Why is Scribd so hot?

35 Comments

Last couple of days from many different sources we have been hearing about this little company called Scribd. A funding frenzy is taking place around the company, with some of the top name venture capitalists jostling to invest in the company. There has been talk of an acquisition offer as well.

What we have heard from multiple and reliable sources that the company was offered $5 million on a post money valuation of $10 million, but passed on that offer. Someone offered to buy them but for now our sources say that Redpoint Ventures has invested a substantial amount of money at twice the valuation of the initial offer.

We asked Chris Moore, a partner at Redpoint Ventures, about all the hoopla, and he offered a “no comment.”

Scribd had previously raised about $300,000 in seed funding, on top of $12,000 it received from Y Combinator. What is Scribd anyway? As per their FAQ:

Scribd lets you publish and discover documents online. It is like a big online library where anyone can upload. We make use of a custom Flash document viewer that lets you display documents right in your Web browser.

Part of the idea behind Scribd is that everyone has a lot of documents sitting around on their computers that only they can read. With Scribd we hope to unlock this information by putting it on the web.

The technology behind the company is pretty impressive, and the traffic growth according to Compete.com and Quantcast has been pretty impressive. though one has to wonder if it merits such high valuation. A sign of the times?

35 Comments

Dr. Nick Begich

Scribd.com took my copyrighted book and gave it away to over 27,000 people for free. Others took my four copyrighted DVDs and did the same thing for over 100,000 copies (10 times more than I sold). The effect of this….I’m not writing or producing DVDs anymore as apparently free = valueless.

The lack of protection assures that we move in other directions. The thieves were all US firms with a business model that perpetrates theft.

It is time for a change. I thought about litigating and still might. My brother is a United States Senator and I will be spending some time researching this by speaking and working with the law firms that have already litigated against scribd.com and others. So that a law can be crafted that will shut down all of these sites and collect compensation from those that have only served to stifle research by theft….For those that supported my work…thank you for that…..

Dave Mendoza

Scribd WAS hot when it was just “this little company…”

But it shared the fate of every online service, software company or what have you out there that gets too big for its own head:

While “page clicks” or “reads” may be impressive numbers, they don’t really indicate genuine interest, such as a download would imply, and since Scribd removed the download stats for an individual document, they’re as good as saying,
“What the f… do we care whether anybody actually READS your document. We just assume you’re dumb enough to go gaga about our big numbers…”

Scribd was hot. Once upon a time. Now it will never be the same today that it was yesterday because they just keep from fiddling with it in order to make it “better” (for them).

Mark

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madcap

“Scribd lets you publish and discover documents online. It is like a big online library where anyone can upload. We make use of a custom Flash document viewer that lets you display documents right in your Web browser.”

That’s great, cause if there’s one thing that my Web browser needed, it’s a way to display documents right inside it. I can’t believe Sir Berners-Lee left that feature out of the Web… what an oversight!

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