Bringing Back the Company From the Dead: How We Got Here and Where We are Going

Putting the “We” in WeGreenlight

Twelve months ago, WeGreenlight was stalled as we struggled to find the real value we could provide our community.

I was convinced that we could scale our community as is because I believed in my idea and I wanted to execute it. After a major pivot, I thought we were done.

My co-founder Iro knew that there was no such thing as a final product in software. While I tried to raise funds and grow our community with our original site design, Iro pushed for a redesign that addressed our new direction from the ground up.

It took me six months to realize he was right after hearing feedback from hundreds of others including our users.

Why was I so stupid? So stubborn? So steadfast?

How many great innovations were stopped by their own creators?

We can’t be afraid of feedback and can’t be afraid to be wrong. That was the last lesson I learned before finally loosening my grip and going with the flow of ideation, opinions, and innovation.

Since then WeGreenlight’s design, platform, and community has transformed into so much more than my mind alone could have imagined.

Iro led our redesign with our new team members Salina Mendoza and Kina De Santis.

Listening to the thoughts and opinions of our team and users, WeGreenlight has much more in store over the next 12 months.

Our “Actionable Insights” will help connect you to the right resources and tools to help you develop and launch your ideas.

Our iOS and Android App will allow you to Greenlight and post on the go with a much simpler experience.

And we’re working on something that will bring your Greenlights into the physical real world.

Today, we are officially launching our new gender options on WeGreenlight. We wanted to make sure our community remains welcoming to all and ensures our community is as diverse as our ideas.

Developing these new options was not a simple task, we took extensive time to research and understand the LGBTQ community before we started developing. We didn’t want to treat this as a simple diversity checkmark but more of a celebration of the evolution of life. This is something that is missing in the Market Research industry as a whole.

We had hoped to launch this feature during pride month, but came across technical difficulties in revising our database to include more options. Our original goal was to copy the options popularized by Facebook’s 58 gender options and create new character drawings that covered all genders.

Generic “Diversity” Stock Avatars

That was the plan at least until our delay brought about an opportunity…

The week I found out our databasing was delayed and would not be able to launch the new gender options, I was in San Francisco. That same week was Pride and I got a chance to experience the community, talk to people, and see how they represented themselves.

I quickly learned that simply adding the same gender options as Facebook and adding character icons/avatars to each selection defeated the entire purpose of claiming one’s gender identity. It turned our genders into caricatures and expectations once again propagating the same issues the Trans, LGTBQ and Feminist movements try hard to fight.

I was merely shoving in a diversity checkmark into our community without really understanding what it meant, what it could do to make our community better, and what we could do to be better for everyone.

I remember staying up until 2AM that night rethinking how to approach the new gender and identity options on WeGreenlight. We wanted to emphasize that we aren’t just a caricature and that as different as we all may be we are still the same.

I came up with using Bulb our greenlight mascot and applying subtle colors to identify what type of Greenlighter we all were.

In the animation, we briefly see colors related to a gender identity but always comes right back to being a “green” Greenlighter.

We also spoke to people within the Trans community who told us that we could simplify our LGBTQ options to still be inclusive but not overwhelming for people to pick from. We want to make everyone feel welcome but not make your options more cumbersome simply because you want more options.

So now you can pick from 15 new options that we help break down into submenus to make the selection process easier:

Agender

  • Agender
  • Androgyne

Transgender

  • Transgender
  • Female to Male (FTM)
  • Male to Female (MTF)

Transsexual

  • Transsexual
  • Transsexual Female
  • Transsexual Male

Genderqueer

  • Genderqueer
  • Gender Fluid
  • Pangender
  • Nonconforming
  • Bigender

Intersex

  • Other

We hope that you enjoy the use of our new options even if you never use it for yourself. Even if it may not apply to you, your community, your supporters, and your Greenlighters just got a little better.

And for any readers that are proudly LGBTQ or still discovering who they are, we welcome you to WeGreenlight as a community to share your ideas and discover ideas you truly want to move forward.

We also welcome your feedback on what we can do to make these new options better. Let us know if we are there is anything that we have missed. Just like the ideas on our site, we welcome all the feedback we can get.

We are building this community together.

With love,

Peter + WGL Team



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