We went straight from the Vegas-based Collision conference into Internet Week New York last week, so forgive us for being a little tardy with our recap.
As many know, we attend a lot of conferences and most of them do have a similar plug-and-play feel to them. Refreshingly, Collision had a more of curated feel; providing opportunities for prime networking and learning, in a natural manner. We found ourselves in super interesting and engaging, impromptu meetings, in all places: Downtown Las Vegas. Aside from the prerequisite main stage activities and start-up village; round tables allowed conference attendees to hear from and interact with the keynote speakers on a smaller scale.
A few key tidbits we picked up:
Matt Gilligan of Circa touched on how to build apps smarter, and recommended using Helpshift as an assist. Also, to be realistic about what purpose your app serves.
We really enjoyed the roundtable from Nicole Glaros, managing director of Techstars. She gave some killer advice on how to seek out and secure VC funding, it involved a lot of networking. Her blog shares some other noteworthy start-up musings.
Another highlight was meeting the CEO of Evernote, Phil Libin; a personal hero, partly because our business would be lost without Evernote. We were impressed by his humble demeanor and insight on how to accept and react to criticism from customers. He also stressed the importance of focusing on your product and not industry accolades.
Technology-wise, Wemo from Belkin, a new app to control your home appliances, otherwise known as the ‘Internet Of Things’, blew us away. They also demoed their product with the cutest puppies, a total crowd pleaser.
A few other start-ups that caught our attention were;
a solution to payday loans
Carelulu - a site that vets childcare options for parents in their area
PhoneSurgeons - a franchise of expert smartphone repair stores and services
- a closed platform to share new articles with your team
Startup highlight: 3 Questions with Lobster
We ran into Olga Egorsheva, Co-founder & CEO of lobster on the street and loved what the company was up to—creating a marketplace for people to legally gain access to Instagram and Flickr images. Users enter the marketplace by using the hashtag #ilobsterit and take a 75% cut when their image is purchased.
Here’s what she had to say:
1. What do you see as the main issues with copyright infringement in today’s social media landscape?
The lack of a simple method to acquire content legally. Our marketplace let’s you search, discover, choose and buy photos from Instagram and Flickr. Secondly, the culture still needs evolving—like people have largely learned to use iTunes and Spotify instead of downloading pirate music, we are leading them to same recognition of intellectual property rights of content producers. We are building a culture around media’s legal use, by providing a tool to acquire content.
Take for example, Daniel Morel’s story, where the damages to Getty Images were upwards of $1.2 million. Many other less notable users suffer when their photos are illegally copied on most common social networks. At the same time, digital agencies, from advertising giants to smaller boutique shops are not able to get a hold of lively, diverse, inexpensive content, while users produce everyday.
2. Have you gotten significant interest from everyday content creators looking to earn a few extra dollars?
Yes, we have—especially when content creators hear that there are interested potential buyers, e.g. when we are running a specific photo challenge for #fatherhood photos in collaboration with a brand. At the moment we connect these requests for content on a case-by-case basis, but are automating the process soon.
3. How have you seen people using content purchased from Lobster? We have so far seen demand mostly from digital agencies buying photos for their campaigns or from certain themes like travel and family, which lend well to everyday content from creators and appeals to their users more than that of professional stocks.
We also created this cool real time data visualization page with our partners Nexalogy to capture the real time social media conversation. Click Here to see the page live.