It's often said that your first idea will not be your best idea, and so it goes for a number of startups. Sometimes, a product or spin-off company turns out to be the real breakout star, thus leaving the original product behind.
Sometimes the company can be sold off; other times it is forced to shut down. It's a little sad, but it happens. The latter fate is now befalling Justin.tv, a social platform for broadcasting video, it was announced in a post on the company's homepage on Tuesday.
The service is being shut down now that that Twitch, its spin-off product that provides a social video platform for gamers, has been sold off: it was purchased by Google for $1 billion last month.
It's not like we shouldn't have seen this coming though, especially since the company officially changed its name from Justin.tv to Twitch Interactive back in February.
"Justin.tv pioneered live video on the Internet and spawned one of the largest video platforms ever: Twitch. Justin.tv was officially renamed Twitch Interactive Inc. in February of 2014 and Twitch is now the focus of the company's resources," the company wrote in the blog post. "Unfortunately that means we need to shut down Justin.tv. We thank all of our broadcasters and viewers for 7 years of live video memories."
All Justin.tv accounts have already been closed, and users "will be unable to access any settings or content." Videos that were created on Justin.tv are no longer accessible for download, since video archiving and VODs were removed on June 15th.
For those who used their Justin.tv account to login to Twitch, those accounts will still work on Twitch, but the site is recommending that they transfer their accounts to Twitch. Users are being given a full month to transfer their accounts.
Information that will be transferred includes usernames, email addresses associated with the account, and any Twitch channel that is currently being followed. Followers and VODS won't be transferred, though.
So what should Justin.tv users do now? Simply, go use a different site.
"If you are interested in broadcasting any video game, or gaming-related content, please check out www.Twitch.tv," the company said. "For other types of content, there are a number of live sites still out there who support live video broadcasting: YouTube, Ustream and Livestream, for instance."
Founded in 2006, Justin.tv was originally a 24/7 broadcast of the life of founder and CEO Justin Kan. Eventually it became a platform for over 60 different channels for people to broadcast their live videos.
In 2007, it raised an $8 million Series A from Alsop Louie Partners and Felicis Ventures.
Twitch, which allows gamers to record live broadcasts of their videogames, was spun-off from Twitch in 2011. In total, the company has raised $35 million, most recently a Series C $20 million investment led by Thrive Capital with participation from WestSummit Capital and Take-Two Interactive Software in October 2013.
Twitch put up this video, memorializing seven years of Justin.tv:
(Image source: justin.tv)