- WEB STARTUPS
- WEB JOBS
- ALL TOPICS
Last night we reported on Tumblr adding an option to allow readers of Tumblr blogs to submit content. I noted that we would see more services offering options to add more content (i.e. aggregation) to their blogs and services without the owner doing any work.
Now wiki provider Wetpaint has announced the launch of news feeds. This option allows owners of Wetpaint-authored wikis to embed feeds from any source online. From the Wetpaint blog (backing up what I said above), “Feeds can display content from all over the web around anything really, so now you don’t have to worry about having enough new and relevant content to keep people coming back to your site right from the get go!”
Wetpaint authors only need to grab a RSS feed link, or can use a search result to create a new section of content in their wiki. The embedded items display links to the original source and part of the content (similar to SocialMedian). Most popular stories are displayed on the wiki’s front page. Naturally they allow commenting which is similar to Friendfeed and if you read CN regularly you know how I feel about comment stealing. I am quite certain this new aggregation option will be heavily used by Wetpaint authors.
Here’s a video on how the external feed option works:
Continue reading “Wetpaint Adds External Feeds and Searches to Wikis” »
Last week we reported on web creation service Jimdo working on a Geocities Lifeboat tool. Today they have announced that the Lifeboat service is live. Jimdo’s U.S. manager Powen Shiah noted, “This isn’t just GeoCities 2.0, and it’s not a static archive of the site: all the pages and content can be edited and managed using Jimdo’s WYSIWYG interface. There’s only one side-effect… the sites might not look exactly the same. Some might even be prettier. Sorry, we did all we could but some things just aren’t transferable!”
Today wiki provider Wetpaint has launched the Geocities Bailout. From their announcement, “To solve this problem, we announced yesterday our effort to help those in need of new hosting services, in the form of a G.A.R.P., a Geocities Asset Recovery Plan. The plan is a bailout for all the Geocities users who are seeing their properties being foreclosed by the fierce Yahoo! landlord and need a new place to keep their valuable content.”
Wetpaint has setup a dedicated site for the Geocities Bailout. They will be providing live chat all day to help users convert their sites and they are offering free domains as a bonus.
As I noted in the Jimdo post last week, these offerings are smart. It’s a bit shocking that all of the other webpage creation tools haven’t done the same thing. While it’s never cool to try to poach users, Geocities is closing so it makes sense to offer a replacement service.
Video galleries – Wetpaint offers photo galleries currently and Devin notes that the video galleries will work in a similar fashion. I’ve posted a screenshot below of what the gallery page looks like.
More droplets – droplets are basically widgets that you can share anywhere. The idea is if you spend time creating a Wetpaint wiki, you will want to show it off on the social networks and on blogs/websites. It looks like the new droplet is called "Site at a Glance" and combines a variety of the current droplets to make one super droplet.
New organizational tools – looks like a variety of usability upgrades for users and content creators.
Discussion Forums 2.0 – Devin teases that the big upgrades for the forums will come in a future release. But for now they are upgrading the ability to make forum posts sticky and keep them on top.
Wetpaint has raised $40 million in venture capital funding to-date.
Wiki provider Wetpaint is announcing tonight that they have hit the one million mark. The one million number represents "created" wikis on the Wetpaint platform, not active customers. It also seems the company is now marketing their service as "social publishing" rather than wikis. I think wiki is well known in the tech market but social publishing might be more mainstream-friendly.
Wetpaint also released the following stats:
- 8 million pages of content in the network
- users from 177 countries have created wikis on the Wetpaint platform
They are also announcing the launch of the "Golden Paint Can Awards" which will give prizes to 70 Wetpaint sites in 15 categories. Winners will be selected by a celebrity panel of judges, stats and a public vote. I always like to see companies show off their customers, it helps with goodwill with the current customer base and also helps potential customers see what’s possible with the application or service. Zlio does a good job of this – they feature one shop every day on their blog.
Two big stories this evening coming out of Seattle, both with regards to Wiki social publishing provider Wetpaint. They have raised $25 million in Series C funding. This brings the total amount raised by Wetpaint to approximately $40 million. DAG Ventures co-led the round with another financial investor, and existing investors Accel Partners, Trinity Ventures, and Frazier Technology Ventures all participated. The company notes that they will use the additional funds to, "accelerate the adoption of its leading social publishing platform and execute on its vision of making every site on the Web socially published with users empowered to create, collect, and organize content together."
I spoke with Wetpaint CEO Ben Elowitz who shares some statistics about the current usage of Wetpaint. There are 925,000 sites in the Wetpaint network, mostly in the entertainment, music, tv, and gaming categories. They have "lots" of large corporate partners and over 2,000 new sites are created every day. Over 500,000,000 (1/2 billion) words are housed inside of the wikis on Wetpaint. Check out my interview with Elowitz from late 2007.
The other announcement is the launch of "Wetpaint Injected". This is the service that was tipped to Techcrunch under the name Project Balco last month. Initial launch partners are Flixster, IGN and NewWire.
Here’s the easy description of Wetpaint Injected: it’s a way to add a wiki to any site in minutes that allows your site visitors to add content to a site instantly. The content is search engine friendly (i.e. it’s not a basic script code) and uses a full editor to make it very easy for users to add, edit and update content within the wiki area.
I’ve included a screenshot below of the implementation on Flixster, one of the initial launch partners. The tool is easy-to-use and will certainly be popular on Web sites that are content-based. It’s a great way to pump up available content and available search engine friendly content.
With all of the talk about data portability these days, I asked Elowitz about the topic regarding Wetpaint Injected. He noted that the content is the site owners and can be "taken" at any time if the owner so chooses.
The design of the wiki area is completely customizable using CSS and there is a RESTful API for expansion. The basic code requires a script code in the page header and a basic include within the page.
I’ve embedded the pricing model below. For basic sites, Wetpaint Injected is free, then the standard revshare/buyout model is available. Wetpaint is also offering a variety of addons as listed in the diagram below.
I think the idea is very strong overall. I have a few concerns:
- there’s no branding for Wetpaint – I get that it’s based on the business model above but in the free version shouldn’t we see some branding?
- the name is a huge mistake – when I think of injected, I think of spam, viruses and web server attacks. They need a friendly name to go with their friendly product and "injected" certainly isn’t that.
- it’s perfect for content Web sites, but for blogs – what’s the reason to use this? It is post based, not site based and isn’t it really just a comment replacement? Since it’s post based, it loses it’s power on a blog. If a blog has two posts about Google, it’d be great to share the injected wiki across both.
- spam – the spammers will absolutely LOVE this – Elowitz did say they are working on some spam prevention tools and I also asked him to check on whether links inside the injected wiki use the nofollow attribute.
At the end of the day, this tool should help Wetpaint continue to grow and could prove beneficial to get Wetpaint on sites it normally would have no chance of getting into. It’s a smart move, both on the marketing/branding side and the business side.
We’ve covered wiki-creator Wetpaint several times before and today the have launched their Facebook application. Named Tag Team Graffiti, the idea is simple. You take a photo in Facebook and make it a masterpiece using tools like the Jackson Pollock brush, spray can, etc.
Once you’ve made your masterpiece, you save it and then your friends can "modify" it and so it becomes a tag team to create a super awesome masterpiece. Once you are satisfied with it, others can rate it and help you move up the leaderboard.
While you might be a winner in the ratings, the real winner here is Wetpaint. The application will draws huge pageviews with the rating system, you could spend hours just rating photos and each one is another view. And don’t forget you need your friends to install the app to really make it fun and effective. There aren’t any ads on the pages yet but you can bet your paint can that they will be there soon.
Here is a sample masterpiece:
The fine folks at Wetpaint have created a list of techniques to "Web 2.0" an office. Wetpaint makes Wiki tools so they probably share everything at their office. I have taken a stab below to give my commentary on each of their suggestions. Have a look at mine below, then review theirs. The only one I notice missing is a gaming network – shooting your fellow workers in Quake can help relieve stress.
Tip #1 – Disassemble the cubes
Sure, you don’t need any privacy! Calling mom to check on when she’s picking you up? You best head into the one conference room with walls and a door!
Tip #2 – Pillage the fallen for cheap furniture
I remember my first day at CKS in the mid-90s. They had 2 Aeron chairs for me at my desk area (it was very long with 2 work stations). I actually hate that chair – it was never comfortable to me and always made me feel like i was going to be thrown 40 feet in the air at any point. But it sure did say, "we know how to spend money!"
Tip #3 – Blacket the walls with whiteboards
Yea, nothing says Web 2.0 like whiteboards. When the press comes in, write up some code or some marketing lingo and draw some arrows. And put words like "acquisition" and so forth on the board. Then look at it in horror and erase it quickly. Would throw off those press types. If you do plan to use a whiteboard, USE AN ERASER. See Scoble sessions for why.
Tip #4 – Your company logo in the entryway
They are right – spend tons on the sign in the front – will make you appear 2 legit 2 quit. Though no name on the door can mean stealth startup and make employees feel more like a CIA agent. Add a secret number keypad for bonus points. Biometrics are so Web 1.0.
Tip #5 – Nerf balls
Let the boss win once in a while. Cuz when the funding is lower than expected, you know the person who dunked over the boss while everyone was watching is first to go.
Tip #6 – Project away
If you plan to use a projector – get one that can do more than 800×600 – that makes you look like a marketer. Anyone in the tech world should be using at least 1920×2500 on a projector!
Tip #7 – Circus Cookies & Diet Dr. Pepper
"Keep ‘em eating sugar and they will work 20 hrs a day" said a CEO to me at a conference. Why not add on some B5 vitamins hourly?
Tip #8 – Miles of disorganized wires
The true Web 2.0 shop has 14.2 miles of wires. Yes, I have done the research.
Tip #9 – Turbo coffee machine with never ending bean supply
Jason Calacanis believes this is his tool to keep his Mahaloployees happy. I won’t name the agency but one of the larger agencies in NYC has an actual coffee bar with barista inside the office for its employees. I’d prefer a lemonade bar.
Tip #10 – Lots of Headphones
I’ve been doing this for years. It’s the best conversation deflector there is! Even if there’s no sound, keep them on and the office gossip will stay away and so will your boss. If the boss breaks in, it is safe to worry that there’s something bad coming. Just keep the sound on loud and they too will go away.
There’s my thoughts on Web 2.0′ing your office, what are yours?