“Eternal Champion of the Entrepreneur”

I'm re-posting this article from TechCrunch because one of my top goals in life is to chase my crazy daydreams. Because at one point, Twitter was somebody's crazy daydream and Michael Arrington said that was stupid. At one point, somebody thought selling shoes online wouldn't work. But somebody kept pursuing that and we have Zappos. And even if it wasn't a company, maybe it was another idea. Maybe somebody thought the OldSpice social media campaign was a bad idea or that no one would buy iPads.

In my humble opinion the world is not lacking raised eyebrows, devil's advocates and skeptics–although they are most certainly necessary. But I think we really need more of those innovative brainstormers with the thick skin to relentlessly pursue their ideas.

I often point to my first post on Twitter, the day it launched in 2006. Why? Mostly because of how wrong I was. Best line: “I imagine most users are not going to want to have all of their Twttr messages published on a public website.” I also love that original vowel-free logo.

The first couple of comments to that post are classic as well:

I do not understand the utility of adding the SMS messages to a public webpage or making messages from my network public. I would have to pass on that type of offering. The ability to make messages private should be added asap.

and

i do not want to be woken up at 4 a.m. because my friend got drunk and decided to text Twttr with “asdl im at barasdf sooo drunksalkfjs”…i find it interesting such an annoying feature is supposedly causing viral growth…i’m done developing social software if the key to success is to be intrusive

and

So is it pronounced twitter or twatter?

With the benefit of hindsight it’s clear that I was…a bit off on how Twitter would play out. As were most of the commenters, although commenters are often negative just to be negative. And the most wrong of all? The Odeo investors who elected to take their money back rather than port it over to Twitter.

My point here is that you never know which startups will make it and which won’t. As a blogger I say it like I see it, but I’m wrong a lot. It’s why I’m not a venture capitalist, where wrong decisions tend to have real consequences. And this is also a reason for us all to give startups a little breathing room when they’re finding their space in the world. Startups evolve. The world evolves (things have changed a lot since 2006).

That dumb startup that’s just a rehash of that other thing from before, with a twist, just may turn out to be something special. Perhaps world-changing special. It’s why I like The Man In The Arenaso much, and why I’m an eternal champion of the entrepreneur.

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