For sometime I have been scratching my head about the $8.3 million funding received by Daylife, a news aggregator of sorts, wondering how could this start-up, a mainstream media mash-up of Digg-style voting site, a meme tracker and plain-old news aggregator, get such a massive amount of funding. Answer to the Why question proved to be a bit elusive. (Updated: Hipmojo believes that there is a need for such a start-up, though not necessarily Daylife.)
And then Paul Kedrosky posted his summary of his SuperNova appearance, pointing out that an innately large number of start-ups were channeling Paris Hilton, the most vapid of all celebrities, who I have often dismissed as a sad reflection of shallow modern celebrity culture. And that just might be my problem.
Hilton is someone a lot of people care about – and thus is a symbol of something bigger – mainstreaming of the web, blogs and broadband. Kedrosky rightly points out, “is unassailable evidence of the arrival of the web as mass, popular media.”
Those who follow Hilton including sites like TMZ, PopSugar and scores of others are leveraging the broadband to build brands that till recently were relegated to the checkout counter of your local Safeway. These brands, and if their traffic is any indicator, are going to attract the hordes, which is going to attract even more advertising to the web.
And that sort of explains why Daylife – another mainstream play – attracted all that cash. Maybe ;-)