I’m beginning to think the team at Firespotter Labs are marketing geniuses. Prior to launching their new iPhone app Jotly (you know, as a joke), they released a hilarious video featuring a “fake” app by the same name. In the video, a guy goes around rating things like parking meters, hiding spots, ice cubes, and a beer in the alley that was left in the sun (F-, if you’re curious). The video was meant to be a parody of our mobile/social app obsession, and perhaps our culture’s tendency towards over-sharing. It also was strikingly similar to Kevin Rose’s Oink, which launched soon after.
Hey, wait. That’s not a joke – two apps and an API? That’s actually a bit of work. Of course, when I asked about metrics, Firespotter Co-Founder Alex Cornell got all cagey. “Our engineering team became so tired of us asking these questions that they stored our metrics behind a wall of riddles and booleans. And then Wikipedia decided to wuss out today and our backend server went down.”
And when I pushed, he added, “unfortunately we are prohibited from confirming almost anything serious at Jotly headquarters. It would be *off-brand* I’m told.”
Ha ha. Ha?
But Cornell did point me to the fact that as of yesterday, this guy was the suckiest (I mean, lowest ranked) user, who was rated #73,845. Today, however, that guy has climbed to #25,511. I guess the soft launch on Android has been going well, then.
With a straight face, Cornell says:
We continue to be really excited by the growing popularity of Jotly. We never expected it to be A) real, and certainly not B) popular. There was a large demand for the Android app when we launched on iOS a few months ago and we are glad that we can finally let Android users in on the joke. After all, they need something to hold them over until Instagram gets their act together.
Joke, my a**. Guys, we’ve all been played – Jotly was never a joke, only marketed as one. As a refresher, the Jotly intro video, below: