StartUp Podcast: Gaming the System (Season 3, Episode 2)
April 22, 2016 10:17 AM - Subscribe

It takes 2 percent to make a thing go right.
posted by Tevin (8 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Lisa FTW for really pushing on the canned "anyone can do this!" response at the end. Turned the whole story on its head and, I'm guessing, really set up the rest of the season to prove how it's not actually true.

Really excited to see how the rest of this season goes.
posted by Tevin at 10:32 AM on April 22, 2016 [4 favorites]

It was interesting to me to listen to this set of episodes because I was one of the people watching video games on and watching them stumble through the pivot to video games. I remember when suddenly the casters I watched suddenly started commenting on their talks with and how started taking their requests seriously.

There was never any sense, to me, as an end user that the product was suddenly ballooning, but I did notice that all the non-video game channels went away.

Anyway, knowing the story in advance made a lot of the "you won't believe what happen next!" asides in the podcast seem really drawn out, over done, and simply long and boring. I know they were trying to build up suspense and mystery, and I'm wondering if it worked for the people who didn't live through the whole thing on the customer side.
posted by bswinburn at 4:01 PM on April 22, 2016 [1 favorite]

I think it worked, as someone who isn't into gaming. I only heard of twitch when they were bought by amazon, and so enjoyed the small hints.
posted by ellieBOA at 2:58 AM on April 23, 2016

I actually found justintv for the sports piracy, but I didn't figure out the company until this episode, and I could surmise that it turned into twitch. It still worked for me, and I'm also really glad that Lisa pushed back on the "anyone can do this," talk.

I'm also curious as to whether or not twitch deals with the same kind of harassment that happened on justintv. Do they have anything in place that stems that?
posted by gladly at 11:22 AM on April 23, 2016 [1 favorite]

I had heard of Justin.TV and know about Twitch, but I had no idea that one pivoted into the other!

I also was glad that Lisa pushed back on the guy's "advice." And I am also really liking this season.
posted by radioamy at 12:22 PM on April 23, 2016

I also really appreciated Lisa diving into the otherwise classic start-up advice. Those are the parts I'm tuning in for, that really differentiates Startup from all the other sometimes hagiographic stories of start-up bros that I see elsewhere.
posted by selenized at 8:56 PM on April 24, 2016 [1 favorite]

Yeah, I've never heard of and am only vaguely aware of Twitch, so it came as a surprise to me.

And I find the "anyone can do this" advice a gray area; the guys do have a point in that you do make your own luck to some degree - if you don't try at all, you don't have a chance at success - but it's true moreso that you can't will yourself into the right place at the right time.
posted by psoas at 10:04 AM on May 2, 2016

I'm a big fan and user of Twitch and figured out this was the story from about minute 3 of the episode 1, so was excited to hear how this played out. I thought they did a good job telling the Twitch story. Would have liked to hear more about the pivot+rebrand to gaming, that was a big scary moment. And more on how Twitch grew to popularity along with the rise of professional esports, particularly League of Legends. But it's all good :-)

But the last 10 minutes about what it means to have a successful startup, that is phenomenal. I've been at both successful and failed startups. And the whole experience when you're in it is a complete mystery. Is success or failure luck? Brilliance? Karma? Some of each of course, and I thought the interview did a good job eliciting one group of founders' views on that.

(Even if I winced a bit at the not-entirely-self-awareness of calling "being in the same college" some sort of luck. That "lucky college" was Yale, an opportunity that generally only comes because of great privilege. The founders seem self-aware about other aspects of their privilege, like being born in America, so fair enough.)
posted by Nelson at 2:44 PM on May 3, 2016

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