Crranky looks for the line between website and startup

Credit: flickr/David Guerra Terol

Mike Moen, aka, has a successful website, but experts told him it wasn't a startup.

Detailing his surprise at learning the difference, Mike Moen posted, “Your startup is not a startup, it’s just a website.” 1.5 million page views bumped his revenue from multiple sources up to about $10,000 per month. But at a startup conference, one of the entrepreneurs told him he only had a website, not a business startup.

So Moen launched a real Web startup, spending thousands of dollars over a year getting 6,000 customers for a virtual world profile site. If a 'real' startup means being broke and begging for money, no thanks, he says. “I’ll take just a big revenue generating “website” any day.”

Snobby startups

I’ve seen how people who are dedicated to simply burn round after round with no revenue look down on people with ‘just’ a revenue generating business.

Jose Saez on

Having had my own revenue-positive "startup" called a hobby, a toy, a blog and various other diminutions, generally by people who've never managed their own company's budget or, if they have, have blown millions in startup capital, this was great.

morisy on

Sometimes I wish this level of honesty was the norm, not the exception.

aarthir on

It's mostly recently funded companies that seem to be getting all the coverage. Self-funded or profitable - not so much.

photorized on


A “startup” does not suggest anything beyond the fact that what you have created is…well…starting. It’s something new that didn’t exist before that’s trying to make money.

Brian on

People always ask you "Are you doing a startup? A hobby? A side project?". I always respond "I just wanna make revenue, damn it, call it whatever you want".

AznHisoka on

The definition of startup that I like is Steve Blank's, a temporary organization designed to search for a repeatable and scalable business model. By that definition, his website was not a startup. It was a lifestyle business.

btilly on

What matters

All that matters is results.

TVD on

go with the site that makes money. You don’t have to be a cool startup

joe_gardiner on

I'm more interested in building cool things and making them open source and/or interoperable than I am instantly trying to revenue-ize it.

drivebyacct2 on

Which would you rather have, a revenue-generating website, or a money-losing startup that might hit big?

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