Ycombinator continues to suck, jointly and severally

Thursday, 28 February, Year 5 d.Tr. | Author: Mircea Popescu

You probably never heard of this ycombinator thing on account of it being largely irrelevant. Unless you read Trilema that is, we scrape pretty close to the bottom of the barrel around here.

Coinbasei is another fine example of the sort of pointless nonsense they push. Originally it was supposed to be some sort of "WoW game gold for Bitcoin game gold" deal. It never went anywhere, as far as I know. Then it wanted to be a Bitcoin miner. I quote people who actually mine :

jcpham "I suspect that coinlab has burnt thru most of their funding without having launched any products, and are now desperately trying to get some press for another funding round before they go under."
jcpham IN 2011, miners raped coinlab for 95%. When the block reward halved, we gamed their PPS until it was unprofitable. It's 2013 now. It's no longer even profitable to mine there, even with their bonus PPS. You lose money mining and their pool hashrate is literally nothing.
dub I like how the glbse logo.
jcpham They need to release a client that allows gpu miners to get paid. Otherwise they are dead.

So that didn't work too well either, it would seem. I have no idea, I don't mine myself, but it seems to be the consensus. Now they want to be some sort of payment processor. To quote them :


The actual market remains both unconvinced and unimpressed :

Bugpowder Any thoughts on the coinlab story? It's not clear from the wording that they actually ARE buying / HAVE BOUGHT mtgox's US book or they are just TRYING to buy the book and have achieved absolutely nothing.
mircea_popescu Bugpowder the later. Not only is mtgox not selling, but who is coinbase again ?

Bugpowder Coinlab.
gigavps Bugpowder they are going to be mtgox's us broker essentially
Bugpowder Are they? Or are they just leaking some hype to a reporter with no actual deal
mircea_popescu Bugpowder my point is more alongthe lines, there's about five or six of other corps doing what they do. The fact that unlike the competition they have a burn rate is NOT an advantage.

Bugpowder "The goal is to move customers’ money from overseas to Silicon Valley Bank by March 22nd." Like by starting a new way to deposit and stealing the future international wire action, or actually pulling all the existing deposits from Japan/HK to a US bank. Anyone have an interview transcript?
mircea_popescu Bugpowder you ever heard of something like this released other than as a joint item ?

Bugpowder Nope.
mircea_popescu MtGox is silent. Nothing happened.

Bugpowder "goal".
mircea_popescu Other than remarkably incompetent trade mag and remarkably incompetent coinlab pr person.

Bugpowder "Has worked for a year to sign an exclusive long term deal."
mircea_popescu I've been working for twelve years to fuck Tea Leoni.

Bugpowder Heh. You may have enough Bitcoins to make it happen.
mircea_popescu I prefer working at it by now. Anyway, the way I read it a deal is not even close.

Bugpowder I concur.
mircea_popescu If it were you wouldn't be pissing the OP off with statements of the kind. Prolly what happened is they finally got told to take a hike, and are trying to extract whatever from it.

Bugpowder Looks like VC-style hype trying to create an illusion of success, hopefully leading to actual success.
mircea_popescu But on the negative side, if coinbase tech competence is anything like their pr ability, they'll be the next large hack. At any rate they're running out of money this year, so... meh.

Bugpowder Coinbase ~= coinlab. Does not inspire confidence : http://blogs-images.forbes.com/jonmatonis/files/2012/10/coinlab-founders.jpg
mircea_popescu Not young enough ?

Bugpowder They look dumb in the face.
mircea_popescu Not jewish enough ?

ThickAsThieves Too "where's my mai tai" looking.

To make the story short and simple : Bitcoin is too big and the people that matter in Bitcoin are too heavy by now for half a million and a few dorks to make any sort of dent in the state of affairs. And when I say a few dorks I mean both the two dorks that imagine they're "founders" or whatever the hell and more generally the however many dorks loosely associated under the ycombinator banner. Boys, if you mattered at all you'd have done something I'd have heard of by now. Something a little more like Google and a little less like AirBnb. You haven't done it, and it's pretty much because you don't matter. No matter what the circlejerk might have been telling you, the fact of the matter is you (collectively and individually) suck.

To conclude : if within a few weeks' time you find yourself in the position of having to decide whether a few million dollars go to a. free drinks and garter inserts at a number of strip clubs or to b. coinbase "second round of funding", the correct business decision is certainly a. At least the strippers can actually provide an answer should anyone happen to ask "what the fuck are you doing".

Also, Bitcoin has been brought to Wall Street already, and a while ago. The agency doing it is called MPEx. I don't appreciate the unwarranted pretense of idiots like whoever is in charge of both Coinbase and Bitcoin Magazine. Get your bearings straight boys.


pigeons Wtf does coinbase's platform have anything to do with "wall street"
pigeons *coinlab
dub It's in amurica.
BitHub I smell a wallstreet fail.
assbot [MPEX] [S.DICE] 15199 @ 0.0063799 = 96.9681 BTC [+]
dub "Coinbase brings bitcoin to the Alabama beef jerky co-operative" doesn't have the same ring.

  1. pigeons "coinbase announces they are switching business models again to improve something that they have no experience in that mtgox with the most experience doesn't like handling"
    pigeons *coinlab

    I confess I share the sentiment. I have no idea what the thing is to be called or what's supposed to be what. Coinlab ? Coinbase ? Coinyourmother ? What are all these things ? A casebook study in "how not to do branding".


Category: Bitcoin
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38 Responses

  1. ThickAsJoseCanseco`s avatar
    Thursday, 28 February 2013

    If Coinlab is bringing Bitcoin to Wall Street, then that means they'll IPO on MPEx, no?

  2. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Thursday, 28 February 2013

    I'd have to see a business plan.

  3. No-no-no, fixed-point combinators are very important! We use them to formally explain recursion.

  4. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Thursday, 28 February 2013

    Yes, they are.

    Unfortunately every respectable word ends up with a dozen or so marketeering lampreys attached to it in the hopes that they may suck something out of it, parasites that they are.

  5. [ANN] Mt.Gox & Coinlab Announce Strategic Partnership to Bolster US/CA Presence
    Today at 12:58:28 PM #1


    TOKYO, JAPAN - February 28, 2013

  6. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Thursday, 28 February 2013


    Feb 28 01:45:13 {ThickAsThieves} i wonder if coinlab is reading
    Feb 28 01:46:22 {mircea_popescu} that'd require them having a clue.
    Feb 28 01:46:28 {mircea_popescu} i give it 10:1 against.

    I guess 10:1 against was maybe an overstatement.

  7. Added to the scamlist.

  8. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Thursday, 28 February 2013

    You forgot to mention there that they list zipbit (the Jonathan Ryan Owens, Alberto Armandi & co scam) as their main customer and that people such as Tihan Seale (Bitcoinica) are listed among the investors. And a number of other points.

  9. Curious Onlooker`s avatar
    Curious Onlooker 
    Thursday, 28 February 2013

    Why do you keep writing coinbase when it seems like you mean coinlab?

  10. Ya, well, if I went into that level of detail I'd be doing nothing else.

  11. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Thursday, 28 February 2013

    @Curious Onlooker This discussion possibly explains it best :

    pigeons coinlab used to say they had "lots" of hpc clients lined up for gpu mininers work, anytime i tried to get details the answer was "lots of people pay for password cracking" and that work obviously never showed up so i question their honesty as well
    * sgornick has quit (Ping timeout: 255 seconds)
    splnkr i'd say the real question isn't whether coinlab can deliver but whether wall street will bite
    jcpham http://coinlab.com/liquidity
    jcpham wtf is this website
    pigeons yeah they are offering tools no one wants or needs
    ThickAsThieves they removed the Buy $1m bitcoins buttons
    jcpham coinlab.com used to point to some funky WURM online game
    jcpham Give us a call at 855-Lab-Coin or drop us a line to ask us about:
    jcpham Foreign Exchange Liquidity Provision
    jcpham Large Transactions
    jcpham Custom Orders / Standing Orders
    jcpham Full-Service Support for Family and Institutional Wealth
    jcpham goddamnit you motherfuckers coinlab
    mircea_popescu pigeons there's more good reason to question their honesty
    mircea_popescu loads of little things cropping up, like the habit of cancelling trades when price goes up then paying off those who throw a stink on forum

    pigeons mircea_popescu: that's coinbase
    mircea_popescu there's a difference ?

    Bicknellski Mt. Gox really wants to be 100% out of the US/Canada market.
    pigeons yes coinbase is the ycombinator/pgraham one
    pigeons coinbase is a gox front end with extra fees and extra problems
    ThickAsThieves this is a sad twitter account
    ThickAsThieves 210 followers
    pigeons coinlab is a former mining pool that overpaid so they could keep users for when they got non bitcoin hashing work that never showed up
    ThickAsThieves theyu follow SatoshiDice
    leotreasure asicmining divs are out
    pigeons coinbase was giving out .1 btc for account refferals when they started and was gonna implement a big pyramid scheme but the rising price killed that
    Diablo-D3 did asicminer just push out the real dividend?
    leotreasure yep :D
    mircea_popescu pigeons you said coinbase twice.
    mircea_popescu i am confused.
    mircea_popescu isn't coinlab run by the same people who run coinbase ?

    pigeons no
    pigeons today i have been using coinbase to refer to coinbase and coinlab to refer oinlab
    pigeons yesterday i was not so accurate
    mircea_popescu Diablo-D3 so have they scrapped their exchange or wtf are they doing ?
    mircea_popescu who's coinlab then ?

    pigeons http://coinlab.com/about
    pigeons https://coinbase.com/about
    Diablo-D3 mircea_popescu: theres plans in the works Im not allowed to talk about
    pigeons http://pool.coinlab.com/partners/goats
    assbot [MPEX] [S.MPOE] 4537 @ 0.00075999 = 3.4481 BTC [+]
    assbot [MPEX] [S.MPOE] 500 @ 0.00075999 = 0.38 BTC [+]
    mircea_popescu pigeons you're kidding, right ?
    mircea_popescu http://techcrunch.com/2011/07/12/y-combinator-alum-memsql-raises-2-1-million-from-ashton-kutcher-sv-angel-and-more/

    pigeons i'm kidding about what?
    Diablo-D3 mircea_popescu: I hate TC, honestly
    Diablo-D3 they report news like shit
    mircea_popescu pigeons vessenes is ycombinator.
    mircea_popescu the two ventures are in no way distinct.

    Diablo-D3 y combinator is a group of VCs, btw
    Diablo-D3 theres a few y combinator VCs that represent VC companies
    mircea_popescu no.
    mircea_popescu ycombinator is a team of dorks.
    mircea_popescu the vcs that get sucked in are usually innocent

    splnkr well, dorks backed by vc
    splnkr everyone's right
    mircea_popescu yeah, everytime they can be fooled into it.

    Diablo-D3 mircea_popescu: ycombinator isnt a team of dorks
    Diablo-D3 I think they invest rather too readily, though
    jcpham me too
    Diablo-D3 actually, maybe thats not it
    Diablo-D3 they invest too much too readily
    jcpham vc techno-fanbois
    mircea_popescu jcpham nothing wrong with throwing money around in principle

    Diablo-D3 its okay to invest small amounts in iffy ventures if you're hedging bets
    splnkr perhaps narrowly is the word
    mircea_popescu if you're sitting on a few bn, it makes sense to peel the odd million to aggitated kids.

    Diablo-D3 they want to invest in the next google
    Diablo-D3 instead, they get the next yahoo
    mircea_popescu you never know when you need a cock sucked.

    splnkr well, honestly, the vc game is like that by nature. you can't predict the future. you have to place a bunch of bets and hope one hits it big
    mircea_popescu exactly.

    splnkr like the hollywood box office model
    mircea_popescu which is why i say, teh vcs are mostly innocent

    Diablo-D3 splnkr: actually, I _can_ predict the future
    pigeons thanks i thought they were distinct. the combination lowers my esteem for both of them
    mircea_popescu but the sort of shit ycombinator pushes is horrible.

    splnkr Diablo-D3: don't be wasting your time here then!
    blu3gr1f1on like coinbase?
    Diablo-D3 splnkr: that isnt it
    mircea_popescu blu3gr1f1on like airbnb
    mircea_popescu which is what soured me on them entirely.
    mircea_popescu coupla years ago i was living with a generally good opinion of them and graham

    splnkr what do you mean then
    Diablo-D3 if I understand the business plan, if I meet the founders and drill the shit out of them and they pass, and if the market they're going into is a logical choice
    Diablo-D3 then its a sure winner
    Diablo-D3 the problem is
    Diablo-D3 _thats incredibly rare_
    splnkr but if your business model is venture capital investment, don't you have to play your cards even in the absence of those rare cases?
    Diablo-D3 splnkr: nope.
    splnkr then it's throwing darts with the best available along those parameters
    Diablo-D3 thats where they get their game wrong
    Diablo-D3 like, okay, lets take apple
    mircea_popescu splnkr that's a fine way to bleed equity.

    Diablo-D3 its not the example I want but it works
    Diablo-D3 apple does three things
    Diablo-D3 they build products, they sell a service, and they also invest
    mircea_popescu in general banking goes bust when the sort of managers that think "we have to play" rise to the top.

    splnkr well this is what i see happening mircea_popescu
    Diablo-D3 apple has a huge fucking investment department
    mircea_popescu that sort of managers are shit.

    Diablo-D3 they are now being sued because they are, according to shareholders, "hoarding cash"
    Diablo-D3 I hope apple wins, btw
    Diablo-D3 apple is waiting for that one perfect deal and they want to buy it
    mircea_popescu Diablo-D3 a company that large is always going to have activist shareholders going at it.
    mircea_popescu usually multiple groups.

    Diablo-D3 mircea_popescu: yeah, but this is big enough to make the financial news
    splnkr yeah i say good for apple for having so much cash
    Diablo-D3 a lot of major corporate investors are running this one
    pigeons zipbit is the patrickharnett/jonathan ryan owens scam right?
    mircea_popescu it doesn't often get reported (this wouldn't have except the "cash hoarding" bs meets the community aggenda of the current white house)

    * nOgAnOo t0ke
    pigeons http://coinlab.com/strategy
    splnkr and not debt leveraging themselves into oblivion
    Diablo-D3 apple, as a business, is ran well
    Diablo-D3 I dont agree with them on a lot of _technical_ issues
    Diablo-D3 but steve jobs left behind a very competent executive staff
    pigeons wait zipbit is the patrick harnett/jonathan ryan owens/kimdotcom scam
    pigeons they are one of coinlab's 3 customers
    Diablo-D3 so I dunno
    Diablo-D3 I agree with mircea_popescu's wording of that though
    Diablo-D3 its stupid to bleed capital
    mircea_popescu pigeons they mean bitcoini caca consultancy don't they

    pigeons wow looking at all these partners and startups, i guess all i need is twitter bootstrap and im a startup

  12. Actually, the fact that Ycombinator goons mostly register domains with GoDaddy is all you ever need to know.

    Sauce: http://jpf.github.com/domain-profiler/ycombinator.html

  13. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Thursday, 28 February 2013


  14. It's not just AirBnB. They also backed such scourges of the interwebs like reddit and disqus.

  15. Nobody want to see that situation.

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