Web Masters Episode 2: Henry Copeland

Below is a transcription of  Web Masters Episode 2: Henry Copeland. To learn more about Web Masters and subscribe, check out the Web Masters podcast page.



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Aaron Dinin:

September 11, 2001. The United States is in complete chaos. Buildings are being evacuated. Planes are being forced to land immediately. Communication systems are flooded. Nobody knows what’s happening, and everyone is desperate for information.

Of course, 9/11 wasn’t the first moment of mass turmoil in US history. Think Pearl Harbor, or even the shots fired at Fort Sumter that would launch the Civil War. But there was something unique about 9/11 compared with similar events that had preceded it.

September 11, 2001 was the first time a massively disruptive event had occurred during the existence of the world wide web. So when 9/11 happened, millions of people worldwide simultaneously did something they’d never been able to do before. They all went online in search of up-to-the-minute news about what was occurring. And guess what they found.

Henry Copeland:

The front page of the New York Times was literally blank for hours on end. They were just crashing. And then they would just put up a headline just to have something there.

Suddenly this whole alternative ecosystem of bloggers starts to provide kind of a meta level of insight

Aaron Dinin:

That was Henry Copeland. On September 11th, he was living in Paris, France, and considering launching a new company that, at the time, most people would have laughed at. It was called BlogAds. Henry had had the idea that bloggers might want to make money off their traffic, so he was considering creating a platform that allowed advertisers to buy ad placements on the world’s most popular blogs.

And while today that surely doesn’t seem revolutionary. Heck it probably seems a bit quaint since we’re well past blogs being the dominant social media platform. But back in 2001, suggesting that people put ads on their blogs would have sounded as crazy as, well, suggesting people put billboards on top of their houses. That just didn’t happen. People didn’t post their personal content online to make money.

But all that was about to change. And strangely enough, September 11th was a big contributor to that shift.

Henry Copeland:

Blogs became this lens through which you could kind of understand all the chaos. Because The Times and The Post were so busy caught in the nitty gritty, it was helpful to have somebody zoom back and give you that information. And so blogs kind of came into their own on September 11th.

Then when you went into the Iraq War, you had this whole circle of bloggers called the warbloggers who took on a very defined perspective that the US needed to go to war. That was the first time that you could really glimpse that blogs were going to be a political power. Because this was a group of people who were kind of trading information with each other, pursuing information, hunting it down, and pushing an agenda.

And that was the point where a light bulb really went off. You get group that’s pro-war, you’re going to get another group that’s anti-war. You know, all the blossoming and all the animosity that eventually grew up in the blogosphere, you could see right then.

Aaron Dinin:

I think it’s safe to say that the animosity of the blogosphere bubbled over well beyond what anyone would have predicted in those early days of social media. And today we’re going to get to hear from someone who got to watch the social media revolution from a unique vantage point. He was one of the first people in the world to connect social media content creators with advertisers.

Ready to hear that story? Great. Let’s get dialed-in. Welcome to Web Masters, the podcast that helps uncover the stories of what it was like building businesses during the early days of the internet and the world wide web.

[INTRO]

Aaron Dinin:

My name is Aaron Dinin. I am your host. I teach innovation and entrepreneurship at Duke University. I also research social media, and I research the history of the internet. Put all those things together, and you’ve got yourself someone really nerdy who loves talking with internet entrepreneurs and hearing how they created their online businesses.

So I’m especially excited to share the story of today’s guest, Henry Copeland, who is truly one of the first people in the entire world to recognize the social media revolution and how it would change everyone’s lives. I can’t wait for you to hear what he has to say.

But first I’m going to thank my wonderful partners on this podcast for helping me have and share these conversations with all of you. My partners are the incredible team at Latona’s, LLC. They’re a boutique mergers and acquisitions company that specializes in the buying and selling of cash flow positive internet businesses.

If you want an opportunity to run your own internet business, you don’t have to start from scratch. You could buy one at latonas.com. How cool is that? Trust me, getting started is the really, really, really, really hard part. Avoid all that and jump straight to the good stuff.

Or maybe you’ve already got yourself a successful internet business, and you’re ready to move on, which by the way, happens way more often than people think. Latona’s will help you get top dollar for what you’ve already worked so hard to build.

Just head on over to Latona’s, schedule a meeting, and they will be able to talk you through the process. That’s Latona’s, L-A-T-O-N-A-S.com.

And, hey, when you are on Latona’s, you’re almost certainly going to see lots of content websites, blogs, that people are selling for lots of money. That would have seemed impossible in the year 2000, but here we are two decades later and it happens nearly every day.

Today’s guest is the guy who basically taught lots of bloggers, that their content was very valuable. I want to know how the heck he got there. Let’s find out.

Henry Copeland:

I got into law school, and I deferred a year because I didn’t get into the law school of my dreams, which was Yale Law. They don’t give grades. So I thought, “Wow, that’s the law school you want to get into.”

I didn’t get into Yale Law, I got into Chicago. I deferred a year, and I went to London. I was going to do some, just hanging out, but I also met this American family and talked to them, and talk to them, and they became more and more interested in me.

I’m like, “I’m not that interesting. Why are these people kind of glomming onto me?” Then at a certain point, like two or three days later, after more conversations, they said, “We have these British partners that we’ve just partnered with, this British investment bank. We’d really like to hire you to kind of babysit what’s happening over here.” And I was like, “Oh, that’s interesting. Well, huh. I’m not sure this works.”

I had a number in my freaking pocket that was one other number somebody had given me and said, “Oh, when you’re in London look this guy up. He’s a good guy.” I called that guy up, and I said, “Hey, I’ve just gotten a job offer. I want to know what it’s like to work in London, work in the City of London.”

He said, “Come in and see me.” I go in and see him, talk for half an hour, and he’s like, “I want to hire you.” And I’m like, “Dude. Two job offers, three days.”

So I took the second job offer and spent the next seven years working in the bond market, which made me keenly interested in business. That was a small entrepreneurial firm run by three old guys who were at that point in their fifties. They’d been working together since they were 20. And so I kind of fell in love with entrepreneurship, watching them run their little business.

Aaron Dinin:

Okay. And how did that get you to the internet? You were interested in business and entrepreneurship, but at what point did you see the internet and think to yourself, “Hey, this world wide web thingy clearly is going to be the wave of the future.” I mean, back then, that was a pretty sophisticated thought, right?

Henry Copeland:

Well, I got started on the internet in the mid-’90s. I was editing a small publication in Central Europe. Something called the Budapest Business Journal.

I was freelancing in Hungary and having a great time, but they suddenly fired their editor and needed a new person. I volunteered to kind of step in and do a couple of days a week. Then it was three days a week. Then it basically became a full-time job.

In the middle of all that, we had a person who was writing about technology, a weekly column. And she starts talking about this internet thing. I was like, “Why would anybody let anybody else put stuff on your computer? What are these servers out there? And why do people share them?” I was just incredulous, but gradually became intrigued by it.

Convinced a little chain of newspapers that I was, at that point, a part-owner of, I said, “Let’s take this stuff online.” We had companies in Japan paying 3,500 bucks a year to ship our papers out so they could keep up with what was going on with their investment in Hungary. It was a business publication. And so I said, “Let’s get this stuff online.”

Aaron Dinin:

This is a moment in Henry’s story I want to highlight, because it’s the linchpin of successful entrepreneurial action. You see, contrary to popular belief, entrepreneurs don’t actually sit around all day asking themselves, “Hey, what cool thing can I build and start selling?” That’s not how it works. That’s not where successful businesses come from.

Instead, entrepreneurs identify problems, or sometimes people call them needs. They identify problems or needs in a market. And then they try to develop sustainable ways of solving those problems. That’s what Henry is doing here at this part of his story.

He wasn’t searching desperately for a brilliant idea. Instead, he saw that there are these people in Japan paying $3,500 per year, and this is back in the ’90s, so that was a lot of money, even more money back then. And they were paying it to have newspapers shipped halfway around the world.

But here’s the thing. The people in Japan didn’t care about the physical papers. What they wanted was the information in those papers. And honestly, they probably wanted it a lot faster than what they got with physical shipping.

And so the internet provided a great way to solve that problem in a more efficient way. That right there is the heart of entrepreneurship. It is a big part of why the internet enables so many new entrepreneurial opportunities. You see the internet often lets us solve existing problems in new and more efficient ways.

Henry Copeland:

And obviously the first thing you do when you try to get stuff online is you go out and you hire somebody. But then it was particularly a non-transparent market. What are you buying, and who are you buying it from? So you’ve got to interview a bunch of vendors. Many of them have never built a newspaper website before.

And so I went through this horrendous process, ultimately found a really good company in Prague to do the work. They did that work, but during that whole time, I suddenly realized, “Wow. Why doesn’t anybody build what we now know as a software-as-a-service? Why can’t you rent that type of thing?”

At the time, we didn’t even know what that was going to be called, renting software to someone.

Aaron Dinin:

In case you didn’t catch that, Henry Copeland was one of the people inventing software-as-a-service. SaaS. The darling business model of startups and VCs in public companies worldwide.

Now I’m not claiming he was the only person to have this idea, or that he popularized it. And of course he wouldn’t tell you that either. Still, I think it’s worth acknowledging how incredible it was to even think that renting software online in the mid-’90s was a good idea. Just to have had that idea and act on it would have been pretty incredible back then

Henry Copeland:

Think about it. This was right around the time Salesforce was getting going. The word application service provider didn’t even exist then. It was only because open-source software had come along and servers were beginning to be commodified.

There was certainly no AWS, but you could rent a server. We had our servers sitting inside one of these giant server farms, in a basement somewhere in San Francisco. But bits and pieces were there to suddenly build rentable software affordably, and do it for a whole bunch of companies at once, a whole bunch of clients at once, in a way that was far more cost-effective than them building themselves.

At this point, that seems like a really obvious thing. But at the time it was like, “Rent software? I want to own software.”

It was a fun period to be selling, because people just had, like, “Why would I trust you with my precious content?” I was like, “Well, you trust your bank with your precious money, dude. Go with a specialist and not with just your dude who happens to be your IT chief, and you wish you could fire him.”

Aaron Dinin:

And so was that how you sold people? You convinced them to fire their entire tech teams?

Henry Copeland:

We literally had buttons for the first publishing conference we went to… You know, at that point, publishing conferences were still huge. You had these giant machines. They would rent out… We went to one in Amsterdam with literally 100,000 people, and these giant printing presses that they would construct inside the conference hall just to show off their latest technology.

And so we had a tiny little booth and our one claim to fame was these little buttons that had, “Fire your webmaster,” with a red strike across webmaster.

Aaron Dinin:

Oh, yeah? I bet that made you lots of friends in the companies you were trying to sell into.

Henry Copeland:

Well, I mean, yeah, the friction you ran into was… Ultimately I realized “Fire your webmaster” was the wrong idea, because the best customers you could have would be one where the webmaster realized that this was a tarpit and he didn’t want to touch it.

And so ultimately, really the IT chief in a good operation was your ally. Because he was like, “Yeah, I’ve got my team. I don’t want them being distracted by this stuff.” And they knew publishers were being unrealistic thinking it was a pot of gold. They didn’t want to touch it.

At that time, their options would have been like an Oracle database. It was an incredibly expensive thing. I mean the classic line, when we started talking to VCs was like, “Well, can’t you do this with Microsoft FrontPage?” And we’re like, “Dude, that is not a database. That is not anything close to what we’re doing.”

Then you’d talk to them about SEO, and they had no idea. So it was a really fascinating set of conversations. And we were just way in front of what everybody could imagine.

I mean, if you think about it at that time, Elon Musk was busy with something called Zip2, which is actually where he made his first money. He built a classified ad system that he sold to a bunch of newspaper chains that was basically an ASP model also. I’ve forgotten who he sold that to. What did he cash out of that, 150, 300 million bucks?

But, weirdly enough, right around that same period of time Elon Musk was getting his start. And look at where we are today.

Aaron Dinin:

Yeah. You and Elon Musk have clearly continued along the same pathway.

Henry Copeland:

Well, I’m happier. Let’s put it that way.

Aaron Dinin:

Okay. Sure. So you and Elon Musk and Salesforce, you’re all doing the same things back then. And let’s say we’re still TBD on who’s going to come out on top, right?

But in the meantime, can you give us some historical grounding here? The idea of renting software, as opposed to buying software, it’s beginning to become popular in what the mid to late ’90s?

Henry Copeland:

I became exposed to the internet in ’94, ’95. I was, “What the hell is this?” ’96, ’97, I’m like, “Wow, we should build a website.” ’97, I built a website for that small chain of papers.

’98, I decide I’m going to create my own company, registered the PressFlex domain, P-R-E-S-S-F-L-E-X, and launched that business in December of ’98. And then slowly built the software and went out and started selling it.

I was living in France at the time, selling it to French newspapers, which was really fun because my French was kind of garbled, but they had a tolerance for an exuberant, seemingly intelligent American. Ultimately, we rented a bunch of websites to French newspapers.

That was from ’98 to ’02. Still have some of those customers. We have the OECD Observer, who’s now been with us for more than 20 years. We have a number of customers still in the UK in that business, the PressFlex business.

But as it went on, it became more and more apparent that there was a two year sales cycle selling to publishers. Because you had to convince the publisher, the publisher’s husband, the head of ad sales, the head of technology. You had to convince all these people to buy into your stuff.

It was horrible. It was a two year sales cycle. And for what we were charging, three to 500 bucks a month, it just was not worth it.

Aaron Dinin:

I’m guessing the challenges in your first business, PressFlex, led you down the road toward developing your next company, which would have been BlogAds, right? So how did you go from building a publishing CMS for European newspapers to this idea of putting ads on blogs?

What did you learn from, I guess, that frustrating sales process of your first company that helped make BlogAds so successful?

Henry Copeland:

So I, in that process drew up a list, a kind of wishlist of, “Okay, if we get a chance to start a new business, what would be the criteria? What would be in it? What’s missing in this business?” And one of the chief things was network effects.

Another thing I decided was, it was better to do widgets, i.e. stuff that other people could bolt into their websites. The insight was that only once every 50 years does somebody build a new website. So the market is always vanishingly small compared with the total potential market. Whereas if you sell somebody something they can bolt into their website, potentially everybody can use your product.

And then the other big one was, be sure to contribute money to people’s lives rather than taking money out of their lives, i.e., much easier to go to a website owner and say, “Hey, why don’t you put this on? And I’m going to send you money,” rather than saying, “Hey, put this on and I’m going to charge you money.”

One day in February of ’02, I suddenly had this idea of, “Let’s put ads on blogs. Blogs are something different. Blogs are special. There’s clearly some energy here. There’s clearly a special connection, a special voice. These things are going to be powerful. Let’s create an ad unit that’s unique to blogs.”

Aaron Dinin:

So here again, I want to highlight another part in Henry story where he’s being, what we might describe as, a textbook definition of entrepreneurial. Specifically, he’s doing two really important things that everyone listening to this can learn from.

First, he’s constantly assessing the friction points in the work he’s doing. He’s doing that despite the fact that the work he’s doing is actually relatively successful. I mean, as he alluded to, the company he was building at the time, PressFlex, still exists today. So he was doing something right.

But it wasn’t a perfect company. There was too much friction in the sales process and the active market was too small. So he created a mental bucket list for a future company he might develop down the road that would intentionally avoid those same pitfalls.

The second big thing he did was look forward to an emerging market. He wanted to figure out how he could apply the lessons he learned to something new that didn’t already exist, and didn’t already have the same kinds of entrenched behaviors. That of course is what led Henry to blogs.

Now, most people listening to this, you’ve probably heard the word blog before, but the meaning has really shifted a lot over time. For example, these days, people might talk about blogging on Facebook. So what we should do now is really take a second to define what a blog in its original form actually looked like. And that’s going to help us understand why it was so unique in the context of the publishing industry.

Henry Copeland:

So traditional publishing puts a headline on top of the page, and keeps updating, puts the most important stuff on top. A blog had, A, reverse chronological order. Which was radical, right? We’re not going to put the most important thing on top. We’re going to put the most recent thing on top. That’s number one.

Number two, each post had a hyperlink that was stable. You’ve got to remember a lot of the big websites at that point were still run on big database sites and just randomly generated URLs that were not stable. And so any blog post became this chunk of information that was stable and existed.

And the most important thing in all of this was, the first person voice. This was just me talking about stuff I knew about and cared about. And so you had this feeling of honesty and expertise. Which is not to say The New York Times isn’t honest and having expertise, but you knew exactly who you were dealing with and what you were getting from them.

And then finally you had comments very often, but that wasn’t a distinguishing factor. It would be reverse chronological order, stable hyperlinks, and then the first person voice.

Today that doesn’t seem radical. At that moment, that was first new thing that had happened in media in 200 years, arguably.

Aaron Dinin:

As someone who spent the better part of his adult life studying media technologies, I would absolutely agree with Henry’s statement. Today, thanks to social media, reverse chronological order seems almost normal. But remember that’s actually because of blogs. Blogs introduced the concept of reverse chronological order as a publishing structure to a broad general audience.

And when you stop to think about it, that structure is, well, really unnatural. You wouldn’t watch a movie in reverse chronological order, and you wouldn’t read a book in reverse chronological order. And we certainly don’t live our lives in reverse chronological order.

But we can, and we often do, experience large chunks of the internet in reverse chronological order. And we can credit, or blame, that structure on blogs.

The advantage of publishing in reverse chronological order is that it invites readers to join the conversation at any time. And then, if they so choose, they can work backwards to better understand the context of what’s been written.

For example, your friend could send you a link to a blog article published today, and you didn’t need to spend hours getting caught up in order to understand the link. You could read it now and get value from what you’d read immediately.

But more importantly, if you liked the content, you could instantly see everything else the author had written right then and there, which helps content creators capture audiences faster than previous publishing media. Compare that with publications, like, say, newspapers, where you could pick up a newspaper and start reading, but you weren’t likely to have immediate access to the entire archive of old papers sitting right next to you.

So this ease of audience growth for blogs began producing blogs with enormous readerships in the early 2000s. They ranged from political blogs like Andrew Sullivan’s to gossip, blogs like Perez Hilton. And these blogs had millions of dedicated readers back at a time when the internet’s reach was only a fraction of what it is today.

And of course, where there are large audiences, you can be sure there’s an entrepreneur nearby, trying to figure out how to build a business.

Henry Copeland:

BlogAds was this widget than any blogger could drop on their website. It was DIY so that customers would be able to type in a headline, drop in a photo. We let people drop in multiple links, pay the price that the blogger had set, and submit the ad. And then the blogger got to accept or reject the ad.

So it was really all the stuff that you’ve got today in Google and Facebook advertising, we had built back in ’02. And we had the granularity of doing it site-by-site, which those folks still don’t have.

They have the beauty of letting you run it a billion times over, but the granularity is something that… We still hear from people like, “God, I wish I had the granularity you guys offered.”

Aaron Dinin:

Okay, so as you mentioned, that kind of stuff exists everywhere now. But what was it like trying to convince bloggers to use something like that back in 2002?

Henry Copeland:

As we all do with our business ideas, we think that what we think about it, everybody else is going to think about. So February, March, April, May, we’re busy building out our prototype of this idea. And, as all good CEOs do, I jumped the gun and start selling the prototype, which haunted me for years afterwards.

But bottom line, no idea you have is so important that you need to jump the gun and start selling it six or eight or 12 weeks early. Because there’s really no rush. No one actually has your exact idea, or your exact insights, or your exact network.

Anyway, so a few people adopted it, but to my great surprise and chagrin many said, “Well, why would I want to put an ad in this personal space of mine? This is as personal as my home. This is like my living room. I don’t want a glaring blaring Budweiser sign on my wall.”

So there’s a lot of resistance, particularly kind of in the upper echelons of blogging. Smaller blogs were just psyched to have 40 bucks. And also psyched to have cool T-shirt ads, which was kind of what we specialized in in the early days. Great political T-shirts.

It was cool content. That was always my argument, was this was not banner ads that had a particular shape and were commodified even then. These were pretty distinctive, interesting ads. A lot of T-shirt ads. A lot of just weird-ass literature. Stuff like that.

But what happened was, blogs eventually started to get big enough that they were soaking up a fair amount of time, whether it was Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo, or Markos Moulitsas at Daily Kos. It became a full-time job for these guys, and they suddenly needed to make some money.

And here was Henry who’d been kind of knocking on their door for three or six months and with this crazy idea. Suddenly it was like, “Well, how much do you think you can send us in money?” I was like, “Well, maybe, I don’t know, 1,000, 2000 bucks a month.” And then, you start doing it, and suddenly you’re writing bigger checks than that.

At that point, everybody in the blogosphere wanted to be on board. At some point in ’05, somebody did a calculation and determined that we were on 23 of the 30 biggest blogs. It was some kind of independent service that looked at everybody’s traffic.

As with all things, the initial two years was a lot slower and a lot harder. In all of 2003, we had 10 grand in revenue, and we were only taking 20% of that. So we had two grand in revenue. And then in ’04, that bumped to 1 million bucks in revenue. And suddenly it was like, “Oh, this is actually a good idea.”

Aaron Dinin:

So at that point it sounds like, you know it’s working really well for the publishers. What about the other side? What about the advertisers?

Somewhere in there, you mentioned that it was a lot of T-shirt companies at first. When did the mainstream advertisers on blogs really start to get on board and realize this was a place to start publishing ads?

Henry Copeland:

There’s a secret trick here, which is, we got a lot of free publicity from journalists, because journalists could kind of even then see the writing on the wall. Media was going to go through some tough times, and there was going to be some disintermediation.

I mean, The New York Times, The Post, have kind of pulled it together and got their digital acts. But at the time they were pretty inept and, I won’t say struggling, they were still making money on print, but it was pretty clear that they were going to get lapped when it came to digital.

So suddenly all these bloggers are making money, and they’re thinking, “Well, gee, maybe someday I’m going to be a blogger.” And so we, and the bloggers, got a lot of favorable press, really, without even trying. I mean, I never called up BusinessWeek. They called us up and said, “Wow, you guys did really well in ’04, how’s it going to go in ’05?”

Really what changed in ’04 was a lot of big political candidates came along. I think it was February ’04, there was a special election in maybe Tennessee, and the candidate I think spent $1,000 on an ad on Talking Points Memo, and got $100,000 in contributions.

And so everybody in DC heard that story and suddenly every candidate is trying to advertise on blogs. So really like 80% of our advertising in ’04 was political.

Aaron Dinin:

Hold on. Wait a minute. So what you’re telling us is that all the way back in 2004, there was a European-based company helping US politicians manipulate elections using social media advertising?

Henry Copeland:

Even then, yes, we were being paid by John Kerry to manipulate the elections. Yes, that’s the true untold story of the 2004 elections.

Aaron Dinin:

To be fair, by then Henry had actually moved his company back to the States, eventually settling in North Carolina, which is where I met him. And, full disclosure here, he was one of the first angel investors in a company I ran for a while.

I met him at the tail end of his BlogAds journey, which lasted longer than you might think, considering the relatively short reign of blogs as the world’s premier forum of social media.

Henry Copeland:

We kept pursuing the vision of a kind of big-tent approach that would have all sorts of bloggers. We called them hives. And I really wanted to kind of just keep spreading it around. But as inevitably happens, you end up slowly specializing, A, and, B, other folks come along and specialize. And so some of the mom blogs… Procter & Gamble basically does a giant conference and just invites all these mom blogs.

The business went very nicely until 2016, but the early writing was on the wall with the whole influencer marketing thing, where people figured out, “Why should I buy an ad on a blog when it’s easier to send them a free baseball mitt, or a free box of Pampers, or let them drive a Toyota for a week and write a review.” The blogger would still, sometimes, disclose that in the post that they would write. So a giant industry in influencing the influencers sprang up.

So weirdly enough, it was that more than ads… But it did not help that by ’08 it was very visible that Facebook, if you wanted to buy political ads, they had incredible targeting.

Aaron Dinin:

Okay. Blogging is dead, at least, I guess, as it relates to running a blog advertising network. So tell us what’s next for you? What’s the next great opportunity for social media?

Henry Copeland:

We basically, as far as I can tell, rung all the permutations and combinations that you can ring. We’ve taken posts. We’ve made them shorter. We’ve turned them into two minute videos. We’ve turned them into 15 minute videos. We’ve added dubbing.

I’d say I’ve moved on. Not moved on in the sense of not being interested in them, but I just don’t think we’re going to see a lot of huge innovation there. Famous last words.

Aaron Dinin:

So if you ask him directly, Henry thinks the opportunity for social media innovation has passed. And it’s admittedly hard to argue with a guy who has so much knowledge about the space. But on the other hand, he’ll also be the first person to admit he can be as wrong as anyone else.

Henry Copeland:

When I got involved on the internet in ’98, I thought I was late. I was like, “Gosh, everybody’s already done everything. Why would I start doing this almost 10 years after the internet got started? This is ridiculous.”

But I had some faith that, yes, this one thing still needs to be done. One thing, which is an application service providers for small and medium sized publishers, right? That was the only thing left, and I should do it. But then the internet was done.

We’re still early, early, early days on all of this stuff.

Aaron Dinin:

And he’s still right. Even now more than two decades after Henry launched his original online publishing platform, I’m pretty sure we’re still in the early days of all this internet stuff. And I believe more great innovation is on the way. Whatever it is, maybe a Web Masters podcast will help inspire one of you to build it.

Of course, for that to happen, we need more listeners, which means we need your help. And you know what you’ve got to do. Head on over to your favorite podcasting app and give us a five star review to tell the world how much you love Web Masters. While you’re there, be sure to subscribe so you get the next episode delivered to you automatically.

And if you can’t wait for the next episode, just like blogs, we publish these podcasts in reverse chronological order. So maybe go see what we’ve already put out that you might’ve missed.

You can also find us on Twitter @WebMastersPod. I’m on Twitter, too, @AaronDinan. That’s A-A-R-O-N-D-I-N-I-N. And considering the theme of this episode, it seems worth mentioning that I have a blog over on medium.com. Search for my name there, and you’ll find lots of great content about entrepreneurship.

I need to give a big thanks to my guest today, Henry Copeland. You can keep up with him on Twitter. He’s @hc, which is really an amazing Twitter handle. You’ve got to wonder how early he must’ve joined Twitter to secure it.

And thanks as well to our sound engineer, Ryan Higgs, and to our sponsor Latonas.com. And as always, thanks to all of you for listening. For now it’s time for me to sign off. Goodbye.