Redeye VC

Josh Kopelman

Managing Director of First Round Capital.

espite being coastally challenged (currently living in Philadelphia), Josh has been an active entrepreneur and investor in the Internet industry since its commercialization. In 1992, while he was a student at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Josh co-founded Infonautics Corporation – an Internet information company. In 1996, Infonautics went public on the NASDAQ stock exchange.

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Permanent Record

Fr100392_1 I am pleased to welcome my partner at First Round Capital, Rob Hayes, to the blogosphere.  His new blog, Permanent Record, is off to a wonderful start.  In his most recent post, Rob is right-on with his comments on Web 2.0, where he astutely observes that:

"the Web 2.0 label will inevitably end up in the dustbin of overused company descriptors (where it can have a cup of coffee with B2B, nano, and any non-medical usage of the word “eyeball”)..." 

I share his concerns.  While I'm looking forward to attending the Web 2.0 Conference next week as a convenient location to hold many of my west-coast meetings, I've come to believe that Web 2.0 has no useful meaning  as a company descriptor.  What started as an attempt to classify an emerging form of business model has come to signify any Internet company that was formed after 2003.  I don't look to fund Web 2.0 businesses - I look to fund good businesses.  I don't care if you use AJAX to develop your website any more than if you use Ajax to clean your office furniture -- just show me how you will satisfy an urgent and pervasive customer need and how you will generate revenue.   

Welcome to the blogosphere Rob - I can't wait to hear what you have to say next...

Rob's Blog, Permanent Record, can be found at http://permanentrecord.firstround.com/



Comments

Mark S

There you have it on the money. What I see is akin to the early days in computer games. Way back yonder anyone could develop a game in their basement and find a way to get it published. The problem was that most of those games were garbage...just like most "web 2.0" sites.

The *vast* majority of these players are creating defenseless technologies and, at best, offering a minor feature under the guise of a revolutionary site with colors selected from a palette of 20. It's a joke really.

Perhaps the bigger joke is that vcs keep funding this stuff. They look for communities instead of real value believing it will be easier to monetize page views than create something that actually matters. Eventually though 3D will eclipse 2D and a sea of this junk will be swept away. Eventually AJAX will be coupled with amazing back end technology that only a handful of companies will have the power to muster. Eventually Madden has to make money and betting on GTA will be based on ROI. Eventually no intelligent investor will advise a company not to worry about making money. Eventually the train will come around the bend, web2.0 will join the vat of other lost buzzwords, and, for a brief period, we will return to the logic of this post.

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