May 07, 2014

Will App.net be able to survive with no full time employees?

I like the concept of app.net, basically a paid version of twitter with more features and without the advertising...and without the user becoming the product...so I was a little disappointed to hear today that the company has cut back to the point to having no full time employees. The company says that they are still in the black, but obviously not by much if they are down to part-timers only. Is this the death rattle of app.net, or can the company continue to operate at this level?

App.net Is Doomed

"I really want(ed) App.net to succeed. Twitter went to a weird place where the nerdy users that helped build the network up in the early days are being shunned and told that we’re wrong for wanting beautiful and flexible apps and interfaces, not wanting ads and not wanting to see hashtags for everything. I know, we’re not the average user. The average user has never wanted an archive of their tweets. And the idea of App.net was exciting, if not a little suspicious. It seemed a little too ambitious and a little too good to be true."
Their offering has evolved somewhat since 2012, and was at once time offering bounties in the tens of thousands of dollars to developers. That is clearly no longer the case. I don’t know the specifics of their financials, but when you are laying off your full time employees, it can’t be good. They still may be able to soldier on, but if people and businesses are confident that the company is going to be around, it is going to be all that much more difficult to attract new users. This may not be the end, but I would call the future outlook murky at best. I hope they make it.
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