NY Tech Meetup — June 2008

Internet Week New York edition

Last night was the monthly NY Tech Meetup at IAC. Instead of the typical 5-minute presentations by new start-ups getting their feet wet, this month was a rather impressive line-up of successful Internet companies operating in New York.

As always, it was a sold-out room of 400+ developers, designers, entrepreneurs, writers, business analysts, project managers, and fanboys in the tech community. I was one of probably 30 women in the audience — which I certainly don’t mind. I live-tweeted from the event. The recap is below:

Opening Remarks

  • It’s the 45th monthly NY Tech Meetup. Dawn apologizes for all of the hassle getting in tonight — and to those who were shut out
  • Scott H says, “This is a special line-up for New York Internet Week… I don’t know what New York Internet Week is, but…”

Kevin Ryan, CEO of AlleyCorp (former CEO of DoubleClick)

  • Silicon Alley Insider their best-known property. ClusterStock (general business site), launched a couple weeks ago.
  • 10gen is a “cloud computing company” — alpha launches in late July
  • More than $35 billion assets created by New York Internet companies in the last 10 years. We rule!

Catherine Levene, COO of DailyCandy

  • Emails are 150 words or less, unique/fun voice. Something new you haven’t heard before. Started in New York. Now 21 editions
  • DailyCandy kids for “women who have been with us awhile and at a different stage in life” 12 editions.
  • 95% subscribers are women. College educated. Some disposable income. “Doer” “influencer” — sounds like a persona to me!
  • Make money through advertising on website and emails. High-end national advertisers.
  • DailyCandy’s future is beyond email. They see themselves now as a content company.

Rob Kalin, CEO of Etsy

  • Etsy is One of my favorite sites. Great search design
  • We used to take our last names from our family’s profession. Cooper, Taylor, Smith, etc. We had a connection to what we made.
  • Etsy lets us connect to handmade goods. It’s connected to NYC (founded in Brooklyn), the dirt & the grind. Isn’t easy to do, but worth it
  • 50 sellers this year making more than $200,000 just be selling on Etsy

Betsy Morgan, CEO & Jonah Peretti, Co-Founder of Huffington Post

  • Betsy: Progressive blog with Arianna Huffington at the helm. Started with 100 of her friends writing. Now at 1600 bloggers today.
  • Betsy: 150 people in the organization. They created a new type of news editorial with few people
  • Jonah: Focused on how people read and share news on the web. It’s a blog, but really about displaying news headlines. Technology a big piece
  • Jonah: Editors’ interface shows data in real-time. If story isn’t being clicked, they can change the headline easily.”Dialog with audience”
  • Guy in the audience asked if Huffington Post would be interested in selling their editorial analytics platform. Jonah said “good idea”

Marc Cenedella, CEO of The Ladders

  • They’re the largest $100k+ job website. According to Scott, they make the most $ in NY too
  • Site uses Ajax to avoid page reloads. Quick and easy for jobseekers. On recruiters side, display PNGs of résumés instead of Word docs

Greg Whalin, CTO & Maya Voskoboynikov, GPM of Meetup.com

  • Meetup is showing the redesign of Meetup.com. See it here
  • Maya: Cleaner, more streamlined. Very important to them for user-generated content to have more prominence & Meetup-content to take backseat
  • Maya: Meetup.com finally gonna use Ajax. In-page drag and drop, tabbing, filtering, etc.
  • Maya: Meetup now integrated with Amazon Payments! They’ll be Amazon’s largest partner
  • Maya: Meetup going local. Entire site translated. Starting in Italian with more languages to come.
  • Greg: The Meetup API!!!! Python and Javascript client-side formats (if I heard that right)

David Uyttendaele & Jeff Stewart, Founders of Mimeo

  • Mimeo lets you print to special high-tech magic printers off-site using your Command(Control)+Print command. Integrates with Print dialog
  • Sends your doc to the website. Lets you choose paper stock, binding, cover, etc. Virtually “flip” through the document before you print.
  • Mimeo gets it to you by FedEx overnight so long as you send it to them before 10pm.

Chris Phenner, VPBD of Thumbplay

  • Ringtones and cell phone games company
  • There’s a difference b/w a site w pages/assets, and a *service* that you have a relationship with. Thumbplay is both
  • Thumbplay integrates w AOL, MSN, Dizzler (“I’m sure you were all there today”). API-based integrations
  • Send “Get U2” to 48000 for free ringtone. No, this tweet is not spam

Panel Discussion

  • Advice to starups: start w the customer, be comfy in your space, focus, have a vision, be flexible, be different, just do it already!
  • In 96: no lawyers had taken a co public, VCs wouldn’t listen. Things have changed.

Overall it was really nice to acknowledge all the innovation that has happened here. Congrats to anyone and everyone who has put their blood, sweat and tears into creating something new, something revolutionary, and something meaningful for the universe.

I started attending these Meetups in January, and each time I go just to see the presentations and quickly rush out. I don’t really know anyone there and I’m not great at randomly introducing myself to people. But since organizing the tweetups, I’ve met a lot of great people and found that I actually knew 10-15 folks there last night. I hung around the cocktail party at IAC and then headed over to The Park, a kinda kitschy/cheesy indoor-outdoor bar on 10th Avenue. A whole bunch of folks showed up there, and it ended up being a late night. I’m really excited for all the new connections I’m making and look forward to whatever is next for me.

Just wanna give a shout-out to some of the people I talked to last night:

Corey Henderson, Matt Knell, Chrissie Brodigan, Sandy Santra, Frederic Guarino, Trace Wax, Tony Bacigalupo, Mike Lewis, Nate Westheimer, Charlie O’Donnell, Matt Zarzecki, Nichelle Stephens, Ari Greenberg, Justin Smithline, and a guy named VoltronVolkan.

Sorry if I missed anyone.

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  1. Volkan says

    haha. You got my name wrong, but close enough. Being mistaken for the Defender of the Universe (you can look it up) is very gratifying. :-)


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