Via Anil Dash. Here’s a refreshing and insightful mea culpa post by Ari Paparo, founder of Blink.com, an “online bookmarks” service launced in 1999. I had a distribution deal with Blink at one point, adding special Blink features to the NetCaptor sidebar and making a commission on user uptake. Ari reflects on the success of del.icio.us and the failure of Blink:
I don’t think it was that we were “too early” or that we got killed when the bubble burst. I believe it all came down to product design, and to some very slight differences in approach.
Blink failed because product design decisions killed the potential network effect that can occur when large groups of users share stuff. Personal online booksmarks are easy. Del.icio.us won because it made it easy for users to share and find new bookmarks – Blink made that very hard.