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Summary:

Dennis Crowley, founder of DodgeBall, a hipster SMS-social networking service that Google bought back in May 2005 has quit Google, reports Young Manhattanite. Alex Rainert, employee #2 for DodgeBall has also left the company. They both resigned on April 13th, 2007. DodgeBall suffered from apathy and […]

Dennis Crowley, founder of DodgeBall, a hipster SMS-social networking service that Google bought back in May 2005 has quit Google, reports Young Manhattanite. Alex Rainert, employee #2 for DodgeBall has also left the company. They both resigned on April 13th, 2007.

DodgeBall suffered from apathy and not much happened with the service that once was a coast-to-coast rage. DodgeBall has been replaced by Twitter and Jaiku, the new shiny things amongst those who love such services. Here is their announcement on Flickr!

It’s no real secret that Google wasn’t supporting dodgeball the way we expected. The whole experience was incredibly frustrating for us – especially as we couldn’t convince them that dodgeball was worth engineering resources, leaving us to watch as other startups got to innovate in the mobile + social space. And while it was a tough decision (and really disappointing) to walk away from dodgeball, I’m actually looking forward to getting to work on other projects again.

Like DodgeBall, Blogger team members and dMarc founders left GooglePlex, preferring to follow their own internal algorithm instead of working for Google. It seems like a trend: for entrepreneurs who sellout to Google, Google money is good, but working for Google, not so good!

Photo via Flickr

  1. “Google’s money good, working for Google, not so good!”

    I think it’s this:

    Working for Google, good for most.

    Startup entrepreneurs working for Google (or whoever becomes their overlords), not so good.

    I mean, look how many happy employees there are at Google?

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  2. Daniel,

    Isn’t that what I was saying…

    Maybe not as clearly…. ;-)

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  3. :D Must not have had my GigaTranslator glasses on correctly. Everything seems to be reading properly now.

    Also: it’s interesting that they used Flickr as their tool of departure notification to the rest of the world, rather than some other means (blogs, twitter, press release, video, etc.).

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  4. Is this any different for any entrepreneur bought by a larger company. YouTube is imploding, Flickr is stagnating, delicious is losing ground to magnolia etc.

    Once you’ve taken the money and gone inside the corporate towers, it is often the lack of nimbleness that frustrates the entrepreneurs.

    The best option is bank the money, serve out your notice period and go do it again.

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  5. [...] [via] [...]

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  6. DodgeBall founder quits Google…

    Dennis Crowley, founder of DodgeBall, a hipster SMS-social networking service that Google bought back in May 2005 has quit Google, reports Young Manhattanite. Alex Rainert, employee #2 for DodgeBall has also left the company. They both resigned on Apri…

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  7. …another example that demonstrates that if you sell out to Google…be sure to get all your $$$ upfront…

    Om…posts late at night…and (very) early in the morning…when do you sleep? :-)

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  8. [...] Parece que el equipo original de DodgeBall, la red social móvil que compró Google hace un tiempo, dejó las oficinas de Mountain View el pasado viernes tras largas deliberaciones, según un artículo publicado en GigaOm. [...]

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  9. Okay, so they were unhappy. Is this the way to announce it, though? The business world is small, tech is even smaller.

    Just seems more short-sighted. Keep such things private, if that’s even possible anymore.

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  10. i didn’t realize dodgeball was ever a success beyond being acquired.

    can i get a check in?

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  11. Daniel:

    Flickr stagnating? Huh?! You’ve clearly not been paying attention.

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  12. Correction: Alex and Dennis were co-founders of the service, as well as business partners. Alex was more than just a “#2 employee.”

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  13. [...] Om covers the departure of DodgeBall’s founder and first employee from the Googleplex. Of particular note is the comment in the departing team member’s announcement: It’s no real secret that Google wasn’t supporting dodgeball the way we expected. The whole experience was incredibly frustrating for us – especially as we couldn’t convince them that dodgeball was worth engineering resources, leaving us to watch as other startups got to innovate in the mobile + social space. [...]

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  14. I can’t help but wonder what this says about G’s acquistion strategies- it seems to me like Google is not interested in buying any sort of idea/work structure, but just raw market share and then incorporating it into their own models.

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  15. I thought Dodgeball died a quiet death. Well, that teaches me to think that a stupid idea just dies…

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  16. “coast to coast rage”? That service had a couple thousand people max. Google is into successful stuff, not press hype.

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  17. [...] DodgeBall founder quits Google  [...]

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  18. Jeremy Zawodny: Not I that thinks that Flickr is stagnating… I’m a huge fan & paid through 2009…

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  19. [...] already), it appears as though Facebook has just begun to chip away at Twitter (which already chipped away heavily at Dodgeball.) Add to that the fact that Twitter has suffered a lot of server downtime due to its [...]

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  20. [...] GigaOM » DodgeBall founder quits Google DodgeBall suffered from apathy and not much happened with the service that once was a coast-to-coast rage. (tags: dodgeball) [...]

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  21. [...] Dodgeball: Founders disllusioned. Never merged with Orkut. Pwnd by Twitter and Jaiku. [...]

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  22. [...] others also share that vision. Google seems to have abandoned their Dodgeball acquisition, but they could reinvest in this space and leverage the hundreds of millions of Google accounts in [...]

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  23. [...] others also share that vision. Google seems to have abandoned their Dodgeball acquisition, but they could reinvest in this space and leverage the hundreds of millions of Google accounts in [...]

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  24. [...] updated in 2006, Dodgeball, a mobile social network acquired by Google in 2005 that stagnated after its founders left Google, and Mapshup Editor, a project that will be replaced by the more powerful Google App [...]

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  25. [...] updated in 2006, Dodgeball, a mobile social network acquired by Google in 2005 that stagnated after its founders left Google, and Mapshup Editor, a project that will be replaced by the more powerful Google App [...]

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  26. [...] About two years later, both the founder and the second employee of Dodgeball leave Google, saying: It’s no real secret that Google wasn’t supporting dodgeball the way we expected. The [...]

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  27. [...] he’s building the product he wanted to build with Dodgeball, but couldn’t. (He had an acrimonious and very public split with Google.) Crowley believes that if you make software that allows people to discover new places and [...]

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  28. [...] Dennis Crowley, avait vendu Dodgeball à Google en 2005 . Mais comme Google a enterré le service, il reprend sa liberté en avril 2007. Il fonde foursquare en mars 2009 avec peu ou prou la même idée. En témoigne le [...]

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  29. [...] the company outright (which founder Dennis Crowley did with his previous company, Dodgeball, to Google). The Union Square VC adds that discussions with potential acquirers also: …allowed the [...]

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