Be yourself

Recently I made it known that Twitpic is ran just by me (@noaheverett) against the advise of what others have told me. I was told that I should “act bigger” than what I really am and to make it seem that Twitpic is ran by a group/company…Screw that.

I value openness and I really appreciate it when a person/company is open about themselves and I want to be the same way.

Twitpic twitter post

Their advice was given with the mindset that acting bigger will help in getting VC funding or help in being acquired and I couldn’t disagree more. If you have to mask what you are or doing to get VC then they are not the right VC for you.

Currently Twitpic is completely self funded by me and the ad revenue pays for all the hosting expenses. (I’ll write a full post about being self funded soon)

So there you have it…Twitpic is self funded and ran by one guy from his apartment. Wooo! I feel better now.

73 thoughts on “Be yourself

  1. Noah, I ran a one man show and, while I didn’t flaunt that fact, I was honest to those who were interested. That includes customers and the media. My advice would be to communicate like larger entity (read professionally), but be accountable in the way only a one-person company can be.

  2. Thanks for the honesty and the great service. TwitPic is one of my favorite things about using Twitter. Keep up the great work.

    Happy Holidays!

  3. Hello @noaheverett

    I’m greatly impresses by the quality of your “one man show”. It has developed into my favorite mobile photo posting service. Keep up the good work.


  4. Twitpic is a great service regardless of how “big” of an operation it is. The fact that it’s a one man show makes it more inspiring to support and continue using. Keep up the great work and I support the transparency. It can also help manage expectations when/if things go wrong.

  5. Dell started in his doormroom.
    Google too…
    Even microsoft.

    A lot of startups are a One Man Idea… the advantage is that rigth now, are cheap to adquire :D

    Your idea is good. Keep the costs as low as you can. Your apartment as offices is a good idea.

    And… more important… enjoy the trip!

    Don’t let moronic consultants with no experience tell you what to do. If everything would be as easy or straightforward as many people say, then no one would be employee and we all should have huge and rich enterprises.

  6. Am I the only person who, given all the hints and posts before, thought this was the case? I was already under the impression that Twitpic was handled by at the most a very small team. That doesn’t stop it from being an amazing service. You don’t have to be a large group in order to get VC funding. You just have to have a great product or idea.

  7. Noah. Your honesty permeates the wonderfully functional and necessary product you’ve created. Your aim is true. Thanks again for making Twitter a richer experience for all of us.
    Happy Holidays :)

  8. Noah – you are a hero. You provide such an excellent service – right up there with the stars of the web 2.0 world – competing with massively-funded outfits with shiny corporates and free food. Not only that but you’ve got the cahonas to cut through the usual half-truths and big-ups to tell it like it is.

    More power to you. I hope that 2009 brings you everything that you want. Well done.


  9. I wouldn’t have known unless you said something, honestly. You’re doing a great job, and as you said, if a VC can’t get past the fact that it’s just a one-man operation, they’re not the one that you need. You’ve obviously built a great service, and if a single number is holding them back, that’s ridiculous. Users and a fantastic service speak volumes.

  10. Noah, that makes me like TwitPic even more. I’ll try to eat up some more of your storage space and patronize your advertisers.

  11. You created a service that has been integrated into several other applications/services, Twibble, slandr, etc. It’s being used by ordinary people all over the world, every day. I loved when UK celebrity @stephenfry sent his twitpics from Madagascar while making a film there.
    When my phone no longer could get access to Flickr’s site, I could still Twitpic my snapshots.

    Not a big company? Well, you made a great thing come through and we are many that thank you, Noah. :)

  12. In this economy, I definitely think you’re doing the right thing. We love the service, and you seem to have been able to mostly avoid the problems that even Twitter proper had when it began to take off.

    In short, regardless of where this all takes you, keep up the good work and, from my perspective, the transparency is very refreshing!

  13. i have always played “neutral” with that aspect of my business. having a company/name allows a certain facade, that might allow an upper hand for financial negotiation but in the end i think that you did the right thing.

    twitter is different/special in that way. also, you have the entire twitter community currently using your service so i doubt you’ll have any trouble with your VC/funding.


  14. Didnt we already know this?

    I thought we did, and I think you are right by clarifying it anyway. There’s nothing wrong with being a solo artist, it’s clear you are running something useful, does it matter how many people are involved?

  15. I think it speaks well of you, that can do all you do, had the vision to be first,
    and have grown. I say well all retweet the Twitpic account and help the entrepreneur out. We’ve all had an additional dimension to the awesomeness of Twitter, for free from Noah!

  16. Okay, when I buy/use stuff, I prefer to buy/use handmade stuff by indie crafters. It’s higher quality, with a personal touch, and the producer actually gives a crap about their customer base. Which is sort of why (despite knowing it already) I think it’s swell that you’re unashamedly running TwitPic by yourself, Noah.

    “Act bigger” generally equates to “be a wanker” and clearly (thankfully!) that is not how you roll. You are doing a fantastic job, it’s a wonderful service.

    Happy Festivus, doll! <3

  17. Noah,(Little/Bigman) I’m”Stoked” that I get to participate(as Appuser) in your rollercoaster ride upwards…Thanks again for TwitPic.

  18. Hey Noah. I’d like to add my thanks for the service and the quick support I’ve received when needed. I’d be willing to pay a monthly microfee for an ad-free version of TwitPic. Are you considering that as an option? Cheers.

  19. As someone who hopes to re-launch his own website, run completely on the backs of one person (me, of course), this is mega inspirational. To hell with what “everyone” says.

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  21. I do enjoy twitpic, but I should add here that you may have misinterpreted what others were saying. (Typically, this advice is passed on for say, freelancers that might get screwed by their clients, and you don’t have paying clients here). Setting up a LLC (limited liability corporation, named that on purpose) or other legal entity protects someone from going after the farm, as it were, instead of just after the business. The issue becomes that you have to represent yourself as twitpic, LLC and not just @noheverett then, because later they might be able to say that you were not working for twitpic, LLC, you were working on your own or somesuch.

    Again, it’s unlikely that such a situation would be applied to you working on twitpic, but I think that may be what people were trying to get across?

    I-am-not-a-lawyer, but one might be able to explain this all better than I can.

  22. I just discovered Twitpic and posted my first picture. Thank you, it was easy and I can see it becoming addictive.

    The way you are going, you won’t be a one-man-band for long!

    ~Luci :)

  23. I think the whole idea of Web2.0 is transparency. I’m with you. Be yourself. I see many companies trying to “act bigger” but it’s pretty obvious with all their stock photography and corporate doublespeak. You are the REAL DEAL. Bravo!

  24. I think it’s fantastic you went public about doing this yourself. About 10 years ago I started a small hosting company ; it never went past Palace servers but I loved what I did (was a side gig) and made some money.

    TwitPic is one of the few add on apps that sold me on twitter, mainly because I didn’t need a new fancy phone and it does what I wanted it to, update twitter with a photo without downloading it !!

    Thanks and good luck you to =)

  25. Noah,I enjoy the levity I can add to my tweets with an animal mug shot! I appreciate the ability to make a visual pun.I wish I could choose pics on my iPhone to upload,but that is their limitation! This is a remarkable effort, and I fir one thank you,applaud you and hope to use you …to add a (mostly) feline augmentation to a silly post, Thank you so much for your ingenuity, would always be happy to try out anything new; my friends called me the beta bog in grad school as I unknowingly seemed to have a lovely ability to attract errors!! Sincerely jmedvm (Jaime Merrifield)

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  27. Just checked the Quantcast Audience profile… this is what it says:
    “ is a top 5,000 site (#1460) that reaches over 1.8 million monthly people, of which 1.1 million (63%) are in the U.S. The site appeals to a slightly male slanted, young adult group.The typical visitor shops at Lowe’s and orders from Hallmark”

    It ranks just after, and and AHEAD of, or

    Not bad for one person, I’d say.

  28. I really value what you do and how you do it. Thank you for creating a resource that is open and available a very large community. I wish I knew something about software so I could help you out – until then, keep up the great work!

  29. Wonderful..Good job! Reading my mind again-thought that was my job-Oh Wellll-can’t and won’t do everything myself so thanks again and have a wonderful day!

  30. From one, one person company to another: “One day we will be big and when that happens we can feel good about how hard we worked on getting it that way.”

    Way to go Noah, you have a great site! I love your honesty!!!

  31. I’m really impressed – twitpic looked a lot bigger than you say – almost had the image of a young startup that had been funded – I’m blown away that you manage to keep the site funded using the ad revenue – that must have taken quite a while to work out that it would work like that. Congratulations!

  32. I totally agree with you. Why lie when the truth doesn’t make anything different, twitpic is still a great site even tho you don’t got a 100 employees.

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