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I'm sorry that it came across with that notion.

Bottom line is: I really want to focus on my projects that have high revenue viability. I'm not experienced with monetizing free products, but someone else is. Until then, having threewords.me on my back is extra baggage that I'd rather let someone take care of, so I can focus back on what's important for me: creating profitable startups.

I had the opportunity to take six-figure funding amounts from big firms and individuals, but I said no to that. I'm passionate about building better support systems for startups. I'm passionate about building an OpenTable competitor. I don't feel the same passion with threewords.me, and since I never take capital on something I don't really think my soul has a connection with (to go all zen on you), the other option was to sell it.

I really appreciate the kindness of the Hacker News folks for taking an interest in the threewords.me 'saga' (thank you!) but I'm admittedly a little embarrassed because the image that all this coverage is putting out for me isn't something that I actively pursue. I secretly hoped that the threewords.me sale wouldn't hit HN, and was satisfied (until now :P). It's just a side project that went big.

> It's just a side project that went big.

I thought you handled it extraordinarily well, and this should be a case study on what to do when you've got a successful project on your hands that you aren't inspired by... a number of people fall into this circumstance, and usually they just let the project languish and die a slow death. I think you handled this really well and I'm inspired by it.

Congratulations and I'm hoping this is a sign of things to come when people have side projects go big.

I thought you handled it extraordinarily well, and this should be a case study on what to do when you've got a successful project on your hands that you aren't inspired by

And once I find out some kind of number for the sale amount, that's exactly how it will get written up on swombat.com.

Edit: apparently, the figure will not be forthcoming. Oh well.

Thanks man! I really appreciate your kind words. If this helps people derive more value from their side projects, that would be awesome.

Congratulations. are you going to share who bought it? is it public ?

You don't have to apologize, explain, or be accountable to anybody but yourself. Entrepreneurs take on all the risks and sacrifice for being "in the game" and the win to loss ratio has always been (and will likely always be) painfully small on the win side; that IMO should afford the risk taker the freedom to do things as they see fit. Just as you don't have to ask approval to fail, you don't have to ask approval to succeed.

> that IMO should afford the risk taker to do things as they see fit.

Quote of the month.

Thank you. You're totally right. In addition — I think side projects are the new way that developers learn. It's like learning chemistry from reading a textbook vs. actually mixing the baking soda and vinegar. Trying more side projects helps us improve the chance on getting on the win side.

I hope, though, my explanation will also help others in the same situation!

I completely understand why you flipped the site, and you should be proud of the fact that you were able to take a side project that started as an itch and have it become viral so quickly, no matter how short-lived that was. My used car salesman comment was a reflection on 'the process' and in no way a reflection on you or the way you conduct yourself.

edit I also didn't explicitly say what @jeromec did, but I definitely share his sentiment. You owe nobody an apology for the success that you had and will hopefully have in the future.

Thank you! Yes, the whole thing could have been run better, but that's why I usually try to not do things I don't know how to do well (like threewords.me), though sometimes things slip through the cracks. And my other option was Flippa, so, yeah. My other (minor) acquisitions all consisted of a buyer approaching. This was different.

Mark, you've done the best thing you possibly could have done short of dropping out of college and giving it all you've got but honestly - and not to diminish threewords.me - I think that would have been a very dicey decision at best and possibly a wrong one.

Playing it safe is one way to get ahead in a sure and steady way and I'm quite sure that the way you've positioned this project and how you handled yourself in the execution of the project and the subsequent sale does nothing but confirm the fact that you have what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur under his own power.

Thank you, man. That means a lot. I definitely think it's the right decision — since then I've gotten back on track with my major projects and focuses. It's a hard thing to do, but a necessary one.

Don't forget yourself either, though. People like you are the guys behind every success that happens. You've always been there to help. So thank you :)

> It's just a side project that went big.

Oh, sounds like you built an app and not a business! http://sahillavingia.com/blog/build-apps-not-businesses/

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