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Archive for the ‘brijit’ Category

Brijit on The American Scene

In brijit, social media on Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 8:22

Reihan Salam, whom I first met in the days just before Brijit launched to friends and family last summer, is going to make me blush. This wasn’t enough to keep me from sharing his post, of course. Any introductions you want to make would be much appreciated, Reihan. And thanks for the kinds words.

To the point that we should re-launch the site without the writer payment component, I think it’s safe to say that when (if?) Brijit comes through on the other side of this challenging time, I’d expect our editorial compensation structure to be, well, different. This jives with the vast majority of the feedback we’ve been receiving, from Brijiteers and others. Exactly what that looks like is still a work in progress.

I headed up 95 from DC this morning to attend the second day of the Mid-Atlantic Venture Association’s annual Capital Connection event. Brijit wouldn’t be a good fit for most of the investors here even under the best circumstances. Nonetheless, there are a handful of potential investors and strategic partners that I’m hoping to see today.

Site’s Back Up, New Abstract Is Coming

In brijit on Monday, 26 May 2008 at 22:02

Thanks to Brent Thorington for stepping up on Memorial Day and getting Brijit back up. And thanks to Hurricane Electric for being responsive, too.

I’ll write the abstract later this evening, but for now, check out the New York TImes’ obituary of Sydney Pollack, who died today at 73.

Brijit.com is Temporarily Down

In brijit on Monday, 26 May 2008 at 8:55

A power outage at our co-location facility late last night caused the main Brijit site to go down. I’m aware of the problem, but without a team in place (with the technology expertise that comes with it), it may take a while longer for the site to come back up. Sorry about that, folks. I hope everyone has a meaningful Memorial Day.

Make That “the Award-Winning Brijit.com,” Please.

In brijit, editorial on Friday, 23 May 2008 at 13:32

The good folks over at TheMorningNews.com has honored Brijit with a 2008 Editors’ Award for Online Excellence. Here’s the citation:

“Favorite Helping Hand When in Content Quicksand

A friend once pointed to a foot-tall stack of New Yorkers in his apartment and said he was a few months behind, but was determined to read every article. A praiseworthy effort, for sure, but not everyone has that kind of fortitude. For us, skimming the issue and reading only the articles that beckon is enough; and thanks to the now sadly defunct Brijit, we don’t even have to do that. This service presents a 100-word abstract (with a rating!) of every article from a bevy of magazines, helping you decide if the article is worth the time investment. Alternately, you could read only the abstracts, get dressed up, and remnick cocktail-party conversations all night long.”

This appears about two-thirds of the way down the page. Check out the full piece here.

Brijit on NYTimes.com

In brijit on Friday, 23 May 2008 at 10:54

Since we launched last October, Brijit has received an overwhelmingly positive response in the media. Marci Alboher writes the Shifting Careers blog for the New York Times, and first mentioned Brijit not long after we launched. I spoke with her earlier this week. Apparently she came back after some time out of town, and told a colleague how useful she found Brijit as a tool for catching up with things she may have missed while she was gone. But alas…

Brijit is featured today in Marci’s blog; we’re currently the lead post on Shifting Careers. Thanks for sharing Brijit with your readers, Marci. Here’s the bit I was most jazzed about:

“The comments to this post are great reading — users of the site offer their suggestions on how to tweak Brijit’s business model and one of the site’s writers weighs in on why the site is appealing to contributors.”

That’s you, Brijit fans. Please don’t hesitate to comment on nytimes.com and tell the world how much you miss the 100-word version.

Writer Payments Are On the Way

In brijit on Wednesday, 21 May 2008 at 7:19

Checks went out yesterday afternoon; PayPal payments went out last evening. These payments cover everything Brijit published this month through May 15. Thanks again to all our Brijiteers.

David Breashears’ Storm Over Everest

In Abstract Alerts, brijit on Tuesday, 20 May 2008 at 9:24

Now here, on Brijit. Thanks to Brijiteer Adrienne Jenkins for allowing me to publish her abstract without a fee.

New Abstract On Brijit. Anyone Else Want To Write One?

In Abstract Alerts, brijit, editorial on Monday, 19 May 2008 at 10:45

Great feedback everyone. Thanks for the terrific show of support. Very helpful as I continue my conversations with potential investors and partners.

I’ve decided that, at least for this week, I’m going to try to do an abstract or two a day — only good stuff. It’s obviously a poor substitute for a fully-staffed Brijit, but it’s better than nothing, and it just feels like the right thing to do as try to find a home for the service while simultaneously closing it down. Here’s one I wrote last night: “Can a Dead Brand Live Again?” by Rob Walker in the 18 May 2008 issue of the New York Times Magazine.

If anyone else wants to write an abstract of something great that they read, watched, or listened to on one of our 100-plus sources, please let me know. If there’s enough interest, I’ll put a process in place to include abstracts from the Brijit community. I think I can handle edits on about a dozen abstracts a day. Leave a comment here if you’re in. Would love to have you. Tell your friends!

To be clear, though (and I don’t even have the technology resources at the moment to change the text of the Brijit site to reflect this): WE ARE NOT PAYING FOR ABSTRACTS AT THIS TIME. Many in the comments have suggested that the site could thrive without the $5 fee — we’re about to find out, albeit on a small scale. I hope you won’t let it dissuade you from writing.

Also, you may have noticed that you’ve stopped receiving your email digests from Brijit. Sorry about that — we know it’s a great product, and if we can figure out a way to come through on the other side, we’ll be makign them a priority from a business development perspective. But we’ve spoken with our friends at SilverPop, our email newsletter provider, and given the situation, we both agreed that we needed to stop sending Brijit emails, at least for now.

Your thoughts on a Save Brijit campaign?

In brijit on Friday, 16 May 2008 at 13:19

Trying to get a handle on the pros and cons of a Save Brijit campaign of some sort. I’m heartened by all the great feedback here and around the Web. Would need to happen by Monday, for sure, and ideally by COB today. A Facebook group? A petition? Any thoughts? Ideas and volunteers wanted!

Can You Feel the Love?

In brijit on Thursday, 15 May 2008 at 17:50

Yesterday was awful. Out of financial runway, Brijit stopped publishing abstracts for after more than eight months of continuous service to our growing community. Ripped the band-aid right off!

Personally, at least, today’s a much better day. The outpouring of affection and support around closing Brijit, at least temporarily, has been amazing. One of my favorites:

Here’s Marshall Kirkpatrick at ReadWriteWeb: “In a tragic and surprising turn of events, Brijit, one of the most interesting startups on the web, has announced that the company has run out of money…”

Thanks, Marshall. You’ve always had nice things to say about our service, and I appreciate it.

Comments like this one from a loyal reader named Gabe: “I visited Brijit 2-3 times a day. Bottom line is that out of the gazillions of sites out there, there are only around 5 (and Brijit is one of them) where I’m guaranteed to be given quick and easy access to more than 5 articles that I’ll find interesting.”

Also plenty of notes of encouragement from friends, acquaintances and total strangers. Great stuff.

Professionally, I’m pleased to say, I also received inquiries from a handful of credible potential investors and partners, upon which I’m already following up. Long shots, to be sure, but worth a shot nonetheless.

Today I’m feeling the love. Please keep it coming!

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