In a salutatory lesson for the never-ending stream of start-ups hoping to make money from clever takes on social media, Blippy, the service that automatically published users' credit card transaction details online when it launched to much fanfare in late 2009 but had to quickly change its business model, is now all but dead.
Raising close to $13 million in funding, Blippy secured huge attention and media coverage for its service, which enabled users to link a card, as well as accounts at outlets like iTunes and Amazon, to its site, which then automatically provided a Twitter-style stream of purchases.
Yet despite the hype from sites such as TechCrunch - which has now posted a mea culpa blog admitting it got Blippy wrong - very few people signed up for the service even before its reputation took a hit last April with the revelation that user card details were showing up on Google searches.
In July the company tried to boost its popularity and user engagement by adding a review feature, letting people share their thoughts on purchases. Just three months later the transaction sharing aspect of the service was ditched completely.
CEO Ashvin Kumar now tells Techcrunch that the switch hasn't really worked; the site has around 100,000 registered users of which just 30% have shared a purchase.
With co-founder Philip Kaplan jumping ship, Kumar says that although Blippy is not dead, the team has stopped innovating and is instead "taking the things that we learned" and working on new projects. Clearly undeterred these new plans are also in the tough-to-crack social e-commerce sector.