Normally this story might have flown under my radar, but after South Park’s hilarious season opener skewering – among other things – startups that raise a bunch of money to do basically nothing, this story becomes even more hilarious. Part of Matt Stone and Trey Parker’s point was that Kickstarter itself is the ultimate startup, because it makes money off of other startups trying to raise money, allowing Kickstarter of course to sit back and do nothing.
Well it’s now looking like Kickstarter has some competition for the title of “Most Meta Startup,” now that Product Hunt has raised $6.1 million, with a $22 million valuation. Product Hunt is essentially a forum/community board system that allows people to upvote various tech products. There are no downvotes, which is I assume a measure put in place to prevent spamming your competitors down. In any case, Product Hunt is basically a ratings board for other startups. Yep, that’s it.
One of the investors involved in this round was Alexis Ohanion, co-founder of Reddit. So to sum up, the founder of a site that aggregates content created elsewhere has invested money in a startup that aggregates other startups. Don’t worry, it gets better. Let’s see what the company currently at the top of Product Hunt is. Well, it’s a “new” credit card company called Final, which makes its money on interest generated from other people’s spending, and also allows you to limit how much you spend per merchant (i.e. you can cancel a gym membership payment without cancelling your card, because fuck the contract you signed). What does this mean? It means that by the time you make your way through the web of companies offering no actual original content or product, the ultimate destination is a service that allows you to fuck over the people WHO ACTUALLY CREATE STUFF.
It’s so ridiculous, you’d think it was a South Park plot..