John and I did a very (very) soft launch of today, which allows you to subscribe to content for any amount (including $0). It also has a few other cool features that make that subscription interesting and valuable. Mostly though, as someone on Twitter so aptly put it, we want to create a system that allows creators who value viewers over views to be successful.

This is similar to other sites that exist on the internet, like Gittip and Flattr have been around for a while. But even more similar is Patreon, which has pretty much the exact same goals as us. 

Jack Conte (who is amazing) contacted me the day that Patreon went live. We had been working on Subbable for about two months at that point. So initially I was a little scared. Why?

  1. I wasn’t sure if Subbable still made sense or if Patreon was just the exact same thing done first.
  2. I was worried that, if we did indeed launch Subbable, people would think we were stealing from Patreon.
  3. I was worried I was gonna piss of Jack, because I respect him and I hate pissing off people I respect. 

It turns out those fears were mostly unfounded because:

  1. Subbable and Patreon, while formed for the same purpose, solve the problem in different ways that I think make them useful to different kinds of creators
  2. Even if they didn’t I think competition (and even fear, to some extent) is good for business because it drives innovation
  3. Jack is really awesome and was nothing but enthusiastic about Subbable after I told him about it. 

I also remain nothing but enthusiastic about Patreon, which has been extremely successful, raised VC money, and been very helpful for many creators who I respect and want to see more content from. 

It’s pretty fantastic to have had that support from Jack, it meant a lot to me in the weeks running up to the launch of Subbable. So don’t think we’re competing, we have the same goal…to have more good content in the world.