Gawk.it update

I sent the note below out to my short list of ‘insiders’ a couple of weeks ago. (insiders in this case are the people that have either directly pitched in on the product or given me actual in-person advice around the product).
 
After having a few other offline conversations with people, I realized that even though I had done this update, and I think it makes clear my current focus and mindset, since it wasn’t public not everyone was aware of where my mind is at.
 
So, to make things open and official, I’m dumping out my note for all of you (the three extras that actually read my blog) to also know about.
 
——-
 
It’s been awhile since I’ve given a proper update, and so this is an attempt to correct that (sorry about the length; tried to make it as short as possible).
Over the past 6 months, my work in the conversation, search, and discovery space has really been broken out into three core services/products/brands: gawk.itknowabout.it, and greentile.com
 
I will address each in it’s own separate section below:
 
gawk.it (site and conversation search):
 
 
gawk.it as a product and a brand is something that I love and will continue to support, improve, and evolve. I’m excited and very interested in making it killer for the exclusive few that have it installed but the truth is that I’m just not passionate about trying to scale installs or increase it’s revenue.
 
In short, I’ve discovered it’s a product I love but not a business I really want to build.
 
knowabout.it (conversation alerting):
knowabout.it is another service I get a ton of personal value out of and will also continue to use, support, improve, and evolve…but again is not really something I’m passionate about trying to build into a large business.
 
greentile.com (conversation analysis):
 
greentile is just an interesting Disqus API hack. I rarely use it myself but it does seem to have a small set of passionate fans. Honestly I wouldn’t even know how to turn it into a business, but regardless it’s *very* low cost and so I intend to support it as long as it retains fans.
 
The result
 
Luckily these systems are basically operating at break-even (thanks mostly to a white-labeled, subscription-based, hybrid of this stuff I’ve built/support for a non profit in NC).
 
So I believe each can continue to happily survive and be supported/improved by mostly just me on the side for the foreseeable future.
 
In the meantime, I continue to be focused on my CTO gig with pubgears (adtech; helping publishers solve problems) and am getting back to my statsfeed roots a bit with my coachwizard.com team/concept/product (youth sports; save coaches time; simplify volunteer coaching).
 
Across the board, I’m not actively looking for investment and am just focused on improving and growing the fan base for each of the products (though pubgears, which has been profitable every month since inception, is casually talking to some potential investors).
 
What I am (always) looking for are:
 
1. Quality additions to the team (designers, especially with mobile, are my hottest need right now).
 
2. Strategic introductions.
 
3. User feedback, requests, and ideas.
 
So I think that's it for now. As always, just let me know if you’ve got any questions, comments, or feedback…and thanks for taking time to read all this!
 
- Kevin
 
p.s. gawk.it and knowabout.it will eventually have native ad revenue as well to help keep them in the black, I’m just not in a hurry to build it out, turn it on, or scale that up right now.

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This is the personal blog of Kevin Marshall (a.k.a Falicon) where he often digs into side projects he's working on for digdownlabs.com and other random thoughts he's got on his mind.

Kevin has a day job as CTO of Veritonic and is spending nights & weekends hacking on Share Game Tape. You can also check out some of his open source code on GitHub or connect with him on Twitter @falicon or via email at kevin at falicon.com.

If you have comments, thoughts, or want to respond to something you see here I would encourage you to respond via a post on your own blog (and then let me know about the link via one of the routes mentioned above).