Not to get all TechCrunch on you, but here's proof that you can still get $4 million in funding for a startup. Palo Alto based Zuberance just scored its Series A from Emergence Capital Partners. The pitch is simple. Zuberance offers a hosted customer-community site, for companies that sell consumer products and services. The companies pay Zuberance a subscription fee, rather than trying to buy or build their own. What struck me: "Zuberance automatically publishes advocate content like product reviews and testimonials to popular websites like Amazon.com, C-Net, TripAdvisor, YouTube, Facebook ..." At what point did unpaid product reviewer become the hottest new writing gig?
Hikers at Mammoth Lakes, near California's Yosemite Park, have stumbled upon two FAA IDs that bear aviator Steve Fossett's name, as well as a jacket and some cash. Fossett has been listed missing since disappearing from a solo flight in September of last year. Internet users had teamed up to review satellite photos to find traces of Fossett without success. One reasonable conclusion from this: Random chance provides more effective results than sit-at-your-desk crowdsourcing. [Fox News]
Steve Cuozzo in the Post hates Wikipedia, that "engine of ignorance 'compiled by volunteers' and masquerading as a legitimate reference work." He's right! It gets things about New York City all wrong, as he points out—not just wrong, but "notoriously wrong-headed."Among its many crowdsourced errors:
When patron of the arts William Kingsland died in 2006, he left a big stack of paintings behind. Guess what, some of them were stolen back in the 60s, Animal New York tells us. Now the FBI is—wait for it—crowdsourcing its investigation of the paintings' origins. They put photos of the paintings on their website. After the jump: do you recognize any of these paintings? Plz halp! Luv, FBI.
Turns out that you can't crowdsource a good book but you can crowdsource a good movie. The dark indie comedy Iron Sky was put together with the help of over 3000 people organized through an online system that has already turned out one film. They released a trailer Tuesday (shown below, along with the creators' first film). The premise: During World War II, Nazis escaped to the moon, and now they're back. Awesome.
Somebody must have snatched a photo of last night's shoving match between Kristian Laliberte, Gawker's favorite benefit-hopping gay, and Derek Blasberg, self-appointed arbiter of socialite status. Of course, it wasn't much of a match. Laliberte—accused by Blasberg of bad-mouthing the Style.com reporter—was reduced to tears, poor dear. Photos to email@example.com.