I don’t know what it is about tech postmortems, but touring the blast craters left by once-promising tech startups is satisfying on a level I can’t really explain.
Take Fling, for example. At one point, Fling’s parent company (Unii Limited) was a viable, if small, alternative to Facebook for students in the UK. Might have worked, might not have, but the point is they had something people wanted and were probably willing to pay for. The company raised a bunch of money and, in the face of impressive user adoption, decided to change gears and introduce something no one asked for or needed.
The only way I can think to describe Fling’s value proposition would be, “Why harass one person at a time with your unsolicited dick pics when you can just fire them into the internet and see where they land?” From here the story gets predictable: hookers and blow, boardroom brawls, a Subway assault (the sandwich kind, not the public transportation kind), and then there’s nothing left but the crying.
I’ve seen this movie more times than I can count and I still tune in every. single. time.