Blog Post Wins Funding, Opens Platform

Stay on Top of Enterprise Technology Trends

Get updates impacting your industry from our GigaOm Research Community
Join the Community!, a startup that will forever risk coming off as a prolonged publicity stunt rather than a business, is rolling out the platform it’s been saying was the point all along. Starting out with founder Justin Kan broadcasting his life 24/7 from a hat-cam was a way to grab attention, but now the company will open up its live video streaming services to anyone with a webcam, a computer, and an Internet connection.

That’s liable to get mighty expensive, and has enlisted venture capital firm Alsop Louie to foot the undisclosed bill. But CEO Michael Seibel said in an interview Tuesday that by building its own equivalent of Flash Media Servers and using Amazon EC2, the company has cut costs from a market rate of approximately $0.36 per user hour to under a penny per user hour.

Over the past six months, also changed its approach from requiring a custom backpack worn by each broadcaster to being compatible with any webcam. Since then, a good number of competitors have also made themselves known, including Mogulus, BlogTV,,, and the comparatively old Stickam (see our comparison of their relative offerings).

Some 800 people have signed up during the beta period, with a mix of small to significant audiences. Up-and-coming band the Jonas Brothers has been the biggest hit to date, with 80,000 uniques and a maximum of 14,000 simultaneous viewers turning in for a live chat last week. That seems like a much more sustainable draw than getting your founder to live-broadcast his dates with girls. Yet every other broadcaster, including Justin himself, seems to have less than 300 viewers present most of the times I’ve stopped by the site.

Seibel said the seven-employee company has plans to make money but doesn’t want to talk about them yet. So far it’s just one-off sponsorships and events, he admitted. The only limitations is placing on would-be lifecasters are they have to be at least 13 years old and abide by posted community guidelines.

21 Responses to “ Wins Funding, Opens Platform”

  1. thanks for the post! i’ve checked and i’m really amazed that these people did such a good job. too bad it doesn’t have the latests tv shows like gossip girls. wish also the quality would be the same as on cacaotv where you can watch free movies and TV shows online (over there : but at least these websites are better than torrent pirate bay because they are legal!

  2. Hey,
    I really like these new Platforms where you can broadcast yourself! But I have a question: Is it possible to directly broadcast from your mobile @, just like your are able @ Because, that kinda rocks!!!! =)



  3. Ok great here comes the masses! Will limit the number of channels I can have or can someone with Multiple Personlity Disoder broadcast on 12 separate streams? Hmm where’s the press release. When will I be able to download clips and post them to youtube? Questions so many questions…

    Guess I’ll just have to go see good old faithfull slavishishly diligent and brilliant Justopia to see what’s really going on!

    Meanwhile get to and sign up fast before someone else begins streaming under your name!