Jason Shellen at Plinky.com as Seen on CNN.com – Something Doesn’t Make Sense

http://www.cnn.com/2009/LIVING/worklife/01/08/jumping.ship/index.html

Upon visiting Plinky.com, you’ll notice there’s nothing there.  If you go to any of the Plinky blogs listed, there’s nothing of substance there either.   So, I wonder what Jason is talking about when he says…

“You don’t find that in a small company.  At my new company, Plinky, we sometimes dream things up in the morning and by the afternoon have it live on the Web. That never happens at a big company.”

Weird.  Also, not to be overly critical because I love start-ups, but I probably wouldn’t accept an interview request from CNN (!) about jumping ship until my new company’s site added some sort of value besides an email sign-up.  Just a thought.

Update (1/22): Plinky.com is live.  After @aubs showed some love on Twitter, I gave Plinky a whirl.  The registration was easy yet stupidly quirky.   The service – unless it drastically evolves – offers little (to no) value.  Hey, whoever funded Plinky.com, I’ve got some oceanfront property to sell you in Idaho.  Jason, will Google hire you back?

7 thoughts on “Jason Shellen at Plinky.com as Seen on CNN.com – Something Doesn’t Make Sense

  1. I am all for entrepreneurship, but these have to be classic cases of what not to do. These three and the reporter who wrote this story should be put in business school as cases reflecting what not to do.

    The challenge is that success as a mid manager in a corporation does not lend itself to being on your own. These are three bureaucrats not entrepreneurs. If someone is going to start a new business, the story would read more like they found a major niche and were able to research it, perform the associated demographic analysis and capitalize on the opportunity. Not talk about how their life sucks in corporations and to make their life interesting they are going to seek out failure. Plinky.com is a prime example of what in the world is this site doing that nobody else is doing? How many more years before it gets up?

    Why did the author pick these three. There are so many success stories out there to write about and get some valuable insight on what TO DO. This article might inspire additional irrational thinking or the irrational exuberance that has gotten this economy into this mess in the first place.

    The article is sad. I commend the three for trying, but they definitely are not the poster child for being entrepreneurs. They are a great poster child for the bureaucrats making business decisions in corporate america.

  2. I wish CNN had turned on their “comments” section for their article.

    The silly notion that “startups” are still the way to a brighter future and healthier sense of well-being sounds like something from 1998. Who researched the background of these corporate “entrepreneurs” to conclude that their actions exemplify risk-taking?

    The reporter would have provided a more interesting story on how the Vanessa Fox got her job at Google in the first place! As a former Silicon Valley technology manager I myself had tried unsuccessfully to obtain a meager interview with their various “business units” at Google. It was impossible to get a response on my candidacy status.

    Thanks DM (poster above me) for pointing out the shallow nature of the CNN article. Again, I wish CNN would open up their comment board for this article.

  3. In 2000 when I started working on Blogger I heard “blogging is dumb”, “I would never use that” and “this isn’t ever going to be big time”. Yet, here we are. My only success hasn’t been as a mid-level manager – I helped manage a small struggling company through a downturn during the first bubble burst. Plinky is not all it’s ever going to be on day one. I’m not surprised to hear that it doesn’t rub you the right way, but maybe in time there will be features or aspects that work for you.

    For the record, I did try and correct the reporter before that went to print to say “We can” not “we do”. However, now it’s true.

  4. Jason, thanks for commenting. Please let me know plinky’s value add.

    I’m technologically up to speed, have twice spent 15 minutes on plinky.com, and (as a maven) wouldn’t recommend the website to anyone.

    P.S. Cool logo and layout.

  5. I think as I have told many people over the past year or so, having a front row seat at Blogger – I got to see a lot of people frustrated with the current social media tools. Creating a blog: easy. Finding something to write about: medium. Maintaining that over a more than six month period: hard!

    There are a lot of people, probably yourself included, that find sharing their thoughts and ideas an easy proposition. Flickr, Blogger, Twitter, Delicious, the list goes on – if you are an active sharer by nature this stuff is easy for you. You are one of the active 500k who maintain interesting blogs. However, the other 96.5 Million people who have started blogs and abandoned them are looking for a little more help than what has been offered.

    On the technological side, Plinky is here to make it seem simple. Behind the scenes we: integrate with third-party API’s like Google Maps & Flickr CC search and many more in the coming months. We also are integrated with all major blogging API’s, plus Twitter and Facebook Connect to publish rich posts the the open web. None of which is terribly interesting if you know a thing or two about javascript and HTML. Again, the audience of people who don’t is much larger than those who do.

    I didn’t launch Plinky to be Yet Another Social Network. In fact, if you only used Plinky to post to your blog or Twitter every day and never used the social features, it still would add value through the technical help and inspirational prompts. It turns out that people do want to connect over content and we provide those features for those that do want that connection.

    Lastly, Plinky is for fun just like the TV show “The Office” is for fun. I didn’t set out to create a Google Office-killer. I thought people would think Plinky would be fun and the current users of the site seem to be having a good time. I would recommend it for people looking for a little inspiration, motivation or looking to be part of a larger conversation while having fun.

    Thanks for hearing me out.

  6. Jason,

    My last two attempts at using Plinky.com started (and ended) with me being prompted to answer a question. One of them was sort of fun to answer (driving music) while the other one was weird (animal would you like to tame). I guess I need to dig deeper into the functionality this weekend.

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