Fighting For Net Neutrality

The basic principle of Net Neutrality is that access to all websites and web services should be equal and that anyone can start their own website/service and make it accessible to anyone with internet access, just like any other website/service. This is important for everyone, especially for entrepreneurs.

Lots of big companies are trying make a profit by killing Net Neutrality. The reason for this was featured on Last Week Tonight With John Oliver. It is also illustrated by the hypothetical scenario described below where someone makes a call to their ISP to complain about internet speeds and access (as explained by Reddit user Arkadysmoon):

Me (after 50 minutes of juggling automated messaging and wait times): Yeah, so apparently I can’t access Facebook, Netflix or NYTimes? All I can read is the freaking NBC page.

Rep: Yes, ma’am. We’re sorry to hear you are having difficulty and are happy to help you with this matter. Please wait while I access your account.

… Rep: Ma’am, it looks like you only have the basic Internet Services package.

Me: Yeah, same one as last year.

Rep: Ma’am, in 2018, we are pleased to tell you we have actually improved our packages to better fit our customer’s needs. Your Basic Services Package covers your local news station and Comcast-approved affiliated websites only. If you wish to access more websites, you will need to upgrade your package to the Social Media, Streaming, or News Packages. If you want all three categories, you will need to upgrade to a VIP package. If you want access to more than 5 categories you will need to upgrade to the All Access Package.

Me: Uh, what?? Why? What do those cost? I want the service I had last year, I didn’t agree to any changes!

Rep: I understand ma’am. Your current Basic Services Package is the same price as last year at $79.99/month, each additional package is $9.99/month for unlimited access to the approved category. VIP Packages are an additional $49.99/month and each All Access Package is an additional $129.99/month.

Me: Are you @$*#&$ kidding me? If I want the same service as last year, I have to pay $210/month?! Rep: Yes, ma’am. And its unlimited access, so it really pays for itself the more time you spend on it.

Me: Uh, no…Why is there a change? I refuse to pay more for the same service. Isn’t it illegal to filter access to websites?

Rep: Ma’am, I’m pleased to tell you that in December 2017, Ajit Pai and the FCC decided to revoke Net Neutrality rules, allowing us at Comcast to better serve you with these customized packages. If you didn’t want this, you should have called your local government representative @ or submitted complaints to the FCC @ Have a nice day!

This is a future situation I’m afraid could happen if Net Neutrality rules are revoked this December.

Get the picture?

Net Neutrality gets attacked every few months and the only way to stop it is through activism. Basically letting politicians know that you are not happy with this. Another Reddit user, Dandymcstebb, supplied the email addresses of the five people voting on the issue. By contacting them, you can make a difference:

These are the emails of the 5 people on the FCC roster. These are the five people deciding the future of the internet.

The two women have come out as No votes. We need only to convince ONE of the other members to flip to a No vote to save Net Neutrality.

Currently PRO Net Neutrality: (thank them!)
– Mignon Clyburn – (confirmed ‘No’ vote)
– Jessica Rosenworcel – (confirmed ‘No’ vote)

– Ajit Pai –
–  Michael O’Rielly –
– Brendan Carr –

Spread this comment around! We need to go straight to the source. Be civil, be concise, and make sure they understand that what they’re about to do is UNAMERICAN.


I couldn’t have expressed it better myself. Let’s keep the internet free!

First Pass At Collecting Data On Startup Accelerators

It is hard to find a comprehensive list of every single startup accelerator that offers cash investment. At least one from the founder’s perspective.

Allow me to clarify. There are lists that already exist, but they tend to focus on the program’s performance, such as follow-on funding. This is relevant, but if you are just getting started as an entrepreneur you may be less concerned with that and more curious about when applications open and how much help they are offering. That is the reason why, when collecting information on startup accelerators, I focused on the following data points:

  1. Amount of cash investment
  2. Location of the program
  3. Application open date
  4. Application close date

Often this information is not clearly marked on the startup accelerator’s website and so I will be contacting each one individually to find out more. It also was not clear what part of the investment was in cash or services, another point I will follow up on.

I also found that on other lists, much of the data was stale. For example, I have already come across 58 accelerators that had shut down or converted to a seed fund. How annoying for a new founder to click on a link to an accelerator only to discover it is no longer running.

Yet another nuisance was data that grouped programs under one umbrella name. Flat6 runs an accelerator in Abu Dhabi, Beirut, Cairo, Jeddah and Tunis. The close date for applications is different for each. That is important information for the beginner entrepreneur, information that The MBA Is Dead will publish through its newsletter (sign up here).

Still, I did pretty good for a first pass at collecting data. We now have 149 accelerators in the database totaling  $5,465,100 in cash available for startups. In terms of accelerators per country, the United States leads with 71, followed by the United Kingdom with 19, Germany with 8, Italy and the Netherlands with 7, Australia with 5 and the rest with 3 or less.


With a separate dataset from that from above, I also looked at which months applications tend to open and close. Accelerators tend to only publish closing dates on their sites when they are in the scouting process. As I did this search in the month of June and July, the data is probably skewed due to this fact, but I thought I’d give it a go anyway, to see what results I’d get. See the results below.




I also found 34 startup accelerators that have on going open applications. Meaning they accepted applications continuously.

As my datasets grow and become more accurate, these graphs will be more interesting, both from the founders and the accelerators perspective. My guess is that we will eventually see that there is a ‘season’ for accelerators, much like there is for school.








Launch Of The MBA Is Dead

Hello! Eric Brotto here. Over the last decade I have worked with hundreds of startups, either on my own or supporting others. I have also worked at 3 startup accelerators, both small and large. The smallest was Startup Reykjavik, the largest being Startupbootcamp, which now counts around 20 programs worldwide. The third accelerator I worked at was Rockstart, a mid-sized accelerator with programs in the Netherlands and now Colombia.

In that time I noticed a lack of information for helping new entrepreneurs get funded by startup accelerators. This is the catalyst behind The MBA Is Dead. Here are my first objectives:

  1. To notify you on funding opportunities via The MBA Is Dead newsletter and social media channels
  2. To empower your decisions on choosing a startup accelerator by sharing up-to-date and comprehensive data on the industry
  3. To post guides on how to grow your startup from zero customers to the post-accelerator phase

As you can tell from the objectives The MBA Is Dead is geared toward the first time entrepreneur. If you have already gone through a startup accelerator, or have users in the tens of thousands, The MBA Is Dead is not for you. On the other hand, if you are thinking of starting your own company, or you have already started your own company, but are struggling to get your first cash investment, or finding it difficult to get past that first investment, then The MBA Is Dead is for you.

Right now my focus is collecting information on startup accelerators. In particular, I’m searching for key dates of every startup accelerator in the world that offers cash investment. I’m also looking at how much they invest. That way, every time an application opens, I can notify you via email or Facebook, Instagram or Twitter and you can then apply.

I want to make sure that this information is useful and that you feel you are getting the support you need to be successful. To that end, I would invite you to email me or text me if you need help. My address is eric [at] thembaisdead [dot] com. Or you can text me on Whatsapp at +44 7775 865 663. Looking forward to hearing from you!