In the August 16, 2012 issue of METROWEEKLY, Will O’Bryan inteviews Johnny Skandros, the creator of Scruff. For those who are saying ‘what the heck is Scruff’, it’s an SmartPhone profiles app that you can use to spot and chat with gay men in your vicinity. Except of the interview below:
MW: Why? What niche were you trying to fill [in creating scruff]? What did you need to offer?
SKANDROS: It was a community I knew existed. It was a community I saw emerging here in New York. I didn’t realize how global it was. I just kind of felt the name ”Scruff” would appeal to a lot of different guys and kind of help build this community that I envisioned. And it did.
I think Scruff is a great name. We’ve built an amazing brand and a lot of guys identify with it. The name really helped it take off. It could get really big, it could fail – I just had a gut feeling about it.
Eric Silverberg is my business partner. He writes all the code and manages the servers. We started this together. He’s behind the scenes, though. The name, the idea around Scruff, was something I pitched to him and he was all for it.
We met many, many years ago – probably eight years ago – through mutual friends, and stayed in touch. We hit is off as friends. I really admired and respected him. He was at Google at the time. A really smart guy. He had moved to New York after business schools. He was here, I was here….
MW: And you said, ”I’ve got this idea, can you write up some code?”
SKANDROS: No. He wanted to do some sort of app, but he didn’t know what. He started dabbling with code. That evolved into Scruff.
MW: When did Scruff launch?
SKANDROS: July 2010.
MW: When did you realize you were on to something?
SKANDROS: I think it was after the first week.
MW: That long?