Wattpad

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Wattpad06
Wattpad logo.svg
Type Private
Headquarters Toronto, Canada
Area served Worldwide
Founder(s) Allen Lau
Ivan Yuen
Owner WP Technology, Inc.[1]
Employees 96
Website wattpad.com
Alexa rank Increase 758 (May 2016)[2]
Registration Required to read, create and modify books and stories
Launched November 2006; 9 years ago (2006-11)
Current status Active

Wattpad is a storytelling community in which users are able to post articles, stories, fan fiction, and poems, either through the website or the mobile app. The content includes work by undiscovered writers, published writers, new writers, with all users being given an equal chance to write popular works. Users are able to comment and like stories or join groups associated with the website. Around half of the users are US based; other users come from the UK, Canada, the Philippines, Australia, Russia, United Arab Emirates and other countries.[3]

History[edit]

Wattpad originated in 2006, as the result of a collaboration between Allen Lau and Ivan Yuen.[4]

In February 2007, Wattpad announced the addition of over 17,000 e-books from Project Gutenberg making them available to mobile users.[5] According to a June 2009 Wattpad press release, the mobile application had been downloaded over 5 million times.[6] In March 2009, an iPhone version was released. This was followed by the launch on BlackBerry App World in April 2009, Google Android in June 2009 and Apple iPad in April 2010. In December 2015, Windows Phone 8.1 and Windows 10 Mobile Version was released.

Growth and funding[edit]

To date, Wattpad has received almost $70M in funding from investors.[7] In 2011, Wattpad announced that it received $3.5M in total funding from its current investors, and from W Media Ventures, Golden Venture Partners, and Union Square Ventures, which is an early investor in "Twitter, Tumblr and other social-media success stories."[8] Then in June 2012, Wattpad raised $17.3M from a group of venture funds led by Khosla Ventures.[9]

The latest round of financing happened in April 2014, where Wattpad announced $46M in Series C funding led by OMERS ventures.[10]

Awards[edit]

In December 2011, Toronto-based Wattpad was selected as the hottest Digital Media company in the country at the Canadian Innovation Exchange.[11] In the same year, co-founder and CEO Ivan Yuen was also recognized as a top Canadian entrepreneur at the Impact Infused Awards, sponsored by Deloitte.[12]

Wattpad in the Philippines[edit]

In March 2014, Wattpad signed a contract with Pop Fiction, an imprint of Summit Media, to print Filipino Wattpad stories in the Philippines.[13] Other publishers from the Philippines also publish stories from Wattpad.

Since then, some Wattpad stories have also been adapted into numerous numbers of teleseries. Filipino television network TV5, in partnership with Wattpad and Life is Beautiful Publishing Company launched Wattpad Presents, a series of Wattpad stories turned into TV dramas. (Wattpad stories aired on the show are usually those that were published by LIB Publishing.)

ABS-CBN also made several adaptation of Wattpad stories such as "My App Boyfie" by Noreen Capili (noringai), starring James Reid and Nadine Lustre, and the coming-of-age series Bagito starring Nash Aguas, Alexa Ilacad and Ella Cruz. Pop Fiction's best selling book, "She's Dating the Gangster", written by Bianca Bernardino (SGWannaB) as a Wattpad original, became the first Wattpad story adapted into a full-length motion picture starring Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla. The movie adaptation was produced by ABS-CBN's film production arm, Star Cinema. Liza Soberano and Enrique Gil also starred on the film "Just The Way You Are", based on the Wattpad story "The Bet" by Ilurvbooks.

Wattpad After Dark[edit]

In February 2015, Wattpad launched a second standalone app called "After Dark".[14] The app focuses specifically on the romance genre and is for readers 17+.

Usage[edit]

Statistics[edit]

As of April 2014:

  • 85% of its traffic and usage comes from mobile devices,[15]
  • the site has 35 million unique visitors per month,[15]
  • there are over 100,000 story uploads per day,[16]
  • there have been over two million writers.[16]

New authors and teens[edit]

The most frequently voted stories appear on the "What's Hot List". According to the profiles visible on the site, many of these authors are teenagers.

Wattpad section also has a Featured Story list, which promotes content reviewed and approved by staff and an editorial review board. Many of these featured stories are written by self-published and professional writers from different genres. Latest updated version of Wattpad help the writers to promote their stories through other social media websites.

Some users choose to use Wattpad to show their artwork via media, which is included as a book under the Random category.

Contests[edit]

Wattpad holds several smaller contests a year and one major one. The largest is the annual Watty Awards. The second largest is Just Write It. In 2011, The Watty Awards introduced three entry levels (Popular, On The Rise, and Undiscovered) to allow greater chances of winning for every type of writer. Contests are open to anyone who has a Wattpad account.

During the summer of 2012, Wattpad in collaboration with Margaret Atwood, Canadian poet/novelist/literary critic, held the "Wattys": the first major poetry contest offering a chance to poets on Wattpad to compete against each other in one of two categories, either as an "Enthusiast" or a "Competitor". It has been going ever since.

Controversies[edit]

Early in its history, some of the large volume of user-uploaded material hosted on Wattpad was copyrighted material created by authors who did not grant republication rights. In May 2009, an article in 'The New York Times' noted, "Sites like Scribd and Wattpad, which invite users to upload documents like college theses and self-published novels, have been the target of industry grumbling in recent weeks, as illegal reproductions of popular titles have turned up on them".[17]

The Wattpad website notes, "We do not welcome upload of material that violate its copyright terms," but also states "it is simply not possible to screen and verify all posted content."[18] In response to industry criticism, in April 2009 (before the publication of the New York Times article that named Wattpad as a vehicle for user-generated e-book infringement) Wattpad announced an "Authors In Charge" program, designed to allow authors or their representatives to identify and directly remove infringing content from the site,[18] but this program is designed specifically for "authors with published books for sale."

Competitors and similar sites[edit]

Bookmate and the long-established and popular sites FanFiction.Net and Fiction Press (a spin-off site for original fiction) also serve as hubs for online prose.

References[edit]