer at Google, but she’s also a prolific activist who was and continues to be instrumental to the Occupy Wall Street movement. A “transgender anarchist,” she founded OccupyWallStreet.org and continues to maintain the @OccupyWallSt Twitter handle; her Github account has an Occupy Wall Street specific repository that boasts the tagline, “Stomping out capitalism, one line of code at a time.” And she also has an interesting new approach to crowdfunding.
Welcome to life after Bravo: Hermoine Way, erstwhile Start-ups: Silicon Valley star, is now the face of Vibease, a company that purports to make the first “wearable smart vibrator.” They’ve just launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise $15,000, and they’re already at $13,695.
Ignore the fact that “Vibease,” when you say it out loud, sounds like it has something to do with bees. Vi-BEES.
Land of the Lost
Two Bedford-Stuyvesant residents have launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise funds for a community grocery store in their neighborhood.
The duo, Dylan Ricards and Sheila Akbar, are but two of the many tattooed, bespectacled and nubby-sweatered Gen Y-ers to migrate to the once-impoverished neighborhood that famously gave rise to rappers Jay-Z and Read More
Ethan Cyr has a dream. That dream is to build a 13-foot T-Rex with Christopher Walken’s head on it. And thanks to the Internet, his dream is going to come true.
Yesterday, Humans of New York received an email from the most awesome child in the world and posted it on Facebook.
It read: “I am a sixteen year old from the lower east side of Manhattan. I am building a 13 foot T Rex with Christopher Walkens head and I was wondering if you would be willing to help
When Aaron Hillis and his wife bought Cobble Hill’s Video Free Brooklyn—a well-loved but somewhat dingy relic from the age of VHS—they had rather lofty plans for the store. They would transform the outmoded space into hub of film culture that would redefine the role of the video store in the time of Netflix. It would be both a boutique offering personalized service and an event space (thanks to collapsible shelves) with screenings and discussions. But like many fledgling entrepreneurs, their plans far outpaced their pocketbooks—Mr. Hillis figured he would need about $50,000 to revamp the space.
They might have tried for a bank loan, or made do until they saved enough for the renovation, but neither option was very appealing, so the Hillises did what everyone with a creative vision and a lack of cash seems to do these days: they launched a crowdfunding campaign.
“I don’t think it’s any different or less valid than when PBS or NPR ask people to donate for a free tote bag, or the Kickstarter campaign in Detroit to build a life-size statue of RoboCop,” said Mr. Hillis, who has thus far raised about $7,000 (with two weeks to go on a $50,000 campaign) on Indiegogo. “As long as you’re transparent about where the money is going, you’re putting together something that people want to be a part of.”