Crowds are stupid – I am sick of the "Wisdom of Crowds" ideas and Web 4.48 funding continues unabated.

Crowds are stupid! They are loud, sweaty, smelly, will trample you at the drop of a hat and should be followed with extreme caution.

Crowds are interesting to watch from afar. Like watching crazies “Run with the Bulls” in Pamplona.


Do these people (this crowd) look so smart!

Crowds can be fun to be a part of at concerts and football games, but I would’nt entrust their opinion on Events with MY MONEY!. Does Bono rely on his screaming fans for his Evolution investments?

The ONLY crowd to watch in the stock market is the overall tape. I am extremely skeptical of any stock site that is building a model based on crowd behavior. I have ranted on this before. LESS is MORE.

The crowd angle is in full Web steam ahead mode in any case.

Over at TechCrunch they are reporting that Pickspal has raised $6 million. Here is their awful analysis:

Recently, however, the PicksPal team noticed that a very small percentage of users tend to be correct in their picks significantly more often that they should be statistically. When they grouped these special users they found them to be a powerful predictive force.

Sports betting (both legal and illegal) is a massive worldwide business. Participants are always looking for an edge and are willing to pay for picks by “experts” (I know this from my extensive research watching Two for the Money).

Tom and his team figured out pretty quickly that there was a potentially massive business here. And next Tuesday they are going to start tapping into that business when they launch what they call “Genius Picks”. For $10, users can get access to the collective wisdom of the 30 best PicksPal players over the previous five weeks in a given sport, and get five predictions on upcoming games.

The only thing I can predict is that my kids will have accounts and that they will be taking shots at picking winners. If they get hot – you too can benefit from their sport’s genius. Can’t wait. Already signed them up :) .

Big heaping OY! Tech Crunch’s site seems weaker and weaker by the day. Instead of deep analysis on less stories, they are just posting a lot of crap and really weak thinking. They have become part of a loud, noisy crowd of venture capitalists, engineers, and web entrepreneurs and this crowd is now confusing things.

What is continually obvious despite the Web naysayers is – There is a LOT of money floating around in the internet venture space.

I have thought that this space will only get hotter as even a tiny amount of money that flows out of real estate by the big guns who have made BILLIONS in this cycle, gets thrown at the Web.

It is and it will get hotter. Deals that should be getting $1 million are getting $5 million plus.

I am reading that Eventful has just raised $7.5 million and has now raised $9.5 (ish) in venture capital. No plans at revenue generation in the near future. Yahoo owns a competitor in the space.

I have met with the good people of Eventful. I like them. They move quick.

But – $7.5 million is lot’s of money for a service like this to have in the bank. Maybe they are looking at some acquisitions that will help them build out their differentiating service for the moment. This is the service:

Besides having created a clearinghouse for events information, one aspect of the service that’s catching on among users is the tool that allows people to demand events. For example, say there’s a pocket of fans for a band in a given city. Users could demand the band visit, and, should the band be willing, the band could make adjustments in its tour schedule.

Interesting for sure, but that feature seems a long way from bankable at the moment. I am sure they know something that I don’t.


  1. Andy says:

    Good post. I disagree a little bit, only because I think there is validity in the wisdom of PROVEN crowds. Hopefully they are using statistical techniques (like BETA) to determine that the “genius” group is indeed more than lucky. It’s something us stock guys are fairly obsessed with :)

    Personally, I would think that when it comes to sports betting, the better approach might be to find the exact opposite….the ones that never win. I have a friend like that, and I’ll often bet the opposite of his “locks”. It works.

  2. Eddie Daroza says:

    Sooo right on! When was the last time you found an investment on CNBC? Crowds are RETARDED, with a huge tarded. Best post I have read in a few days at

  3. Jordan Glasner says:

    Spot on wrt to ridiculous amounts of funding. I’d put that $7.5 mil into an incubator and crush most of these web 2.0 dreams.

    How did we end up back to where revenue doesn’t matter?

  4. TechCrunch has exactly the Wisdom of Crowds problem. Sometimes it does not apply.

    Each post and it’s comments at TechCrunch are a quick and dirty summary trial of an online service.

    Based on a set of rules that the community has defined has “good”, each website is quickly analysed. It gets more points for having RSS but it gets less points for not having a nice Web2.0 design.

    Users prove a business, not TechCrunch.

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