Tumblr Gets More Money, Now It Just Has to Make Some

Blogging platform Tumblr has raised another round of financing from its existing venture backers, Spark Capital and Union Square Ventures, putting pressure on the company to start generating revenue. It is exploring various options, but founder David Karp has said that he is “opposed to advertising.”

Rojas and Block Raise $3.2M Financing for Gdgt

Former superstar gadget bloggers Peter Rojas and Ryan Block have raised $3.2 million in financing from a group of venture capital firms and private individuals to fund their “crowdsourced” gadget review site, called gdgt. The company says it has hundreds of thousands of registered users.

Twitter Raising $100M in Funding?

twitterlogoTwitter is close to securing $100 million in new funding, the Wall Street Journal is reporting. Mutual fund T. Rowe Price and private equity firm Insight Venture Partners are said to be the new investors in the micromessaging site. Spark Capital and Institutional Venture Partners, who have previously invested in the San Francisco, Calif.-based company, are also said to be participating in the funding round.

Twitter doesn’t generate revenue — and hasn’t yet hammered out a business model — but the aforementioned investors are valuing it at around $1 billion, the Journal reports. Twitter has raised $55 million thus far.

A Clear Lane to Nowhere

Updated on 6/23: Thanks to those of you who emailed or tweeted back, the Clear fiasco is a much bigger problem than most people realize. This email pretty much sums it up:

They just sold me a renewal. Worse, they sent lots of solicitations to buy Clear cards as gifts (!) That must border on fraud since presumably they knew when they were selling me and doing those solicitations that they were “in the zone of insolvency” or whatever that legal term is.

I couldn’t agree more. Any company that is about to go belly-up should know not to be actively solicit new business from unsuspecting consumers. I have also heard they were pushing “Clear cards” as Father’s Day gifts. Now imagine if you gave one of those cards to someone!

Original Post: It was one of those logical ideas that couldn’t go wrong. Tightened security at the airports meant that one had to spend extra hours going through security checks, something that wasn’t convenient for busy executives, who didn’t want to waste hours standing around in lines. From that inconvenience came the idea — what if you got registered as a traveler, got approvals from all the right authorities, and received a special Clear card that would allow you to get through a special security check line called the Clear Lane?

clearlanes In 2004, founder & media magnate Steven Brill started the company, Verified Identity Pass, and over its lifetime convinced a stellar line-up of investors such as Lockhead Martin (s lmt) and Spark Capital to pump as much as $54 million into it. Today the company shut down — as much a victim of the economic downturn as it was of its perceived value. The downturn has led to travel budgets shrinking drastically and with it the number of executives in need of a Clear-type service. Many of the everyday travelers actually cared about the service that cost about $200 a year. The company managed to sign up just over 250,000 subscribers.