Star Apps: Paul Budnitz

A year ago, Ello founder Paul Budnitz was frustrated with all the ad-driven, privacy-compromising social networks, so the established entrepreneur (Budnitz Bicycles, Kidrobot) decided to form his own. For a year, the site was limited to Budnitz and his 100 closest friends, but as demand to join increased, he opened it up to the public. Initially Ello saw a healthy 10 to 15 percent growth rate — until a combination of dissatisfaction with Facebook’s name policy, media attention, and word of mouth thrust Ello into the spotlight. I chatted with Paul Budnitz about Ello’s explosive growth, what it offers that competing networks don’t, and when the much-anticipated app will arrive.

Paul Budnitz is racing to keep up with Ello’s explosive user growth.

What do you attribute all the recent excitement around Ello to? I think there’s a lot of discontent with the ad-driven networks and advertising in general and what that leads to. It makes social networking not so fun when you feel that there are ulterior motives going on that are not in your best interest. We also just designed something that’s really cool and fun to use. I think there’s also been some specific events that have happened with a lot of really positive stuff from the queer community co… [Read more]






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