The Internet is full of horrible trolls! Like me. Launch some new product, and we'll flock to it in an attempt to make mischief. That's why Mike Monteiro's Dickproofing idea is pure genius.
I asked Mike to explain the concept to me on IM. Here's what he had to say.
Mat: Dickproofing is genius, is it for real?
Mike: it should be. I tossed it out half-jokingly, but I think it's an actual good idea
Mat: It is! I mean, think what it could have done for Stamped. Actually. What could it have done for Stamped? [Stamped is a recently-launched app that lets people "stamp" things they approve of and send it out over various social networks.]
Mike: I don't think dickproofing can save a bad business model, that's not its intent, but it can certainly show you how your service will get messed with. And you might be ok with it being messed with, but you should be aware of HOW it might happen.
And we're not talking malice. We're talking about the standard jerks who figure out how to use your service for Beavis and Butthead type hijinks.
I don't think anyone set out to destroy Stamped. It's just that the bad kids got on it first. And instead of lots of stamps for "The Muppets" you've got stamps for "Getting Handjobs During the Muppets." And, for all I know, the people who made it are fine with that.
Mat: Will dicks always use a new social service for Beavis and Butthead style hijinks?
Mike: In a way, that's a testament to the service being interesting. If it's fun, it's fun to fuck with
Mat: Like lying on Twitter?
Mike: Exactly. Remember the first couple months of twitter? "I'm eating a sandwich." "I'm at macy's." Then the characters showed up.
Mat: Is it true that you were the first person to lie on Twitter?
Mike: It is. I have a signed document from Ev to that effect
Mat: I think you're lying now.
Mike: I was once told never to lie to a journalist
There you have it!