Tuesday, 19 March 2013

The Death Of Formspring

LegoTrip Formspring Is DeadA few days ago I received an email from Formspring. When it began expressing gratitude towards all of its 30 million users, talking shit about how they’d “grown beyond their wildest dreams” or some other cliché, I knew something bad was about to happen. And sure enough, I was right. By the time I had reached the end of the message, it had spiralled into some bleak announcement about how resources were low and costs were high, and despite having raised $14 million in venture capital, they could no longer afford to keep the site running, opting to shut the whole service down.

It might sound a bit surprising for me to say this, but a small part of me felt relief. Formspring had become somewhat of a chore in my life, and I can’t honestly say I wholeheartedly enjoyed the process any more. Every time I sat down to tackle some random question, there was always this nagging slice of my brain which taunted my fingers, encouraging them to work on something more constructive and beneficial to myself, rather than other people. I’d have to slap my face a few more times each week just to get the voices to shut-up, and only then could I keep writing these things. I did it for you guys.

That aside, there is a much bigger piece of me which mourns the loss of a website I’ve used off and on for the last 3 years. Part of this grief, is because a lot of links I have posted over the course of Juice Nothing will no longer lead anywhere, which sucks. But even more than that, I guess on some level I really did value the never ending questions which blessed my inbox at regular intervals. They made me feel loved, keeping me warm with attention, which is all I’ve ever wanted in life, really. So please believe me when I say: I seriously appreciated the "following" this website generated for me, so much, and as a result, I will miss this side of my routine. I will miss it alot. My profile had become something to be proud of. Something which contained examples of my best writing to date. And that in itself, is a personal tragedy.

So what now? Well, first off, I think it’s fair to assume that you won’t be hearing any more Formspring related posts from me, ever again. But MARK MY WORDS: this will not be the last you hear of me answering anonymous questions from you lot. The interest in this side of my creativity, and the gratitude I have for this interest, is far too powerful to let something like this go. It will take time to set-up, but a day will come when a new Ask Jared platform will open for business, and it will be different. No longer will I use some other shitty website to do the job for me, at risk of falling on its face again. This will be MY thing, where I will have complete control over content and appearance, running as a safe place where you guys can steal my time, as well including the entire backlog of posts which Formspring are about to swallow up (they are allowing me to export the data - thank God). Next round, things will be even better. This will all turn out to be a blessing in disguise, trust me. Just hang on for a bit.

Finally, to the 10 questions in my Inbox at this current time: I am sorry. But you guys will be the first to be answered on the new platform, I swear it. Just maybe not as quick as you’d like.

Love Jared.
(That’s a command, not a valediction)

UPDATE: Due to some "last minute deal", Formspring have announced they will no longer be shutting down. That's great, but I can't take the strain on my heart, and will not longer be using this temperamental website, instead opting to continue with the plan above.


  1. > a lot of links I have posted over the course of Juice Nothing will no longer lead anywhere

    Why not relink them to a cached version of the site?

    1. It's a good idea in theory, but that does mean I'd have to go back and relink every article I've posted in - which it a lot of work for not much reward. I'd rather just host the answers on my own site somewhere temporarily, which is an idea I'm toying with, yeah.