UrbanSitter’s Social Babysitting Service Granted $1.75 Million in Allowance

UrbanSitter, which may become the high-tech version of “The Baby-Sitters Club,” now has a bigger allowance with which to operate.

The San Francisco-based company is somewhat similar to the teen-oriented book series by Ann M. Martin, in which a group of middle-school students help parents find babysitters.

But in this version, instead of an elaborate phone tree, it uses modern communication tools like Facebook. The UrbanSitter site helps parents find sitters based on their availability, and even on their experience working for Facebook friends and friends of friends.

UrbanSitter has secured $1.75 million in seed funding from First Round Capital. Rustic Canyon Partners, Menlo Ventures and several angels also participated.

In September, AllThingsD’s Liz Gannes reported that the company had launched in one market, and had assisted with 300 babysitting bookings.

Since then, it has expanded to San Diego, Napa and Sonoma Valleys, Seattle, Boulder and Lake Tahoe. Next month, it will roll out in New York, Chicago, Denver and St. Louis.

The funding will be used for product development, such as mobile bookings, and new features, including online payments to sitters. The capital will also go toward expansion into new cities.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work