Now Earn.com, the concept I was railing against, failed. It failed hard. It was consumed many years ago like many startups, and the company that bought it, Coinbase
, does not do anything quite like this. (The guy who created that company, Balaji Srinivasan, is by no means struggling.) But that didn’t stop this three-year-old rant from appearing on Hacker News, out of nowhere, last week.
Out of the context of that period, it reads like an overly hyperbolic, over-the-top rant that doesn’t help anyone. It just feels like I needed to dial it back a whole freaking lot.
Emotions can catch you at the tippy-top of the scale, and while it feels like you’re saying something that matters or speaking up for a group of people, sometimes that ranting can feel completely over the top outside of its original setting. The conflict feels small now, but at the same time, I can understand why it felt big: It seemed like a threat to my business model, and I imagined not one person doing this, but hundreds. And as someone who likes the open nature of email newsletters, that worried me.
Still, I think the tone was unnecessary. I needed to think about the issue at a deeper level without the level of blood-to-the-brain rage that was clearly running out of my fingers at the time I wrote it.
Sometimes, what seems like life and death turns out to be a modest pin prick from a distance. So no, that wasn’t the way I should have responded to that.