Buried in the buzz for Wattpad Tap, Hooked, and Amazon Rapids lies a small UK startup called Penpee.
This startup describes itself as a "Netflix for short stories". Creators can publish stories consisting of (at most) 5 chapters and 6,000 words and will be paid when readers finish each chapter.
Readers can buy credits to read stories, or they can earn them by referring friends, reporting plagiarized stories, and continued participation. Each credit is worth 0.02 cents (a fiftieth of a cent) and a chapter can cost up to 3 credits.
Penpee is based in the UK, and is relatively new – it only launched a few months ago. According to founder Tijan Penpee, the startup currently has over 300 users.
Edit: Penpee sent me a press release with more info (DOCX).
Chris Meadows February 24, 2017 um 9:20 am
Pen pee? So, what, leaky ink?
I’ve had my share of cheap pens pee on me, but I can’t say that it encouraged me that much to share my stories online…
Steve Zissou February 24, 2017 um 10:01 am
What on earth is that… pen pee… read the piss of our pens!
Beyond the questionable name… a maximum of 5 chapters with a max payout of 6 cents per chapter… so revenue per reader can be at most 30 cents?
That’s certainly interesting.
Nate Hoffelder February 24, 2017 um 12:09 pm
I don’t think much of it either.
And it’s not 30 cents but three-tenths of a cent per read.
Steve Zissou February 24, 2017 um 5:15 pm
Three tenths of a cent… Well now it’s no longer interesting!
It certainly isn’t much of an incentive.
It brings visions of those sketchy writing job postings where they want you to write a 1500 word blog post for $5 to my mind.
Mark Williams – The International Indie Author February 25, 2017 um 5:20 am
The pee in this instance may well be a play on the British slang for a post-decimal GBP penny – we would say 10p or 50p rather than ten pence of fifty pence.
Nate Hoffelder February 25, 2017 um 7:05 am
Actually, I think it really is his name.