Rip Empson

Rip Empson
Rip Empson is a writer, explorer, eager learner and part-time rabble-rouser -- whatever that means. Today, you can find him working as a senior associate at Morgenthaler Ventures and Canvas Venture Fund. He works in a marketing, PR and advisory capacity both for the Morgenthaler, Canvas and their portfolio companies (like Lending Club, Doximity, Evernote, Check and MuleSoft to name a few), and also spends time on the investment side, helping the Canvas team find face-meltingly amazing startups. Before venture capitalizing, Rip spent nearly four years at TechCrunch, the leading technology publication and media dynamo, where he covered startups. Within the Whacky World Of Startups, Rip focused most of his attention on chronicling the rise of technology and ambush of innovation on health and education. But between you and me, I hear he's especially passionate about any and all forms of disrupting -- particularly those that are disrupting the disruptable disruptions -- and anyone or anything that can quench his insatiable thirst for disrupt-a-lutions. Rip has been quoted by various people at various times – some of them publications and probably super wicked famous people referencing his work – some of them people mistakenly re-tweeting him thinking he’s Rip Torn. Is he a budding national treasure? You said it, not him. As to what he’s doing right now? He’s either transferring his life savings from Scramble With Friends tokens to Bitcoin or vice versa. Hard to say, really. CrunchBase profile →

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  • StockTwits Continues To Expand, Steals VP David Putnam From Yahoo Finance

    StockTwits, a realtime platform for stock traders to share information, has been undergoing a rapid growth spurt of late. According to Quantcast, 465,000 people are now visiting the site per month, which means the company has more than doubled its visitors since early December, when less than 200,000 were checking in to share and trade. This seems largely due to the service’s… Read More

  • Newsy Raises $1.5 Million in Series B Funding For Mobile News

    Newsy, a multisource video news service that analyzes the world’s news coverage, announced today that it has closed a $1.5 million series B round led by a St. Louis-based private equity firm. The second round adds to the $2.75 million in funding Newsy has already raised, bringing total investment to $4.25 million. The funding will be used to grow the company’s editorial, marketing… Read More

  • An Incubator From Down Under: Meet StartMate's First Batch of Aussie Startups

    Last year, a group of Australian startup veterans and executives created Startmate, a seed fund and incubator designed to provide small, early-stage investment and hands-on mentoring to local startups. Bringing the Y Combinator model to Australia, Startmate chooses 5 startups to participate in its 3-month incubator program. It then seeds those 5 companies with $25,000 and offers them access to… Read More

  • Flurry Launches Support Program For Game Developers, Nabs Director From Playfish

    It appears there’s an arms race taking place in the mobile gaming world, and as is often the case in Silicon Valley, it starts with engineering and development talent. Google, for one, took some serious measures at the end of last year to stem the flow of its engineering talent to Facebook. Many companies go out of the way to court and retain top developers, but it’s traditionally… Read More

  • Digital Polling Utility CivicScience Scores $1.2 Million In Seed Funding

    Pittsburgh-based startup CivicScience, an intelligent polling utility that offers a host of audience measurement and analytics tools for publishers and advertisers, has raised $1.2 million in seed funding from a group of institutional and angel investors to expand its platform partnerships and automation technology as well as ramp up its hiring efforts. The seed round’s investors… Read More

  • Marketing Intelligence Service Motista Raises $4.5 Million in Series A

    Motista, an on-demand consumer intelligence solution for marketers, has raised $4.5 million in series A financing led by El Dorado Ventures. El Dorado Partner Tom Peterson will be joining Motista’s board of directors. Motista is not disclosing its total funding numbers, but the company was originally backed by founders Scott Magids and Alan Zorfas and several angel investors, who… Read More

  • Views.fm Makes Dropbox Look Sexy

    The Web is a medium for sharing. Whether it be photos, videos, music, links, code, we share the content we produce and consume all the time. The rise of the social graph has only brought more attention to the ways we share and with whom we share. After all, sharing is caring, amirite friends? In a recent post, I talked about some of the problems that remain in a specific (and familiar) part of… Read More

  • Netflix Shares Soar, Site Goes Down

    It’s not a great day for the Internet, folks. Web services seem to be dropping like flies. For several hours today, WordPress.com’s back-end was nowhere to be found, causing several TechCrunch writers to consider writing on legal pads and posting on Craigslist. Some even considered posting on HuffPo. Don’t worry, they’ve been fired. On top of this, and much to the… Read More

  • Sendoid: Finally, Sharing Big Files Isn’t A Huge Pain

    When it comes to files, we love to share. No, we need to share. Thanks to the massive capacities of Gmail and other email services, it’s become remarkably easy to share files. Of course, most email services limit the size of the file you can share. Gmail’s, for example, is 25 megabytes. But if you want to share a larger file or multiple files — and even want a little privacy… Read More

  • What A #MarchMadness Bracket Would Look Like If It Were Decided By Twitter

    The NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments are fully underway and have been providing us with an ample dose of March Madness. As per usual, there have been plenty of upsets and buzzer beaters, and, true to form, my bracket was hosed by the end of the first round. There has been plenty of excitement, but something feels like it’s been missing. I wasn’t quite sure… Read More

  • Youngest Y Combinator Founders Launch MinoMonsters, The Pokemon Of Social Games

    At age 15, most normal people are going to high school, learning to drive, not listening to their parents, and doing things that they’ll later tell their kids not to do. Josh Buckley is not a normal teenager. At 15, he was selling his first company for just over six figures. Today, the 18-year-old entrepreneur and angel investor has partnered with 17-year-old engineer Tyler Diaz to… Read More

  • Online Subscription Billing Is Still A Hassle, SaaSy Aims To Change That

    Small business owners have about a gazillion things to worry about when it comes to running their company. It’s enough just to manage and execute their business model, let alone having to worry about software, infrastructure, tracking, compliance, customer service and so on. As more and more Web businesses turn to subscription-based models to make money, services have popped up left… Read More

  • HeyZap Goes After Social Discovery, Launches Check-in For Mobile Games

    Heyzap, a monetization and distribution platform for online casual games, announced today that it’s going mobile. Launching a social discovery application for mobile games on Android, the startup will be bringing the 1.6 million users it has already accumulated on its social gaming platform over to mobile. The company aims to build on its foray into social gaming last year, when it… Read More

  • Plaxo Goes Back To Being A Smart Address Book, Launches Virtual Assistant

    Plaxo has had its fair share of ups and downs. Back in 2006, the company famously wrestled with spamming allegations and was later the subject of controversy over the screen scraping techniques it used to pull contacts from Facebook. (Which led to the infamous “Scoblegate”.) With its launch of Pulse in 2007, Plaxo expanded into the social networking space, going beyond the address… Read More

  • Mobile App Users Are Both Fickle And Loyal: Study

    A study released by Massachusetts-based application analytics firm Localytics today confirms my suspicion that we both love — and are quickly bored by — our mobile applications. And, perhaps, that studies will confirm just about anything. In part 1 of its study, Localytics analyzed thousands of Android, iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry and Windows Phone 7 apps. Using its realtime app… Read More

  • Zynga Gamers Raise $1 Million For Tsunami Relief

    On Friday, social gaming giant Zynga joined tsunami relief efforts by enabling in-game donations through virtual goods in Zynga games like FrontierVille, FarmVille and CityVille. Today, the company announced that — in just 36 hours — Zynga gamers donated more than $1 million to relief efforts. Zynga partnered with the Save the Children to raise money for its Japan Earthquake… Read More

  • The Demand Media of Search Engine Marketing, BoostCTR, Raises $1.6 Million

    San Francisco-based ad platform, BoostCTR, announced today that it has closed a $1.64 million seed funding round led by a group of institutional investors and angels, including Javelin Venture Partners, Metamorphic Ventures, Founder Collective, WGI Group, and 500 Startups. Managing Director of Javelin Ventures Jed Katz and Metamorphic Ventures Partner David Hirsch will be joining the… Read More

  • DIY Music Management Platform Nimbit Raises $1.25 million

    Nimbit, a direct-to-fan marketing, sales and distribution platform for musicians, announced today that it has closed a $1.25 million series A investment round. The round was led by Common Angels and Hub Angels and, according to VP of Marketing Carl Jacobson, will be used to ramp up the company’s hiring efforts. Nimbit adds to the cumulative $3.5 million of seed funding it raised during… Read More

  • Search Your Cloud From Your Browser: Greplin Adds a Chrome Extension

    In February, we covered the social search service’s public launch and, mere days later, wrote about its closing a $4 million venture round backed by Sequoia. Since then, Greplin has been rapidly expanding the social applications it can search and index, adding Yammer, Highrise, and Google Contacts last month to its already healthy set of networks and services. On top of these, you… Read More

  • Social Analytics Platform BackType Raises a Cool Million in Funding

    Today, San Francisco-based marketing intelligence company, BackType, announced that it has closed a seed funding round of just over $1 million, led by a group of Silicon Valley investors, including lead investor True Ventures as well as Manu Kumar’s K9 Ventures, Freestyle Capital, Chris Sacca’s Lowercase Capital, Dave McClure’s 500 Startups, Founder Collective, Raymond… Read More