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Foursquare Turns Down $100M

CmdrTaco posted more than 4 years ago | from the stop-telling-me-where-you-are dept.

Businesses 189

theodp writes "Valleywag is stupefied that 'an annoying, unprofitable social network like Foursquare would turn down $100 million,' a move inspired in part by Twitter's 2008 rejection of a $500 million offer from Facebook, which in turn once rejected a $900 million bid from Yahoo. Time will tell whether the move by Foursquare was a prescient one, but it's certainly gutsy. After all, today's $850 million company can prove to be tomorrow's worthless one, right AOL?"

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WTF? (4, Insightful)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776386)

Christ, I don't think I've ever even heard of these guys. They should have took the money & ran.

Re:WTF? (5, Funny)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776470)

Christ, I don't think I've ever even heard of these guys. They should have took the money & ran.

Agreed. With that kind of money you could almost afford your own US Senator ... or US Representative at the least. With one of those they could start pushing their pro-Square agenda. For far too long the Mods and the Rockers have enjoyed an unquestioned two party system ...

Re:WTF? (4, Insightful)

ircmaxell (1117387) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776486)

Unless this is a marketing ploy (Have a friend "offer" $100 Million, just so you can turn it down publicly)... After all, news that a social site turns down huge money would likely generate publicity...

Re:WTF? (5, Funny)

bFusion (1433853) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776530)

I don't think Yahoo has any friends.

Re:WTF? (1)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777078)

Microsoft and Apple.

Re:WTF? (2, Funny)

syrinx (106469) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777122)

"I invited your best friend Geocities, only he couldn't come, because you murdered him."

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777208)

"... All your other business partners couldn't come either, because you don't have any other business partners because of how unprofitable you are. It says so right here in your personnel file; 'Unprofitable. Invested in by no one. A bitter uninvestible loner whose financial decline shall not be mourned.' SHALL NOT BE MOURNED. That's exactly what it says. Very formal. Very official. It also says you keep changing search providers. So that's funny too."

Re:WTF? (1)

blackraven14250 (902843) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777216)

posting to undo misclick on redundant.

Re:WTF? (1)

Dalambertian (963810) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777590)

Honestly, I'm going to have to go with FourSquare on this one. Why should the most innovative companies get swallowed by bigger fish? It only takes away control over their product, causing untold suffering to millions (\s). Do you applaud every time banks buy each other out? Let the mom and pop tech start-ups find their own way.

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777852)

It only takes away control over their product, causing untold suffering to millions (\s).

LMFAO. Unless of course by "untold suffering" you mean literally hundreds of people nerd-raging about the fact they can no longer be mayor of their favorite hipster wannabe joint...? Get some perspective...

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31776560)

You know, I thought the exact same thing when Facebook was turning down similar offers from Google and Yahoo a couple of years ago. Screw me.

Re:WTF? (1)

bangwhistle (971272) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776612)

Maybe the previous deal he made with Google soured him on big biz, or maybe $100 million just isn't enough? Who are we to question the ways of revolutionary thinkers?

Re:WTF? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777020)

Who are we to question the ways of revolutionary thinkers?

You know, that IS a good philosophical question. The revolutionaries ARE, in fact, quite commonly seen as the outcasts of society, screaming against an establishment they envision as wrong and detrimental to their respective communities. Are we so entrenched in our own beliefs to the point where we are completely blind to progress? These thinkers seem to believe so. History has vindicated several of these different-thinkers, though admittedly relatively few.

It's fun to discuss, but I don't see how this applies to your first sentence or an annoying little "me-too" social networking website that nobody cares about and isn't even worth $20k, let alone $100M.

Re:WTF? (4, Informative)

reverseengineer (580922) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776624)

Apparently, this same guy had a similar project called "Dodgeball" which Google bought out in 2005- and then killed in 2009 to replace with Google Latitude. I don't know how much he got for Dodgeball, but it may be that he really can afford to walk away from offers now. Both Dodgeball and "Foursquare" are/were location-based social networking services for mobile devices- Foursquare appears to tweak the concept by turning it into a sort of Zynga-style game where you earn awards for using the service. 100 million bucks for that.

Re:WTF? (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776720)

Zynga? The spyware makers?

Re:WTF? (3, Informative)

Orange Crush (934731) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777168)

I wouldn't compare Foursquare to Zynga . . . there's a game aspect, but it isn't ad-scam laden like Zynga's properties. Foursquare is broadly very similar to services like Loopt and Google Latitude, but with a few enhancements. Each time you "check in" to a location, you earn points. Whoever has the highest score is declared "Mayor" of that particular venue. Venues are also tagged to classify what sort of place they are, and you earn badges based on your check-in habits. For instance, three times in one week at venues tagged as being gyms will earn you the "Gym Rat" badge; go to a certain number of places tagged as having karaoke nights in a certain amount of time and you get the "Don't stop believin" badge, etc.

There are more aspects too--you can set up "to dos" to suggest certain activities at certain venues, and people can add them to their to-do list, etc. It's basically just another "I am here / what are my friends doing / what's a popular place to go tonight" app with some game aspects.

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777738)

Wait, so I can actually get gym badges from real life gyms?

Re:WTF? (2, Insightful)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776688)

Seriously,

I went to the site to see what it is. They have no explanation of why i would want it on the front page, except for a link about us.

A 2 minute long video, that's a howto.

30 seconds in I got bored.

even with this publicity, I think it is unlikely to take off. There does appear to be links for developers trying to leveragge the site into money though.

Re:WTF? (5, Interesting)

FreeUser (11483) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776796)

A 2 minute long video, that's a howto.
30 seconds in I got bored.
even with this publicity, I think it is unlikely to take off.

Besides, losers who use foursquare are just begging to be stalked. It makes Facebook's abysmal privacy look positively friendly by comparison.

In fact, stalking foursquare losers ("fourstalking") has become quite the pastime, so much so that this attention junkie [lalawag.com] quit the service, despite craving the attention. A part of me feels sympathy...while another part can't help but feel these narcissists are getting exactly what they deserve.

Re:WTF? (1)

crashumbc (1221174) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777404)

Makes it easy to rob their house if you if you know where their at.

Re:WTF? (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777486)

Is this just me?

Every time I see a 4sq tweet that says "I'm at the store/mall/etc", I want to reply "I'm at your house, robbing you". If nothing else, to show them how stupid it is.

Re:WTF? (1)

kyteland (1372821) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777548)

Somebody's already way ahead of you on that one.

http://pleaserobme.com/ [pleaserobme.com]

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777320)

Self selecting membership, is that patented.

"A novel method of filtering out potential members based on attention span and ability to do any background research to determine their worth to the ongoing community."

Codenamed "Bye Bye"

Re:WTF? (2, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776836)

Yup, you never heard of them. Now, though, you did. They were the loonies that turned down 100m for a name nobody knew about.

I think the price just hit the 200m range.

The words "four square" conjure up bad memories. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31776844)

For me, the words "four square" conjure up some bad memories for me.

When I was a youth, we used to play the old playground game called four square. It's a game played by four people, who each stand in a quadrant of a 2x2 grid painted on pavement. A rubber ball is hit between the quadrants, and if it bounces in your square and then out of play, you lose.

Well, one day while playing an errant ball struck my gonads and caused me some serious injuries. For lack of a better description, it basically broke my penis. I now will never have children, and suffer from hormonal problems. So I cringe whenever I hear the words "four square".

Re:The words "four square" conjure up bad memories (1)

jimbobborg (128330) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776944)

Well, one day while playing an errant ball struck my gonads and caused me some serious injuries. For lack of a better description, it basically broke my penis. I now will never have children, and suffer from hormonal problems.

It's not like you would have had any kids anyway, so it's no big loss.

Re:The words "four square" conjure up bad memories (1)

counterplex (765033) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777800)

For me, the words "four square" conjure up some bad memories for me.

For lack of a better description, it basically broke my penis.

So... is this a good time to ask you to return your Man card?

Re:WTF? (2, Insightful)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777106)

Christ, anyone who hasn't heard of Foursquare isn't really keen on the social networking scene. It's the latest buzz. HA, get it? Google Buzz? Alright I'll stop with stupid puns.

The general Idea is either
A) They make enough money already (I believe another project of theirs was bought out by Google some time ago)
B) They don't want their project to die, they want it to become worldchanging
C) They are holding out for more, because its worth more.

Or any combination of those.Yes, well, you can say A and C don't go together but just look at Wall Street.

Re:WTF? (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777472)

    I think you got the important part. Most of us have never heard of them. They aren't a big outfit. Bragging up that you turned down big money is sometimes just a bragging point.

    I worked at a place once, that was totally full of themselves. And no, I'd be pretty sure none of you ever heard of it. The CEO told us in a company meeting (attendance required) that he had turned down a 10 million dollar from Microsoft to buy us out. I thought about it while he continued, why would Microsoft offer 10 million to this little outfit? They had a small customer base and parts of some products (some of which actually worked). Payroll had been questionable. Actually payday was a game. Everyone would get their checks, and make a mad dash to the bank to cash them. The people who got there first got paid. The late ones had to wait until the bosses found more money somewhere. Frequently we were paid in shares of the company for working overtime. Even that became a joke, where we'd compare who had the most "shares" in the company. In all reality, those shares were worthless.

    About a year later, they really did sell to another company for pennies. Well, I think the CEO walked away with $10k. The staff (to be laid off by phone call the following day) had the pleasure of taking home office equipment that the buying company didn't want to bother moving. A handful of employees transferred to the buying company's office out of state and lasted there for a few months until they were laid off.

    Just because someone says there was an offer of something means absolutely nothing, unless someone was actually making the offer and it could be reasonably believed that they would follow through.

    One company that *did* make mad money didn't brag about it to anyone. I was aware of the numbers, because of the work I did. They didn't do a lot of marketing, most of it was by word of mouth. Once, they hired a sales person who made the mistake of saying the company had just been sold and he was now doing sales for it. The owner got an email asking why he sold his company. That was the last day that sales minion ever worked there. I wouldn't say it was more than a couple minutes between the time the boss found out, and the guy was flying out the door.

    If you have to pretend someone's going to give you lots of money for your company to make it sound big, then that means you're in a fantasy world. Sorry 4^2.

Re:WTF? (1)

iamhassi (659463) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777856)

"Christ, I don't think I've ever even heard of these guys. They should have took the money & ran."

I've heard of them, but very little. I asked some net savvy teens and early 20-somethings and they said "Foursquare? .....like, the game?"

I can only imagine the owners of Foursquare are too young or stupid to remember the late 90s .com burst. [wikipedia.org]

Re:WTF? (1)

Gudeldar (705128) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777886)

Obviously you don't read Techcrunch. Arrington has been relentlessly promoting Foursquare, I wonder if he has stock in them or something.

They probably wrote 2 versions of the copy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31776476)

If they took the deal, it would have been spun as the arrogance of taking the money and running or a new sign of venture vulture futures.
     

Re:They probably wrote 2 versions of the copy (1)

Kell Bengal (711123) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776502)

That said, a shrewd business move is a shrewd business move - arrogant or not. This was not a shrewd business move.

Well.. (5, Informative)

ZeroExistenZ (721849) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776490)

Why would one offer them 100 mio for it if it's so worthless, for one.

For two, why is money such a big deal? If you love what you do and can provide for yourself with it, why whore yourselves out? It's not about being filthy rich, but doing what you love, right?

Re:Well.. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31776538)

It is easier to do what you love when you are filthy rich.

Re:Well.. (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777854)

It is easier to do who you love when you are filthy rich.

Re:Well.. (3, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776774)

For two, why is money such a big deal? If you love what you do and can provide for yourself with it, why whore yourselves out? It's not about being filthy rich, but doing what you love, right?

Some people collect stamps, some people collect coins, some people collect butterflies, and some people collect obscenely huge amounts of money.

Some people worship God, some people worship life, some people worship nature, some people worship money.

Some people love their god above all else, some people love their spouse above all else, some people love their children above all else, and some people love money above all else.

It's all about what you love and what your personal value system is. Personally, I pity anyone who thinks a thing that lacks a price is worthless.

Re:Well.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777148)

You idiot, I said it was priceless not worthless!

Re:Well.. (4, Insightful)

A Name Similar to Di (875837) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776992)

I logged in for the first time in a year just to agree with you. There was a survey a few years back (sorry I couldn't find the link) suggesting that many business owners regret going public and losing control of their company, despite the cash they made.

I realize Four Square's case isn't the same as going public, but it's similar. If you love what you do and already make good money, why ruin it? And for the record, you can pay everyone's salary and still make zero profit, so "unprofitable" doesn't mean that the people working there aren't making good money.

Re:Well.. (2, Insightful)

plover (150551) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777630)

Turning down the money is irresponsible (unless it's truly vastly undervalued, which is possible.)

The only reason not to sell it for a price like that is if he already has enough money and is running it as a hobby. If that's the case, it can make or lose some amount of money without it really affecting him. But just because Top Honcho has $XM in the bank already doesn't mean his employees have equal resources. If it starts losing money and he gets bored, who is going to keep all those employees in paychecks?

Worse, what if his current employees are working for options? "Hey, everybody, guess what? Yahoo would have made you all millionaires, except I turned them down. Back to work!"

Re:Well.. (2, Interesting)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777092)

Because 4square's not making any money *now*.

I've seen it posted here somewhere, but it's been said that money can't buy happiness but the lack of money can buy a whole lot of misery.

Re:Well.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777098)

Money buys happiness

Re:Well.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777102)

ask the owners of /. about that. I think there's something to be said for letting you do what you love and letting other people handle the details of paying the bills, etc.

Re: 100 Mio! (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777182)

Hey he's fixed the typo in the article!

"I sold my location-based service I started in my basement for 100 GPS units!"

Re:Well.. (1)

ottothecow (600101) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777198)

Considering this guy already had one "company" that sold to google (and since at that point there can't have been more than a handful of people since it was really more of an idea+implementation than a company at the time), he probably has enough money to do what he loves quite comfortably.

At this point maybe he likes working on the software on his own terms. If he sold, he would have to come up with a whole new extension of his original idea if he wanted something to dabble with--maybe this feels like a hobby project to him and he doesn't want to let it go. Also, if somebody thinks it is worth money now...it could still be worth money in the future when he gets bored with it.

Re:Well.. (2, Insightful)

Angst Badger (8636) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777246)

For two, why is money such a big deal? If you love what you do and can provide for yourself with it, why whore yourselves out? It's not about being filthy rich, but doing what you love, right?

We live in a culture where profit is the ultimate good, transcending all other considerations, including individual and even species survival. For someone to refuse profit -- or, as is more likely in this case, to defer profit now in hopes of greater profits later -- is literally beyond comprehension for most people. And then they get angry because they're envious of all that money. To be fair, people spend their entire lives bombarded daily with the message that wealth and possessions are the only things that matter, so it's not surprising they end up with deeply conditioned tunnel vision.

Re:Well.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777390)

Why would one offer them 100 mio for it if it's so worthless, for one.

You are obviously too young to remember the olden days of 1998-2000. Back then, $100 million would only get you a couple of guys in an office suite who had thought about coming up with a plan for some big idea for the next big thing in some unspecified field. A company with an actual product would run you $250 million, and one with paying customers would be closer to $500 million. It was speculated that a company that turned a profit could have sold for over $1 billion, but the bubble burst before one of those materialized.

Re:Well.. (1)

edjs (1043612) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777480)

For some, what they love doing is creating startups. The day-to-day running of a mature business may not interest them.

Re:Well.. (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777640)

Why would one offer them 100 mio for it if it's so worthless, for one.

Lets suppose it has 5 million users worldwide. Thats $20 per person. Thats not fucking bad, considering (A) you just purchased their eyeballs (the actual product of all social network businesses), and (B) you have their location.

What is a local television station worth? This service has all the advantages of local advertising markets, but with a global advertising infrastructure.

Did you think the offer was for their IP?

The IP isnt their product. Their product is users, and they rent them to advertisers.

Re:Well.. (1)

Bakkster (1529253) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777648)

Why would one offer them 100 mio for it if it's so worthless, for one.

To those thinking it's worthless (not you, I assume), they forget that FourSquare has location and behavior data on all of its users. It's a goldmine for targeted advertising.

Here on Slashdot, many people may not realize that other people go to places called 'bars' to drink alcohol. FourSquare knows when you are visiting bars (known to the social butterfly as 'bar-hopping'), and where you are currently, and start serving ads for other local bars or pizza places with a high expectation that you are likely interested in their services.

Companies will pay big money for this kind of audience and advertising potential. Maybe even 100 million dollars.

idiots (3, Funny)

electrosoccertux (874415) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776504)

These guys turning down the money are idiots, all idiots. Twitter cannot create the revenue to generate the profit to pay back $500m. Or $900m in the case of Facebook. They [owners] all should have sold it, they're never going to get that kind of money anywhere else. Have you seek Zuckerberg give presentations? The goofball can't even give a proper PR announcement, let alone get people excited about anything Facebook is doing.
This goes doubly so when the buyer will let the owner retain control.

Re:idiots (1)

bFusion (1433853) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776548)

This guy doesn't need money, he sold Dodgeball to Google for zillions of dollars. Maybe he's just out to make a product he enjoys.

Re:idiots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777880)

That makes no sense to me. Facebook will make 1 Billion dollars this year alone. How can you possibly say that they are idiots when all they have to do is wait one year and they have the same amount someone would have bought them for.

http://mashable.com/2010/03/02/facebook-could-surpass-1-billion-in-revenue-this-year/

Already rich and still driven (4, Insightful)

wombatmobile (623057) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776510)

Dennis Crowley learned two things from his earlier experience of selling Dodgeball to Google. 1. A big company like Google can destroy a little company. 2. When your bank account is 8 digits big, 9 digits is not as important as following your passion.

Re:Already rich and still driven (1)

The Clockwork Troll (655321) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776814)

That's great (#2), so long as when it comes time to hire, you can find other like-minded folks who just want to write Foursquare code and don't need visions of a mega-exit to motivate them when the chips are down.

I'm not saying that kind of intrinsic motivation is super-rare, but to find it in a whole group of people? And to have it sustained? You better have a hell of a mission in mind. Is "make it easy to check into cafes and win badges!" that mission?

Perhaps it is, perhaps it is.

Re:Already rich and still driven (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776968)

1. A big company like Google can destroy a little company.

It didn't destroy it, it just wasn't doing things on Dens' schedule. Dodgeball became Google's thing, not Dens' personal side project and thus their desire to add developers to his team was low and their desire to tie him and his staff up in endless meetings was more important.

But as far as the money is concerned, yeah, that's probably true.

Foursquare? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31776528)

What the hell is that? I thought Twitter was supposed to be the Next Big Thing?

location-based (1)

jDeepbeep (913892) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776762)

What the hell is that? I thought Twitter was supposed to be the Next Big Thing?

Well, Foursquare seems to currently be the Next Big Thing in the location-based genre of social networking.

Re:location-based (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777718)

The Next Big Thing? I didn't know there was a First Big Thing yet.

Re:Foursquare? (0)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776822)

Local social networking is the next next big thing, taking advantage of location-aware devices like smartphones with gps. There are a lot of stablished players in that field, including google and yahoo. Foursquare is one of the big ones, and the Yahoo move could be more related to some strategic IP involved than buying code or community,

So what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31776558)

I turned down sex less than five years ago...

Though, in hindsight, maybe that wasn't the best of ideas, because nowadays I'm a bit like AOL in that department.

AOL (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31776776)

in hindsight, maybe that wasn't the best of ideas, because nowadays I'm a bit like AOL in that department

Not really. AOL is fucked.

Re:So what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31776830)

I turned down sex less than five years ago...
Though, in hindsight, maybe that wasn't the best of ideas, because nowadays I'm a bit like AOL in that department.

I had sex with a random stranger this weekend, it was sortof a dissapointment and I just wanted to get away from her hoping I would forget about the deal even though "meeting up with someone just for sex without strings attached" sounded like a good and exciting idea. It was not. Two weeks prior I had sex with yet another girl, it was nice, but her back acted up and I had to comfort her as she was in physical pain over it, from that there was some sort of intimacy and warmth, but to what means ?

Some things are better when you do not have them or don't get it, and glorify it in your fantasy. Like sex. Reality is often a sad confrontation with your ideals, yet dreaming and desiring creates motion. In this case, instead of investing time in both ladies, seen afterwards, i'd rather could've invested time in figuring out some algorithms and completing a project.

Somehow rejecting $100M looks so sexy... (1)

viraltus (1102365) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776564)

That looks like a great ad, are we sure they didnt offer the $100M to themselves? In any event, I check the web and the idea looks interesing...

Brilliant (1)

Altermeris (1785944) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776804)

As soon as I read this article I wanted information about Four Square. I am now fully aware of it purpose and may suggest it to my friends. This guy is getting traffic from this move, it might have been for the best. Anyway, this guy has plenty of money as mentioned before. Will he really be happier with a extra digit?

Fuck Everything (5, Funny)

jayhawk88 (160512) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776874)

We're going Fivesquare

Re:Fuck Everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777016)

"Now we're standing around with our cocks in our hands, selling four squares and a mayor."

Re:Fuck Everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777024)

We're going Fivesquare

AND DOING IT LIVE! \obOreilly

Re:Fuck Everything (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777028)

It's FivePentagon.... dweeb :)

Check out my site. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777034)

EightOctagon.

Re:Fuck Everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777066)

Perhaps a sequel, eight octogon

Re:Fuck Everything (1)

eulernet (1132389) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777110)

Too bad: Foursome is already taken.

Re:Fuck Everything (1)

M8e (1008767) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777712)

Elevensome, one better than a tensome.

Re:Fuck Everything (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777552)

This goes to eleven!

Re:Fuck Everything (1)

mooingyak (720677) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777560)

That doesn't make any sense.

The speech goes "Four square and seven years ago." Not five.

Re:Fuck Everything (1)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777740)

Four score, not square.

Or, if that was meant as funny, I guess I don't get it.

Re:Fuck Everything (1)

CmdrPorno (115048) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777686)

I'm going to 4chan. They're much more friendly.

$850 mill company (1)

228e2 (934443) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776890)

I was 100% sure the $850 mil company was Myspace until I moused over . . . am I the only one??

Four Square, like we used to play.... (1)

gabereiser (1662967) | more than 4 years ago | (#31776908)

Four Square has been all the rage since last years SXSW conference. Even more so this past SXSW.... I think that the "offer" might have had more to do with ownership rather than funding. If the offer required Four Square to give up seats on their board then I totally agree with them turning it down. After all, who gets total control when the board is made up of a bunch of gents from other companies? Bold move indeed, but evidently a right one.

I'm going to hear about it everywhere now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777032)

I'd never heard of FourSquare till the other day when I heard about that one guy going to the North Pole to be the first person to check in there.

Social network bubble (1)

oldhack (1037484) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777056)

Man, I want this bubble to burst so bad. Is there a market to bet against the bubble? :-)

Re:Social network bubble (1)

Marcika (1003625) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777578)

Man, I want this bubble to burst so bad. Is there a market to bet against the bubble? :-)

I looked into it, and there apparently isn't... All the big players (Zynga, Facebook, Playdom, Playfish, Twitter, bebo, studivz, orkut, whatever) are either still private or a really small part of a big conglomerate like EA or Google. So no way to go short equities or long CDS protection in them...

Re:Social network bubble (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777604)

Sell short on social networking companies?

You could bring about the end by working on a distributed social network (no central authority means no ads means no profit).

mo3 dowN (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777096)

Mr. Ra7ymond's

Upstarts. (5, Insightful)

MaWeiTao (908546) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777160)

These start-ups love to pass themselves off as scrappy little guys nipping at the heels of giants. In my experience these companies, the vast majority of the time, are backed by investors with very deep pockets. These guys are undoubtedly banking on the hope that this investment will pay off in a big way. There's this infatuation investors have with these social sites and it's easy to see why. Minimal investment, little substance, but the pay offs can be huge if people get hooked. Why spend a fortune building a company that actually makes product, with the expense and work that comes with it, when you can just do this? And given that development can easily be outsourced to India these ventures even more attractive.

Right now they're at the hype generating phase. By turning down this offer they have garnered media attention. And amongst the ignorant masses people will believe that these guys are principled. I think they're waiting to hit critical mass with users. Their hope is that they become the next Twitter. Then they'll sell especially if they haven't figured out a way to make money on something that seems completely pointless.

What is "AOL"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777242)

I'm only 18, what is this "AOL" you speak of?

Re:What is "AOL"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777642)

I'm only 18, what is this "AOL" you speak of?

I'm sure someone here can send you a floppy disk that will explain everything.

Terms of The Deal (1)

mpapet (761907) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777264)

Only the deal makers know what the details of the $100 million deal. Chances are excellent it's a bad deal. Some ways the deal can be bad follow....

Often times, there is a top line PR number, that if *every* option played to the start up's benefit, then they'd have earned the number. But most of the deals are completed leave the start-up members meaningfully smaller pay outs.

Let's say the deal flies and the people selling meet the conditions of the purchase, there's the matter of actually getting paid. You think "Investors XYZ are buying my company and they have *plenty* of money." What they have are plenty of lawyers whose task is to generate as many billable hours as possible for the start up members leaving the start up members largely broke. Once the resources are exhausted, then the acquirer pays pennies on the price that was agreed upon years earlier. Yes, you read that right, years....

The deal is far from complete once the acquisition is executed. Chances are excellent there's only heartache for the start up members with a sale.

Today's lesson: making money is only one part of the process. You need to get paid.

hey, here's a radical notion (2)

sammy baby (14909) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777274)

Maybe they turned down the bid because they wanted to stay independent and liked what they did?

Jesus, it drives me crazy listening to people go "what morons, they should have taken the money and ran." Why? What if they really like what they do?

Disclaimer: I'm not familiar with Foursquare's product or management, and I have this crazy notion that there are things that are worth more than money.

Re:hey, here's a radical notion (1)

Anonymous Psychopath (18031) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777564)

Maybe they turned down the bid because they wanted to stay independent and liked what they did?

Jesus, it drives me crazy listening to people go "what morons, they should have taken the money and ran." Why? What if they really like what they do?

Disclaimer: I'm not familiar with Foursquare's product or management, and I have this crazy notion that there are things that are worth more than money.

Social networking sites rise and fall relatively rapidly. The insinuation is that they should have taken the money because even if they love what they do, they probably won't be doing it for much longer. Having the money would enable them to easily go do something else they love.

I think I get it. (1)

rickb928 (945187) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777300)

Foursquare looks at first glance to be a site where the entire point is to do things that earn 'rewards'. Looks like they call them 'badges'. Hmm... Life as a massive DnD game, minus monsters and death. Ok...

Like 'unlocking' my city (or cities, where I am). Oh yeah, sounds like endless billboards on my phone. Essentially advertising I participate in. Not a new concept, I participate in advertising now by losing pieces of my life to it.

Kinda like Farmville without the Facebook stuff. And more ads, I bet. Pointless? Doing virtual chores for nothing?

And of course, you never know when you might stumble across something interesting. So this is, like, a mashup of Twitter/Facebook/Latitude/Google Maps? Oh my. Friends in Maine will want to know all about my great restaurant find in Gilbert, AZ. Hell yeah. And the gelato place, too. In February.

But I might turn this on to see how much it sucks. And if I think it sucks, it is probably worth way more than $100 million. No sarcasm, just fact there.

You go guys! Rock the world! Good luck!

It's a gamble (1)

drsquare (530038) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777388)

Social networking sites can either become incredibly successful or fail horribly, and it's generally down to luck as to which happens. He could make more money at a later date, or go bust.

Privacy concerns (1)

xonar (1069832) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777518)

Perhaps they were concerned that the exact GPS location of everyone's favorite places, activities, and friends could fall under the category of information that could be badly abused. It'd probably make me quit using it if they sold-out to some big company.

Twitter generating revenue? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777534)

The article states that Twitter rejected a $500 million and that Twitter "had no revenue at the time".

Is Twitter making money now? If so, how the fuck are they doing it? Their service is FREE, they don't have ads, they don't SELL anything. Yet they have tremendous costs.

Same goes for Facebook. How the fuck are these guys actually MAKING money? Venture capital doesn't count because that will dry up some day. Does any of these social networking sites actually have a real, qualified accountant or two working for them?

These sites give EVERYTHING away for free, yet don't actually SELL anything (except for probably your "private" data). That business model just sucks and anyone investing in them is utterly clueless.

What I would like to know is a list of every single company/person who has invested in them so I know not to ever do business with those guys, or so I have a list of suckers I can get money from for money loosing ventures.

Re:Twitter generating revenue? (1)

Colonel Korn (1258968) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777784)

The article states that Twitter rejected a $500 million and that Twitter "had no revenue at the time".

Is Twitter making money now? If so, how the fuck are they doing it? Their service is FREE, they don't have ads, they don't SELL anything. Yet they have tremendous costs.

Same goes for Facebook. How the fuck are these guys actually MAKING money? Venture capital doesn't count because that will dry up some day. Does any of these social networking sites actually have a real, qualified accountant or two working for them?

These sites give EVERYTHING away for free, yet don't actually SELL anything (except for probably your "private" data). That business model just sucks and anyone investing in them is utterly clueless.

What I would like to know is a list of every single company/person who has invested in them so I know not to ever do business with those guys, or so I have a list of suckers I can get money from for money loosing ventures.

They make money from venture capital. Facebook doesn't talk much about its finances, but the Forbes articles I've read speculating on the topic seem to think it would be a miracle if it has yet to make a net profit in a year. And Facebook is the most successful social network with a well established way of selling targeted ads.

You don't invest in these companies because they'll make money, just like you don't invest in gold because it will make you dinner. You invest because you count on other investors sharing the illusion that the company is valuable and thus driving up the price of your share. Then you sell.

Cash or stock? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777584)

If the offer is stock from a company that you expect to take a dive before you can exercise the stock, I can see skipping the deal. If it's cash, you take the money.

Inflation / USD weakness (1)

npongratz (319266) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777654)

Has the US dollar really become so weak?

My dotcom company did this! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31777866)

$20M on the table and we turned it down.....2 weeks before the crash! Oh I was *so impressed* with the business acumen of the MBAs who insisted on holding out for more :/

Inaccurate title and summary (4, Informative)

noahm (4459) | more than 4 years ago | (#31777872)

Foursquare hasn't turned down anything, as far as anybody knows. In fact, the Yahoo! buyout is still only rumor. The article is basically representing the opinion of some analyst entrepreneur. Quoting from the article:

Sometimes making a fortune is dumb, writes entrepreneur Charlie O'Donnell—which is why, O'Donnell adds, Foursquare will wisely walk away from a rumored $100 million offer from Yahoo.

Who's Charlie O'Donnell? What's his role in Foursquare? Is he really making statements on their behalf? I doubt it. Quoting from the photo caption later on,

[Photo: Laughing Squid's pic of Foursquare CEO Dennis Crowley who, to be fair, may not have turned down anything yet.]

So, wtf? There's no story here, it's just some random dude repeating what some other random dude said would be a wise move.

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