App.net Raises $803,000 In Funding From 12,315 People
Twitter may be king of the micro-blogging hill but this doesn’t mean other services out there are not trying to knock it off that hill. App.net brands itself as a better alternative to Twitter; a platform that doesn’t bombard its users with ads.
The subscription-based platform founded by Mixed Media Lab CEO Dalton Caldwell has surprised many by surpassing its funding target. Initially Caldwell and co had aimed to raise $500,000 to go towards development. 12,315 backers later, App.net is sitting on $803,000 and so the funding round has been closed.
Caldwell seems genuinely surprised by the level of support and says he only put out the call in order to gauge interest for a platform based on the principles touted by App.net. The concern is that Twitter having grown too big, is now shutting developers out in the cold and making the overall Twitter experience a bad one for users.
These developer concerns helped shaped the way the funding call was structured. People who made a pledge bought into App.net on three different levels: $50 was enough to get a user a basic membership level; ‘Developer tier’ access which allows for API tinkering cost users $100 and ‘Pro’ users who get full developer access plus a meeting with Caldwell had to fork out $1,000.
In the end, Caldwell got more than what he needed to get App.net going. Although the money isn’t substantial enough to take on Twitter head on, it is still enough to make the battle interesting.
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