Hello Pinboard Customers, From Linden Tibbets, the CEO of IFTTT

Here is the email I received from the CEO of IFTTT, in response to the whole Pinboard kerfuffle, a few minutes ago. It looks like they've done a little soul searching, and wanted to apologize:

Hello Pinboard Customers, 

We've made mistakes over the past few days both in communication and judgment. I'd like to apologize for those mistakes and attempt to explain our intentions. I also pledge to do everything we can to keep Pinboard on IFTTT.

IFTTT gives people confidence that the services they love will work together. There are more services in the world than IFTTT can possibly integrate and maintain alone. We are working on a developer platform that solves this by enabling service owners to build and maintain their integration for the benefit of their customers. 

The vast majority of Channels on IFTTT are now built on that developer platform by the services themselves. We made a mistake in asking Pinboard to migrate without fully explaining the benefits of our developer platform. It's our responsibility to prove that value before asking Pinboard to take ownership of their Channel. We hope to share more on the value of our platform soon.

I also want to address Pinboard’s concerns with our Developer Terms of Service. These terms were specific to our platform while in private beta and were intended to give us the flexibility to evolve our platform in close partnership with early developers. We’ve always planned to update and clarify those terms ahead of opening our platform and we are doing so now. We are specifically changing or removing areas around competing with IFTTT, patents, compatibility and content ownership. The language around content ownership is especially confusing, so I'd like to be very clear on this: as a user of IFTTT you own your content.

I truly appreciate all of your feedback, concerns and patience. Helping services work together is what IFTTT does. We respect and appreciate the open web. This very openness has been instrumental in enabling us to build IFTTT and we fully intend to pay it forward.

Linden Tibbets


I want to believe. I want to believe. However, when you build a company on top of public APIs, and you do not have a public API paying it forward, you do not have ANY transparency around your partner program, and there isn't even a pulic URL for me to reference as part of your apology --- I just can't believe. I'm sorry.

You have a great idea IFTTT. You ave captured the imagination of the average person when it came to what the API potential is. The problem is you don't have API in your DNA. You just don't understand how APIs can enable partnerships like you enjoyed with Pinboard at one point in time, and you took it for granted once you found success. I've seen many API driven companies make this same mistake. 

Without a public API, a transparent partner program, and a public communication strategy, you won't recover from this.