The Fake Startup That Wasn't

FOOL-TOPIA: This week, 1776's Liz Elfman interviewed Youtopia CEO and co-founder Simeon Schnapper, during which time Schnapper revealed that Youtopia had originally been a "fake" company. Though now a serious endeavor, Youtopia was originally born out of Schnapper's involvement on a film project. In the project, Schnapper and his partners endeavored to create a fake edtech company and take it "all the way up to an IPO, filming it all along." 

So what sort of company was to be the protagonist of this film? Schnapper says, "A fake company that would incorporate all of the typical highs and lows and passions of the startup world, and would spread virally in social media, with antagonists and protagonists and Aristotelian curves." In a word, Youtopia. 

Despite these untraditional roots, Youtopia is now revenue-generating and was a winner in the Mozilla Digital Learning Competition in 2013. And we're not fooling.

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