Competition

Not to keep beating the Parley horse, but it seems like everyone is making encrypted messaging apps these days (and crowdsourcing $100k to do it). When we first started talking about Parley last December, the demand for such a product wasn’t nearly as well defined, and existing competitors had a fairly niche appeal. The recent revelations about the NSA’s widespread snooping capabilities seem to have changed that, though, and the related demise of a few established players stirred things up even more.

On the plus side, all the action in the space means that we correctly predicted where the market was heading, which is never easy (and in our case I’ll attribute it to luck as much as skill). The flip side, however, is that Black Chair is starting to feel like an even smaller fish in an ever growing pond. None of us ever worked at Google, nor do we really have any other internet claims to fame (as opposed to the guy who invented PGP or the founder of the Pirate Bay). All of that is ok.

Competition is really important in the general this-is-how-capitalism-works sense, but it’s also extremely valuable for individual businesses. We now have easy comparisons to make (we’re like X in this way, but we’re different from Y because…) and clear reference points throughout the industry. It’s a privilege to go toe-to-toe with people who have done this before, and also an opportunity to differentiate ourselves, to carve out a niche in between everyone else. Who knows; maybe one day this will become a story about how we thrived amidst fierce competition, or maybe Parley will die a gruesome death with our story serving as a bad example for generations to come. It’s far more likely that Parley will continue living a quiet existence and eventually pay for our groceries every month, and that would be just fine by me.

davidnoel

Software developer, book writer, beer brewer :)

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