I need your vote for “Maker of the Year”, but it’s not for me.

Eric Willis
Makers Gonna Make
Published in
4 min readDec 14, 2015


I need to tell you a story about a great person named Mubashar Iqbal (You can vote for him NOW or later. Do it NOW!)

So Ryan Hoover just sent out an email today mentioning one of the Golden Kitty Award categories. After checking out the WTF Products of the Year, I started checking out the other categories. The one category that immediately stood out was the Maker of the Year award.

It was great to see all the familiar faces (I talk to many of these makers daily over at Maker Hunt). I consider many of the people nominated to be friends, but there is one person that really stands out and I feel really deserves recognition: Mubashar Iqbal (We all call him “Mubs”).

My first experience with Mubs exemplifies what would become a common experience for many others. 10 months ago, I launched Maker Success. I had been collecting blogs posts about Product Hunt launches. At some point, it became very difficult to organize all of them on Medium so I decided to just create a dedicated website to share all of the stories. So when I got the site “ready”, I launched it on Product Hunt. The problem was that it wasn’t ready and it crashed 20 minutes after the launch. This is when Mubs reached out like your friendly neighborhood Spider Man. To make a long story short: Mubs worked with me to completely rebuild the site and re-launch it in an absurdly quick turnaround. He just reached out and asked if he could help. I certainly need it because the site was very buggy. We hopped on skype and have been friends every since.

Later, Mubs would also help me (along with others) launch Maker Hunt. If you don’t know, Maker Hunt is as slack community for Product Hunt Makers. I wrote about why it was created here. One of the most common themes on Maker Hunt is someone having an issue (or wanting to build a product) and Mubs reaching out to help. I can’t remember how many times someone has sent me a DM in slack asking me for feedback on a product and the response to my question “Who helped you with this?” has been “Oh Mubs reached out and helped me build the backend”. Not only is he a great developer, he’s one the most helpful people I’ve ever met. If he can squeeze an extra minute of his time to help you with an issue, he’ll do it…and that’s without you specifically asking for help.

There are many people who are Product Hunt “makers” because Mubs built their product. He inspires people to build things and he helps them do it. I like to call him “The maker who makes makers”. Many of the 20+ products he’s made on Product Hunt are not his own side projects and are just him supporting another person’s goal. They have come to fruition because Mubs wanted to help someone pursue an idea… to build something to help other people. Having talked with 1000+ makers about Product Hunt, once of the most surprising responses that I got to a question was that they’ve built a particular product solely for Product Hunt… that without the quick validation and support of the Product Hunt community, they would not have pursued an idea. Things are being built solely because of Product Hunt and Mubs is helping more people builds things than anyone I know (btw. Some of these side projects have gotten people hired, gotten people funding, etc). And here he is again today:

I’ve always said that Product Hunt is great because of the people not solely because of the products. I’ve been tracking products since the late 90s. Product Hunt certainly helps me discover great products, but ultimately, it’s something I’ve been doing for a long time and that’s not the only value for me. What I love about Product Hunt is the people… the community. Some of my best friends are people that I’ve met on Product Hunt. It’s a community of some of the warmest, most helpful, most positive, and knowledgeable people I’ve ever met. Mubs is one of the smartest and nicest people I’ve ever met. If I never discover another product on Product Hunt, I’ll always be thankful for Product Hunt for connecting me with people like Mubs.

He’s too humble to toot his own horn, but I know he would love being acknowledged by the community. Please vote for him! He deserves it.