This is a good week to get things moving! Hell, is it almost April or what?! Whew. A few links and a few high-level thoughts in today’s issue! I hope you enjoy!
- Slack message connect. People have some thoughts. Email growth playbook.
- Crowdfunding round. This is why the internet. Don’t bet against it. GoPuff.
- Antifragile. Yes, yes, and… yes. #yenYEAR? Resilience. Hopin buys.
- Savage. Tesla dominance or Bitcoin! Elon’s education for kids. Anyroad!
- WFH via HBR. YC EdTech. FB is unoriginal. Very cool accessories.
- These are good. The dive. Stories for social. Cryptosocial. Airwallex.
- Robinhood IPO. Only then we’ll know. Your data $. Memo. Disco.
- Quick-start to meaningful engagement. Rival peak. Lobbying. Proud.
- Blippar. Lolli. Podsights. Recroom. Tourism. Bevy raises. Guide to sales.
- Bootstrapping. Running. Uncomfortable. Bigger. Tragedy. Drum machine.
To infinity & community,
Theories of legitimacy
Vitalik Buterin’s piece on legitimacy got me thinking something fierce this weekend and I wanted to share some of it with here with you all. Give the following few lines some good thinking time:
Vitalik: There are many different ways in which legitimacy can come about. In general, legitimacy arises because the thing that gains legitimacy is psychologically appealing to most people. But of course, people’s psychological intuitions can be quite complex. It is impossible to make a full listing of theories of legitimacy, but we can start with a few:
- Legitimacy by brute force: someone convinces everyone that they are powerful enough to impose their will and resisting them will be very hard. This drives most people to submit because each person expects that everyone else will be too scared to resist as well.
- Legitimacy by continuity: if something was legitimate at time T, it is by default legitimate at time T+1.
- Legitimacy by fairness: something can become legitimate because it satisfies an intuitive notion of fairness. See also: my post on credible neutrality, though note that this is not the only kind of fairness.
- Legitimacy by process: if a process is legitimate, the outputs of that process gain legitimacy (eg. laws passed by democracies are sometimes described in this way).
- Legitimacy by performance: if the outputs of a process lead to results that satisfy people, then that process can gain legitimacy (eg. successful dictatorships are sometimes described in this way).
- Legitimacy by participation: if people participate in choosing an outcome, they are more likely to consider it legitimate. This is similar to fairness, but not quite: it rests on a psychological desire to be consistent with your previous actions.
Note that legitimacy is a descriptive concept; something can be legitimate even if you personally think that it is horrible. That said, if enough people think that an outcome is horrible, there is a higher chance that some event will happen in the future that will cause that legitimacy to go away, often at first gradually, then suddenly.
I shared a note from this article already in the above links but I had to give this section a bit more love. The TL;DR: is this: Mr. Beast is building a venture fund that will support creators. More important than money is the mentorship that he and his crew will give the folks who get funded.
That, my friends, is the real benefit. He even goes on to share a story of how he’s already done this for others:
They definitely do not. I’ve literally seen people with under 100 subscribers get a million views on a video, if me and my friends just show them how to make a video properly.
There’s this guy who is pulling 10,000 views a video. He asked me for some advice. I was like, “Fine, I’ll help you get a viral video.” So we gave him a video idea. I told him how to film it. You know, he filmed it multiple times.
I shit on the thumbnail after he did it. And he had to keep making the thumbnail. And he got mad at me because he’s like, “This is good.” I’m like, “No, it’s not there yet.”
So I made him put like four times the amount of effort in a video. It was an idea I gave him because I knew it was just a very clickable one. And that video went on to get 10 million views, which was more views than his entire channel had.
I’ve had tons of other instances like that. Usually a lot of people are either really good at making tons of thumbnails or they’re really good at making great videos, but like very few people are good at both.
So it’s usually just identifying what they suck the most at, but just telling you about how to not suck at it. And then yeah, I mean, that algorithm works like wonders. It doesn’t matter if you have 1,000 subscribers or a million. If you upload a really good video with great retention, a great [click-through rate], it’s gonna pop off.
Mentoring and coaching can transform someone’s life and Mr. Beast understand that combining that with a bit of capital might be a darn good combination. For us in the creator / community space, we’ve known that for years! But finally there’s a bit more capital going around.
And that’s a good thing.